Power Supplies

Not for computers – for other electronics. I’d glossed over the “it can supply 600mA peak” part for my microcontroller board’s 3.3V regulator, and assumed I wouldn’t hit it. Then I spent a great deal of time trying to diagnose strange nondeterministic behavior. The OLED display would quickly go blank. The SCD40 CO2 sensor would quickly stop providing data. These problems all immediately stopped when I used an external power supply capable of higher amperage. Go figure.


Feit Electric LED Strip Light Pinout

Tested on Costco item #1528979, which is in a black box. They’re still selling one in a white box online. (On further inspection its pinout seems the same.)

  • +: GND
  • B: D-
  • R: D+
  • G: VBUS
  • W: CC2, SBU1, CC1, SBU2

Maker Stuff!

It turns out that it’s pretty dang gratifying to build embedded systems. Don’t like the power LED that’s always on? It’s your code that turns it on! You can turn it off!

I have three projects that are functional so far. One logs temperature to a MicroSD card, which helped convince the leasing office that my fridge was not cooling well enough to be food safe. Another displays CO2 sensor readings. The third sends door close/open events over MQTT.

Currently I’m working on giving a kitchen scale the MQTT treatment so I can make detailed cat food consumption graphs over time instead of manually weighing for two inconsistently timed data points per day. Next will probably be designing and printing a case for the CO2 thing, which is currently just a bunch of components taped to a power bank, and is very flimsy.


Headphone Recovery

I moved my computer, and with a new setup comes new hazards. My headphone cable was wrapped around my foot when I tried to get up, and it ripped the headphones out of the jack. Both the jack and the plug were damaged – the jack was no longer in one piece, and pieces of plastic had flown off its housing, and the plug was bent but still in one piece. We were able to bend the plug back into shape with a vice, but the damaged jack would only provide audio to the left ear. Enter jack retasking in the Realtek Audio Console:

I was able to use the remaining front panel jack, and made sure to run the headphone cable with less slack to try to prevent a repeat performance. There’s a bug here, too: even though I’ve requested separate playback devices for the front and rear panel, it only gives me two if the normally-output jack is set to output. Close enough, and if I really wanted to work around it I could probably rewire the remaining jack to appear as the output one by moving cables in the front panel connector.


Indoor Air Sensors

I got a Metriful indoor air sensor, and wrote some code to expose it as JSON. It’s definitely not much:

Firefox renders JSON nicely

Looking again at the website, I see that 8 days ago they added what is hopefully a much better version of what I started. Yay!

EDIT: Yep, it’s way better:

Here you can see the light levels as the sun set, followed by turning on a lamp in that room for about an hour.

Videos / Movies

Dance Like An Idiot

For the 8th grade talent show at the end of the year, I made a Flash animation to Lemon Demon‘s Dance Like An Idiot. As you may be aware, Flash hasn’t aged super well, so I tried making a video of it at modern resolutions. It now has a height of 1080 pixels, compared with its original mid-2000s 548×400, but is still 12 FPS. I noticed some problems such as duplicated frames, but deemed it good enough for a first published attempt.

This video rendition is over 25x the size of the original SWF at around 33 MiB.

Site Related

Server Move

With heavier services removed, it turns out this site can run on a Raspberry Pi! It’s a bit low in RAM headroom, mainly due to MySQL, but it cut my network and server hardware power usage by about 2/3! Ubuntu 20.04 works quite nicely on it, and I ran into a certbot bug while I was at it. An interesting experience!


Cat Yawn

He is very good.


CPU Upgrade!

I was having trouble hitting framerate in Beat Saber, especially with spectator view smoothing on in Koto. Upgrading the CPU helped a lot:

Ryzen 7 1700 with wider and higher frame time distribution.
Ryzen 7 3700X with narrower and lower CPU time more in line with GPU time.


I made a scan of the corner of a room to test. I took 34 photos with a Nexus 5X on a tripod with this 3D-printed mount printed by a friend and Meshroom.

This tutorial was helpful. The white balance was fixed, exposure was 100 ISO, and focus was at infinity. I might want to try a closer focus next time; see if that changes things.