Your leaking thatched hut during the restoration of a pre-Enlightenment state.


Hello, my name is Judas Gutenberg and this is my blaag (pronounced as you would the vomit noise "hyroop-bleuach").


decay & ruin
Biosphere II
dead malls
Irving housing

got that wrong

appropriate tech
Arduino μcontrollers
Backwoods Home
Fractal antenna

fun social media stuff

(nobody does!)

Like my brownhouse:
   beneath the old carpet
Tuesday, December 18 2012
Today I took delivery of a pair of 433MHz serial data receiver modules similar to the ineffectual one used in the Meade TE923W-M weather station. Unlike the one used in the weather station, though, these require a 5, not 3.3 volt power supply. I hooked up one of the modules to power and connected its output to an LED, and this allowed me to visualize transmissions coming from the various sensors. I couldn't look at the data and make any sense of it (at least not with such a primitive setup), but it did give me a visual sense of what was happening in the invisible 433MHz chunk of the electromagnetic spectrum. Next I wanted to see if this module could actually replace the one removed from the Meade weather station. So I connected the module's data output to the Meade's data input through a voltage divider (so the signal would range between zero and 3 volts instead of between zero and five volts). Unfortunately, this arrangement did not lead to the detection and display of any sensor data, indicating that either the replacement was doing too little (which seemed doubtful, given how limited the electronics on the ineffectual receiver had been) or too much (enforcing a baud rate or error detection for examples). It's also possible that my improvised voltage-divider-based level shifter sourced insufficient amperage.

Today we got the word tomorrow the guys at Carpet One could install the bamboo floor in the first floor office, so this evening we quickly dismantled everything in there and temporarily stashed it in the mud room, living room, and on the dining room table (where Badger, Gretchen's computer, took up residence &mash; connecting to the household network via WiFi instead of ethernet). To save ourselves some money on this install, I tore up all the old 18-year-old carpet myself, revealing a disturbingly-discolored OSB subfloor. Beneath the northeast corner of the carpet (near where the pipes to the solar deck pierce the first floor office on their way from the boiler room) I found a bunch of soapy white powder that I feared might be rat poison. To be on the safe side, I bagged it up and put it at the very center of a bag of trash destined for the Hurley dump.
I should mention that this was the first time since moving into this house that we'd ever completely cleared out the first floor office. It was the room we initially moved all our stuff into while the rest of the house was being painted, and ever since it's been the crappy room we think nothing of modifying to serve temporary purposes. Most recently it served as a corral to isolate Ramona while her knee was healing, and in the past it was where Eleanor spent her months recuperating from two different knee surgeries. The main impetus for replacing the carpet was the several times Ramona pissed into it while corraled. Originally Gretchen had wanted to replace the old wall-to-wall carpet with another carpet, but I'd somehow convinced her to go with bamboo and a smaller area rug instead.

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