Monday, March 12, 2018

In Like A Lion!

There is an old saying about the month of March coming "in like a lion", and going "out like a lamb".  Well, March certainly came in with a roar for us.  High winds and blustery weather came with March.  I can only hope that the second part comes true.
My father passed away in January of this year.  It was interesting that the two children who stole from my parents are the ones who did not appear at the funeral.  To my mind, that was a very disrespectful thing to do.  But then, those two people have been disrespectful toward their family for many years.
My youngest brother and I plan to sell our childhood home sometime soon.  He has no need for it.  I have no need for it.  As for the other two siblings...?  Well, their lack of respect for their parents got them disowned.   So they have no say, and will receive no more.  Still, the idea of selling the place where you grew up makes one sad.

I have not been considering the SPOCS totalizer module.  I will probably put it in soon.  In the meantime, I am working on a Wi-Fi camera project.  It is based on an Ethernet camera I have, along with an Arduino-with-Wi-Fi clone, and a home made pan and tilt system.  I almost have it working;  I need to test the motor drive electronics.

More on that, and SPOCS later.

Good Night, Ma Wolfe, Pa Wolfe, Dad, and Mom, wherever you are.

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Darn Ground Hogs!

Here in America,  on February 2, we celebrate Ground Hog day.  It is based on a bit of folklore which says when a ground hog awakes, and leaves his burrow, what he does next can predict how long winter will be.  
Well, both Punxsutawney Phil, and Buckeye Chuck have predicted six more weeks of winter.  Really, guys?  Oh, well.  Time will, as always, show if they are right.

In the meanwhile, things are going along here at Manor Dellroy.  Earl (remember Earl? We named the kitten Earl Grey) is growing like a bad weed.  All indications are that he is a Nebelung, a rare breed of cat.
Now, what the heck is a rare cat doing in the middle of Ohio, USA?  Darned if I know.  I searched for Nebelung breeders, but there are none here.  So Earl's past remains shrouded in mystery.
Earl is extremely shy around strangers.  Not vicious at all - if he does not know you, he just wants to leave, right now.  But once he gets to know you - it took two months before my son and I could approach Earl - he is very affectionate.  He has acclimated well to all of the other critters here.  He has also made friends with Mrs. Dellroy, to her delight.
Earl is now about a year and a half old.  The literature on Nebelungs say that he will be a kitten, and continue growing, until he is about two years old.  He can be as large as 7 Kg (15.4 Lbs)!  He has really sharp claws.  He has been learning to not extend them when we play with him.  One careless swipe, and he can really lay your skin open.  His reflexes are getting better and better.  He hunts for small game, sometimes.  He brings in moles, chipmunks, mice, and the occasional bird.

Meanwhile, on the SPOCS front, my totalizer add-on has a problem.  The problem is not within SPOCS; it has to do with the flow of water around here.  I may just ignore the problem, or add something to indicate when water flow is abnormal.  More on that later.

Good Night, Dad, Mom, and Ma and Pa Wolfe, wherever you are.

Monday, January 1, 2018

Hello, 2018!

Indeed.  We celebrated the New Year with family and friends last night.  It was a nice get-together although my cousin did very well at low-stakes poker.  Oh, well.  By low-stakes, I mean I did badly, and lost a total of five dollars.  Not enough to make me rich, and not enough to make me poor, either.

I have been taking a little time to reflect back on 2017.  It has been an eventful year, all right.  2018 looks like it is going to start well.  Several things in my life are falling into place, so that is good.  I would like to address a few people in my life.  If it were possible to talk to them, this is what I would say.

The first person is a sibling, who has behaved in a very mean, nasty way for decades.  He hates Mrs. Dellroy - but only because she got into his face when he was being stupid.   The things I would say to him are:
1.  We do not hate you, only the awful things you have said and done to us.
2.  We do not sit around, talking about you all of the time.
3.  I was not being mean, when earlier this year, in a court proceeding you were present for, I said that my life goes better without you. It is just the truth.
4.  I hope someday you change.

The next person is a sister-in-law, who did something really bad almost three years ago.  I would tell her:
1.  Yes, you DID do something wrong.  You lied to your mother, for starters.  Shame on you!
2.  You do owe your sister an apology.  You hurt her very much.  She was only trying to do right by your parents.  You did not.

The next person I would like to speak to is a daughter.  I reached out to her recently.  The response I got was quite angry and negative.  I would say to her:
1.  You were wrong to exclude us from your wedding.
2.  You were wrong to exclude us from the birth of our first grandchild.
3.  You are wrong to make demands.  If you do not make an effort to change, I shall be forced to deny your existence.  I would be forced to disown you.  I do not want to do that, but if you continue being mean, I shall do it. 
4.  Your behaviour marks you as a sociopath.  One wonders what kind of parent a sociopath will make.

The last person is another daughter.  She, too, has stopped speaking with us.  I believe she is confused, and needs to find her own direction.  I would say:
1.  The phrase "coming out"  applies to everyone you know.   Your mother was right; you weren't really "out".  Actually, you still aren't.
 2.  I am much less concerned about your sexual orientation than I am about what you are doing with your life.  Where are you going?  What do you want to do?  A person in their late 20s should have some idea, by now.
3.  You and I were able to talk about stuff before.  Sometimes we did not agree, but we agreed to disagree.  What happened to that?  Why are you so snide, and judgmental?  I would like to talk with you, in person, one to one, just once.
4.  Both you and your sister could learn a lot from your oldest sister.  She is kind, and loving, and tolerant.  She does not hate.   In spite of the fact she is lower-functioning than many people, she, at least, is a joy to be around.

I have heard it said you should wear your heart on your sleeve.  So, there, I have told you the things that are most troubling in my life.  One solution is to put these people aside, for my own mental health.  Right now, that is all I have for a plan.  These folks need to decide, on their own, to change, and rejoin the human race.  I hope they do.

Now that the "etc." is out of the way, we have the SPOCS part.  I am still working on the totalizer module.  I hope to have the basic version done soon.  In the meanwhile, I hope you have a happy new year - whenever you observe it - and your life goes along easily.

Good Night, Ma and Pa Wolfe,  wherever you are.

Friday, December 22, 2017

Now it is Nearly Christmas

My place of work had a pot-luck luncheon today.  It was very nice.  After lunch, the boss told everyone to go home, and have a Merry Christmas.  This was after the company dinner last week, which was held at a very nice restaurant.
This has been a very eventful year.  It started off with me getting downsized from a great job of four years.  Then a family friend and I started separate businesses, with the idea of supporting each other.  The friends' work situation changed, but it turned out OK, since I had a client that liked my work, and wanted to bring me on board.  It's official - I will be an actual employee on January 1, 2018.  More on this later.  Sprang Automation will shut down shortly thereafter.  I won't have to pay my own taxes any more - which is a pain, I'll tell you.
I have already worked on a number of projects through the year, and more are coming in 2018.  I am looking forward to the new year.

In the SPOCS world, I am adding a new feature.  Since our septic system was redone last year, there is a new pump that feeds the leach field.  This pump, in theory, could be used to track household water consumption.  So, I am adding a totalizer module, in place of the event trend module.  We will see how this turns out.  I am in the process of defining how the module will work.  Are there any functions you would like to see SPOCS have that it doesn't now?  leave a comment, and let me know.

To all who observe it, a Merry Christmas, and a Happy New year.  If you observe something different, may it be great.

Good Night, Ma and Pa Wolfe, wherever you are.

Tuesday, November 28, 2017


That's right, Thanksgiving, as in, giving thanks for the things we have in our lives.  Not so much stuff, as the love of our children, the fact we live in a free country, and have enough to eat.
Some folks want to vandalize the holiday, by changing the name to something silly, or glossing over the idea of being thankful.  That's called being grateful, folks, and appreciative for what you have, and what others may have done for you  (ARE YOU LISTENING, DAUGHTERS #2 & #3?).
So we celebrated  three times last weekend...once, with our little, faithful family.  Once with my maternal family.  One final time with Mrs. Dellroy's family.   A good time, in each case.

And now November is nearly done.

In the meantime, SPARCL14 is running SPOCS version 2.60.  I am looking at final changes to various modules.  The communication modules have better diagnostics, so you can tell what went wrong sooner.  There are a number of bug fixes, and general improvements.  I am having L14 exercise SPOCS pretty thoroughly, before we go for a release.

Good Night, Ma and Pa Wolfe, wherever you are.