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This isn't a blog and the content here is not blog posts. Rather, these are random notes I've taken that I've chosen to make public for ease of reference. If you stumble across them and find them helpful, that's great, however, compelling reading and thoughtful prose are not to be found here.

Johnson City Network Configuration

These are my notes on the design and configuration of my home network. They aren’t expected to be of value to anyone other than me. Note that I’m new to MikroTik, so it’s very possible that there are multiple better ways of doing what I’ve done here.

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Notes on exiftool


These are my notes on using exiftool to organize a jumbled mess of digital images. This is written more as a personal memory jogger, unlikely to be of value to anyone else.

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Using FIM for Duplicate Photo Detection

I recently discovered FIM (File Integrity Manager), which is intended as a tool for managing changes to photos. It is primarily intended to detect corruption in photos stored on disk, but it also offers the ability to detect duplicate photos, which is what attracted me to it. These are my notes on using it as a duplicate detector.

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The SparkFun ESP8266 Thing and espeasy

I had an old SparkFun ESP8266 Thing laying around and decided that I wanted to install espeasy on it. Why was I interested in espeasy? It's new to me, but it seemed to provide a lot of leverage to someone wanting to monitor and/or control remote sensors/devices. Specifically:

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Dotfiles Reloaded

About a year and a half ago, I converted to using GNU stow and git for managing my dotfiles. The most recent version of that effort is available here.

The scheme worked well but the OCD part of me grew tired of seeing symbolic links to files instead of the actual files themselves. The symlinks weren't unexpected, after all, the whole point of stow is easily managing lots of links. Then I ran across a post on Hacker News about using a bare git repo to manage dotfiles in place. I very much liked the idea and settled on using vcsh and myrepos to manage my dotfiles going forward.

I should mention that I've known about vcsh for a good while. My impression had been that it was more complicated than necessary for my purposes. I've since changed my mind completely; it's as simple as what I ended up doing with stow, if not simpler. Minor tweaks to dotfiles are a pleasure when using myrepos.

These are my brief notes about the process.

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A Content-Aware Untabify Command

I have an application whose behavior is controlled by a YAML file. Recently, I modified the behavior and shipped off the new YAML file to the application, only to have the application die because the YAML file contained tabs instead of spaces. One remedy would be to modify the application to handle tabs properly. Another would be to ensure that tabs are never present in the YAML file to begin with. In this instance, the latter was the path of least resistance; this is a brief note about creating a shell script that will use GNU Emacs to perform the tab to space conversion.

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Using an Amazon Dash Button for Emergency Notifications

Using an Amazon Dash/IoT Button for Medical Emergencies

I've been interested in the Amazon Dash button as a generic IoT device since they were introduced. The original branded buttons are a great deal at $5, but using them for other than their intended purpose is a chore. With Amazon's introduction of the generic IoT Button, it is now quite simple to create custom behavior associated with the button. These notes describe how I used one to I create an 'emergency' button for my 103 year old father.

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