Starting 2017

In trying to hear NOAA Weather Radio (KEC58) out in Erie, Pennsylvania there was a bit less noise tonight:

Almost hearing the station at 162.400 MHz

This compares better with last night's waterfall display with horrible noise:

Not hearing the station at 162.400 MHz

The SDR that I picked up from Adafruit is showing a propensity to pick up subharmonics of local FM broadcast stations. That's neither good nor helpful. I may need to go back to the drawing board on project design.

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Staring Ahead At 2017

2016 was not the best of years. While my parents have told me that it wasn't a bad year, my "log line" for year was that this was the year I was under investigation, threat assessment, and who knows what other official review. These things kinda happen when you work in the civil service of a president who sometimes thinks he is a Stuart monarch and even worse acts like one from time to time.

Tonight I spent some time playing with a software-defined radio. A project in 2017 is to set up an automated recorder out in the garage to monitor the CBC Radio One outlet that is audible from the other side of Lake Erie in southwest Ontario. Right now there is a bit of a noise problem to overcome with some antenna construction as the waterfall display below shows I can barely even hear the local outlet of NOAA Weather Radio (KEC58) out in Erie, Pennsylvania amidst some broad-spectrum noise shown in yellow:

Seeking the station at 162.400 MHz

Even though it isn't funded, I'm still looking at the Outernet research project. By way of Joey Hess over in the pump.io spaces, I see I'm not the only one thinking about them either as there was a presentation at 33c3. Eventually I'll need to watch that.

I will note contra David Tomaschik that disclosure of employee information that is available under the Freedom of Information Act isn't really a hack. In general you can request that directory information from any federal agency including DHS and FBI. The FOIA micro-site created by the US Department of Justice can help in drafting your own inquiries.

The folks at the Ubuntu Podcast had an opportunity to prognosticate about the future. With the storm and stress of my civil service post, frankly I forgot to chip in. This happens increasingly. Since I used to be an Ubuntu-related podcaster I can offer some prognostication.

My guesses for 2017 include:

  • I may not be a federal civil servant by the end of 2017. It probably won't be by my choice based upon the views of the incoming administration.
  • 2017 will be the Year of Xubuntu.
  • Laura Cowen will finish her PhD.
  • Lubuntu will be subsumed into the Kubuntu project as a light version of Kubuntu.
  • There will be a steep contraction in the number of Ubuntu derivatives.
  • James Cameron will retcon the Terminator franchise once again and now call Skynet instead Mirai.
  • The United States will lose a significant portion of its consumer broadband access. The rest of the world won't notice.
  • I may celebrate New Year's Eve 2017 well outside the Continental United States and quite possibly outside US jurisdiction.

To all a happy new year. We have work to do.

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