Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies

Bitcoin (and many other cryptocurrencies) have been making headlines lately.  Their prices seem to be going through the roof.  Some people even claim that they are long-term ‘investments’.  What’s really going on?  Should you buy some? To start the ball rolling let me first say that I do not own any Bitcoin.  I do not […]

Curvature of the Earth

We all know that the surface of the Earth is curved, but exactly how ‘curvy’ is it?  At what scale do you actually need to start compensating for it in a construction project?  Let’s do some easy math and find out… The Earth is not a sphere — it’s actually an oblate spheroid — but […]

Free Dehumidifier

Air too humid inside your house?  Got mould problems?  Clothes take ages to dry inside during the wet season?  How does a free dehumidifier with zero running costs sound? Most folks don’t know that their ‘frost free fridge’ can easily be hacked to act as a dehumidifier.  As it runs continuously, it can be used […]

Slow ADSL Download Speeds

Got an ADSL connection that’s running slow?  Downloads taking too long?  Wonder if there’s anything you can do to speed things up?  Maybe, maybe not. Note:  The bulk of this post was originally in response to a question from someone who was getting only 1Mbps download speeds on their ADSL connection.  Since the issues are […]

Lawn Tractor Oil Filter Tips

If you have a John Deere D125 lawn tractor (aka ride-on mower), or pretty much any of the D-series, and have ever replaced the oil filter, then you’ll know how annoying it can be.  The crux of the problem is that: the ‘proper’ oil filter (the AM125424 for a D125) is a very short filter […]

The Future of the Electrical Grid

Grid power is dirty!  It’s polluting the planet!  We should all put solar panels on our roofs, some batteries in the shed, and go off-grid!  For the sake of the children!  Hmmm… Not so fast. This post is about the electrical grid (“the grid”), why it’s not going to go away, and why (eventually) it […]

Disabling Lawn Tractor Safety Switches

Like many others, the 2015 John Deere D125 Lawn Tractor (aka ride-on mower or garden tractor) has two annoying safety switches.  One stalls the engine if you mow in reverse without pressing a button.  The other stalls the engine as soon as you get off the seat (or lean too much forward or to one […]