Sunday, December 6, 2015

3D Printing with a PEI sheet.

Experimenting with a PEI sheet. PLA works great. Still have ABS warping issues.

PEI sheet results:
PLA 60° No prep needed sticks perfectly.
ABS 80° Warping and barely sticking
ABS 100° Minor warping and strong bond.
ABS 80° with glue stick: no warping.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Hunter Sprinkler Controllers and What the hell is up with them?

I love my Hunter sprinkler controller. It works exactly how I want it to work. From configuration to turning on a single zone it ease of use is perfect for me. But I have found one thing that I don't understand and its come to my attention that Hunter controllers may not be all that great after all.

2 years ago I bought a new house. The controller there was a Rain Bird. It worked but was 10 years old and somehow the buttons and knobs were worn out. So I replaced it with something I knew like a Hunter controller like I had in my old house. 3 weeks after getting the controller the external rain, light and temperature sensor went out. It likely went out after a bad storm the previous night. That is fine the controller still worked. 2 years later we had another bad lighting storm and now the display on the unit is faded to almost dead yet the controller still works. So these units are made to go outside yet seem to be greatly effected by the weather. I for one would have not expected issues like this. In all my years I have only seen one electrical device die due to lighting and yet this device had two in the past two years. Like I said Hunter has a great product but I wonder if they need to spend some time making sure their products can stand the test of time outside and at least handle a storm that a lot of these devices will to placed in.

Bvckup 2 is likely the most efficient backup software available.

I have been using Kaspersky to backup my data on external drives but if you haven't used it you will find it a little clunky. The software does what it should but after a certain amount of files the software starts to get slow. In my case the software took 15 minutes to scan for changes.15 hard drive grinding minutes that brought my up to date laptop to its knees. It just couldn't handle the number of files or the size of the backup. Because of that I started to look at alternatives. I found a lot of software that had tons of features but lacked ease of use. Kaspersky was very easy to operate but speed was getting to be important to me. Bvckup 2 was the backup software I decided to go with in the end. It lacks a lot of the features you would expect like file visioning, compression or encryption but it makes up for that with ease and speed. The software is clean and simple. No cluttered icons or useless extras just bare bones backups. The best thing going for it is the delta backups. It can update small parts of files that changed vs coping the entire file over again. This will cut down on the time to backup by leaps and bounds.


Wednesday, July 8, 2015

True Value DIY VIP membership is a joke.

So let me just say that I know that I'm complaining about nothing. I will also tell you that its over an item that is likely only at most $5. That being said I still think as little of a difference having or not having this item is there is something about this that feels wrong and misguided. Its when a store like True Value tells you everything you want to hear and then they don't deliver. Hurry now you have a "free gift" and that only VIP members get it. Its "limited edition" and that because your are a "Loyal" and "Committed" customer that you deserve it. Its not only a gift but a "Thank You gift" because you are that awesome. To get this extremely personal and almost Hallmark style item. That was hand crafted just for you by monks. You only need to go to the store and pick it up. OK, so some of that I made up but they want you to feel like your special so you will stay at VIP level.

You might say "Well sir you most definitely have first world problems" because who would complain about getting a free gift. Right I agree in most cases. When I went to pick up this glorious rare item the store didn't have any. If fact while they could order more they said they would not. So this item that was 75% of what a VIP member gets is basically BS. There is no item, no discount, no bogo, no free puppy or in this case no free set of glass ware. The VIP membership got me in total..... drum roll.... a sticker to place on my membership card so employees know I'm a VIP. :-/ My business is important enough to send this card for a free gift but not important enough to order more of them when it comes time. Its not like this card is printed with my member ID and the store to pick it up. Oh wait it was. So it would be easy to know how many people would be coming in.

So why is that wrong to me? It feels disingenuous and made up. I know what "limited quantities" means but in this case I'm really someone that spent a lot over the last year at the store. Telling someone that you have a "Thank You gift" and then not actually having one is messed up. Its also not like the coupon for a free bag of chips you see in the paper but in limited quantities. I would expect that to not be there. In this case you are catering for you customers that spend the most money in your store. The guy getting the bag of chips may never shop there again but the VIP will. So what do you do you tell the people who spend above average about a gift that they will never get. I don't know how you could run a business that setup a promotion that knowingly is only for VIP's and some how be okay with possibly pissing them off when they don't deliver. Even more depressing is when its over a item that costs True Value next to nothing. You are willing to lose a truly valued customer over a cheap gift item because you decided to try to save $3 vs the hundreds I spent.

Sorry Billy, I know you really wanted that car and that I said it was awesome but it was in "limited quantities" meaning that there was none to start with. Better luck next time Mr VIP.

Even though I love the store, the people that work there, the lower prices and how close it is to my house. I will now drive further and spend more at Ace. Knowing that I could save enough to buy the gift item 5 times over is hard but money is not the issue here. Feeling scammed is.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

If you use DVD/Blu-Rays make sure to add recovery data to them.

Don't just think that your DVDs are safe enough to hold all of you important pictures without some sort of recovery data. A small scratch can quickly cause errors on the disc. A great way to create recovery information for a DVD/Blu-Ray is using "DVDisaster". I have tested it using a badly damaged disc and was able to recover all of my data from it. I been using it for the past year and found it to be a great way to make sure your archived data is recoverable. You can create recovery info to be put on a disc or a separate file on your hard drive.

SecurDisc is a lie... Avoid this recovery option at all costs.

I just recently bought Nero 2015 and found the SecurDisc option interesting. I currently used DVDisaster to add recovery to a DVD's but SecurDisc seemed a little better since its built into Nero and is faster to setup. But before I took and jumped in the SecurDisc pool I decided to run the same test I used with DVDisaster to make sure I can actually recover data after bad disc damage. What I found was that the software failed to recover all the damaged files from the disk even though it said "Recovered". I repeated the test using a much less aggressive damaged disc and still got corrupted files back from the damaged disc.

In DVDisaster with 25% of the disc space reserved for recovery it could recover a DVD from the damage I left. I bet 10% would have been enough. SecurDisc failed when 75% of the DVD is recovery information. 75% should be enough to recover from some very bad disc issues. That is like writing the same info 3x on the disc. Nothing is recovered and at no point have I seen that SecurDisc even work beyond returning corrupted files back.

Seems that this software was designed 7 years ago and simply was added for a bullet point. Nothing shows me that its even a valid recovery tool without a external application like Multipar to help recover the damage SecurDisc fails to correct. I'm sticking with DVDisaster.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Next Gen game systems are a let down.

Why is it that we are told that the next generation of consoles are so great and will be full HD when it's a complete lie. Microsoft has confirmed that Ryse will be "native 900p". I'm pretty sure that they have no clue what native means since there is no such thing in the HD specs for 900p. To even say that two things together shows just how out of touch Microsoft is. Plus that 900p, if such a setting did exist, is not a full HD setting that we are being told the game systems were gearing up for. Microsoft and Sony are both telling BS storylines and the sub par game systems can't back them up.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Twitter Support Sucks

I recently converted my account to two factor authentication on my twitter account thinking it would be a good idea to prevent issues. Well it in fact caused a major issues that Twitter isn't prepared to handle. About a week after I started using two factor my phone started having issues and I decided to do a factory reset. I had written down my backup code for Twitter thinking everything would be ok. This is when I hit the issues. My code doesn't work! The thing that supposed to let you back in doesn't do anything.  Without it you can't log into and the twitter app only works if you have a temporary password from the web site. What sucks is the I can login with my password but there is no way to prove I'm me without that stupid backup code. Over the past two weeks I have put in two tickets explaining my issue to Twitter support with zero response. I have never had issues with my Google, Last Pass or Facebook accounts just Twitters lame unsupported two factor method. Thanks Twitter you can close the account... wait what was I thinking Twitter support will just ignored that request too.