Almost two weeks unemployed

I’ve been unemployed for almost two weeks now. Loving it so far. What have I been up to?

Kids stuff

I got to go to my kids’ music class. I had attended one of the early sessions, months ago; this is only my second session. On the same day, I took my daughter, Lydia to swim class, which, though she’s been doing since 4 months of age, I’ve only witnesses 4 or 5 times. She and I will be visiting the local pool a lot this summer which is only 2 or 3 blocks away.

I took the kids to the St John’s parade; a local thing. Robie was in the parade with her Poekelon school She’s training for her brown sash, just before black.

We went to a Mother’s Day get-together on Sunday. We were there most of the day. Being a Sunday, I would have been able to do this anyway, but it was different because I didn’t feel anything else pulling at me. I could just enjoy it.

I took Lydia to her “Little Monkeys” class at Robie’s Poekelon school

There’s another dad on the block that’s a stay at home dad. We met at the park down the street.

All kids stuff I hadn’t been privy to before. Oh, and I got the go ahead from Robie to get the old “snip snip”, so workin on that. 1

Garden stuff

Much of my free time has been spent in the garden. Since I’ll be at home more, I going to cut my own grass. The gardener we had was mostly great… but here and there something I planted disappeared 2. So Lydia and I went to get a lawnmower, albeit a smaller walk behind model

Going for a test drive

Last year, I did some hydroponic experiments inspired by this video:

That was very successful for me for growing basil. This year, I’m doing more of that

My Kratky Beds

I’m also expanding it to include tomatoes 3 based on videos from the same guy’s videos, including this one:

Here’s a row of Dutch buckets I had already setup before leaving Intel:

Dutch buckets 1

Here’s a newer row I did last week. The pipe on top of the fence is strawberries:

Dutch buckets 2

For my more traditional beds, I planted a bunch of Leeks, some flowers, beets, and yet more tomatoes. I also setup a way to water them more easily which my friend Scott turned me onto. The white pipes have 1/16″ holes drilled into them about every 4 inches. They all connect to the bucket. I have 4 other similar beds

IMG_4811

On the topics of “Tomatoes”, I’ve had this thought related to Guerrilla Gardening. I think it would be awesome to get a bunch of MJ seeds 4, do some starts and then plant them around town. I wonder how they would do. It’ll be legal in Oregon soon. Turn it into a true weed.

Technical stuff

I continue to chair the SystemRDL committee. I did this for Intel, but I can continue as an Allied Member of Accellera. Since we’ll be releasing hopefully this year, it’d be a shame to stop now. I’ve enjoyed working with this group. Generally speaking, the meetings are more productive than most of the Intel meetings I attended. It’s nice to work with such knowledgeable folks 5

I am researching some sort of mobile computing solution. For years, I’ve had an Intel issued laptop 6. There are so many choices. I really just need something basic, like a chromebook or a really low end laptop. I have a desktop that works well where I can do heavy stuff like lightroom and video editing. I’ve tried using the HP Stream 8 that was given to everyone for the winter holidays. It mostly works but doesn’t have enough memory for some stuff 7 Let me know if you have an opinion on this. 8

My current setup includes an Atom based FreeNAS box for storage. It contains two parallel drives for some redundancy. 9 My main desktop machine is a Sandybridge based Ubuntu box running VirtualBox with Win7 in it. This has worked very nicely for me, especially compared to dual-boot. I’ve installed ZFS on Linux to enable me to move the storage drives into this machine. I haven’t moved them yet, but I’m thinking I can use a portion of the new SSD drive I bought to speed up access to these files 10. I’ve also ordered another 16GB of RAM to augment the 8GB I have now. 11 I’ve really liked running Ubuntu Linux at home over the last couple years. The only reason I have windows at all:

  • I haven’t taken the time to give Robie a quick start on linux. I’m sure she’d be fine with it.
  • Adobe Lightroom. While there are a number of things I really don’t like about it, I isn’t a good alternative.
  • Sony Movie Studio 12. I’m not aware of a good video editting application for Linux.

I have several project ideas I want to pursue, but haven’t done anything yet.

 

 

 

 


  1. TMI?

  2. not stolen, just weeded away

  3. not to be confused with “Tomatoes

  4. anyone got any?

  5. especially compared to some at Intel, who think they know what they’re talking about. The ones who blow off my advice or predictions of coming problems and then are surprised when those predictions come true. The same folks who insist on going off in bold new directions while understaffed on the current needs

  6. ever since laptops existed

  7. for example, I’ve discovered that editing a google docs document can get pretty slow when the doc is ~100 pages.

  8. Apple products are right out

  9. I picked FreeNAS because the ZFS file system that it uses has some appealing features. The main feature is that it can scrub the files and not just the file structure. In retrospect, I wonder if it really makes a difference for me to offset the hassle. There’s one reader of this blog who knows a lot on this topic. Perhaps she’ll comment with some interesting opinions. FreeNAS is FreeBSD based which, while very similar to Ubuntu, has some differences that would require some time by me to get used to.

  10. SSD caching is another ZFS feature, thought Ubuntu’s LVM has this as well

  11. I effectively have only 4GB right now since virtualbox is usually holding onto its allocation

  12. I don’t use Premiere Elements because it’s overly dumb’d down compared to the full application. Movie studio is just like the pro version except some features are missing, features that sadly I’m starting to want. Like multi-cam editting

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