Sun conure

I've always wanted a pet bird. Actually... I owned a cockatiel when I was younger but it never seemed to like me and we ended up finding it a new home. Anyhow, recently something (I'm not quite sure what) spurred my old interest in birds and I started looking around. I came to the conclusion that a Sun Conure was the type of bird I wanted. Not only are they beautiful when matured they are said to be quirky "playful clowns", easily trained as well as affectionate and cuddly (although they will bite if you do something they don't like). They are particularly loud birds (although mine hasn't been overwhelmingly loud just yet) and on the downside are not known to be great talkers (possibly learning only just a few words if any).

I started by aquiring all of the essentials (and more). I bought a cheap but sizeable cage from Ebay and numerous toys and food from Amazon and just about any pet store I could make it to in the area. I found a breeder on Hoobly who is about an hour away...

Jupyterhub docker

This article will examine the blog post Deploying JupyterHub for Education by Jessica Hamrick on the Rackspace Developer Blog. I will attempt to layout a set of step-by-step instructions for deploying such a setup. I highly recommend reading the aforementioned blog post before continuing on with this post as it is very insightful and this blog will use much of Jessica's information and some of her code which is available freely on GitHub. To begin with we will be using Docker Machine and virtual machines to complete a development setup of something similar to what is proposed in the blog post. In the real world you would use Docker installed directly on a bare metal or cloud host and this walkthrough will later guide you through this process (which requires multiple host machines).

Let's begin.

  1. Download and install the latest version of VirtualBox for your platform.
  2. If you are using Windows or Mac OS X, download and install Docker Toolbox for your platform. Docker Toolbox provides Docker...

Could I have chosen a larger topic? Still coming soon(ish)...

Onion omega

Check out the Onion Omega on Kickstarter

Yesterday, I backed the Onion Omega project on Kickstarter. The Onion Omega is a small Raspberry Pi like device which is about 1/4th the size of the Raspberry Pi. The Onion Omega allows you to prototype and develop hardware using popular tools such as Git, pip and npm while programming in high-level languages such as Python, Node.JS, PHP, Lua and my personal favorite: Ruby (amongst other languages). The Omega has built-in 802.11 b/g/n WiFi, an Atheros AR9331 400MHZ MIPS 24K processor, 64MB of DDR2 RAM, 16MB of flash storage, 18 GPIO ports and runs OpenWRT Linux.

The device comes with a dock (and at the level I backed it at an expansion of my choosing) which exposes commonly used interfaces such as USB, power, an RGB LED, buttons and more. In addition to the standard dock, you can also get an Arduino Shield dock compatible with your existing Arduino shields. Currently there are 4 (?) stackable expansions set to be released: an ethernet...

Indoor plant growing

About a month ago now I was given some of the clippings (spiderettes) off from one of the many Spider Plants my coworker maintains in his office at work. Watching the easy to grow Spider Plant grow and thrive has spurred my dormant interest in plants and over the past weekend I started buying some supplies. I bought two new Ponytail Palm and am (hopefully) in the process of cloning my grandmother's Christmas Cactus. I added a Majesty Palm into the mix and a Snake Plant for the upstairs. One thing I have always wanted was a bonsai tree. I picked up a cheap Ginseng Ficus from Meijer but it doesn't seem very authentic. On the other hand, I ordered an 8 year old Chinese Elm Bonsai Tree from Bonsai Outlet which I am really excited to receive. Finallly, I grabbed some other miscellaneous folliage and some bamboo shoots to put in a vase. I might have gotten a bit obsessed.

Growing the Spider Plant from the spiderettes has proven to be one of the simplest plant growing experiences I have...

Copyright © 2015 by Justin Vrooman