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Planned obsolescence and the right to repair

06 Jul 2021 - by 'Maurits van der Schee'

What have light-bulbs in common with Apple products? They are designed so that you can't repair them and they are (needlessly) designed so that they need replacement pretty fast. Batteries are glued into the phone and the glass front panel breaks easily and is hard to replace. Is that legal?...

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Antec ISK 110 with 3400G using cTDP

23 Jun 2021 - by 'Maurits van der Schee'

I've built another PC. This time I wanted to create a silent but powerful small form factor PC. It aims to replace my AMD 3400G midi tower with something equally powerful and quiet that fits my desk. I've chosen an ASRock Fatal1ty B450 Gaming-ITX/ac motherboard...

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Firefox on Ubuntu has crackling sound

20 Jun 2021 - by 'Maurits van der Schee'

I'm running Xubuntu 21.04 and when I'm listening to mixcloud and visit certain sites using Firefox the sound starts to crackle and gets distorted. It can only be resolved by restarting Firefox, but restarting the browser is quite annoying...

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Minesweeper written in Go using Ebiten

15 Jun 2021 - by 'Maurits van der Schee'

It was already 7 years ago that I wrote Minesweeper for a the iPad on the iPad (using Pythonista). It was an implementation of Minesweeper in Python and it was optimized for touch usage. I have ported that implementation to Go using the Ebiten game engine...

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Low power computing at 8 watt idle

05 May 2021 - by 'Maurits van der Schee'

I've built another PC. This time I wanted to create a low power computer that could be always on. It aims to replace my NUC i7 with something powerful, silent and not too expensive. I've chosen an ASRock J5040-ITX motherboard with a on-board Intel J5040 CPU...

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Why I use Bitlocker without TPM

04 Apr 2021 - by 'Maurits van der Schee'

Bitlocker is the Full Disk Encryption (FDE) solution in Windows, similar to FileVault in OSX and LUKS in Linux. I do advocate the use of full disk encryption on any device, but especially on devices that are prone to theft, such as laptops...

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Storing JSON strings in MariaDB

11 Mar 2021 - by 'Maurits van der Schee'

In SQL every column has a name, a type and a single value (that may be NULL in some cases). These strong guarantees makes working with SQL very nice. Nevertheless people seem intrigued by these "limitations" and propose "improvements"...

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Installing PDO_SQLSRV on Debian 10

18 Feb 2021 - by 'Maurits van der Schee'

Installing the PHP SQL Server driver (PDO_SQLSRV) on a Debian 10 Linux system requires several steps, starting with the installation of the Microsoft ODBC Driver. Note that Debian requires TLS 1.2 and if your SQL Server does not support that you will run into "Error code 0x2746"...

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Should table names be singular or plural?

02 Jan 2021 - by 'Maurits van der Schee'

As we all know "naming things" is jokingly named as one of the two hard problems in software engineering (the other one being "cache invalidation"). This post is about the question whether your (database) table names should be plural or singular...

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Free OTP 'soft token' written in Go

08 Nov 2020 - by 'Maurits van der Schee'

I have written open-source software that you can use as an alternative to Google/Microsoft Authenticator on any device (that Go can cross-compile for). You may (for instance) run it on your Raspberry Pi (zero) and use it as a "semi-hardware" token...

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