ebooks Education tech

About the Internet Archive

Brewster Kahle’s work to archive all human knowledge and make it publically available to everyone. That’s a noble intention!

“What is best known about the Library of Alexandria, version 1, is burning. So don’t just have one copy, so in addition to SF (on the San Andreas fault line), one in Alexandria (in the middle east [perpetual war zone]), and one in Amsterdam (in a flood zone). So we’re hedging our bets here.”–Brewster Kahle

World Situation: Is this archive going to be public or private? (Corporations want to control it.) Or universal access of all knowledge for all mankind.

“Free to the People”–Inscription at the Entrance to the Carnegie Library , Pittsburgh

Ted Talk
& a 12 minute audio interview.


Raspberry Pi Alternatives

I like raspberry pi PCs because they (were) cheap when I bought them (around $25) and they’re the size of a deck of cards, and use little electricity. The alternatives are now a better bang for the buck since 2019 when availability went down and they started being scalped. Hopefully later this year or next year the production runs will go up and bring the prices back down.

I currently have 4 running Raspy Pis:

  • 2 in a local realtor’s offices displaying Lake County Ca properties (using a boot-time chrome to display the houses using a webserver I maintain)
  • 1 running a DIY nas in my office
  • 1 running a music webserver (volumio) in the bedroom

Here’s a short youtube video on the Raspy Pi alternatives.

A new video came out on May 18 with an Eben Upton (creator of the Pi) interview, where he says supplies will catch up in later half of 2023.


What will it take for Apple to disentangle itself from China?

The tech giant increasingly finds itself beholden to America’s biggest geopolitical rival. But is diversification even possible?

This is a fascinating article on making iphones in China. Basically the whole infrastructure exists on such a big scale that no other country is in the same league as China.

“Look at the smartphone manufacturing hubs that China has created,” he says. “I don’t know where that can be replicated.”

Chan, the Foxconn labour researcher, predicts that as media attention dies down Apple will quietly increase its investments in the country. “China has so many advantages,” she says. “From the moderately educated and skilled workers to the really high level engineers and PhDs — those providing expertise in cutting-edge knowledge.”

Chan adds: “Apple would have too many difficulties to find the human resources and infrastructure that is parallel — or even close — to the scale provided in China.”

From the Financial Times Article

Learning to Code

Give a computer program to a person to frustrate him for a day. Teach computer programming to a person and frustrate her for a lifetime.–some Computer Science Professor

A vast majority of people who try to learn to code will get frustrated and give up.

I sure did. I got frustrated and gave up. Several times.

But like other people who eventually succeeded, I kept coming back after a few days, and tried again. —Quincy Larson from How to Learn to Code & Get a Developer Job in 2023 [Full Book]

Marketing tech

A Digital Signage Project

I have been working with Timothy Toye, a realtor, for a long time. Originally I was able to buy some software that would display Lake County properties for sale by pulling from the California MLS system. However, over time, the software didn’t keep up with California standards so I decided to build a real estate project by myself. (I could have paid $$ to get a custom version, but that seemed like too much per month.)

I started with using a Lamp stack on the backend with a Laravel library for accessing the MLS data. Then I used a lot of small php routines and bash scripts to create all the materials to create a website carousel property display.

Finally, I mounted a raspberry pi to the back of a large monitor, and put that in the realtor’s front office. I set the pi software to boot up into a chrome browser that points at the website. Everyday a script runs to update the website.

It’s surprising how much work goes into creating a product that seems simple on the surface. Such is programming!