This week I am excited about scheduled deliveries, making better progress on setting up my desired NixOS configuration in preparation for one of the aforementioned deliveries, and playing with my new Meshtastic.

Upcoming deliveries

I got notice this week that my Compact Travel Hoodie, by Unbound Merino, was finally out for delivery. I previously ordered this in a size small but it was maybe a little too… compact, for my liking. So I exchanged it for a Medium and now it fits much more comfortably. It’s lightweight, unbranded, and pretty great at regulating my temperature. Yesterday I spent several hours in SF Chinatown for Kung Fu day and the sweatshirt kept me from being cold while also not overheating me. I’ve been pursuing a smaller, simpler wardrobe, and while I was initially hesitant at the price of the Unbound products, I’ve been a fan of their active wear t-shirts as well, and they might make for a great staple in my wardrobe going forward. We’ll see how they hold up after a few washes, though.

Gif showing the customization and assembly of a Framework 16 laptop

I also got notice that my Framework laptop shipped, which I’m very excited about. I ordered the DIY kit for a Framework 16 with a Ryzen 9 7940HS, 64GB of DDR5-5600, and a 4TB WD Black SSD. It’s probably a little overkill for what I need, but I’m excited to support the company.

I didn’t really need a new laptop, I still have a 2021 MacBook Pro that works fine. Hell, technically my old Thinkpad T440P still works fine. But I was eager to support Framework’s mission, and so I put my money where my mouth was. I would love to see more laptop manufacturers move towards a USB-C based exchangable I/O system, even if they don’t go full Framework on repairability and customization.

NixOS Updates

Screenshot of terminal showing neofetch output on my NixOS virtual machine

Basically since placing the order for my Framework, I decided that I was going to run NixOS on it when it arrived. So I’ve been spending the last couple weeks consuming everything I could find about NixOS and tinkering with my own configuration via a Hyper-V VM on my desktop.

This week I got almost all of my shell customizations in place, vscodium setup for a graphical IDE (maybe some day I’ll switch to neovim, but not today), as well as a couple browsers. I still have to get git, 1password, and signal-desktop setup before I’m ready to fully move in, but I’m getting there.

I’m most excited, though, to run Nix on bare metal, where hopefully I will be able to use Hyprland – it currently doesn’t work on my VM due to graphics hardware acceleration, I think.


Photo of my meshtastic device, 3d printed green case, screen on with a message from 4 days ago of a user nbdy saying “pokes mesh”

I setup a Meshtastic device recently and was excited to learn about the Mesh community around the bay area. I just bought an assembled device from Muzi Works, I liked the 3d printed case design and like to support folks doing this sort of work.

After getting setup, I also found Meshmap, which gives a nice view of mesh nodes seen by the official Meshtastic MQTT server. I also found, joined, and am lurking in the Meshtastic Bay Area Group discord. There are several cool projects happening in there, though it immediately made me feel like my little handheld device that I have to link up to my desktop or phone isn’t good enough and that I need a permanently powered on device that I can run long term and collect mesh data. But of course, this will probably join my ideas for long term nuclear radiation monitoring, hooking up my radio scanners to follow bay area local agencies and broadcast to broadcastify, and numerous other projects that I just haven’t found or made the time for yet.

One thing’s for certain, I’m going to have a lot of fun ideas left undone when I’m ready to retire.

What I’m Reading

Book cover for Tor, by Ben Collier. Subtitle 'From the Dark Web to the Future of Privacy'

Tor: From the Dark Web to the Future of Privacy

By Ben Collier

ISBN: 9780262548182
Learn More

I didn’t make it far into this book this week, my available reading time has decreased due to an extra-curricular contract I’ve been working on.
  • Remarkable to Obsidian Sync - I’ve mostly been using Obsidian for my notes, but I also have a remarkable that I’d love to be able to take notes on more frequently and sync them into my Obsidian vault. I haven’t tested it out yet, but if the excalidraw conversion works well, that would be really awesome.
  • Bellingcat Shadow Finder - The folks over at Bellingcat released this pretty neat tool for finding the location that a photo was taken based on the shadows in a picture and the time it was taken.
  • The Grug Brained Developer - From the mind that brought us HTMX, the Grug Brained Developer is a manifesto on avoiding complexity and embracing simplicity.
  • Badness 0 (Apostrophe’s version) - 22 min - The latest Tom 7 (aka suckerpinch) video, this one explores typography, functional programming, machine learning, Super Metroid, and what binds them all together.
  • - A collection of package, version, and dependency metadata of multple software ecosystems. The latest release has over 10 million packages.
  • DNS Coffee - A site that collects and archives stats from DNS zone files, it’s a neat research project into DNS.
  • A Brief Introduction to Digital Anthropology - I frequently find myself browsing Maggie Appleton’s website just to remind myself how wonderful the internet is. It always gives me some feeling of optimism, even when reading years-old essays that aren’t fully formed.
  • Solid Project - A Tim Berners-Lee project that aims to standardize ways to empower individuals and groups to own their data. I was excited when I first started looking into it, but I think one very key thing that makes it not good is that there’s no end to end encryption, the security of your data depends on who you decide to host your data with. While the project is idealistic, I think the security and privacy ramifications of this decision are less than ideal.
  • Home-Cooked Software and Barefoot Developers - Another Maggie Appleton piece, this one is a transcript of a talk given at Local-first Conference in 2024. It explores the ideas of needing to build more hyper local community software, and how LLMs could help empower people who previously couldn’t cross the command line wall into being able to build things to meet their needs more easily.

Upcoming Projects