greyduck.net

Looking For Quacks In The Pavement

Category: Geekery (page 1 of 82)

Pulp Pulp Culture Culture

I should know better than to tag songs on “best-of” albums.

It’s an okay song, I just didn’t necessarily want to hear it twice within half an hour.

What we’ve got here is failure to communicate the result of my ratings-tagging both the Thomas Dolby record Aliens Ate My Buick and the Thomas Dolby best-of compilation record Retrospectacle. I use MediaMonkey to build random playlists. Some are for specific bands or genres, others boil down to “give me X minutes of songs with a Y star rating or higher.”

The above screenshot is from my “MEHs Haul” playlist: 90 minutes of three-star tracks that haven’t been played in the last few weeks. I’m used to getting studio and live versions of the same song, especially in my workday-length random playlist. The same studio recording twice in relatively rapid succession, though? That’s my own danged fault.

Maintaining a digital music library is an ever-ongoing task, apparently.

The Carol Corps

We are, one is forced to admit, a Funko Pops household. Like, we’re not addicted to buying all of them, nothing like that. But the “I can quit any time” line is just that, a line. Case in point:

Some time ago, before the movie was anything more than wishful thinking, I picked up a Captain Marvel. Cool! Onto the shelf she went.

Then the movie happened, and I picked up a Vers. Okay! I had two different Captain-Marvel-ish Funko Pops on display. Fine, fine, no problems.

Then my birthday arrived and I found myself with another variant. Boy howdy did Funko go nuts on these or what?

Then came the Captain Marvel “blind box” (Vyx ordered it, not me!) with two more. And a sixth arrived from… look, I don’t even remember, okay? But that one glows in the dark. Bonus!

End result?

All the Captain Marvel Funko Pops (with bonus Voltron crew)

Look! I have my very own Carol Corps!

(For fun, and at Vyx’s suggestion, I took another quick pic:)

(It may or may not be good to be the king…)

Edit: I was putting away dishes, which included a Captain Marvel glass (part of the aforementioned blind box) and, well:

We’ve had a set of “naughty words” glasses for years and years. In a way, this was inevitable.

New phone + Nature park excursion

It began when Kyla’s previous phone (an aging Moto X Pure) started going kaput in a big way. After some research, she went to Best Buy on Friday and picked up a Nokia 6.1 as a replacement. That phone’s just a smidgen more powerful than my Moto G5 Plus, which makes it a huge upgrade for her. Huzzah!

Well. My phone had some issues as well and is nearing the end of active support. Plus, being a Lenovorola, it has some… quirks. So I figured, fine, let’s just get out ahead of the problem and use some of that sweet, sweet tax refund money to upgrade my own device. Saturday, while out on our grocery run, we swung by Best Buy and I nabbed a Nokia 7.1 (in blue, not that it matters because once the protective case goes on nobody’s going to see its natural color again).

How am I liking it so far? Quite a bit, albeit with some getting-used-to involved because it’s a longer, narrower device than my previous two phones. Text is smaller as a consequence. There’s also that weird “notch” display element at the top, and the fingerprint sensor is on the back with almost no physical guide to tell you where to tap your finger. (Once the case I ordered arrives, finding the sensor should cease to be a problem.) The phone is definitely peppier, and with the SD card I took out of the tablet (it wasn’t being used for anything since I haven’t made any time-lapse videos in ages) I’m able to put a whole lot of music on there instead of just a few hours’ worth.

Within 24 hours we went from being a fully Motorola household to a fully Nokia household, and we’re both quite pleased about that.

Today, because it’s absolutely gorgeous outside, we hiked around at one of our favorite places: The Tualatin Hills Nature Park. I played stevedore, carrying around our water bottles and battery packs and the “big” camera in my backpack. The trees lack leaves as of yet so it was up to the moss and ferns and some grasses to provide greenery. We didn’t see many birds but wow, were there ever gartner snakes all over the place! They all slithered under cover as soon as we could see them, which is a shame because I really wanted a picture. I had to settle for using the Go Snapshot feature of Pok√©mon Go for my “wildlife” photos.

Taillow reading about his distant cousins.

“You shall not pass!”

We also crossed the world’s smallest bridge.

Step on, or step over? You decide.

All in all, a lovely day out. We’ll have to do this again once the trees are somewhat leafier…

Mobile testing

Before I go looking around for an app with which to post content from my phone, I figure I should try using the built-in mobile web interface as a test. Let’s see how it works.

Here we see a dapper older gentleman, karate-chopping a city for its money.

And I’m using the new WordPress “block editor” because what the heck.

I guess this is doable. I’m not sure if I actually like it though. Ideally I should be in front of a proper computer to do any useful, long-form writing. But in a pinch? I guess it’ll do.

I expect to be haunted by Enzo Ferrari’s ghost now.

I’m not sure how to feel about assembling LEGO doodads as a creative outlet. All I’m doing is following instructions. On the other hand, if I take a lot of photos and write a snarky blog post about it… yeah, here we go then.

Continue reading

Pi Are Somewhat Rectangular Actually

The power supply finally came in! I rushed home to finalize the physical part of the build. Easy peasy.

With everything assembled and plugged in, it was time to load the new operating system onto the MicroSD card (you can see it poking out just a bit from the front of the case in the above picture). I originally picked one of the purely music-player oriented projects but realized two things:

  1. This thing’s going to route through the TV via HDMI anyway.
  2. Of the library managers that aren’t MediaMonkey I’ve ever worked with, Kodi is the only one to let me make a smart randomized playlist using the Mood tag in my music files. (I use the Mood tag “BGM” to indicate appropriate background music tracks for light social gatherings, such as board game nights.)

So I switched to OSMC, which is a Raspberry-Pi-specific build for Kodi. Once I got that loaded onto the SD card, I hooked everything up and pressed the power button. Lo and behold!

Could it really be that easy?

Well, no. I mean yes, but no. My next tasks were to install Samba (it’s an option inside of OSMC itself so that’s handy), update the IP to a fixed location so we can reliably reach the share from our computers, format and mount the 120GB SSD, copy over the music library, convince Kodi to load the music library, and create the first test BGM playlist.

Results, though:

Would I recommend this to other tinkerers who want a living room music player that doubles as a shared network music library source? If you don’t mind dealing with tiny fiddly bits and are comfortable with some Linux command line shenanigans… yes. So far I’m quite pleased.

I wish the Pi version of Kodi had visualizations. I’m going to miss that.

Now to uninstall Kodi from the Amazon Fire TV box… maybe tomorrow.

« Older posts

© 2019 greyduck.net

Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑