Reduce Reuse Recycle – Dream Machine Edition

In order to live in Tiny Spaces you need to reduce your stuff.

See my Live Smaller Post to see more about the physical spaces you can live in.

For me as I reduce my physical footprint I am increasing my digital footprint.  I am digitizing the data to allow me to store my physical CD’s, DVD’s, Notebooks, and other “Hard Copies” outside my Tiny Space. One great way to bring your data together is to use an ‘Electronic Organizer’.  I have tried many of these and have been frustrated by the monthly fees, limited usage, cloud requirements, special add on’s and most of all the inability for the user to modify them to be what YOU NEED not what they THINK YOU NEED.  That is why I was so HAPPY when I found TiddlyWiki.

Recently I have started to port over my Dream Machine to TiddlyWiki 5 to allow me to take full advantage of the latest and greatest TiddlyWiki BUT I am getting ahead of myself, I may need to answer an obvious question you are asking first.

What is TiddlyWiki?

TiddlyWiki is a self contained Wiki that can be used for almost anything.  By self contained I mean it is a single HTML file.  The file has all the information for creating the structure and technical stuff needed to hold all your data in what are called Tiddlers.  A Tiddler is a single TiddlyWiki entry.  TiddlyWiki is Open Source, User Changeable, Fun, Easy, oh and it is AWESOME to use.  You can put it in the Cloud or carry it in your Pocket on a USB Thumb Drive.

What would I use TiddlyWiki for?

Almost anything you can think of.  TiddlyWiki Classic has become quite the hit in the Getting Things Done community, see mGSD.  I am currently using TiddlyWiki 5 which is the newest version and am exploring all the options.  The more I learn the more people I can see using it.  You could use TiddlyWiki for note taking and projects at school, as an ideas scrapbook, for bible study, or knowledge maps, and just about anything you would want to ‘Capture’.  TiddlyWiki can capture text, pictures, sounds, and all different types of data on your journey called life.

“an unexamined life is not worth living”
-Socrates

For everyday life these days I use Google Keep to jot down notes on the go and sync between phones and computers.  Then I use my Dream Machine and other TiddlyWiki’s to store and sort all the stuff I really need to ‘Keep’.  So for different interests and hobbies I have different TiddlyWiki’s set up.  So that way if I need a recipe I can look it up in my [[Not Yet Created Recipe TiddlyWiki]], #heheh.

If you want to learn more about TiddlyWiki check out my Five Steps to TiddlyWiki 5.  This step by step tutorial will get you up and running creating Tiddlers and TiddlyWiki’s, FAST.

Reducing my Physical Foot Print

In addition to reducing my footprint by going digital I am also selling stuff I no longer use or that I found during the reduction process.  I found a bunch of DVD’s, TShirts, and of course a BUNCH of Balls.  I am also selling electronic stuff like my DLP Projector and Audio gear I no longer use.  So make sure to check out my Ebay Page for everything that I am reducing.

What is coming up?

I am working on creating a book based on my experiences as a Flow Artist.  I will be creating a Kickstarter to help fund this effort.  The book will take my 25 years experience as a Flow Artist and distill the concepts and apply them to every day life for everyone.  Being able to think outside box is very helpful when you live inside the box, #heheh.

I will post when the Kickstarter goes live until then make sure to “Subscribe to the Blog” so you can be notified when it comes out.

Hexayurt, Tiny Houses, & Living Smaller

Hexayurt’s are a hexagon shaped yurt created by Vinay Gupta.

Why would you want a yurt that is a hexagon? The answer is that building materials are not traditional yurt friendly. It is easy to get 4 x 8 panels but not so easy to get circular anything at your local mega home store.

The hexayurts I have built have all been for Burning Man.

When I lived at the Vulcan before my first trip I did a test build, that was complicated as I barely put it up without breaking it, Check out my video of the build.

For my following builds I built a Honeycomb Stretch Hexayurt with 6 foot walls. This had the advantage of being burnt on playa and only required a one way trip.  It did have the disadvantage of getting soggy and not working a second year(hence the burning), go car camping go!!!
Here is a picture of a test build using regular cardboard(About 80% Scale of the Real Build).
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And the scale models prebuild.
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Since my first build in 2008 I have also gained a love of tiny houses and have lived tiny for almost 2 years.  My room at the Vulcan in Oakland was a work of engineering insanity.  It allowed me to live, lounge, work, sleep all in under about 50 square feet.

I moved to SoCal and found out about ISBU(Shipping Containers) and how they have blocked out the sun for some people.  I have been unable to build using these but I have been able to make quite a few designs using models.  My favorite is the HexaShipping Container mega compound(Image Below).
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On my journey I have also collected books on Tiny Living and my favorite is Humble Homes, Simple Shacks, Cozy Cottages, Ramshackle Retreats, Funky Forts: And Whatever The Heck Else We Could Squeeze In Here by Derek “Deek” Diedricksen

Let me know if you are living small in a tiny place, or living big in a Tiny House, home, or dwelling of some kind.

Contact Juggling Day

Today is Contact Juggling Day!

So the blog post theme today is contact juggling.

For me, today is a celebration of an art form that combines dancing  and prop(s), with gravity as your silent partner(props make noise or make you make noise :) ), in other words, Gravity Prop Dancing(TM) heheh.

My flow journey started with the words ‘I call it contact juggling‘. Thanks James for my first steps on this journey and for coming up with a name that can include so many things.

So if you haven’t already, go grab a prop, go out, or stay in, and make your prop float all over your body.  Spin it, roll it, and even throw it.  Connect with what you are doing and move beyond gravity and the prop into a place many call flow.

I am excited to share more of this art in future blog posts.

For now I am going to go play with a sphere, roll a fushigi, and spin a metal.  I will be enjoying dancing with props using gravity as my partner, or in other word, I will be contact juggling.

Happy Contact Juggling Day 2014 Everyone.

Rich Shumaker

The Raspberry Pi

I thought my first post beyond the “It work’s” would be about Contact Juggling but oddly it is not.

My first blog post is about ‘The Raspberry Pi’

Raspberry what? You might ask.

Try searching Google for Raspberry Pi and you will find projects using the Pi to create mini arcade emulators,  to make beer, to drink beer, to create a DSLR camera controllers for timelapse, and  water droplets.  The Rapberry Pi has an IR Camera(the PiNoir), can be a Web Servers, or OwnCloud Storage Device, oh you need a Media Centers the Pi’s got that covered.  Wait you wanted to do a Near Space Missions, don’t forget your Pi.

So what is this Raspberry Pi again?

Before I tell you anymore about ‘what the Pi is’ I need to tell you how I found it.

Several years ago I was at an LAUSD(Los Angeles Unified School District) elementary school with a friends 3rd grader, yeah I have a friend, heheh. I asked to see the computer lab and they said it was closed.  I found out later it was closed after some kids were electroshocked.

Wow electroshocked, so I guess no computers for them.  Well that was one school, in one place, then I asked friends and they said almost the same thing about their kids schools minus the electro shocking part.

So I was upset, no computers for kids, now what am I going to do.  I did what anyone who is upset does when frustrated about not being able to solve world problems.

I went to the internet to find others with the same problem so we could blog our anger together one comment at a time.  While I was shaking my virtual fist in the air internet lighting struck and I found the Raspberry Pi.  RasPi

If you are of my Atari 2600 era you have noticed the ‘cmd prompt’ disappeared years ago, ‘dir’ is nowhere to be found, and the period, I mean dot, has taken over.  For as little as you see the computer of ‘my day‘ with a cmd prompt, and blinking cursor, you have a computer in almost everything you own, in your phone, your tv, and your modern touch screen tablet.

So what? That just means things are better and easier and more ‘user friendly’, right?

Sure if by more ‘user friendly’ you mean “I got an app for that(*)”, then yes they are.

Learning computers now is using apps, not dir(rectories) or creating code, wait what is code?

Code is where apps come from so learning code(computers) means making apps, not buying apps.

Wait I can make an app?  Must be hard or everyone would do it right?

Nope the barrier to entry is learning code, which is like reading and writing, something we should be learning right?!?  Probably teaching kids too!!!  Which reminds me of when I was a kid with a C64C64-mmmmmm-homer

So what is this Raspberry Pi again?

The Raspberry Pi is a credit card sized computer using computer chips you find in cell phones, it has HD video and can do what computers do, oh and it costs $25(Model A).   They also have a $35 version(Model B and just released B+) which is the one most people get.  The Raspberry Pi Model B+ is the evolution of the original Raspberry Pi.  The original B which came out before the Model A had 256mb ram, 2 USB ports, 26 GPIO pins, SD Slot for OS and an Ethernet port.  The newest revision the B+ has 512mb ram, 4 USB ports, 40 GPIO pins, MicroSD Slot for OS and an Ethernet port.  The new B+ is even more power efficient than the original B and easily runs off the charger you use for your phone.(B+ Spec from Adafruit)

Now after reading all that you are probably thinking, ‘oh an Arduino?’

And I say ‘exactly like that, and nothing like that, all at the same time, heheh.’

Honestly the Arduino and Raspberry Pi are more like peanut butter and chocolate, they go great together but they are not the same, <insert techno babble micro-speak, computers this, micro controllers that, CPUs, GPUs.>

So why did this Raspberry Pi get created and by who?

The Raspberry Pi or RasPi or Pi was created with one simple mission, ‘Teach “Kids” Computers’.  I put kids in “quotes” as I am a big kid now, heheh. The Raspberry Pi Foundation was formed by Eben Upton, Rob Mullins, Jack Lang and Alan Mycroft, based at the University of Cambridge,(Wikipedia).  In 2006 the Raspberry Pi Foundation noticed that same trend I found years later, kids don’t have ‘computers’ they don’t learn ‘computers’, they learn apps.  So they created a computer for kids to learn, the Raspberry Pi.

Keep Up the Great Work Raspberry Pi Foundation!!!!!!

Why I like the RasPi

Or Why you need one or two or more for yourself.

#1 “Kids” get computers(please don’t get me started on last years LAUSD mice for iPad debacle wireless mouses are necessary to be able to use the tablets to take the new tests”) – Remember why I put quotes on kids earlier, heheh.

#2 Making cool stuff and learning computers at the same time, Tetra Pi coming soon.(**)

#3 Minecraft, Mathematica, and Sonic Pi too, all free – Have you seen how much Mathematica costs for your PC?

#4 HD Video Looper – waking up to What Does The Fox Say?

#5 Cuz it’s a credit card sized computer you can create anything your imagination can think up.

Some Raspberry Pi Resources

Raspberry Pi Dot Org Blog

PiWeekly

MagPi

EndNotes and disclaimers

* Future #1 hit for DJ Plague

** Coming out shortly before DJ Plagues #1 Song ‘I have an app for that’

I do not work for the Raspberry Pi Foundation and all views and opinions of the AWESOMENESS OF THE PI are mine, heheh, hopefully you will share them too.