Upgrading our Bath Fan Light – for Under $25

Our bathroom fan light was driving me crazy for a while now. No matter how much wattage I would put into it, the plastic cover only allowed for a very dim light to come out. And the arrangement of the bulb in the fixture together with the housing forced most light to emit downward and to […] Read more..

What’s New in SketchUp 2014? Better Ruby, for Example!

By now you most probably have heard that SketchUp 2014 has been released. There are quite a few great new-feature overviews and reviews out there and I’ll suggest you look at the ones linked at the end of this post to get up to speed. For now, I just wanted to show you why the […] Read more..

Using robots.txt to your advantage to reduce server load

A little while ago, my hoster (1and1.com) whom I actually like quite a bit, decided that I was using too much of my fair share of the common server and decided to warn me that I was “abusing” the system. They told me that if I didn’t reduce my server load, I would have to […] Read more..

Project #22 in the Daddy Handbook: A Catapult

Because she saw one at her school’s science fair, last week our youngest daughter asked me to help her build a catapult. Feeling intrigued by the idea of putting together something that shoots something else but not wanting to go overboard (you never know what kids do with these), I came up with this design. As […] Read more..

Placemarks from KML

Creating a KML file from MySQL data with PHP

I recently had a need for a PHP script that queries a MySQL database for location-based point data (a LatLong coordinate and some descriptive information) and then creates a KML-file from that data on the fly. A file like this can then easily be loaded into Google Maps, Google Earth and other geospatial applications. In […] Read more..