Trying to make the world a better place.
- I created ETC to have something to watch on television with my family.
- I created Bayside Brume to have something to read while I waited in line at a local cafe.
- I created ItsCarma so we San Franciscans could remind each other about street cleaning and not get ticketed.
- I created Hieroglyphs.net to teach people about Middle Egyptian hieroglyphs.
- I created PlasMap to make illustrations of plasmids.
What is this?
Below is more information about each of the projects mentioned above.
Entertainment Television Company
ETC is a sort of home television station. It runs on a Raspberry Pi hooked up to an old console television. It plays movies and television programs I’ve digitized from DVDs I own, according to a generic schedule I created, and consistent with other parameters (for example, regarding which movies can be “broadcasted” on which days and at what times, based on their content ratings—G, PG, PG-13, and so forth). As my software generates the ETC playlist, it also generates the teasers needed to advertise upcoming movies to ETC viewers.
Bayside Brume was a one-sheet/two-page literary digest that was meant to be picked up and read while waiting in line at one’s local coffee shop, perhaps on the way to work. Behind it is a fairly complex program written in Python that generates PostScript documents that are saved as PDFs, and that a cafe can print and have on hand for its customers. The content is drawn mostly from Project Gutenberg sources. About the name: “Bayside” for San Francisco Bay and “Brume”, meaning “fog.”
- QR code generator
- Sudoku generator
ItsCarma was a specialized messaging app intended to help car owners in San Francisco. It allowed anyone to send one of a number of car-related messages (like “Street cleaning today”, “Headlights are on”, “Window is broken”) that could alert a car’s owner to an impending parking ticket or other situations involving their car. Unfortunately, it launched in March 2020, in the week that San Francisco went into Covid lockdown and SFMTA suspended most of its parking ticketing activity. We never recovered from the resulting loss of revenue and officially closed in late 2021.
- Twillio API
- PayPal API
- Twofish encryption
Hieroglyphs.net was founded in 1998 and has been on the web ever since. It is an incredibly cool (though perhaps somewhat understated) collection of web-based tools related to ancient Egyptian hieroglyphic writing. Over the years I’ve produced two related puzzle books and a set of flashcards.
PlasMap is a small utility I wrote in Perl to draw plasmids from their structural data. The Perl script is enclosed in a Platypus wrapper making it a stand-alone app on Macs. I also include a copy of the script itself, two sample data files, and user documentation PDF.