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Showing posts from October, 2015

717th post: Indirectly helping reduce utility bill

I may not directly seem to be saving energy, but there are indirect ways that I help to reduce the household utility bill.

Solar Panels with 2 USB type-A ports
It began after I bought my first power bank in 2012. I didn't know it was a power bank then, but the only input it had was the retractable power plug and the other side covered in solar panel. The down side was the small capacity it had, and certainly couldn't charge much with the size of the panel. However, the idea that you could get some charge from placing it in sunlight without ever plugging it in since completely draining power was new to me. It now only works as a USB wall charger since it can't hold charge now, if it doesn't overheat while charging. Solar panels do still work, but effectively useless with the little power it generates.

The solar panel idea came about as I was looking as a result of that device bought in 2012. I research that I certainly need panels way larger than what I had, and the nece…

716th post - Seperating the confusion with USB type-C and 3.1

When I look around YouTube comments in videos, particularly that of the 2015 MacBook, people seemed confused that the two USB type-C and 3.1 are together, or an Apple-only standard. (In fact, Google's Chromebook Pixel and newer generation Nexus phones uses it too.)

What is USB 3.1?
Here's the confusing bit. USB 3.1 has two different versions: Gen1 and Gen2. Gen1. Gen1 is basically renamed 3.0, where maximum transfer speed is 5Gbps. Gen2 is the real new 3.1 with speeds doubled to 10Gbps.

It's not Thunderbolt 3, which uses the same USB type-C connectors with the thunderbolt logo on it, so don't expect a USB type-C to mini-DisplayPort adapter to work unless it's between Thunderbolt 3 and Thunderbolt 1/2 or DisplayPort protocols. Separately, you can have video output with just USB 3.0 3.1.

What is USB type-C?
Well, we all know what it looks like and how reversible it is, but here is the list of what is is and what it isn't.

What it is not:
It's a propriety standard…

715th post: Early preperation for Halloween everywhere

When you go out to the shops since around August, what do you see slowly creeping in? Decoration for Halloween! To remind you, that's on 31st October, which is practically November.

I do get how big of an event this is, plus the time between production of goods and preparing venues of with said goods, but I feel that it's way too early to have have it in stores in August!

Even online, you can't escape it as people began talking about it. Pumpkins, orange colour, ghosts, bats, witch hats, skeletons... The usual things associated with it.

When the day has come and gone, everyone removes the decorations a lot more quickly than setting them up, only to be replaced by... Christmas decorations.

You can never escape these things, do you?