The mysterious cat feeder of the 101

Last year I wrote about the mysterious feeding setup at the 101/Millbrae Ave overpass. It looks very lush and tropical and isolated in the below picture: its not. This is a very industrial location beside an airport and major highway.

After many days of walking over this bridge and peering down at the feeding setup (its large, ~10 feeders, a few boxes, etc), today I spotted a customer. That little blob of white fur.

I'm not sure who's trekking across all the traffic and 'reclaimed water ponds' to get there, but, well, it seems you have at least one happy customer.

Quick and dirty real-time sync of local dir into a container (perhaps in Kubernetes)

OK this is a bit of a hack. But lets say you want to be editing files in a directory. Each time you write one, you want it synced into some container. This is obviously for development purposes. Well I present the below hacklet. It uses the inotifycall of Linux, watching the current directory. Each time a file is written, in my example, it calls docker cp. Feel free to make that kubectl cp or another action.

Warranty void where prohibited.

inotifywait -m $PWD -e modify | while read path action file
  echo sync $file
  docker cp $file CONTAINER:PATH/


The sad SaaS state of software sufferin’ succotash

Recently I was looking to add OAuth2 login to my wordpress system.

Side note: when you see an icon 'sign-in with Google/Github/...' on a site, please use that, rather than creating a new account. The protocol is called 'OAuth2'. Its not (usually) giving that new site permission to read your gmail, rather its allowing you to federate and use less logins.

Back to the story. I was looking to add OAuth2 to my wordpress. I wanted to handle a few different logins (Google, Github, Linkedin being the minimum). This is not overly complex, I was not expecting trouble. A couple of hours later of looking at a bewildering array of plugins, all of which had 2 or more of these properties:

  • Some freemium approach where the part you wanted is not available, the yearly cost is high, and its not obvious they will stay in business
  • There is a SaaS component you are delegating to that now owns your site
  • Has not been updated in 4 years

Sigh. So I picked one (miniOrange). It worked, I was ready to hit the buy now on $400/yr, when suddenly, the removed it from the wordpress marketplace. No reason given. This one used a SaaS component so I was instantly broken.

Enraged, I wrote the attached, on Github. Its certainly not great. Its not even good. But it works, I've made it free (as in speech, also as in beer). It uses only your site, no 3rd party site is involved in the OAuth2 dance with your credentials. And, more importantly, I can now improve it. And so can you, pull requests welcome.


Premature tire removal!

I wrote just a couple of days ago about the excitement of removing the snow tires. The strategy and gamble of "will it snow again". I present to you might front yard this am. Very snowy 🙂

Its going to be a slippery ride in to work without my studded tires.

Murphy, you great trickster you!

The rite of spring (snow tire removal, not stravinsky)

Every year in mid march people start to get antsy. There's still some snow, but its nearing spring, maybe I should swap my snow tires out.

For those unfortunate enough to live where they don't understand the concept of snow tires, its simple. When the ground is cold, rubber is harder, and gets less traction. So tires are made with a super-soft compound and marketed as 'snow', 'ice', 'snow and ice' etc. But the upshot is they are softer at lower temperatures, thus getting better traction.

However, these super-soft gumball tires also don't have a long life. So you want to coax another year out of them by removing them as soon as feasible, and take the chance on 'one last big snowfall'.

Yesterday I swapped the snow tires off the bike. You may recall they were metal-spiked as well as being soft-compound and very wide. I gotta say, they were fantastic, I'm not sure I would be alive today if it were not for those tires. But, progress, its spring, its time to remove.

Its very weird driving now with nearly 1" less width and a whole lot less noise. Its not that the summer tires are quiet per se, but compared to the metal spiked monsters they are silent!

How about you, done the great swap yet?