It's not JUST about what I had for breakfast...

Saturday, March 29, 2008

A Simple Mind Builds Something That Glows In The Dark

Feeling rather electrical the other day, I finally got around to hooking a LED up to the USB port.

29March2008LED 003

A rather simple project, compared to building a Knight-Kit Star Roamer short-wave receiver (which didn't work...), it only took me an hour to solder the thing together. There are only three parts:

  1. Green LED (salvaged from something, no specs)
  2. Resister, 220 ohm (Red-Red-Brown-Gold 1/4 watt)
  3. Heat shrink tubing
  4. Wire, a bit of
  5. USB connector and cable (salvaged from Apple mouse)
Wait, that's more than three...

Using my trusty Harbor Freight El Cheapo Brand multimeter (You can build a ECG with one!), I measured the current with the 220 ohm resister as 15 mA (Is that right? Milli amps? Micro amps? I forget!), which seems ok, according to this article it can't exceed 500 mA.

Testing the whole mess was a trial, as I only had one alligator clip to hold things together. I need to rig up a test jig for testing these misc. LEDs I have laying around.

Using some math, I suppose I could have calculated the optimum resister to use, but I felt a headache coming on. After all, the math in this article took me a half-hour to get through my head.

Works great, but I need a white LED to actually do any good, I think.

29March2008LED 002

Why are there two reflections?

Today is Google blackout day, turn out your lights tonight for an hour!

Friday, March 28, 2008

Apple Pie, Baseball, and Lead

Our local television troubleshooter/reporter/lawyer told us a tale about a Little League Park that was closed because of lead pollution. Check it out here.

According to the child interviewed by our intrepid hero, there are only three things to do in Oceanside.
  1. Baseball
  2. Gangs
  3. Stay home and do nothing
How sad is that?

I would recommend this young man develop some hobbies, or maybe even try reading a book.

Seriously, "they" need to either tear this field down, or fix it up. It's an eyesore, a hazard, and a waste of space.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Easter Sunday

Here's a guy in a San Diego Padres cap about to eat a lemon.

2008Mar23Easter 010

Here's a guy in a San Diego Padres cap, who is annoyed about being referred to as a guy in a San Diego Padres cap, eating a lemon.

2008Mar23Easter 011

Here are some Easter cupcakes.

2008Mar23Easter 009

Here are some Easter lizards.

2008Mar23Easter 007

And lastly, here is an Easter Main Street.

2008Mar23Easter 004

Monday, March 17, 2008

Flower Time

We went out to the desert to see the flowers a Sunday week ago. Driving out the 8, then taking the scenic route past Lake Cuyamaca , we observed there was no snow, but the lake was quite a bit higher than it usually is. Hanging a right at nearly-Julian, we headed down the hill, on the 78 through the Banner Grade (Banner on a Motorcycle on Youtube). We followed some motorcycles down. Saw a big guy on a mini-type bike whizzing up the grade, slowly. Seemed like a bad idea.

Nice bike lanes on the ring road in Borrego Springs.

We found our way to the flowers. There were lots of people there.

2008Mar09desert flowers 010

The rest of the pics are over on the squeakycyclist zooomr page, with appropriate comments. Would that you could look at the big versions!

Looked up the flower identifications at the Desert Plants & Wildflowers section of the DesertsUSA site. Their Desert Wildflower Reports California section is very handy, too!

After talking to a fellow with a VERY large lens, who was very knowledgeable about the flowers, we took off. Deciding to take the freeway back, we drove WAY out of our way to get there, and did. Saw a lady bicyclist, not a tourist, climbing out of the desert on the freeway. It was getting to be dusk, I wonder where she was headed?

Well, that's about the end of the tale. There was probably lots more stuff I can't remember, like the Petco/fish food subplot, and the cash register fiasco therein, but the details are hazy.


Sunday, March 16, 2008

Gone To The Movies

It occured to me the other day that I could count on two hands the movies I have taken one or both of my kids to see, when they wuz kids. So that doesn't count LOTR or Star Wars episodes I & II.

And here they are:

  • Return To Oz
  • Titanic
  • Star Wars (On the big screen!)
  • A River Runs Through It
  • Searching For Bobby Fischer
  • Fantasia
  • Jurassic Park
  • The Commitments

Tuesday, March 11, 2008


When I got into the libery biz back in the 70s, it was during a expansion of library services. There were classes in library technology at the local Jr.C., people were being hired, books were being bought. It was exciting.

Over the years we have lost staff hours, and there has not been a budget for library books for several years. All over San Diego, new school libraries were built, but staff was cut. With the new wave of budget cuts, I know at least one high school is cutting its librarian. And one middle school.

We are losing our librarian next year.

What does this mean?

It means, everything other than checking out, checking in, and shelving, is not going to happen.

Well, I gotta go to work now.


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