Posts By: Ben

Asheville Magnet Fishing

I wanted some random things to do with my kid on sunny days, so I picket up a magnet fishing kit. Basically, you throw a really strong magnet on a rope into water (lake, river, etc) and see what metal you find. Old bikes, knives, and a lot of trash. Everything you pick up is… Read the rest »

Dad Blog

I have only done something like four posts in the past 3 years on this blog. In that time I have moved across the country, had three kids, rebuilt a company to survive the pandemic then transitioned it back again, raised and butchered two pigs, got a new dog, raised some chickens and put the… Read the rest »

Notes from Dweb Camp 2022

We (Custom Camps) recently finished running the week long, 430 person Dweb Camp 2022. This gathering of technologists took place in Navarro CA, in the ancient Redwood forests. We got a beautiful note from one of the participants who flew in from Europe: When we were driving out of Camp Navarro, after the last bus… Read the rest »

Oakland to Asheville

In April our family moved 2600 miles across the country from Oakland, CA to Asheville, NC. Like many others, the pandemic influenced our timing but we are also part of the first wave of US climate migrants. We moved because the wildfires in California were causing smoke that made our lifestyles less enjoyable. Our son… Read the rest »

Keeping your sanity with Mute Filters

I still use RSS to pull information from the internet to my eyes. It is the most efficient way of gathering information from multiple sources without having to manually dig, and it avoids the brain killing viral balloons from Facebook and the like. However, there is one endless source of “news” that I am done… Read the rest »

Cost of Newspaper Subscriptions

My brother Matt asked why there is no useful comparison of the cost of newspaper subscriptions. Some Googling made it clear – this consumer comparison does not exist. So, I took a few minutes to knock one together. I think the real reason is most people are looking to get a specific paper, and are… Read the rest »

Crossing the country for the Eclipse

The first solar eclipse Mandy and I saw was in October of 2014. That one was a partial eclipse, but nobody seemed to care. We grabbed glasses from the Lawrence Hall of Science, and joined crowds in the Berkeley hills to watch it happen. Shadows went wild, and it was a fun afternoon. The first… Read the rest »

Santa Cruz and 5000 pound Mammals

This weekend Mandy and I went down to her college town of Santa Cruz and walked among 5000 pound Sea Elephants. Santa Cruz is about an hour and a half south of San Francisco if you take the freeways for most of it. We did not take the freeways.