The CCTV at work was upgraded; I got to recover the old DVR and have repurposed it alongside a cheap camera mounted at low level to watch cats and other creatures in my garden. It is better than normal British TV, like having your own personal nature channel 🙂
The statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary also reminds me to take care with the metal box as its a 230V to 12V psu where I mislaid the case screws, there is 230V mains on terminals inside it)
This cat is the ringleader, but he shares the space with around 5 others and seems to even encourage them to visit my garden…
One bonus of this arrangement is if I see a cat I can sometimes then photograph it with a better camera (the kitties are often surprised that I seem to know where they are 🙂 )
Interestingly they seem to behave better since the CCTV was installed; they do not fight each other and make noise with miauwing at night nor foul this side of the garden.
It is not just cats either I see on the camera…
Apologies for poor quality but that is a hedgehog. Apparently these are getting rare in some bits of England so I reported the sighting to Suffolk Wildlife Trust who put it on their map. A lot of folk seem to feed hedgehogs with cat food, I wonder if they are actually following the cats around (they are too big and well protected for lazy town cats to bother with them as prey)…
There do seem to be folk who actually read this / stumble across the blog perhaps through searching for random tech stuff in spite of me rarely promoting it I thought I’d post an update and what I hope to do with this space..
Unfortunately last year I had to deal with a family bereavement as well as health problems/tiredness/burnout; often after I have finished with work-related tasks (which I try and prioritise my energy towards as I am lucky to have a very understanding and accomodating employer) I am way too tired for much else, such as music/creative stuff such as photography and tech/electronic projects.
Also slowly realising I am getting older and have had to make some different lifestyle choices; much less partying and late nights compared to my nearly two decades as a raver, DJ, party promoter etc. All good fun but starting to get a bit much in the end.
This has slightly reduced my enthusiasm for “harder” electronic music, so I have temporarily removed the online radiostation VFR Europe from here (as I hadn’t got the time to curate, upload and schedule content, let alone work on my home studio) although it will hopefully return in the future.
The good news is I am slowly regaining energy as well as getting into a better routine of sleep patterns, eating etc than in my “youth” (I still don’t consider myself to be old!) and there are still things I get up to I can blog about so hope to be posting here more often.
I don’t do “social networks” much – I (re)tweet occasionally at @vfrmedia (when I get round to it will add the twitter sidebar) and have no desire to become a “social media star” so this blog isn’t going to contain the latest “hip” technology; but will reflect my diverse tech/engineering interests (including “retro” stuff such as my reignited interest in fountain pens) as well as nature/and environment related content….
Since putting this project on Youtube I’ve had a surprising amount of interest from across the world about the modifications I made to the original code from ON1ARF ( a radioamateur in België) to allow 1200 and 2400 bps pager transmissions as well as the default 512bps (I wanted to use the circuit to test commercial POCSAG pager receivers used at one site at my work).
the rest can then be used as normal – remember to alter the main Arduino sketch code to select these new bps rates.
NB: I am based in the UK/Europe; we always use wide deviation for POCSAG signals (although much other PMR traffic is now on narrow deviation).
If your country’s Communications Ministry requires narrow deviation to be used you will have to recalculate the modem settings using the spreadsheet referred to in the library files. (Its not as bad as it might seem; I had to use it to get the 1200/2400bps settings and I am not an RF nor a coding expert by any means)
I used the Japanese Multimax program + two obsolete XP PC’s. The PC also has a second soundcard connected to Ekiga on auto answer so dialling extension 338 will allow announcements to be made on the PA amp (it is connected to an input with auto vox volume ducking).