Set an auto notification for a Craigslist Search

Ever heard of IFTTT?  Me either until I attended a network seminar at a local real estate office back in October.  The presenter told us about IFTTT (if then then that) website that allows you to make an automated trigger with two programs or resources either on your computer or iPhone, iPad etc.  At first I didn’t give it much thought thinking it was just a gadget or possibly a network privacy concern but after looking again I found something I really liked. I often look for used products on craigslist.  First off let me say…craigslist is not for everyone.  It can be time consuming, fruitless and sometimes dangerous to use craigslist (creepy people) but those who do use it know it can be a great way to get used products for a killer price, sometimes even free. The problem is having to constantly sift through the listings trying to find the perfect item before the next guy buys it before you.  I just don’t have time.  In comes IFTTT to the rescue.  With IFTTT you can trigger a specific craigslist search to send you an email each time a new item is listed that fits that search.  Let me … Continue reading

Best headphones for the money…No question!!

UPDATE:  I have now had these for a few months.  After a run through the washer and dryer, sitting in my car in the freezing winter temps, I can say they still keep cranking out great sound.  Seem to be tough, wires arent broken so big thumbs up to durability. Some things are worth an honorable mention and some things are worth raving about.  Well, these little guys are fantastic!…I am raving!!!  I bought the Panasonic HJE120 headphones off of Amazon because they had over 4 stars with over 8,000 reviews.  I have been using my Sennheiser cx300’s for 5 years and don’t get me wrong, they are awesome but I have to say these Panasonic headphones are really good, maybe better.  A little unusual with the shape and fit but once you snug them in you get deep rich bass (not overdone) and a wide open clean soundstage.  I couldn’t be happier.  Oh…Did I mention $5-$7 on Amazon.  Click the link below and buy direct from my page.  Enjoy! Available in a rainbow of colors too! Continue reading

Build and Set Up XBMC on a Raspberry Pi Computer

This is a quick tutorial on how to assemble the Raspberry Pi and where to buy some of the parts.  Take a look and let me know if you have any questions. Lets Prepare a card for running RASPBMC (XBMC on a Raspberry PI) Now that you have put it together lets download some repositories Finally Set up XBMC on a Raspberry PI…this is long… Continue reading

Configure your SD card to run Raspbmc on your Raspberry Pi

Hi guys.  I wanted to link my video tutorial that I have recently uploaded to help those who are trying to install Raspbmc on to their SD card to run the XBMC program on a Raspberry Pi.  It can be a little confusing so I made an easy to follow video.

If you are confused by what the heck I just said in the paragraph above don’t worry I will break it down.  The raspberry pi is a micro computer that many are using as a mini home theater PC.  The Raspberry Pi runs Linux, or other variants of operating systems.  Two that are popular (because they run the the XBMC interface) are RaspBMC made by a guy named Nazarko and Raspbian made by some other guy (forgive me I don’t know the developer).  I have only installed RaspBMC.

The RaspBMC operating system needs to be installed over the web with a live internet connection.  The SD card must first be prepped so when you first plug in your Raspberry device it will know what to do.  Think of the card as self booting and self installing.  Once you follow my video and install the RaspBMC software then you install the SD card into the Raspberry device, plug it in and it takes it from there and finishes the software install.  Believe me, its a lot easier than it sounds.

Check it out.

Upgraded to Mavericks and now you can’t connect to your NAS?

UPDATE: Mavericks 10.9.2 was released February 2014 and SMB2 seems to be working fine now. The below steps may not be necessary. With any upgrade there are bound to be problems.  With the new Mavericks OS update from Apple I have experienced two really unfortunate issues.  1) My copy of Adobe After Effects no longer works and 2) I can’t write to or read any NAS files.  Adobe’s suggested fix is a creative cloud membership at $49.00 a month and all will be peachy…right?  No thanks. At least I found a “work around” for the NAS issue.  Just in case you’re wondering a NAS is a “NETWORK ATTACHED STORAGE”.  Basically a hard disk (or a series of them) that are connected through the ethernet to your home network so all your devices can access the data.  The problem was very strange at first.  I could see the drive and the folders but as soon as I tried to drill down into them BLAMO! Error-0 message.  That was it, I assumed I was fried until I googled and found out that Mavericks now uses SMB2.  Server Message Block is the way the computer talks to the server (or hard disk) and … Continue reading

Canon T2i, Still a valid player for photographers and videographers

Ever since Vincent LaForet rocked the world with Reverie, the video and DSLR camera world has never been the same.  Vincent picked up the Canon 5D MKII and made a quick film that showed everyone that the DSLR format was perfect for the indie film maker and hobbyists.  It also proved that you no longer had to spend $10k-$20k for the cinematic quality and look. The only problem was that even the 5D MKII was too much money for me to justify.  The Canon T2i was the answer that guys like me were waiting for.  The T2i was less than $1,000 and had many of the same attributes that the 5D possessed.  Large sensor (not the same but still large compared to camcorders), good in low light, ability for great out of focus background and artistic bokeh.  Although it was a shaved down version it was enough to satisfy at 1/3 of the 5D’s price.  In fact, with regards to visual quality it was identical to the Canon 7D because it shared the same exact sensor.  The 7D was and still is one of the most popular sports cameras on the planet. The Canon T2i is now like an old friend.  Its … Continue reading

Remembering the Albums…

After giving my daughter her record player that she requested for her birthday I was drawn in while testing it out. Everyone was out of the house and I listened to an entire side of a Gordon Lightfoot album. It really brought back memories of easier times.

There is a tangible physical nature that’s hard to explain.  You held music in your hands.  Watched it spin and respectfully would not lift the needle to rush to the next track.  You would actually listen giving the song it’s due.  That’s what the artist wanted.  That went away somewhere along the line.  It was born of a slower time when we could spare the hours to share an experience never to be interrupted by the beep of a text or a ring of the phone.  I was young but do miss it a little.  Fire in the fall, thanksgiving dinners and easy times.  You only communicated with the ones you were physically with.  Engaged.  Not distracted.  Enjoying just being there, right then.  It was more NOW and less EVERYTHING ALWAYS.

Rigid Palm Nailer

I am a contractor so its very hard to get me excited over tools.  To me a saw is a saw and a drill is a drill.  I am jaded I know but every now and then something cool comes along and the kid in me gets all giddy.  One of my employees came to me the other day stressing that he had a next to impossible job of nailing a hanger (construction support device) in a tight location.  I remembered seeing these once but had a hard time finding this until I hit the shelf at Home Depot.  There is a gadget called a Palm Nailer sold next to the air compressors and nail guns in Home Depot.  Its made by home depots own house brand RIGID and it is only $69. The nailer fits in the palm of your hand and drives the nail in place with repeated pulses of air with a “tapping” system similar to a jack hammer.  Its only 5-1/2″ deep and seems to be built very well.  The nose of the nailer has a magnetic charge so it holds the nail in place until you are ready to drive it in.  Its very fast and … Continue reading

Great Method for Photo Backup – WWW.FLICKR.COM

Ok, I am tired of hearing about my friends and family losing “all” of their pictures. “I had it backed up!” they say. Let me tell you, putting a bunch of photos on an external drive and calling it backed up is irresponsible and very risky! Don’t worry I am not judging I am speaking from experience. I once had a hard disk in a docking station with over 1 terabyte (that’s alot BTW) of personal photos and videos. I got my foot tangled in the power cord and just tipped it over and the drive, while spinning, landed on the soft carpet. Literally it fell maybe 3 inches. I waited for it to spin down and then re-inserted the drive into the dock and I heard the “click, click, click” of death. All data was gone. I even sent it off to a company in Miami for recovery and NADA!…I got nothing back. Sad story but true. Hard Drives are physical. They can, no they DO fail. All too often I hear of people going out, buying an external drive and writing all of their photo and video data to the drive and then deleting the original data from … Continue reading

Creating a Shared Family Calendar and Everyone Stays in Sync – iPhone and iPad CALDAV

The topic of synchronizing a common calendar across an entire family’s set of devices came up at my neighborhood pool yesterday. (I know…we are that boring.) I couldn’t actually remember how to do it so I was unable to explain it to my friend. I went through the exercise of doing it all over again step by step to share with others and refresh my own memory. A couple of years ago I was struggling with trying to keep my family in Sync. We have 6 members in our household and trying to get everyone on the same page was impossible. I did a little research on how to do this and finally came across a method that works for me. I now have a unified “family” calendar that I can place entries and reminders and everyone sees the same thing. We have 5 iPhones, 2 iPads and two Macs. This isn’t an Apple promo but its just the way I am set up. Its not always perfect because like anything its subject to the user “garbage in garbage out”. At least I give my self a fighting chance, right? Here is what you do…You set up a new GMAIL … Continue reading