State of my Open Source Contrbutions

To start off, this is not a “I’m quitting” post - don’t worry. But this should clear up why I’m ‘ignoring’ some actions. But with some recent family events that have transpired, and also inspired by Jeff Geerlng’s Just Say No, I’ve ended up dedicating way more time to my coding than I actually have. So this is a message to say - I’m slowing down. I need to take some time to tend to my family, and to tend to myself.

How I sign my commits in Gitpod

For absolutely no good reason, I sign all my commits to GitHub. My argument to myself is to prove “it is I, who committed!”, but I don’t do meaningful enough commits to warrant that. In reality, I was curious by GitHub’s Vigilant mode, so I decided to see if I can feasibly sign all my commits for that sweet, sweet “Verified” badge alongside my commits. This is really easily done and achieved with GitHub’s commit signing guide.

A Year of Cloud Coding in Review

Over the past year, roughly 90% of my non-professional coding time was done using a Cloud IDE. My work extends a crazy, disjointed range of different purposes. I maintain a WordPress plugin, run several ReactJS experiments, made my personal website 100x more confusing, and as a DevOps Engineer - lots and lots of configuring and pipelines. All of this, I did in cloud editors. At this point, if it wasn’t for getting into Plex, my workstation laptop would have spent the whole year not getting anywhere past 50% utilisation.

Bored Waiting for GitHub Codespaces? Gitpod has Your Back

I’ve been on the waiting list for GitHub Codespaces for nearly 2 years now, and I haven’t seen anything from GitHub about it. At this point, I’m even wondering if the Codespaces initiative was some kind of desert mirage, and actually doesn’t exist at all! But bored of waiting for something I’m losing the plot over, I saw what alternatives are available. In comes Gitpod to save the day. What’s the Point in (GitHub) Codespaces and Gitpod Anyway?

I built: PlayStation 1, Pi Powered!

And this completes my PlayStation console collection… If we ignore the PS5. A lot of things happened at once to trigger this project. I had not bought a Pi 4 at this point, and I had the PlayStations 2-4… Next minute I’ve bought a dead PSOne off eBay, a Pi from the Pi Hut, and waved goodbye to my bank account… In December. The idea was incredibly simple – Whack a Pi 4 inside a PSOne shell, with the toggle button and LED still functioning.

I Wanted a Pi to Tell me Useless Stuff About my Computer!

Yep, here we go again – another semi-useless but way over-complicated Raspberry Pi thing… I had a fantastic idea to make an Android Auto screen for my classic tech car. Did it work? Yes. Did it obscure my windshield? Kinda. Did it over-complicate my audio setup? *sigh*… Yeah. I’m not a fan of e-waste, so naturally instead of going into the bin, my Raspberry Pi screen got reused… As a paperweight.

I made: Cardboard Macintosh with a Raspberry Pi

And it also runs DOS too. Yes, it feels really weird. If you’re a maker of any level of expertise, signing up to the Instructables Newsletter is a bad idea for your bank account. A week in and you’re looking at buying a laser cutter, a 3D printer, and an assortment of different power tools. I’m in the camp of “Oh that’s looks cool… Oh I can’t afford any of this!

MacOS in VMware. Yep, This Also Works

macOS Mojave worked great(ish) in Virtualbox. Does it work in VMware? Turns out, yes – works great, and has guest additions. Virtualbox is fantastic for Open Source software, but VMware is one of the primary players in the virtualisation scene. As soon as I got macOS working in Virtualbox, I almost immediately turned my attention to doing the same thing in VMware… Because I’m mad. Not only does it work just as well as it does in Virtualbox, you can also install guest additions thanks to some super smart cookies in the scene.

Raspberry Pi Gameboy and Mega Drive – My Retro Setup

In my quest for all things retro, I discovered that the company I bought a Mega Drive Pi case from makes a really convincing Game Boy case. I promise this isn’t sponsored. It’s no secret that I have a love for retro, and I also have a love for Raspberry Pi. For ages I’ve always recommended setting up a Raspberry Pi as the ideal retro machine. But recently I came across Retroflag, and their extremely faithful reconstructions of retro game console cases for the Raspberry Pi.

MacOS in Virtualbox. It just works.

You can run MacOS in Virtualbox. Because? Because. In the pursuit of Hackintosh, you need a Mac. That’s well and great, but I didn’t want to screw around with my partner’s Macbook. So what if you want to sandbox something? Virtualbox! I had no expectations that this was going to work. OS X has always been runnable in Virtualbox for a while, but the performance has normally been lacklustre. While it’s not exactly daily-driver level, the performance in Virtualbox wasn’t too bad!