Posted in Modification, Modularity

Hacker Home Security Hardware Prototype!

Just wrote a post over on Hacker Home Security detailing the first prototype board for my project of the same name.

I’d expected initially to make it on the D1 Mini platform, but recently sorted out some of my prior problems with using a raw ESP8266, so I’ve since migrated to that.  Plus it’s significantly more power efficient as it doesn’t need to run a usb-to-serial adapter as well, which can be an unnecessary drain on the D1 Mini.

I really enjoy designing circuit boards.  There’s a certain artistry to them, an efficiency of space that really constrains the options and results in some results that I really take pride in.  Let me know what you think!



Posted in Modularity

WordPress of Things

Continuing my prior remarks on building Internet of Things devices that connect to WordPress, I delivered a talk at WordCamp Lancaster earlier this month on that topic.

All the code from the examples is up on my GitHub page here:

I’ll be working on some future posts that open each project up in more depth to explain how it comes together.

Posted in Modularity

Nintendo’s Modular Switch

(apologies for the pun, but it was totally intended)

Last night, Nintendo officially announced details and games for their upcoming console, the Switch.  This morning I waited outside of a GameStop to preorder mine.  I’m excited.

Most of the technical details, while impressive, struck me as basically what was to be expected — nothing out of the ordinary.  Better haptic feedback, new sensors, etc.  One thing did surprise me, though.


The actual Nintendo Switch charges via USB-C.  The controllers also charge via USB-C.  This means a couple things, listed roughly in the sequence that they occurred to me:

  1. Huh, that’s interesting.  I’ll be able to use the same charging cable that I have for my Pixel phone for the Switch as well!  That’s certainly a change, Nintendo has a history of inventing proprietary connectors on, like, everything.
  2. Oh, so if I’m on a plane ride or a trip, I’ll be able to charge it on the go to extend its battery life.
  3. Wait wait wait, if the Switch charges via USB-C when it’s plugged into the TV Dock, I wonder if it uses that single connection for both charging, and the 1080p HDMI video out?  It certainly could, I don’t see why it wouldn’t.
  4. Does that mean that the Nintendo Switch’s TV dock is just a glorified version of Apple’s USB-C Digital AV Multiport Adapter — piping the video out through the same single USB-C port that the power comes in via?  I wonder if they’d be interchangeable.
  5. I wonder if it would support USB peripherals via a USB-C hub plugged into the Switch.

There’s a lot of tech questions that will only be answered on or about March 3rd, when the Nintendo Switch actually releases — but with Nintendo changing — err, switching — to more modular technology standards, I’m very excited to learn where we go from here.