Asterisk on AWS Linux

A couple of months ago I decided to move my company’s Asterisk PBX system from one of our physical data-center servers to Amazon’s AWS EC2 Platform. We had been using Trixbox since 2006, but the Community Edition of that product …

Detecting Failed AD2USB to Raspberry Pi Connections

One of my ongoing home automation frustrations is the interface between my Ademco Alarm Panel and the Raspberry Pi I use to monitor the panel’s bus traffic. The problem that I have is a termination of the USB connection between …

Infinite Video Loops on a Raspberry Pi

I recently upgraded my office by moving to a great new location. As part of the move I added a ton of new space to accommodate our rapid growth and even added a “play area” for the staff so they …

The Fireplace Hack – Revisited

Back in February 2013 I wrote an article entitled “Hacking a Fireplace”. In that article I wrote about how I used an Arduino to create an interface that would allow me to directly control my fireplaces from my home automation …

Using SNMP MIB Data to Capture Ink Levels

My regular readers know that I have implemented an extensive home automation system that allows full control and automation of everything from doors to lights to fireplaces to full multi-zone temperature management and includes various tracking and reporting functionality. One …

Update #2 – Hack-a-Day Hack With Greasemonkey

One of the ongoing challenges with changing a web site’s look and feel with client-side scripting is that it oftentimes breaks when the site’s theme is modified. There are a lot of you out there that use my Hack-a-Day Greasemonkey …

“Fixing” Findagrave

I’m a bit of an armchair genealogist and, as time permits, I indulge myself in as much research as I can, often leveraging a myriad of online resources as I pursue my subjects. One of the sites that I frequently …

Adding iCloud Calendar Subscriptions to Google Calendar

If you’ve ever tried to subscribe to a public iCloud Calendar from Google Calendar then you have, no doubt, discovered that it doesn’t work. The problem stems from Apple’s use of the robots.txt file on it’s calendar servers to prevent …

Hacking a Fireplace

UPDATE – Read Hacking a Fireplace – Revisited for an alternative approach to this hack. I’ve been building my home automation system for years and have achieved extensive lighting, climate, entertainment, security and entry control. Never satisfied, I’m forever pondering …

TNG 9 – Sheets Mod

I’ve worked with a LOT of genealogy software applications over the years and all of them have left me, for one reason or another, unsatisfied. I started experimenting with The Next Generation of Genealogy Sitebuilding, also known as TNG, back …