Favorite stupid google assistant trick of the day

Hey google: set a 6 minute timer for coffee

Hey google: set a 10 minute timer for burgers

Hey google: set a 11 minute timer for cookies

and so on.  You can have multiple timers going at once, and then ask how much time left for one of them, like:  Hey Google: How much time left for cookies? and it will respond and do the right thing.  Super useful in the kitchen and now you don’t have to touch a physical timer, reducing cross-contamination issues.

The best kind of car to get for the next decade…

It is time to retire the family vehicle and look for what is going to get us around.  Our 2013 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport has served us well for 130,000 miles but it’s time to say goodbye and look toward the future.

Our choices have been narrowed down to either the 2018 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV or the 2018 Chrysler Pacifica PHEV .  Both have about 30 miles of all-electric range.  With either of these vehicles – we would hardly buy any gas.  We have a first-gen 2011 Nissan Leaf, so we know what our daily driving looks like with batteries.  30 miles of electric range would serve over 90% of our driving needs and we’d only need gas for the occasional trip out of the immediate Bay Area, like to go to Santa Cruz, Monterey or Tahoe.

Plug-in hybrids give you the best of pure electric vehicles – the great torque and acceleration you get with electric motors, and the great in-town gas mileage of a hybrid, and the range of a diesel.  You can recharge and not use gas – as long as it is convenient to do so – and pull in to any gas station to refuel when it isn’t.

We regularly drive from the SF Bay Area to Central Washington, an 800-mile trip.  With either of these vehicles we can drive up there and fill up once at the halfway point in Bend, OR.  Once we get up to WA we can recharge at home at $0.04/KWh.  At those power prices it is like paying $1.30/gal for gas.  (source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gasoline_gallon_equivalent)

We haven’t even mentioned the $10K in tax breaks (roughly $6500 Fed / $3500 Cali).  Although with the current Insane Clown Posse resident in our nation’s capitol – I wouldn’t hold out hope for the Fed tax credit to stick around for very long.  If you are in the market for a new vehicle and you are considering a PHEV or BEV – don’t wait.

Do the math.  Compare PHEVs to regular hybrids and regular gas cars.   A PHEV can more than cover the higher payment with lower fuel costs and the tax breaks.

Bitcoin Wallet Rebuild

We are rebuilding our hardware bitcoin wallets again.

Why? First, to document the build procedure in excruciating detail. Second, to try to break it and find additional problems. Third, to try to make the installation less hardware dependent and more portable – maybe to even run on any PC from a USB stick?

After we rebuild this time, we fully expect to find some more issues that need to be resolved, but we are close to actually trusting these things with real bitcoin.