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Edward Vielmetti
Ann Arbor, MI
Networker, Internet old-timer, and parent of two small boys, living in Ann Arbor, MI.
Recent Activity
A couple of years ago, I got one of the first-generation RTL-SDR USB software defined radio units. These inexpensive devices are originally designed as TV tuners, but clever radio hackers figured out how to turn them into software-defined radios that... Continue reading
My Twitter feed was full of air crash news this morning. Germanwings flight 9525 crashed in the French Alps, killing all passengers aboard. Wikipedia has a [good summary](, perhaps as good as any. What was unusual about the crash was... Continue reading
Last night was the a2civictech meetup. We met at Zingerman's Next Door, there were 9 people who showed up, some familiar faces and some new ones. The nominal topic of the discussion was data quality, understanding how various data sets... Continue reading
First made in 2002, these old candybar style phones are virtually indestructible. My son popped my Ting SIM into it and it's working fine. Not so my old Nexus 4, which did a face plant on the sidewalk, cracked the... Continue reading
Photo credit: Ryan Eby, from his [aurora photoset]( on Flickr. I first got word that there was a chance of northern lights from the [Michigan VHF-UHF Society mailing list](, an amateur radio group. When the aurora activity is high, the... Continue reading
This strange map of Alaska from the National Park Service annexes parts of Canada. Thanks to eagle eyed Canadian Kai Petainen for pointing this out. Original at [](, which is an embed of [this full state map]( Continue reading
Dr. Lewis Ernest Peters, 82, of Marquette, died peacefully Wednesday morning, March 4, 2015, at Brookridge Heights Memory Care while under the care of Lake Superior Hospice. He was born April 10, 1932, in Evanston, Illinois, a son of the... Continue reading
The project of the week has been an effort to generate a set of maps - 2935 of them, in fact. The source data is from the Department of Energy, listing a set of utility companies and the counties they... Continue reading
> style <- styleGrad(prop="score", breaks=seq(50,100,by=10) ,style.val=rev(rainbow(5)), leg="score") > leaflet(data="/Users/emv/tmp/N.geojson",dest=tempdir(),popup="*",style=style) So, progress. One process, written in python, takes an Excel file provided by the county and creates a GeoJSON file from it. Addresses in the file are geocoded. The original file... Continue reading
I've been fond of maps and graphs for a long time, but haven't had a good set of tools to play with that easily generate decent versions of same from various data sets I've found or accumulated. The small hope... Continue reading
One of my favorite weather forecasts comes from []( This screen shows the ensemble set of forecasts they have for temperature for tomorrow (February 20, 2015), highlighting the 8:00 a.m. reading. You'll note from this graph that there are several... Continue reading
I woke up this morning thinking about ways to improve my sense of direction. (Don't ask me why.) Here's some previous work on the internet that I had found for wearable devices that give you an always-on compass reading and... Continue reading
Our living room has lovely (old) wooden windows. When it's cold, the windows get cold. Last year we got some lovely thermal curtains to insulate. I thought I'd use some of the equipment I had to see just how cold... Continue reading
The Ann Arbor Downtown Development Authority is considering hiring "downtown ambassadors" to patrol city streets, help out visitors, and keep the downtown neat and clean and welcoming. As a counterpoint to this corporatized welcoming function, I give you the Psychedelic... Continue reading
Vellum closed in January 2015. The [Ann Arbor News story]( tells the part of the story of an innovative kitchen that was "like a laboratory", and a subsequent format change to a more mainstream menu. The restaurant had a two... Continue reading
Ann Arbor City Council is meeting tonight, 5 January 2015, at 7:00 p.m. the Washtenaw County Administration Building. Here are some highlights from the agenda. Three public hearings are on the docket. The public will get a chance to weigh... Continue reading
The first computer that I ever had all to myself was the Olivetti Programma 101. This was a 1965-era Italian machine that was just a little more than a programmable calculator. It used flexible magnetic cards for program storage, discrete... Continue reading
If your mobile device got logged out of Twitter and you can't log back in, you're not alone. No report yet from []( acknowledging the problem. Suggestions: a good book, or maybe Plurk. Continue reading
As of this writing (2 am Sunday December 28 2014 in Ann Arbor MI) there is no word on the fate of the lost airliner Indonesia AirAsia Flight 8501 which went missing on a flight from Surabaya, Indonesia, to Singapore.... Continue reading
Every month I get an email with a spreadsheet of restaurant inspection reports from Washtenaw County. Here's a summary of the worst (and best) of the restaurants inspected in November 2014. There are three types of problems reported by county... Continue reading
From Scientific American, [For Sale: “Your Name Here” in a Prestigious Science Journal] ( > “Beggers funnel plot” is particularly revealing. There is no such thing as a Beggers funnel plot. "It doesn't exist. That's the point," says Guillaume Filion,... Continue reading
Radio Havana Cuba was one of my cold war era shortwave radio presets. I don't have a working shortwave radio of my own any more, and the miracle of the Internet means that you can now tune in broadcasts directly... Continue reading
Dr. Dobb's Journal is closing down, with its last issue appearing at the end of 2014. They [tell their story]( in a final report. The key insight into the demise of this 38 year old publication is that this was... Continue reading
Echolink is a system that lets amateur radio operators transmit from their computer, through a relay at a suitable Echolink server. You have to be a licensed ham to get on the network, and typically there's a two-way repeater set... Continue reading
Nothing personal, but it's time to take a break from Twitter. I tried to do this [back in 2008]( when it was still possible to have a reasonable conversation on a blog about whether you were or weren't going to... Continue reading