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Woodworking: Windtraveler lamp base nitty-gritty

This is getting exciting!

The assembled lamp body and base

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Contemplating: A better rice farming method

Photo of rice crop near Ambositra, Madagascar by Bernard Gagnon
Rice crop near Ambositra, Madagascar
Photo by Bernard Gagnon - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0

This is one of the more hopeful bits of news I've read in a long time.

A method of growing rice, which was developed in Madagascar in 1983, requires a fraction of the seed and much less water per hectare, and is resulting in significantly higher yields. "Reports from China, India, Southeast Asia and Africa suggest that average yield increases of 20 to 50 percent are regularly being achieved by farmers adopting the 'system of rice intensification' (SRI)."

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Reading: Margot Lee Shetterly, Hidden Figures

Hidden Figures by Margot Lee ShetterlyNarrated by Robing Miles

I'm in awe of people who can grasp advanced mathematics, and this book tells the stories of some truly gifted mathematicians and engineers who worked at NACA and its successor NASA. The story focuses on three black women, Katherine Goble, Mary Jackson, and Dorothy Vaughan, as well as their peers, as they courageously fought racism and misogyny to make significant contributions to helping the U.S. achieve aeronautical superiority during World War II, and then to help get the U.S. into space and to the moon.

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Living in the Rockies

Mysticles on our Rocky Mountain Birch tree. There's a gentle westward mist meandering through today, forming delicate pointed icicles on the east face of every branch, pine needle, and dried grass blade.

Delicate mist-formed icicles on birch twigs

Higher res version of this photo »

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Amateur radio: Pi-Star and digital voice hotspots

Pi-Star is great software for digital voice hotspots and repeaters. It can handle DMR, D-STAR, and YSF, and even P25, NXDN, and YSF cross modes when used with a multi-mode digital voice modem that supports those modes.

Paired with a board like the ZUMspot or MMDMV_HS_Hat, Pi-Star is a great solution for use both as a base station and as a mobile hotspot.

MMDVM_HS_Hat mobile hotspot setup

More: Playing with Pi-Star and Hanging out with hotspots

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