Developer from the UK, currently making cool stuff at The Outlook Creative Group.
Podcasting weekly at munchtech.tv.

My new favourite Safari extension

We all know that comment sections on some sites *cough* YouTube *cough* can end up being a toxic wasteland, well this aptly named plugin does a good job of, well, shutting them up!

https://rickyromero.com/shutup/


Watch: The Social Dilemma

Wow, what an eye opening piece of television! I’ve just finished “The Social Dilemma” on Netflix and it really does open your eyes wide to what companies are doing with your data, and how we’re being influenced to think in certain/specific ways by hundreds of tiny little actions every day from these social networks.

We are all aware of the “If you don’t pay for the product, you are the product” saying and we all think we have an idea of what these companies do with our data, but boy oh boy does this documentary really up the “scare” factor on that!


Not Now – blink -182

I’ve recently started building up my blink-182 collection and managed to snag both part 1 and 2 of the “Not Now” single on vinyl, super stoked with them and can’t wait to get them framed!


Mounting Synology folders on a Raspberry Pi (for Plex)

I’ve recently moved my Plex server to run on a Raspberry Pi but I wanted to find a way where I could keep all of my data on the Synology. This is the way I mounted shared folders from my Synology to my Pi so I could use them in Plex.

Make sure NFS is enabled on your Synology

Control Panel > File Services > Enable NFS

Allow access to a shared folder on your Synology

Control Panel > Shared Folder > Edit

Create a new NFS rule

Once the edit panel is open, click “NFS Permissions” and then “Create”.

Hostname or IP: This should be the IP address of your Raspberry Pi (ideally a static address)
Privilege: What abilities do you want the Pi to have? I usually select “Read only”
Squash: Map all to admin

Tick “Allow users to access mounted subfolders”

Click “Ok”.

Make note of the mount path at the bottom

That should be it from the Syndology side, onto the Raspberry Pi side.

Setup mounts on the Pi

First thing I do is create a new directory in the /media folder on the Pi, in this case I called it NAS (/media/NAS)

sudo mkdir /media/NAS

Next up we need to mount the network folder to this folder we’ve just created.

sudo mount -t nfs 10.0.synolgy.address:/volume1/video /media/NAS

Replace 10.0.synology.address with your Synology’s IP adress. Also replace /volume1/video with the mount path you made a note of earlier (found under each NFS rule).

Almost there! Sudo mount is not a permanent command, so we need to make sure it still works next time you reboot your Pi. To do this:

sudo nano /etc/fstab

Then on a new line in there, paste the following (making sure to replace the same details as before):

10.0.synolgy.address:/volume1/video /media/NAS nfs defaults 0 0

Save and exit fstab and you should be ready to go!

In theory, you should be able to run “ls /media/NAS” and you should see the files/folders from your Syndology! This should also now mean you can add these folders to Plex on your Pi as libraries, simple!

Issues

Not being mounted at boot

Sometimes I’ve noticed the mounts don’t always mount when the Pi boots. I’ve yet to find a permanent solution for this, for the meantime I just run:

sudo mount -a

Mounting but with no permissions

This is one I experienced recently, I could mount the folder from the Synology on the Pi but I was not able to do anything with it (not even list files in the directory using “ls”). I ended up noticing this was down to permissions on the Synology with the admin account.

Within the shared folder settings in the Synology control panel, make sure “admin” has access to read/write the folder you’re trying to share.


New plates!

…and its first wash in a loooooooooong time

SyndiFeed version 3 – It’s finally here!

SyndiFeed.com was one of the first real web projects I worked on all the way back in 2012. At the time, I wanted a nice and clean online RSS reader and the best around at that point was Google Reader (RIP!), so I did what all programmers do, I built a todo list app, wait no, an RSS app! It turned out that a good number of other people also wanted something similar and SyndiFeed became “popular” once Google announced the demise of Google Reader. Since then I’ve made multiple attempts to update and improve on a very simple product, yet none ended up seeing the light of day. Well, that changes today! Over the weekend I buttoned up the last of the code and shipped version 3, almost 8 years after shipping version 1.

It’s a big update, and by big, I mean literally everything has been rewritten and none of the original code was re-used in any way. I simplified a lot of it which on top of making maintaining it going forwards easy, it also has the added benefit of making it quick which is definitely not something that could be said for version 1. The new version will update your feeds in the background for you so there’s no more missing the latest post from that blog you love! I’ve removed a couple of the bulky, less used features and stripped it down to just what I wanted out of an RSS reader. There is a lot more to come (yes, dark mode is one) in the future and I’d like to open up integration into more RSS platforms as well. All featured suggestions are welcome!

If you were an existing user, there’s a small migration process that needs to happen when you first login. In theory, you shouldn’t notice a thing, but in the event that you do have any issues, please reach out to me or the @SyndiFeed account on Twitter and I’ll try to get everything sorted as quick as I can.

2020, the year of RSS?

https://syndifeed.com


Mark Hoppus Bass build is complete!

 

How it started life…


Best of* 2019

* more like my favourite things, but oh well

Another year (decade) over! I thought I’d put together a few of the things I enjoyed the most this past year.

Music

This one is easy…too easy. I hinted at it in last years post but the music I was most excited for this year was the new Angels & Airwaves album along with the new blink-182 album, well, we kinda got that, or at least most of it. The two new Angels & Airwaves tracks have been on repeat ever since they came out and the new blink-182 album (Nine) has been in rotation as well.

Rebel Girl – Angels & Airwaves

Kiss & Tell – Angels & Airwaves

My favourite new discovery of the year has been a British band called Hot Milk, you can check them out here.

I also started using Last.fm (again) this year, so you can check out my listening habits here. Spoiler alert: It’s just blink-182 over and over.

Apps

Not too many standout additions this year. I’ve been getting more and more into using “Things” as my to-do app of choice, it’s a high buy-in price but well worth it if you can stay committed.

The other main app that I’m surprised I’ve stuck so well to is You Need a Budget! This time last year I made the conscious decision to track every single penny going in an out of my accounts, and that’s exactly what I’ve done for the last 12 months and counting. Whether you’re in financial difficulty, I think using a budgeting tool (there are loads, spend a little while and find one that works for you) is an essential tool, really helps deal with unexpected surprises (I’m looking at you cars).

This isn’t really a “best of”, actually, it’s quite the opposite, but can we just give a quick shout out to the new YouTube app on the Apple TV for possibly being one of the worst user experiences I’ve seen in a long time? Apple provide these native video playback controls that work with their remote really well (no matter what you think of the actual remote) but YouTube have successfully used none of that, and it’s the worst. The irony is when the 4th generation Apple TV launched, the YouTube app was great! Used the native video controls etc. and just worked….why fix something that isn’t broken 🤷‍♀️

TV & Film

Toy Story 4. Enough said. Easily my favourite movie of the year. I was a little worried about how they were going to carry on after the ending of the 3rd film, but it ended up very well done and super fun to watch, and oh boy that animation, just wow.

Favourite TV series of the year has to go to Stranger Things 3. After the no so good season 2, season 3 absolutely knocked it out of the park. The storyline was great, the visual effects were great and the soundtrack was outstanding.

Honourable mention to the latest season of Orange is the new black, they really pulled it back together with the last season.

Podcasting

Another great year for our show over at MunchTech.tv, record numbers and I think we’ve really stepped up the quality of the show this year. We’re also approaching 10 years this January, which is nuts. Super excited for the things we have planned for that episode.

Guitars

I’m running out of wall space. This year I’ve spent more time than ever in the shed learning so much about the process of making guitars. Still working on the second one, but the first one you can see the process here, here and here.

The colours might not be to everyone’s taste, but I’m a fan. The first one is a Surf Green Tom DeLonge Stratocaster and the current work in progress is a Hot Pink Mark Hoppus bass – more on that soon.


So here’s to 2020 and the decade beyond, Merry Christmas and a happy new year to everyone!


New Ernie Ball “String Theory” video!

Could listen to these for hours…


Building a TD Fender Strat – Part 3: Final assembly

View part 1 of the build here
View part 2 here

It’s been a little while since I last posted an update but here’s the final (kinda) post on the build. We’ve got it all painted and put together, I’m now in the process of slowly perfecting the setup.

The only long term changes will be correcting the pickup (currently a SD neck, ideally needs to be a SD bridge) and a few minor wiring tweaks. Eventually I may sand the finish down and redo it, we learnt a lot painting this guitar and there a few areas where we could definitely improve.

Overall though, super psyched about how the guitar came out, it looks and sounds great! Onto the next build (watch this space…)

Link to gallery


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