Photo – Rippled Clouds

When I got home from the office, I got out of my truck and it felt like you could almost reach up and touch the clouds.

Under a ripply sky
Nikon D5100 (24mm 1/640s f/13 ISO 100 HDR)

Or if you looked down the street, it felt like you were in a giant box with a blanket hanging overhead.

I believe the clouds would be classified as stratocumulus undulatus. Here is a Wikipedia entry with a bit more information about them.


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Tumbleweed Invasion

Being that I am from Texas, you might see some Texas news and such here.

And being from Texas, I’ve seen and driven over my share of tumbleweed. It’s not unusual to see hundreds caught up in fence lines for miles at a time.

However, for one West Texas family, a wind storm came from the wrong direction causing hundreds of tumbleweeds to pile up on his home.

Here is a news story to show you more.


Cromemco DPU Board with Z-80A and Motorola 68000

I was thinking about the web site and looked up and remembered that I had another S-100 processor card on my shelf a bit less common than the Cromemco ZPU.

Cromemco DPU Board (x1080)This one has two processors, one being the standard-fare Z-80 for maximum software compatibility and the Motorola 68000 16-bit processor.

I never used this card myself but when it was offered to me, I took it because of the uniqueness and the possibilities it would have offered in “the old days.”

There is more information about the card including the manual for it on the web site.

Link: Cromemco ZPU on


Web Site: S100 Computers

I was thinking about the old Cromemco, S-100 and CP/M days when I ran across a most interesting web site,

They have a great history and technical section plus active NEW board designs. The author has created his own S-100 bus based system from scratch incorporation modern designs and equipment.

If you have any interest in CP/M or the S-100, this is a must visit site. And if you’re curious about the early days of microcomputing, this site will give you a taste of what it was like in those days.


Type 60 AP Selective Signaling System

What you see here is called a Western Electric Type 60 AP Selective Signaling System or sometimes called a Model 60 AP Selector.

AP Selector View 1B (x0180)It was a gift from a friend of mine in Illinois after he saw my fascination with the device. He has an extensive knowledge of mechanical telephone systems and a fully working vintage telephone system.

In a nutshell, it was used on railway dispatching telephone circuits for a couple of purposes.

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Sangean CL-100 Quick Review

Up for my first quick review is the Sangean CL-100 AM / FM-RBDS / Hazard Alert NOAA Weather radio and alarm clock.

When you first hold the unit, it feels quite solid and the rubber buttons operate very nicely. The MENU button allows access to everything from the time and alarms but also a strong set of customization features navigation by the arrow and SELECT buttons.

Sangean CL-100 - Weather (x1080)

Of course, the primary purpose of this radio is to receive NOAA weather broadcasts and play audible alerts with triggered from one of 7 weather frequencies. The display will show the alert, such as SEVERE T-STORM WARNING, and illuminate a corresponding alert LED.

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Ultimate Laptop Cooler

Okay, I know those are some pretty bold words but when you see what I am trying to accomplish, it will be clear.

Laptop Cooler Box - Standard Air Flow (x1080)

Elsewhere are vents for things like the RAM, hard drive, video processors and CPU support chipset. The battery isn’t cooled and who knows whether these vents get any measure of forced air to conduct heat away.

Normal laptop coolers are somewhat beneficial in that they will supply the fan with some air (reducing back pressure), provide a general influence of cooling to the bottom of the housing plus at least stir up the air around the vents.

My problem is that I often leave my laptop stationary and on for weeks at a time and I want to keep the components as cool as practical to extend component life.

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Casio PJ-160L Calculator and IH-10 Ink Cartridge

As the opening post for Shared Engrams, I just wanted to record for all that the Casio IH-10 ink cartridge used by the Casio PJ-160L is actually the same cartridge used in the HP ThinkJet, HP part number 51604A. My local office supply store had the HP part in stock and it works perfectly! No need to seek out the original Casio part.

The HP 51604A cartrdige is a perfect match for the discontinued Casio IH-10 ink cartridge.
The HP 51604A cartrdige is a perfect match for the discontinued Casio IH-10 ink cartridge.

Briefly, the Casio PJ-160L is a full-size desktop calculator, clearly with an inkjet printer on-board with a 16-digit back lit LCD display. It can also do basic time calculation, print some basic graphs as well as the usual calculator and tax functions.

Key feel is good, responsiveness is adequate and certainly better than most average calculators. Print quality is very legible although some might consider the characters a bit light / fine in their appearance.

The only real negative I see is that it reverts to showing the time and date after a few minutes (nice) thus losing the last calculation and result (boo.)