Signifying nothing's

Cabinet of Curiosities


Cabinets of curiosities served not only as collections to reflect the particular curiosities of their curators but as social devices to establish and uphold rank in society. There are said to be two main types of cabinets. As R. J. W. Evans notes, there could be "the princely cabinet, serving a largely representational function, and dominated by aesthetic concerns and a marked predilection for the exotic," or the less grandiose, "the more modest collection of the humanist scholar or virtuoso, which served more practical and scientific purposes." Evans goes on to explain that "no clear distinction existed between the two categories: all collecting was marked by curiosity, shading into credulity, and by some sort of universal underlying design" (Wikipedia, "Cabinet of curiosities" (quoting Impey, MacGregor, Oliver, Arthur. The Origins of Museums: The Cabinet of Curiosities in Sixteenth- and Seventeenth-Century Europe. Oxford University Press. p. 737)) 

  • writing
    I won a few writing contests in high school and that convinced me that I should be a writer. As is the way of things, however, my path diverged in the yellow wood and I took the one that lead to a regular paycheck. I still like to write, however.
  • photography
    I've always liked taking pictures. Like other things in this collection, this interest began as a teenager. It wasn't until the innovation of digial photography that I returned to taking pictures. Flickr's demise into a pay-to-play service did stop my sharing broadly, though.
  • computers
    gadgets & gizmos
    I bought my first computer in 1980. I wrote programs for it in BASIC. Even earlier, I had a 150 in 1 Electronics Project Kit and want it back. Even earlier than that, I had walkie talkies. I want them back too.


A sampler



read me

I mostly write poems these days for the blog I've been keeping since 2000.   


I used to keep photos at Flickr.   They are still there, but I haven't uploaded in a long while.   Mostly I just upload to Instagram these days.


I set up this server.  Why not? Click on it and watch it go!




watch mewatch me
watch Chickadeewatch the server
Clint Gardner. Get yours at bighugelabs.comsee my old photos




Weather Station Project

Update (11/12/2021): SDR stick arrived! Let the fun begin!

Update: November 21, 2021: Found that I was on the wrong frequency for the LaCrosse data. Tuned in to 955Mhz and BAM there it was (along with a ton of other sensors like the gas meter and various home security devices.). Raw data is dumping to the Sandbox (along with the HealthKit data). Going to pipe the output into MySQL so that I can more easily access it. It is currently in CSV. I have no idea why the JSON output won't read the same way the HealthKit data does.

Update 11/24/2021: thinking about using an MQTT broker via Mosquitto to push the RTL telemetry to MySQL.

Health Data Project

Update (11/12/2021) : I have successfully connected the Apple Health Kit data with Chickadee through the app "Health Auto Export" and some fancy dancing in PHP and MySQL. Next steps will be parsing the JSON data!

Update November 21, 2021: See above update on Weather Station Project. But I did manage to get a complex array parser working. So much data. It is stored in native format in JSON in MySQL.


(Something for work: a device that prints out a poem on thermal paper.)

I started this project a while back. Here is the actual website it will run from: . We have an old thermal receipt printer that will print out a poem when the user hits the PRESS ME button on the touch screen monitor that a Raspberry Pi Zero W is attached to.

But, I'm running into issues with our Eduroad network, thus need to see if one of these solutions will work for us:

I already tried one using an SSL certificate, so I am not enthusiastic that any of these solutions will work. If not, I will download the whole SQL db to the Pi an take it from there.


  • Check out the Sandbox for progress on the personal projects.

Currently Reading or Recently Read
Graeber, David and David WengrowThe Dawn of Everything: A New History of Humanity2021-11-16
Atsitty, TaceyRain Scald2021-11-092021-11-16
Federici, SilviaRevolution at Point Zero: Housework, Reproduction, and Feminist Struggle11/10/2021
Luther, MartinThe Small Catechism2021-11-112021-11-11
Mantel, HilaryBringing Up the Bodies2021-10-01
Mantel, HilaryWolf Hall2021-09-012021-10-01
Johnson, GeorgeThe Ten Most Beautiful Experiments2021-08-152021-09-01
Kazantzakis, NikosThe Last Temptation of Christ2021-07-282021-07-31
Add Book

More to come


 I am going to do some more fiddling to get more gizmos working on this server.  I particularly want to parse the data from a weather station I acquired in the pandemic, and might look into pushing out some data from the Apple Health app (if that is even possible.)  I need to find a solution for screen capturing the server, as it seems to hang under the current method.                                        


Signifying nothing