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Aug 202013
DIY SCUBA noise makers made from PVC and stainless steel ball bearings

DIY SCUBA noise makers made from PVC and stainless steel ball bearings


My wife and I went on a couple of dives in Destin, FL, USA over our summer vacation. The first was an awesome boat dive chartered through ScubaTech. Aside from nearly losing my new GoPro on the bottom of the ocean, it was uneventful and extremely enjoyable.

The next day we (mainly me) decided to try our first solo shore dive. The Destin Jetties are a popular shore diving location, and after renting our gear and lugging it 150 yards from the car in loose sand in the summer sun, we were ready to dive. The Jetties were very crowded (boats, snorkelers, dive classes, etc), and this was my first time towing a dive flag (which I will NEVER do again). After roughly 35 minutes on the bottom we were both following our course back towards the shore. I suddenly became aware of some rather intense currents. As I found myself getting pulled up and away from my wife, I frantically tried to make noise so she would know to begin her ascent. Between struggling with the tow line, and focusing on getting my wife’s attention, I neglected to dump the expanding air from my BC and shot up to the surface. Thankfully we had been at a shallower depth for a while, so no issues with the fast ascent (although DEFINITELY not recommended). My wife eventually noticed I was missing, she stuck to her training and looked around for 1 minute, then surfaced about 20ft from me. As we exited the water, I resolved to buy or make some kind of noise maker to bring with me next time. Obviously the better solutions are proper buoyancy control and staying next to your buddy, but this gives you a last ditch effort to get someone’s attention.

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Mar 032013

At the time of this writing I drive an ’04 Mazda 6 (automatic, with lowest-level stereo and temperature control). I was tired of either lugging around a book of CDs or using hacked up FM transmitters to listen to my music. My Mazda didn’t come with anything in the Mini Disc/Tape Deck port, and I had briefly considered purchasing a tape deck from Mazda in order to use one of those Aux In Tape Adapters to fit my needs. However, at $200 for a piece of antiquated technology, I had my eyes out for a more cost efficient alternative. Enter the Sylfex AuxMod.

AuxMod Basic

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Jan 042011

So you’ve either just joined us from Part 1, where we learned how to emulate button presses on an RF outlet remote control, or you decided you’d rather skip that portion and go straight to the Network/Arduino link. Either way, I’m glad you’re here. In this tutorial, we will learn how to control the Arduino from a website residing on your own home server. As a disclaimer, I’m aware of several different methods of accomplishing the same thing with various Arduino shields, but I had a home server and no shields, so this is the method I chose. Let’s dive in… Continue reading »

Dec 092010

Home automation/security has always been a passion of mine. Sure, there are plenty of commercial kits out there to buy, but I’d rather DIY, especially if it means saving a buck or two. This 2 part series will explain how to cheaply control electrical outlets in your home using an Arduino. Even if you don’t care for home automation, the information from this tutorial will give you serial access to the Arduino over the network, so you can feasibly do ANYTHING, as long as the Arduino is capable of controlling it.
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Sep 282009

UPDATE: John Doe sent me a link to an excellent video tutorial he put together based on the text instructions below. Thanks a lot John, I greatly appreciate it!

OK guys, my post on fixing the HP vs19d monitor was immensely popular and it looks like it helped a lot of people save some money on buying a new monitor. I’ve had several comments made about people that have successfully applied my fix to the vs19e monitors. To help those of you that may be a little uncertain about applying a fix to a different monitor, I’ve posted images and short instructions for the vs19e below. If you want more explanation, visit the previous post for the vs19d monitor. It goes into a little more depth and detail (vs19d).
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Jun 202008
**UPDATE: VS19e monitor repair instructions and pics now available: VS19E

The other day, I rolled out of bed in the morning and after a cup of

Gevalia’s finest, I sat down at my computer to check the weather. To
my dismay, upon clicking the power button on my HP vs19d LCD monitor, nothing happened. The blue LED would light up for a few seconds, I would hear a high pitched squeal from inside the monitor, and then nothing. This process would repeat itself until I eventually unplugged the monitor. I later called HP tech support to find that the monitor would have to be replaced. Good thing I bought that expensive three year extension warranty, right? Well, turns out that my warranty only covered my desktop and didn’t extend to the monitor. Excellent.
It seemed like I had one of two options. I could either attempt to fix the monitor myself, or buy a new one. I needed to access my computer to get some files for work, and the HP LCD was the only monitor I had. So, making my decision, I visited NewEgg from work and bought a 19″ WS Acer for a great price.
But I still wasn’t happy that my monitor was only two years old and on its way to the dump. So I decided to crack it open and have a look around. If you’re having a similar problem, follow along, because now my monitor works fine.
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