Greg
animals brewing
food and drink fiction
gardening general
health history
language music
multimedia opinion
photography politics
Stones Road house technology
Greg's diary
recent entries
Translate this page
Select day in November 2019:
Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa
1 2
3 4 5 6 7 8 9
10 11 12 13 14 15 16
17 18 19 20 21 22 23
24 25 26 27 28 29 30
Select month:
2019 Jan Feb Mar Apr
2019 May Jun Jul Aug
2019 Sep Oct Nov Dec
Today's diary entry
Diary index
About this diary
Greg's home page
Greg's photos
Network link stats
Greg's other links
Copyright information
    
Groogle

Tuesday, 19 November 2019 Dereel Images for 19 November 2019
Top of page
next day
last day

PIXIO fail
Topic: photography, multimedia, opinion Link here

Anke Hawke is coming for another clinic this weekend, and clearly we want something better in the way of recordings than last time, where I had a relatively painful time (mainly) behind the camera.

In principle we now have the sound side of things sorted out. The only other issue was getting the device level.

OK, put the OM-D E-M1 Mark II and microphone receiver on the PIXIO, remove the panorama head from my tripod, leaving the leveling base in place, mount the whole thing on the tripod, and off.

What a fiddly camera mount this thing has! And it's quite flimsy. I went to check that the weight of the camera and lens wasn't too much. But no, according to the specs the maximum load is “2.5 kg (5 lbs)”, and my combination only weight 1.14 kg. Still, there's plenty of room for improvement. That could be as simple as a small ball head.

Out to the arena and set the thing up. Turn on beacons. Turn on badge. Turn on PIXIO. Four flashes of the green LED, and then it turned off again. Dammit, what does that mean? Should I try it longer? It continued to blink as long as I pressed, but then turned off again. Next time round it alternated with a red LED.

Back to RTFM. Ah, I shouldn't have turned the badge on yet. OK, try again with the badge turned off. Same thing.

RTFM again. Green/red alternate means that the device is in slave mode. How could that happen? Hold down the on/off button long enough.

Finally it occurred to me what I had read the very first time:

5. To avoid self-discharge of the robot, unplug the robot after the end of the robot charge, turn the robot ON for a few seconds and then turn it OFF before storing it.

What does that mean? Clearly a bug in the charging circuitry, and a workaround to match. And I hadn't done so the last time. Battery discharged? How do I know? There's no display, and no mention of it in the “instructions”.

OK, abort, take the whole thing apart, in the process noting that there's no real way to unscrew the PIXIO from its mount: the only part you can take hold of rotates on the head. Connect all five components to the battery charger. The beacons and the badge took about 5 minutes to charge. The PIXIO itself took 2 hours, clearly completely discharged. After charging, turned it on as instructed, and discovered that the LED was much brighter, and that it continued to flash until I turned it off again.

What a disaster! The triangulation works well, but the rough edges, both in the charging circuitry and the documentation, are unacceptable.


Dianella revoluta
Topic: photography, gardening, opinion Link here

One of the prettier flowers that I have seen is Dianella revoluta, which is relatively rare, but this year there are more than most. Brought back a twig from Westons Road while walking the dog, and tried some focus stacked images. They still need to be processed, but the first non-stacked attempts were less than encouraging:


https://lemis.nyc3.digitaloceanspaces.com/grog/Photos/20191119/big/Dianella-revoluta-2.jpeg
Image title: Dianella revoluta 2          Dimensions:          5184 x 3888, 9271 kB
Make a single page with this image Hide this image
Make this image a thumbnail Make thumbnails of all images on this page
Make this image small again Display small version of all images on this page
All images taken on Tuesday, 19 November 2019, thumbnails          All images taken on Tuesday, 19 November 2019, small
Diary entry for Tuesday, 19 November 2019 Complete exposure details

   
https://lemis.nyc3.digitaloceanspaces.com/grog/Photos/20191119/small/Dianella-revoluta-9.jpeg
Image title: Dianella revoluta 9
Complete exposure details
Dimensions: 600 x 450, 85 kB
Dimensions of original: 5187 x 3888, 8783 kB
Display this image:
thumbnail    hidden   alone on page
Display all images on this page as:
thumbnails    this size
Show for Tuesday, 19 November 2019:
thumbnails    small images    diary entry

I would never have thought that the (natural) light was so uneven at the back of the office.


Wednesday, 20 November 2019 Dereel Images for 20 November 2019
Top of page
previous day

Nasi goreng revisited
Topic: food and drink, language, opinion Link here

Nasi goreng is a Malay and Indonesian term meaning literally “fried rice”. I've known it for about 65 years: early in our time in Kota Bharu we were walking through the market, and I saw some rice. Clever 5-year-old says “goreng!”.

Wrong, doubly. Malay adjectives follow the noun, so it's “nasi” that means rice, and “goreng” means fried. But “nasi” would also be wrong in this context. There are many words for rice: “padi” is the rice in the field, “beras” is the word for husked rice, and “nasi” means cooked rice.

And of course we ate lots of nasi goreng. It was one of the first dishes that I tried to cook myself, and I've done it many times since. But it wasn't until four years ago that I wrote down a recipe, mainly for other people, and which I promptly forgot.

Nasi goreng is best for leftover rice, and we had plenty of it this week. OK, make breakfast. Rice, bacon (my personal favourite), spring onions, peas, prawns, soya sauce (dark and light), eggs, cucumber—pretty much my ”breakfast” slant in the recipe. I don't need to look it up.

But it tastes boring! What's missing? Off to look online and offline (recipe books), and found significant differences. Indonesian(-language) recipes include trasi (Indonesian for belacan), and one has sausages (though they can be Chinese sausages). My only Malay-language recipe includes celery, chicken livers and tomato sauce. Wendy Hutton's Singapore Food includes raisins! And Rosemary Brissenden's “South East Asian Food”, which I have had for nearly 50 years, includes raw rump steak (½ lb for “one plate” of rice)! To think I once considered the book authentic.

But they had one thing in common that was missing from my recipe: garlic. Why was it missing? It wasn't in the recipe. I just forgot.

One thing I did learn: use very little dark soya sauce. It's almost overpowering.


Dan Murphys: No customer service
Topic: technology, food and drink, opinion Link here

Everybody knows Dan Murphy, the author of TECO, the first real computer editor. But in Australia there's another Dan Murphy, a large retailer of alcoholic drinks. And they're still trying to establish an online presence, and I have some kind of “account” with them.

Today they came up with an interesting offer: Adelaide Hills Sauvignon Blanc for $25 a bottle, but for members only $10. Is it worth it? They're selling in units of 6 bottles, so it was worth a try.

Oh, you have to log in. No worries, details are saved, press “log in”. After 5 minutes of spinning, gave up and tried in a different browser instance (also firefox), this time logging in first. Through the usual steps, pressed “pay now”. Brief hang, then:


https://lemis.nyc3.digitaloceanspaces.com/grog/Photos/20191120/small/Dan-Murphy-1.png
Image title: Dan Murphy 1          Dimensions:          1147 x 235, 88 kB
Make a single page with this image Hide this image
Make this image a thumbnail Make thumbnails of all images on this page
Display small version of all images on this page
All images taken on Wednesday, 20 November 2019, thumbnails          All images taken on Wednesday, 20 November 2019, small
Diary entry for Wednesday, 20 November 2019 Complete exposure details

 

That's interesting, particularly since I chose PayPal. Retry? No, though it suggested retrying, that part of the page had disappeared.

OK, try again with Chromium. Same thing. But I got mail from PayPal:

Date: Tue, 19 Nov 2019 19:49:48 -0800
From: "service@paypal.com.au" <service@paypal.com.au>
To: Greg Lehey <groggyhimself@lemis.com>
Subject: You've received a refund from Dan Murphy's Online

Dan Murphy's Online has sent you a $60.00 AUD refund for your purchase on 19 November 2019.

Now wouldn't that be fun if they had refunded me money without booking it in the first place? But no, it seems that PayPal has preferential notifications. The corresponding booking notification came 5 minutes later at 19:55:05 -0800.

OK, follow the instructions that say I can send mail to, an appropriately named customerservice@danmurphys.com.au. Cut, paste and send a message to them.

Date: Tue, 19 Nov 2019 20:11:23 -0800 (PST)
From: Mail Delivery Subsystem <mailer-daemon@googlemail.com>
Subject: Delivery Status Notification (Failure)

** Address not found **

Your message wasn't delivered to customerservice@danmurphys.com.au because the address couldn't be found, or is unable to receive mail.

The response was:

The email account that you tried to reach does not exist. Please try double-checking the recipient's email address for typos or unnecessary spaces. Learn more at https://support.google.com/mail/answer/6596

Marvellous! In passing it's interesting to note that they use Gmail for their mail.

OK, how about the Contact Us link? Not found. Clearly they don't want contact. Oh, yes, you can click on the “Contact Us” link on the “not found” page, and that links to a web form that thinks it's an email interface. But it doesn't like my web browser:

Please upgrade to a supported browser to get a reCAPTCHA challenge.

Damn you, Dan Murphy! Do you want to sell me things or make life difficult? OK, tried with a different browser, and finally sent a complaint. I don't know why I bother. There are other vendors who don't give me that much trouble.


Garden progess
Topic: gardening Link here

It's been over two years since we bought two Clematis plants. One is doing acceptably, but the other, a General Sikorski, suffered one problem after another, being almost swallowed by a Tropaeolum. But it didn't give up, and today, after over two years, we finally have a flower:

 
https://lemis.nyc3.digitaloceanspaces.com/grog/Photos/20191120/small/Clematis.jpeg
Image title: Clematis
Complete exposure details
Dimensions: 600 x 450, 110 kB
Dimensions of original: 4609 x 3456, 3399 kB
Display this image:
thumbnail    hidden   alone on page
Display all images on this page as:
thumbnails    this size
Show for Wednesday, 20 November 2019:
thumbnails    small images    diary entry

Yes, it doesn't look like much, but there are more buds on the way.

Other things aren't doing as well. This chili plant has suffered, I think, from being sprayed with fertilizer:

 
https://lemis.nyc3.digitaloceanspaces.com/grog/Photos/20191120/small/Chili.jpeg
Image title: Chili
Complete exposure details
Dimensions: 600 x 450, 162 kB
Dimensions of original: 4608 x 3456, 3572 kB
Display this image:
thumbnail    hidden   alone on page
Display all images on this page as:
thumbnails    this size
Show for Wednesday, 20 November 2019:
thumbnails    small images    diary entry

And this Lilac is suffering from not enough water:

 
https://lemis.nyc3.digitaloceanspaces.com/grog/Photos/20191120/small/Lilac.jpeg
Image title: Lilac
Complete exposure details
Dimensions: 600 x 450, 207 kB
Dimensions of original: 4609 x 3456, 5563 kB
Display this image:
thumbnail    hidden   alone on page
Display all images on this page as:
thumbnails    this size
Show for Wednesday, 20 November 2019:
thumbnails    small images    diary entry

Watered it well. It'll get a dripper Real Soon Now.


Topic: Stones Road house, general, opinion Link here

Found this in the garden below the PV arrays:

 
https://lemis.nyc3.digitaloceanspaces.com/grog/Photos/20191120/small/Clamp-2.jpeg
Image title: Clamp 2
Complete exposure details
Dimensions: 600 x 450, 63 kB
Dimensions of original: 4608 x 3457, 1680 kB
Display this image:
thumbnail    hidden   alone on page
Display all images on this page as:
thumbnails    this size
Show for Wednesday, 20 November 2019:
thumbnails    small images    diary entry
 
https://lemis.nyc3.digitaloceanspaces.com/grog/Photos/20191120/small/Clamp-6.jpeg
Image title: Clamp 6
Complete exposure details
Dimensions: 600 x 450, 69 kB
Dimensions of original: 4608 x 3456, 1922 kB
Display this image:
thumbnail    hidden   alone on page
Display all images on this page as:
thumbnails    this size
Show for Wednesday, 20 November 2019:
thumbnails    small images    diary entry

It looks very much as if it could be part of the mounting brackets. There's nothing obvious, but it's worth checking on, so sent a message off to Tomas Kucera of Effective Electrical about the matter.

Looking at the clamp, there's a good chance that it was dropped and never used: there's no evidence of any pressure on the bolt.


This page contains (roughly) yesterday's and today's entries. I have a horror of reverse chronological documents, so all my diary entries are chronological. This page normally contains the last two days, but if I fall behind it may contain more. You can find older entries in the archive. Note that I often update a diary entry a day or two after I write it.     Do you have a comment about something I have written? This is a diary, not a “blog”, and there is deliberately no provision for directly adding comments. It's also not a vehicle for third-party content. But I welcome feedback and try to reply to all messages I receive. See the diary overview for more details. If you do send me a message relating to something I have written, please indicate whether you'd prefer me not to mention your name. Otherwise I'll assume that it's OK to do so.


Greg's home page This month Greg's photos Greg's links

RSS 2.0 Valid XHTML 1.0!