Calvin's Toddler Tower Write-up

 I've really enjoyed the positive reactions project builds get on LinkedIn, so I went ahead and finished up another one. Like the project itself, this write up was fast and straightforward.  Easy One-Day-Build Toddler Learning Tower [Instructables]

Another Project Write Up and a Plug for Tony's Writing

It's tough to find time to write blog posts with so much else going on, but I wrote a write-up of the Console Busy Box that I made last year, and I also helped Tony set up a Fiverr profile, so I figured I'd throw up a blog post just to show that I haven't forgotten how to type. Baby's First Mission Control Console []  This is a console busy box. Click if you're curious and all questions will be answered. Additionally: I convinced Tony to make himself reachable on Fiverr as a new way to reach clients for his writing projects. I helped him set up his two "gigs" as Fiverr calls them, and made the art to communicate to potential clients what kind of zany fun Tony can provide: So far, interest has been good and the clients have been happy! I'm excited to see where this little experiment goes next.

It's time to end Daylight Savings. Ourselves.

Daylight Savings Time is unpopular. So why do we still do it? I'm not asking why we started  DST, which is stupid but doesn't matter. I'm asking this: what is preventing us from stopping this unpopular practice? I've met several people who thought that California had ended it by referendum with Prop 7 in 2018 . It's fitting that a measure about DST is misunderstood by many Californians. But the literal explanation is that DST is imposed by the federal government, and Prop 7 merely demonstrated Californian's preferences as the first step of asking our federal government to free us from daylight savings. This feels absurd though, doesn't it? The federal government? Why is congress in charge of what time Californians set their clocks to? The answer is that just as a dollar is just piece of paper that gains its worth from our collective agreement, their authority exists so long as we believe it does. We set our clocks forward because everyone else does, and if w

Updated Covid Links

 Covid Links These are sites I check often enough to make it worth my time to post them to my website because I don't sync my bookmarks. LA City Dashboard: LA County Dashboard: LA County Map: LA Times Dashboard: NY Times Dashboard: IHME Model:

Returning to COVID Month 0

We are all metaphorically going back in time to March, so let's act like it. Do you remember how the magnitude of the danger and disruption of COVID-19 dawned on you? If not, you're about to experience it again anew. I remember in the first month wondering whether I should cancel an in-person meeting of a dozen people, or if the attendees would think I was being overreactive. My Mom asked whether it would be silly to cancel a cross-country plane trip. And then I saw this article by Tomas Pueyo on March 10:  Coronavirus: Why You Must Act Now . In the article, Pueyo warns readers of what came to pass: a wild-fire spread of death curtailed only by cutting off transmission rapidly. It was the first illustration I'd seen of what to expect, which was important because I had no frame of reference. All of this context is building to this: when experts like Fauci say that the worst is yet to come, this is what they mean. Look at the trajectory of cases , and extrapolate the deaths o

My 2020 Voting Guide

 Here is how I'm voting in 2020: I've received my ballot in the mail and completed it, then I've dropped it off at a Ballot Drop Box. You can find it at: Then, I will sign up for SMS updates on my ballot to confirm receipt: My votes: Note: I'm not in city council district 4, so I can't vote for Nithya Raman, but if you are, DO. I strongly support her. I also strongly support Measure J. It's a vitally important reimagining of public safety that meets the demands of our time. Item Choice Difficulty Reasons City of Los Angeles District 10 Mark Ridley-Thomas Difficult Ridley-Thomas has been in charge for a long time while homelessness, housing shortages, and poor policing have worsened. Ridley-Thomas holds better positions than Yoo, and has been more forthright about them. Board of Trustees, Seat 1 Andra Hoffman Easy DSA-Endorsed Board of Trustees,

Quarantine Projects: Figurines, a Mobile, and a Novel

During the last ... three months? Four? Tony and I have produced a few things I want to highlight here (mostly to make them easier to share online). First, I made a baby mobile and published the design process and full build plans online: Arduino Baby Mobile (Marvel Inspired) [] Second, I made figurines of two characters from The Umbrella Academy, a comic book and TV show that returns to Netflix on July 31, and I wrote up a guide on how to make your own: Custom Figurines: the Easiest Way to Model Your Favorite Characters [Instructables] I've entered it in a contest on Instructables and I'm excited to see how it does. Finally -- and best of all -- Tony has written an unlicensed prequel novel to The Umbrella Academy comic book and Netflix series: The Ties That Bind , by A.E. McGinn You can also read it on Wattpad if you prefer, or download it as an e-book: The Ties That Bind.azw3 The Ties That Bind.epub The Ties That

Covid-19 Dashboards and Data Resources

There is a lot of data on COVID-19's movement and direction. Below is a catalog of data tools to help us find data and see comparisons that help us understand what has happened and might happen next. There's a lot of information, so I've ranked each group starting with the links I consider most useful first. If you'd like to volunteer to help provide supplies to Los Angeles, go to to volunteer or donate. Los Angeles and California: LA County Dashboard [LA County] LA County’s map of cases by neighborhood district Data | COVID-19: Keeping Los Angeles Safe [City of LA] A collection of stats and relevant data for city residents to make smart risk assessments California coronavirus cases: Tracking the outbreak [LA Times] Cumulative and new cases by CA metro areas [LA County DPH] A table of case counts by neighborhood district US, nationally an