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Technical details

Productive weekend.

I replaced the wall outlet next to my front door with one of these brilliant things:

Cooper Electric USB outlet in black
One outlet plus TWO USB CHARGING PORTS. Cool, huh?

First there was this:
An outlet box with all the wiring hanging out

Then this:
Wiring diagram for an outlet

(My phone camera has been a lifesaver for print instructions that are too tiny for my eyes. Snap, instant upload to Google+, look at them on my computer.)

And then this!
A black USB outlet installed
The green LED comes on when something is actually charging. No phantom power trickling out when an attached device has finished charging. (The white thing on the left is my porch light controller switch)

Note: if this type of outlet is something you're interested in, read the specs. Some, including this one from Cooper Electric, are only powerful enough to charge smartphones and headsets, but not an iPad.

Next I winterized my bike. First some of these:
A coil of battery-operated LED fairy lights

Then some of those:
Small black zip ties

And then this!

DarkEmeralds' Dutch bike strung with white Christmas lights

Then I rode over to my little tiny branch of Multnomah County Library and renewed my library card, which expired sometime in my 30s, I think. The place was hopping on a Sunday afternoon. As part of my plan for living on my retirement income, I have to quit buying books and music on a whim.

I got an app, then I got an ebook. The part of me that put on an ebook conference in 1999 is weeping with joy. Public libraries are cool. It's nice to be back.

Crossposted from Dreamwidth, where there are comment count unavailable comments.


( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 11th, 2013 01:20 am (UTC)
Both abebooks and Better World Books have frequent free postage sales, and Better World frequently has "buy three get the fourth free" sales, which is pretty impressive if the books are $2-$3 a pop.

And of course public and university library book sales are your friend.
Nov. 11th, 2013 01:45 am (UTC)
For me, in my wee, shelfless house, the more books I can cram inside my Android phone, the better. And then to be able to make them go away again when I'm done reading--well, that works out perfectly for me.

I noticed, too, that my library has audiobooks, which was a pleasant surprise. I think I might be able to give up my Audible subscription without too much of a pang.

For actual book-things, I'm a 20-minute bike ride from Powell's. I'm really looking forward to my first winter of retirement with my new book-friends.
Nov. 11th, 2013 03:25 pm (UTC)
My on-sale books tend to be "read once, donate" so they are, so to speak, only in temporary storage.

Hmmm, it's 10:24 now, the used book store opens at 11, I have a bag o'books sitting near the door ready to donate...
Nov. 12th, 2013 07:25 am (UTC)
You are the clearinghouse of many good things!
Nov. 11th, 2013 01:35 am (UTC)
Oooh Eleanor is looking SNAZZY.
Nov. 11th, 2013 01:46 am (UTC)
She seems very happy with her new attire.
Nov. 11th, 2013 08:41 am (UTC)
The best bit about libraries for me now is that the catalogue is computerised and searchable at home, and my county library system allows me to reserve books from anywhere in the country and have them delivered to a library of my choice (usually my nearest one). And while they seem to dispose of a lot of fiction, they do tend to retain history books in their stacks and I'm sure those books love an excursion every now and then!

I have a plug-convertor which does what your new outlet does - it allows one item to plug in normally (usually my laptop) and has two USB outlets. It's also very useful when I travel within the UK, and may not have my laptop with me but want to be able to charge my phone and ereader while still being able to use the socket for a bedside lamp or whatever. I do admire you for tacking wiring; I would never dare.

And I agree that Eleanor looks lovely! Do people assume that you're decorating for the holidays, or do they realise that it's all about being visible to other road-users?

Nov. 12th, 2013 07:28 am (UTC)
Do people assume that you're decorating for the holidays, or do they realise that it's all about being visible to other road-users?

Well, it's half and half, really. No getting around how festive it looks!

Modern day public libraries are wonderful. Here, too, I can access the entire collection from my home computer--and if I want a physical book, my local branch is a very short walk up the street, right next to the supermarket where I get most of my groceries.

I've got those USB adapters--the removable kind you can travel with--in every room in my house, and one in my office. And one that goes with my bike. It's crazy!
Nov. 14th, 2013 12:50 pm (UTC)
I love what you did to your bike, and I'm very impressed at your work on the outlet!
Nov. 15th, 2013 04:13 am (UTC)
Well, the electrical work was only half-successful. I managed to disconnect my porch light switch and now will probably have to call in the professionals. :(

But the USB outlet is a really good idea!
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )



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