I’ve always wanted a Canon AE-1 and earlier on this year, I was lucky enough to come across one in excellent condition at a Brick Lane market stall in London. Over the years, I had seen various for sale on eBay and elsewhere, but I was never quite sure if I should bite the bullet and go for it. The lady at the stall walked me through their inspection program and guarantee and I thought that if I ever buy one, that moment would be it.Continue reading “Canon AE-1 Adventures”
Currently Reading – Magazines
Magazines have always been a love of mine. In a way, they’re a reflection of our culture and I always find it interesting to see what people pick out at the magazine shop. It’s a sort of extension of our personality similarly to how people like to identify with music, film, and books. And I love that about magazines.
Why buy magazines in this day in age when the Internet has become so prevalent? I honestly don’t know, but personally it comes down to the fact that I get enjoyment out of reading a magazine that has had countless hours of hard work put into it. I suppose it’s a question for a psychologist to answer, but at the end of the day, it’s just like anything else in life that’s real and tangible. The same reason why millions of people go to see Mona Lisa in person as opposed to just viewing an image online. I’ve also noticed a big shift in magazines over the past few years, or perhaps I’ve just noticed a niche of magazines that I’d never been made aware of before, in which the attention to detail, style of writing, and general feel of the magazine is of such high quality, holding them feels significant. It’s of the opposite spectrum when compared to the magazines I used to read that were perhaps a lot more disposable due to the nature of the internet not being so prevelant back when I was a child.
Cold Brew and Tonic Water
What better way to quench your hot summer day thirst with a jar of iced cold brew and tonic! I’m using a Kenyan SL28 coffee for this recipe, but feel free to experiment and try different flavour combinations.
Firstly, we need cold brew! I’ve started to experiment with cold brew recently and decided to adapt Adam’s “Think Different” – (hot) Cold Brew recipe, specifically using the heat element of the recipe. Similarly to blooming a pour-over coffee, I liked the idea of using hot water to wet the coffee grinds before adding cold water. Alternatively to making your own cold brew, you could obviously buy a good quality cold brew from your local cafe or shop, such as Sandows. This option is good for spontaneous BBQs too 🙂
60g coffee : 600ml water
Cold Brew Recipe:
- Bring 200ml of water to boil. Allow to cool for a moment until you’ve prepared the rest of the equipment.
- Make sure your jar or storage tank is completely cleaned. Use hot water and soap to disinfect any bacteria as you’ll be storing your coffee in there for 16-24hrs. I used a cocktail shaker that could be completely sealed up and left in the fridge overnight.
- Coarsely grind 60g beans and add the ground coffee to your storage tank. Fill with 200ml of hot water and stir so that your coffee is completely wet. I find this process is similar to blooming and you’ll see some gases escape the ground coffee. Leave to sit for a moment (up to about 45s) and add 400ml cold water. Stir once more.
- Store in a fridge for up to 24hrs.
- Drain over a V60 or other filter paper. I find that this process can take a long time if you stirred the coffee-water sludge a lot. I’ve experimented with stirring a minimal amount and stirring every few hours. I’ve not concluded what I prefer…
75ml cold brew : 75ml tonic water
Cold Brew Tonic Water Recipe:
- Half-fill a cocktail jar or glass with ice cubes.
- Squeeze in half a lime (or quarter if you’re using a small glass).
- Pour in a 50:50 mix of cold brew and tonic water. I pour cold brew first, then top up with tonic water.
- Garnish with mint and lime. If you’re creating a pitcher, you can add lime wedges and mint straight into a jug and just strain as you’re pouring.
Enjoy! This is a really refreshing drink that would fit in perfectly for an outdoor BBQ, or just sitting on your balcony on a hot summer day. I’ll be experimenting with different recipes so stay tuned for more to follow.
V60 Recipe (June 2016)
As my coffee adventures continue over time, I’ve started to really appreciate pour over coffee, in particular, Hario V60. From time-to-time, I had previously been drinking drip-brewed coffee from a budget supermarket branded coffeemaker, but after having received a Hario V60 Dripper (size 01), I began to experiment more with recipes. My previous “recipe” for my coffeemaker was to pour 1 spoonful of pre-ground coffee per cup. The result was, well, okay. Much of the result depended on the coffee I was using, but there was little room for experimenting with pour methods, bloom time, etc. Taking control of these variables allows for more experimenting, resulting in more varied recipes.
My First Siphon Coffee
A barista and a chemist walk into a cafe… At least that’s how I’d imagined a siphon, or sometimes called a vacuum pot, was invented. I’d seen the occasional Instagram post that looked as though Walter White was making his morning brew, but up until about a month ago, I had never got the opportunity to try one myself.
Plex and VPN
Ever since I got my Sinology Diskstation, I’ve been meaning to set up Plex, a home media server solution. I got round to setting Plex up months ago, but for some reason I could never figure out why I couldn’t connect and browse my media library when I was connected to Plex through VPN. Plex’s Remote Access feature has always confused me too – it requires the user to log into their Plex account and pay for a subscription. What I couldn’t understand was, why would Plex—even though I was connected to my VPN—show me no media, yet when I was at home, it would?
Backing up your iCloud Photo Library
As iCloud Photo Library is now in full operation, I wondered if it was possible to somehow back up my whole iCloud Photo Library. I had a look at the settings of the Photos app on OS X and found the that there’s an option to Download Originals on this Mac;
Store original photos and videos on this Mac. Choose this option if you want to access full-resolution versions of your entire library, even when offline.
UK government quietly rewrites hacking laws to give GCHQ immunity
UK government quietly rewrites hacking laws to give GCHQ immunity
Ars Technica UK:
The UK government has quietly passed new legislation that exempts GCHQ, police, and other intelligence officers from prosecution for hacking into computers and mobile phones.
While major or controversial legislative changes usually go through normal parliamentary process (i.e. democratic debate) before being passed into law, in this case an amendment to the Computer Misuse Act was snuck in under the radar as secondary legislation. According to Privacy International, “It appears no regulators, commissioners responsible for overseeing the intelligence agencies, the Information Commissioner’s Office, industry, NGOs or the public were notified or consulted about the proposed legislative changes… There was no public debate.”
Not surprising, as David Cameron said “for too long, we have been a passively tolerant society, saying to our citizens ‘as long as you obey the law, we will leave you alone’. This government will conclusively turn the page on this failed approach.”
What I find most terrifying is that according to Ars Technica (same link), “only a rather one-sided set of stakeholders [were] being consulted (Ministry of Justice, Crown Prosecution Service, Scotland Office, Northern Ireland Office, GCHQ, police, and National Crime Agency).”
How to change OS X Launchpad icon grid size
I recently decided to start using Launchpad in Yosemite, but I found that on both my MacBook Air and my iMac, there were far too few app icons in the grid.
Continue reading “How to change OS X Launchpad icon grid size”
Using an HP LaserJet 1018 with OS X
About 7 years ago, I purchased an HP LaserJet 1018 and have been using it ever since. It’s a basic black and white laser printer, but what I’ve found amazing is that in the 7 or so years that I’ve had it, I’ve only ever needed to replace the toner cartridge once. Back when I first bought it, OS X wasn’t supported, and it unfortunately still isn’t. I used to get it to work using OpenPrinting.org’s Foomatic, a “database-driven system for integrating free software printer drivers with common spoolers under Unix”. There’s still a full install guide here, but what I’ve found over on the Jayway.com is far easier.