Thursday, 14 March 2019

DNA Testing: what can it tell you?

Personal DNA kits have become very popular over recent years.


Many are sold to those looking for long-lost relatives, or to people just curious about their 'roots'.


But what can they tell you about your origins and relationships to other people?

Tuesday, 12 March 2019

Bluetooth Audio Transmitter Repair

We recently had a problem with our Insomniacs Bedside Radio.


The Bluetooth pairing button seemed to have shifted position within the box, causing it to be jammed on.


So time to open it up and reposition it, or so I thought.

Sunday, 17 February 2019

Your toilet won't flush? How jolly inconvenient!

Modern, low-level cisterns don't last like the old, high-level, chain pull bogs use to.


One of the most common complaints is when they become difficult or impossible to flush.


This could be the reason why...

Monday, 4 February 2019

Electret Microphone Preamplifier

This design runs from a 5Volt USB supply and attempts to minimise electrical noise.


I wanted to create a simple preamp for an electret mic insert using components from my bits box.


So component values and transistor types are not critical.

Monday, 28 January 2019

DodoPi Bat Recorder: "hey, we have a live one!"

Bats flying around in mid-winter! ...whatever next?


It may be relatively rare compared to the number of recordings made each night during the summer...


...but just one recording shows that there are bats out there.

Friday, 25 January 2019

Garden Birds: a pox upon thee

We sometimes see birds in our garden that are clearly 'not right'.


A few have physical disabilities such as broken or missing feet or legs.


While others are clearly just unwell.

Wednesday, 23 January 2019

my 'always-on' stair lights

Sometimes things work better than they were designed to.


The lights on my stairs work as expected when I turn them on, but continue to glow when I turn them off!


So whats going on?

Saturday, 19 January 2019

BirdBox 2019: early interest (...plus hog & bats update)

Seeing small garden birds showing an interest in our bird boxes is a reminder that the nest box season will soon be upon us.


There is a long run in, a couple of months of building, egg laying and chick rearing, and then its all over for another year.


So make sure you are ready by putting up any new boxes now!

Friday, 18 January 2019

Gambas: using external C libraries

It may be useful sometimes to use C-language library functions in your Gambas programs.


There may be a performance advantage in writing your own C functions or you may simply wish to use existing C libraries.


Here are my notes which may help you get started.