I’ve started setting up wifi at a local campground to give the campers internet access, replacing an older system that was no longer up to the task. Route 19’s first commercial deployment.
The new setup uses Ubiquity Airmax for backhaul and Ubiquity Unifi for guest access. It’s a relatively low-cost and simple-to-setup system that should provide good coverage and reliability. (The Ubiquity gear I use at home has performed well for the past ~4 years.)
The first step was relocating the network equipment in the main building to a better spot – the UPS, modem, router, and switch were moved to an upstairs utility room. From there I plan to run cat5 to the backhaul Rocket M5 on the roof and a Unifi AP inside. This cleaned out a tangled mess of wires and equipment in the main office.
Around the campground there will be 3 Airmax 5 Ghz NanoStation Locos for backhaul to the Rocket, each tied to a Unifi Outdoor AP that the guests will connect to via captive portal using a password that will change regularly.
One issue is whether we can get enough bandwidth from Aliant to service up to 100 clients in the peak season. We’ll definitely need to limit the bandwidth of each client.
I’ll setup AirControl and the Unifi Controller on a small hosted VPS server running Ubuntu to give me remote access for troubleshooting.
"Our existing space program involves us putting bombs underneath rocket-ships, blowing them into space with enough air supply for a few weeks, and bringing them back before the astronauts lose too much bone mass and/or the Tang runs out."
— Paul Tyma: Why We’ll Never Meet Aliens
"Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm."
— Winston Churchill
Inspired by the Nest thermostat (nest.com) I’ve been thinking about how to expand their great usage graphs to include information directly from the furnace. Where Nest graphs when heat is called for, I’d like to plot when the furnace is actually running.
The first thing that came to mind as a prototype is an Arduino board connected to the furnace logic board or power source. I have a wood - oil combo furnace which would add more complexity, but I’d be happy to start with just monitoring the oil burner. A relay on the power source that logs the time on and time off to a file, ultimately shipping it to a server via wifi for use in a simple web app.
The Arduino would need to draw power from somewhere. It would need to safely connect to the burner power source, and it would need a wifi connection. I know my furnace room has a poor signal at best.
The web app API would simply need to receive data that included an account ID and a state, but more likely we should upload historical data in bulk – maybe an hourly basis.
Still thinking about this one, just needed to write it down.
Your CMS should first & foremost provide an editorial workflow that benefits the person responsible for managing the site content. The interface and experience inside the CMS of a content-driven site is just as important as the interface and experience of the public site it’s managing.
There are lots of great off-the-shelf content management systems out there – open source, licensed, and hosted – and one might be a perfect fit. But don’t choose based on the number of features, choose based on the benefits it provides to the editor. Don’t choose based on how popular it is or how easy it is to install, choose based on how natural it feels to manage content with.
The CMS is not for the designer or developer, it’s for the people that will use it for the next few years on a regular basis to create and manage their website content. Get them to try it out. Adjust the interface to hide the features they don’t need right away, reduce the number of options so they aren’t confused or overwhelmed. Prioritize the content that will change frequently. Reveal and introduce more features as they get comfortable. Tailor their experience.
If there isn’t a CMS out there already that fits them or their content just right, then build one that does.
I’m trying to get a sense of what browser + operating system + calendar combinations will automatically handle the webcal:// protocol.
I’d appreciate it if you could follow this link and let me know what happens and what browser / operating system / calendar you use.
You can send your results to me by twitter @kenziecampbell or email email@example.com.
"We are pretty keen on viewing design as a verb, not a noun here. We never finish designs, we never “redesign,” we evolve. Business needs are always changing, economies change, customer needs change—hence how we tackle these issues need to evolve."
— Jaimee Newberry, Former Sr. UX and Product Manager Zappos.com