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A few years ago, when large wildfires were becoming the norm, I remember hearing that you shouldn't vacuum when the air quality was poor.

The claim was that pollutants would go through the vacuum and out the exhaust, distributing them back into the air, where you then breathe them in. It was better to just let them sit. While this argument made sense, it struck me as primarily being a critique of a poorly designed tool: I vacuum to remove unwanted matter from my living space, not to redistribute it within the space. So I did the obvious thing and bought a Miele vacuum with HEPA exhaust filter from the Germans. For the past four years my vacuum has been effectively the same as my air filter. I can use it regardless of environmental conditions, even during the 36-hour night.

San Francisco Sunrise

This post was published on . It was tagged with micro, air.

I've started mounting my bike lights via shock cord.

The previously mentioned Orfos Pro LED flares ship with Velcro One-Wrap for mounting. This works well enough, but lately I’ve decided I prefer using shock cord and cord locks. The cordlocks add a little weight to the system, but this setup mounts to all the things I want to mount the lights to, and makes it very easy to tighten. After tightening the lights don’t move around at all, where with the Velcro they would move a little on a bumpy road. This system is also quick to attach and detach, which I appreciate when parking, and can be more easily manipulated when wearing full-fingered gloves.

Orfos Pro Shock Cord Mount

  • Orfos Pro Shock Cord Mount
  • Orfos Pro Shock Cord Mount

This post was published on . It was tagged with micro, bicycle, gear.

I published my script for creating optical backups.

Optician archives a directory, optionally encrypts it, records the integrity of all the things, and burns it to disc. I created it last year after writing about the steps I took to create optical backups of financial archives. Since then I’ve used it to create my monthly password database backups, yearly e-book library backups, and this year’s annual financial backup.

It's been a while since I've regularly run with a weighted rucksack.

In the past two weeks I’ve been getting back into the practice. To setup the bag, I remove the Control Panel 1 and Transport Sleeve that I normally EDC in my FAST Pack Litespeed and replace them with an internally mounted Transporter Tail. This is used to secure a 30 lb Hyperwear Steelbell. On the outside of the bag the only change I make from my normal setup is the addition of a prototype FAST Stability Belt. With the bag weighted down I lash on my sandals, fire up my antisocial activity tracker, and it’s almost like it’s 2011 again.

Rucksack Run Equipment

Baking soda has approximately 37,000 uses around the home.

I use it to occasionally supplement my all-purpose cleaner when washing dishes, use it to clean produce, and sometimes dump some in with my laundry.

I store baking soda by the kitchen sink in a Progressive Prepworks Mini Prokeeper. This had a good, tight seal that keeps the baking soda fresh and dry, and has a little dusting insert for easy shaking. The 1.5 cup capacity is meant to hold the contents of a standard sized cardboard box of baking soda, but I don’t buy those.

For the past three years I have purchased 13.5 pound resealable bags of baking soda. I bought my first bag in January 2018 and found it lasted me exactly one year. I have purchased another bag each subsequent January. The bags are cheap (I pay an average of $8) and keep the bulk baking soda fresh and dry for the year. I fill the Prokeeper container from this, and otherwise keep the bag sealed.

This post was published on . It was tagged with micro, ablution.

Bleach has a shelf life of 6 to 12 months.

After one year the sodium hypochlorite will have broken down into salt and water, which will not be helpful in your battle against the Black Death. According to the University of Nebraska’s guidelines on chemical disinfectants for biohazardous materials, “bleach loses 20-50% of its sodium hypochlorite concentration after 6 months”.

Bottles of Clorox bleach are stamped with a date code which when properly decoded will indicate the date of manufacture. The first 7 characters in the label on one of my bottles are A819275, indicating that it was manufactured in plant A8 on the 275th day of 2019, or October 2nd. The previously mentioned dateutils proves its usefulness here.

$ datediff 2019-275 now
169
$ datediff 2019-275 now -f "%m months, %d days"
5 months, 17 days

A simple shell function may be used to decode the date.

jul () {
    date -d "$1-01-01 +$2 days -1 day" "+%Y-%m-%d";
}

$ jul 2019 275
2019-10-02