What I Learnt Making A Teeny-Tiny 1kB Webpage

Jun 5, 2023
Having bought the domain hen.re on a whim, because it was short and a bit like my name, but with no real plans, I thought it'd be a fun little project to see if I could create small landing/home page. But a very small page, so small in fact, that it could join the 1kb Club, a list of webpages that are smaller than 1,024 bytes.

Why Do I Blog?

May 29, 2023
It's a good question; given that this blog has already, quietly and unnoticed, entered its second decade, and a question that I've never addressed. So perhaps it's time I did so, for myself, and anyone else who might be curious.

Lego Trains on Brio Track

May 22, 2023
Lego Trains on Brio Track
It turns out you can use some smaller Lego train sets on Brio tracks, which is a great way of combining the two systems, if you have children that want to design and build their own trains.

Home Sensor Network Part 4 - Setting Up A MQTT Server

May 16, 2023
Now that we have a server up and running we can start using it as a collection point for readings from sensors from around the home. To do that we're going to install an MQTT broker, plus a script that will subscribe to the broker and write the incoming data into a database.

Against Me! - Searching For A Former Clarity

May 14, 2023
Against Me! - Searching For A Former Clarity
Searching for a Former Clarity is Against Me!'s third album, released in September 2005; its recurring theme of second guessing choices, and imagining the various consequences, overlapped with my uncertain and reflective mood at the start of my final year of university.

Home Sensor Network Part 3 - The Weather

May 1, 2023
While I want to be monitoring what's going on inside the house, I'd also like to know how that relates to what's happening outside. I also thought this would be a good chance to start writing the scripts to deal with SQLite, without in parallel having to deal with anything more complicated that using the Requests module.

Home Sensor Network Part 2 - Server Setup

Apr 12, 2023
The first thing we're going to need is a small server on which we can store all the data we're collecting from our home sensors.

Home Sensor Network Part 1 - The Plan

Mar 20, 2023
I want to set up a simple home sensor network, one that will initially monitor room temperatures, humidity and some utility usage. If it works I may try and add other things to it, but I want to focus on getting the basics working and trying to keep it as simple as I can, otherwise I'll never start.

Home Sensor Network Part 0 - Prologue

Mar 15, 2023
I've wanted to set up some kind of basic smart home/home sensor network for a while. It doesn't have to control anything (yet), just be an easy way of recording and seeing temperatures and home energy use. But I've been struggling to get going on this project for two reasons; young children which reduces the time I have to anything else, and option paralysis. I just want a simple set up, but what is 'simple'?

The Unnecessary Complications of Everyday Life

Feb 28, 2023
Today I managed to save 900€ over the next year by switching gas contracts, which for a three minute phone call, even after twenty five minutes on hold, isn't a bad half hour's work, certainly more than my usual hourly rate1. But I'm not happy about it - because it's something I don't think I, or anyone else, should have to do; this annual make-work to dodge artificially inflated prices to try and catch people out. Regardless of what I pay, it's the same gas coming out of the pipe.