Recent Blog Posts

Re-gripping a Nikon D700 DSLR

The Nikon D700 holds a special place in my heart. I started getting serious about photography right around the time digital SLR cameras (DSLRs) were overtaking film cameras in terms of quality and sales quantity. My first non-snapshot camera was a manual-focus Minolta X-700, and I'm sad I sold it years ago. The D700 was the first 'semi-pro' level DSLR I used; though I never owned one until recently.

Nikon D700 60mm 2.8 Macro lens Hero image

I rented and borrowed the Nikon D3, D3s, and D700 a number of times when they were the state of the art, and I still love the way the D700 renders images. The fact that it shoots at 12 megapixels means it's more forgiving with handheld photography at slower shutter speeds (since motion blur gets much worse as resolution increases). It doesn't do video at all... but as a photographer's camera, besides maybe the Nikon Df, there isn't a DSLR that I've enjoyed using as much for as long.

Mcrouter Operator - demonstration of K8s Operator SDK usage with Ansible

It wouldn't surprise me if you've never heard of Mcrouter. Described by Facebook as "a memcached protocol router for scaling memcached deployments", it's not the kind of software that everyone needs.

There are many scenarios where a key-value cache is necessary, and in probably 90% of them, running a single Redis or Memcached instance would adequately serve the application's needs. There are more exotic use cases, though, where you need better horizontal scaling and consistency.

Review: Choetech T535-S Dual Wireless Qi Charger

After holding onto a dying iPhone 7 for as long as I could, I finally decided to trade it in and upgrade to the now-current iPhone XS early this summer. When I upgraded, I was mainly hoping for a better screen, camera, and battery life. Outside of those three features, I don't care much, as the iPhone 7 met my needs very well.

The XS does well on all three counts, but one new feature (I think in the iPhone 8/X generation) I didn't even remember existed was wireless charging. Qi wireless charging allows devices to be charged inductively, placed on top of a charging mat or pad. The standard has been around for a while, and other devices had it before Apple's iPhones, but I never thought much of it.

Well, a few months ago, someone at Choetech emailed me and asked me if I'd like to try out their T535-S Dual Wireless Qi Charger in exchange for an honest review (which you're now reading). I was about to respond I don't have any devices I could test it with, but then realized my new iPhone would actually do it!

Trying out CRC (Code Ready Containers) to run OpenShift 4.x locally

I've been working a bit with Red Hat lately, and one of the products that has intrigued me is their OpenShift Kubernetes platform; it's kind of like Kubernetes, but made to be more palatable and UI-driven... at least that's my initial take after taking it for a spin both using Minishift (which works with OpenShift 3.x), and CRC (which works with OpenShift 4.x).

Because it took me a bit of time to figure out a few details in testing things with OpenShift 4.1 and CRC, I thought I'd write up a blog post detailing my learning process. It might help someone else who wants to get things going locally!

CRC System Requirements

First things first, you need a decent workstation to run OpenShift 4. The minimum requirements are 4 vCPUs, 8 GB RAM, and 35 GB disk space. And even with that, I constantly saw HyperKit (the VM backend CRC uses) consuming 100-200% CPU and 12+ GB of RAM (sheesh!).

A hospital stay and MLB blackouts led me to RTL-SDR radio

Last year I spent a lot of time in the hospital. Between multiple surgeries and outpatient visits and follow-ups (either intentional or through an unexpected ER visit), I probably spent at least a month or two in a hospital room. For a time, you could see the exact date ranges I was checked in by the holes in my GitHub contribution graph! Such is the life of an open source developer.

Jeff Geerling holding yay sign in hospital bed after surgery
Despite appearances, this was not a very fun recovery!

The physical Apple Card is a case of form over function

Apple Card is not just the physical card you get in the mail when you sign up for an Apple Card. There are a lot of upsides to what Apple's doing with Apple Card and Apple Pay.

I get it. And I also believe the physical titanium Apple Card is a marvel of engineering. Kudos to the metallurgists and designers who produced it—it would easily make for a durable and beautiful display piece on the history of monetary transfer.

Apple Card - Jeff Geerling - Front hero shot

The card feels great in your hand. It has a beautiful white finish. The letter and logo detail is impeccable.

Apple Card - Apple logo detail

The way the magstripe seamlessly integrates into the titanium structure of the card is beautiful, and probably required some extremely precise machining.

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