Lighting our new home

I’ve been fascinated with lighting since building my first home in 2003. The ceilings in that place have more 6″ downlights than anyone would reasonably install. Continuous Xenon lighting was used under the cabinets in the kitchen and bar. I like a lot of light, and that home demands it with its high ceilings and lack of natural light in the main living spaces. We started out with horrible incandescent 130-volt BR40 reflectors in the ceiling fixtures. [Read More]

TestDisk Data Recovery on OS X

One of the 4TB external USB hard drives I use for local backups started randomly disconnecting a few days ago. Today it failed completely. It’s a Seagate Backup Plus model, where the bottom of the enclosure consists of a small, removable shim that contains the USB & power connections and the USB to SATA converter chip. After trying different USB ports and cables without success, I decided to hook up the drive directly using SATA. [Read More]

Opendiag OBD-II Schematics & PCB Layout

Back in 2000, I created my first open-source hardware: An RS-232 to OBD-II interface. I’m no longer interested in this project, but it gets a surprising amount of traffic every day. I’m keeping it available for those who want it. Today there are far better approaches for connecting computers to cars, so please keep in mind that this information hasn’t been updated since 2002. [Read More]