2011-05-26

Alive and Thinkin'

I am alive. Apologies to folks who were following the electronics stuff -- the short version is that it worked, although I didn't get to use it 'in anger' as such. The other thing I learned is that when traveling through UK customs on the week of a royal wedding, having a small plastic box with wires coming out of it and a 9v battery strapped to it with tape is not a clever thing to have in your car (thankfully the customs official had a sense of humour).

Since then I've been doing a bunch of for-money work, and only took time out this week to relax. I occasionally take a week off to hang around at home and get 'life administrivia' done. Think of it as a concrete block on the see-saw of work-life balance.

I've been playing around a bit with generalised messaging for domotics updates. I'm thinking of a centralised controller that can accept events from various signals, such as the Current Cost meter, a wifi device coming in range, or a small IC hanging off the doorbell circuit, for example. A lot of these devices don't have particularly fully-functional network stacks, so I'll have to bite the bullet and get the handful of ZigBee radios I got recently working. Doorbell will be the fun one, I think. My house already has a (private) twitter account, and DMs me for various stuff (unknown hosts grabbing a DHCP lease on the network, etc.). Adding more stuff to this is the idea.

I'm also interested in the idea of cloud applications with local storage or local encryption keys -- so all your data is stored encrypted on the server side, and only you have the keys, so the content is decrypted at render-time. Stuff like 1password does this with secure stuff like password databases, but I think web browsing machines are zippy enough to do this for userdata. I have to see if it's been done already (it probably has), but I want to do some fiddling with it.

So yes, same old. Too much science to do, never enough time.

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