Category Archives: Tech

Gamma Ray Computer Glasses


I use the computer all the time, and I mean ALL the time. At work, at home, when I’m relaxing, etc.  I’ve read about Gunnar glasses and their ability to help relieve eye strain for prolonged computer use.  I always cringed at the price, knowing that no matter how good they might be, after all they are just some tinted glasses with plastic or *insert material here*. You are better off buying prescription frames at that price!

Along comes a post by fellow Gadgeteer, Janet Cloninger, I found out about Gamma Ray computer glasses.  I browsed around the Amazon link provided and found these puppies for only $15!  I love Amazon and since I had a prime membership, went ahead and bought the GR801 model in black.  I received them two days later, and luckily they fit perfectly!  They are super comfortable and fit my face shape quite well.Gamma_Ray_Selfie

What do you think?

I will wear them around work and the house for a couple of weeks to see how I feel. Will I have less eye strain than usual?  Worst comes to worst, I can fit them into a pair of prescription lenses. :)

Open Source RSS Reader – Selfoss

selfossIn my constant search for a good RSS reader, I bounce back and forth between Feedly and InoReader.  I really like Feedly’s UI, but like Inoreader’s functionality and social app sharing features. Both have premium options which don’t interest me too much since I only have about ~50 websites that I subscribe to, and don’t share that much content.  Since I like to tinker with web hosting/installs, I did a search for another open source RSS web-based reader. Previously I gave another self-hosted app Tiny Tiny RSS a try, and liked it for a while, but then fell back to the other readers due to ease of use and UI.   How does Selfoss stack up?  I decided to give it a try with my Dreamhost webspace.  Requirements are as follows:

  • PHP 5.3 or higher
  • MySQL, PostgreSQL or Sqlite
  • Apache Webserver (ngnix and lighttpd also possible)

Installation was super easy, but instructions were a bit unclear.  After downloading the  selfoss zip file onto my Mac, I extracted the files, and dumped them into a newly created subdomain.  I visited my site, but noticed how “odd” it looked. No database or anything is needed for a simple install (although you could use your database of choice).  After much googling, I realized that the .htaccess file was invisible via my Cyberduck FTP application (and therefore not “visible” to Dreamhost)! It appears that when you unzip a file with “.htaccess”, OS X doesn’t see it as a file:

No htaccess

So, in Cyberduck, I went to View, Show Hidden FilesShow hidden and sure enough, the .htaccess file was there.  I had to rename it to “htaccess”, then back to “.htaccess”. (This is the configuration file that allows  control to override any other global settings for that directory and sub directories, so it was needed to view proper CSS and other attributes.) edited htaccess I was then able to see my self hosted RSS site! I imported my OPML file, and boom, all done: selfoss complete Note, you must run a cron job to have the RSS feeds update manually, but there is plenty of help on the selfoss forums.   There is also tons of other configurations that you can adjust, so give it a try yourself and see how you like it!   I’ll also check out the Android app.

Raspberry Pi with WordPress


Previously I set up the Raspberry Pi with Berry Web Server, but today I wanted to see how the Pi would run with the more often used Apache, PHP, MySQL and WordPress. One of the podcasts that I watch frequently is Know How, on the TWiT network. A couple of weeks ago they had a show where they did just this.  (A RAMP/LAMP server).  I’ve included their show notes below – the original episode and notes are found via Know How!


    1. Download all the files that you’ll need for the project. (Formatting Tool & NOOBS) You’ll find all files at the Download Page
    2. Extract the files to your desktop and copy ALL the contents of the extracted NOOBs folder onto the SD Card.
    3. Connect the Raspberry Pi.
    4. Install – You’ll get a screen that lets you select which distro you want installed on your Pi. Select “Raspbian” and then click “install”
    5. Click “OK” and the RasPi will reboot into the configuration tool.
    6. Change your Password – Using the arrow keys, choose option #2 and change the default password. (Your username will be “pi” and your password will be whatever value you choose.)
    7. Set Language and Time Zone – Scroll down to option #4 “Internationalisation Options” and set the Pi to your language and time zones.
    8. Select “Finish” then hit ENTER

* You’ll now see the Raspbian command prompt which should look like this: “pi@raspberrypi ~$_”

You now need to update the list of available packages, install Apache, MySQL, PHP5, PEAR, and phpMyAdmin, then set the Apache Configuration.

Update Packages
sudo apt-get update

Install Apache
sudo apt-get install apache2

Install MySQL
sudo apt-get install mysql-server
* In the middle of the installation, you’ll be asked to change the root password for the MySQL database.

Install PHP5 & PEAR
sudo apt-get install php5 php-pear php5-mysql
sudo service apache2 restart

Install phpMyAdmin
sudo apt-get install phpmyadmin
* It will ask you, halfway through the installation, which web server you want to use. Select Apache and then select “OK”
* It will also ask you to confirm that you want to use the MySQL database installation that you just completed. Give it the password that you selected and continue.
* Lastly, it will ask you what password you want to use for the phpMyAdmin page.

Set the Apache Configuration
sudo nano /etc/apache2/apache2.conf

Add the line:
Include /etc/phpmyadmin/apache.conf

Start the server
sudo service apache2 restart

Test It!
Type: ifconfig and you’ll get a status screen that includes the “eth0″ IP address. Type that address into your browser and you should see the “It Works!” screen.

If you append “/phpmyadmin/” to the IP address, you’ll enter the phpMyAdmin page.

Add an FTP Server!
Take ownership of the web root by typing:
sudo chown –R pi /var/www

Install the vsftpd package by typing:
sudo apt-get install vsftpd

Edit the vsftpd configuration file by typing:
sudo nano /etc/vsftpd.conf

You need to make four changes to the configuration file:
– First, change “anonymous_enable=YES” to “anonymous_enable=No”
– Remove the comment, the pound sign, from “local_enable=YES” and “write_enable=YES”
– Go to the bottom of the file and add the line: “force_dot_files=YES”
Hit CTRL & X to save and exit.

Now start the FTP server by typing :
sudo service vsftpd restart

Finally, we’re going to create a FTP shortcut. Type:
ln –s(space) /var/www/ (space) ~www

Success :)  It runs pretty well considering the low power!

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