Archive for the ‘Misc’ Category

Configuring the BLTouch on a Hictop 3DP-18

I had a bit of trouble getting the BLTouch to work on my Hictop 3D printer, so I thought I’d share a few notes on how to get the gizmo to chooch on that acrylic-framed plastic melter.

Long story short, I finally got it to work by setting the MOTHERBOARD variable in my Configuration.h file to BOARD_RAMPS_14_EFB.  It was previously set to be a Ramps 1.3 EFB.

My printer uses an MPX .3 board, and it uses pin 11 for the servo.  So the config line is:
#define SERVO0_PIN 11

Other than that, I just used the instructions on ANTCLAB’s page.

I’m using this mount from Thingiverse.


Job Hunt Tip: Keeping track of potential employers

Hey Interweb folks, I know it’s been a while since I’ve rapped at ya.

Lately I’ve gone through the process of finding a new jobby-job.  (Spoiler alert:  I found one.)  During the process I noticed that I kept forgetting contact names or mixing-up the details between gigs, so I crafted a handy template for quickly and concisely keeping track of the important bits of information about each potential employer.

I’m a software developer, so my first point of contact about any given job is usually a recruiter.  It’s important for me that I keep track of which headhunter I’m working with for a given job.  That way, nobody’s toes are stepped on.  Relationships are important!

I used to store this list so that I could access it from any device.  You could use that, or Google Drive, MS Office online, etc.  Just make sure you can access it anywhere.

Modify this template as required for your particular needs, of course.  And if you find this template useful, let me know what line of work you’re in and what modifications you’ve made to make your job search less chaotic.

  • Company Name
    • My overall thoughts about the job…
    • Recruiter
      • Name
      • Company
      • Phone
      • Email
      • Any notes about this person that are pertinent
    • Location
      • Address
      • Drive time/complexity
    • Compensation:
    • What is their line of business?
    • Interviewer/Supervisor:
      • Name
      • Title and/or their place in the food chain
      •  Pertinent notes – what do I think of this person?
    • Corporate URL
    • Glassdoor Info (FYI: is a site that has reviews from employees about their employers.  Take with a grain of salt, of course.  And use a throw-away email account to sign up.)
      • URL:
      • Notes:
    • Employment Type and Length (permanent? contract?)
    • Tech Stack (what technologies/frameworks are they using?)
    • Project Info
      •  What would I be working on?
      • What would my primary responsibilities be?
    • Culture
      • Dress Code
      • General Attitude (laid-back, stuffy, all-business, goofy, etc)
      • Hours (do they work a lot of overtime?)
    • Do I know anybody that works there?
      • If so, what do they think about the job?
      • Do I want to work with them again?
    • Pros:
    • Cons:
    • Misc intelligence/gossip from my network about this gig:
    • Benefits
      • Health:
      • Dental:
      • Vision:
      • 401k:


Intermittent Key Fob Problems with my 2006 Avalon

Hey, Internet peeps. As Jim Anchower would say, “I know it’s been a long time since I’ve rapped at ya…”  I’m writing today to document an automotive issue.

I recently purchased a sweet-ass 2006 Toyota Avalon Limited, and everything on it was smooth as silk for a couple of weeks but then we had a major thunderstorm blow through. The next morning, neither of my key fobs would unlock the car and the keyless starter proximity thingy couldn’t find them.  I had to unlock the car with the little emergency key that slides out of the fob, and to start it I had to hold the fob up against the start button (another emergency feature).

Long story short, rainwater was pouring down from the sunroof’s passenger side drain hole, down the headliner and down the A-pillar behind the interior trim, and onto a big-ass cluster of wires at the bottom of the passenger-side front fender/footwell area.  Once I dried these areas out, the fobs started working normally.

I was able to correctly diagnose the issue because about a week after the issue started, my son and I were driving around in another big-ass thunderstorm and he felt a drop of water hit his arm.

The most frustrating thing about this issue was that about 25% of the time, I’d go out to my car and the fobs would work. I took it to the dealership and wasted a pretty big chunk of change since they just threw parts at the problem instead of diagnosing anything.  Never going back to that place again.

The hilarious thing is that I bought a Toyota specifically for their legendary reliability.  I was tired of working on my own car all the time.  Lesson learned.  I’m still workin’ on my own car, and I’m still doing it better and cheaper than the stealership.

So here are some keywords and phrases that I came across while going bonkers trying to figure out WTF the deal was:

  • DCR (Door Control Receiver)
  • RKE (Remote Keyless Entry)
  • Smart Key System
  • ECU
  • “key fob won’t unlock car”
  • “key fob not recognized”

Composite C1 – How to remove the Generator meta tag

I really, really like Composite C1.  It’s a sweet CMS that does what a CMS should and doesn’t have a lot of overhead like some systems I could mention.  But when I wanted to remove the Generator meta tag and/or other common meta tags that could (in my opinion) present a security risk, I couldn’t find any info about it.  So, after some digging through a couple of different Composite sites that I built, I have found two places where a call to this data can hide.

First, check all of your Page Template cshtml files (in /App_Data/PageTemplates/ ) for the following:

<f:function name=”Composite.Web.Html.Template.CommonMetaTags” />

…and get rid of that.

Also, go to the Layout perspective and pop open the Page Template Features, and look for a node called “Descriptive HTML head elements”.  Open that up and get rid of the call to the common meta tags.

When posting form data to an iframe, be sure to put a NAME on the FRAME!

There was a Chrome update recently that broke a web form of mine.  I had the form posting to an iframe so that I could do a file upload without having to reload the whole page.  I had the id attribute of the iframe populated, but I didn’t previously require a name attribute on it.  After fiddling around with it for a while, I decided “what the heck…” and tossed a name attribute on it.  Voila!

As always, your mileage may vary and what works in one browser today might not work tomorrow.

Page width problems on iPhone Safari – solved!

I was having a bear of a time trying to figure out why a web page was showing up too wide in Safari mobile today.  I thought everything was set up fine:  I had the meta tag to set the viewport to device-width, and the scale to 1.0, etc.  So I figured it was some element within the page that was somehow erupting from the bounds of the body element…but it was in fact the body element itself (and the html element) that needed some attention.  Make sure to set the body and html elements’ width and max-width CSS properties to 100%!  Problem solved.

On Content Management System Customization

That which is too messy or a huge PITA to do on the back end is usually pretty easy to do with jQuery.  Git ‘er done.