New Shoes To Turkey Day

Walking the other day prior to cooking where I celebrate #Eurowastelanders slaughtering–as only they can–the indigenous peoples of the Americas way back when. And I do it unashamedly in the land of those same #Eurowastelanders. Does that mean I’m full gone-native now? Or should I just keep reminding them of what they’ve done? 

Silly questions, eh. 

Rant on.


PS The truck is a fat and oil waste collection truck. It picks up all the krapp from restaurants in big, blue, plastic barrels and hauls it off to Holland where it’s then processed and used as Diesel fuel. Ironically, the barge is full of (probably diesel) cars also on their way to somewhere Holland where they’ll then be shipped to India (I’m guessing). 

A German, A Jew, And Tim Cook Walk Into A Bar

Screen Shot 2018-11-28 at 12.47.17.png
Don’t panic. It’s just a screenshot.

… The German, with a heavy accent, asks Tim in broken English, “wahn kahn ik pey myna bahr drink mit apple pey in Deutschland?”

The Jew, who is also the bartender getting ready to start his shift, turns to Tim, greets him by showing him the red dot on his new Apple Watch, and says, “don’t worry, Tim. We’ll let you know when you can.”

Now. Before any worst-reader gets all hot n’ bothered with my Semitic and stereotype joke, heed this: having lived among the Germans (the Huns) since the late 1980s, I think I can tell you why Germans hated Jews so much. It’s really very simple and not as complex as Hitler loving a$$holes the world over would have you otherwise think. The reason the Germans (back then) hated the Jews was because the Jews, of all the peoples of Europe that were integrating into tribes through out the (insert your favorite number of centuries here), the Jews were the ones that had the most success at life. That is, it was never about Jews running or owning banks, it was never about financing wars (with banks they either owned or didn’t own), and it certainly wasn’t about babies being devoured by long, pointy nosed werwolf type dudes or dudettes! No. The Jews simply had their shit together as a tight-nit group–that happened to be somewhat different than the onslaught of WASP/Christian-ism that was struggling so hard to find meaning (in anything) other than greed mongering as espoused by their own killing of the/their Christ/God. I mean, get this. As a family, Jews stayed together. As business owners, they stayed together there too. As achievers, they achieved like no other. (How easy it is to forget the achievements of artists, musicians, scientist of those days–who were all, thank God, Jews!) The Germans and many other Europeans, at the time, were nothing but a horde of ugly, disgusting, farting, fat-ass, knuckle dragging pseudo-religious $hitbags that couldn’t get by on their own wit because, well, they had no wit. And so, as  WASP/Christian-ism tried to deal with the self-perpetuating greed of feudalism turning to capitalism, Jews simply already had the/a right/correct formula for life. They believed in something other than just money, they believed in something other than just pseudo-wealth and/or patriarchal power that they could impose on others. And so… How admirable is that? In other words, the reason Germans and so many Europeans hated Jews (to the point of murdering six million of them FOR NO GODDAMN REASON) was because they were all jealous and spiteful and moronic and ugly and disgusting and knuckle dragging… and and and… Oh look. It’s Donald J. Trump. He’s the new best of the best in the knuckle dragging tradition of a fail-upwards European aristocratic Wasp/Christian-isms that can’t seem to die-off–when indeed they should. But I digress.

How the article below (and screenshot above) got me thinking about Jews, Germans and the fact that Apple Pay is still not available in Germany but is available in Kazakhstan…? Oh well. Maybe what I’m really thinking about is that Jewish girlfriend I once had. Boy was she sweet. And she had such a nice family, too. I really liked her dad. In fact, he was the first guy that introduced me to computers. I’ll never forget those floppy disks and the way they slid into slots at the front of that IBM behemoth and then he hit the start switch at the back of the machine and it made a loud click and immediately hummed to life. After him telling me all about operating systems, floppy disks and boot-ram, etc, Gwendolyn and I finally went out on our date. (Note: names have been changed to protect the innocent.) That night after we made love in a park and I shot my goo all over her three times, she asked me if I was done searching for her red dot.

“Your what,” I asked as I was recovering with the hopes of going at it again.

“I think it’s time you find my red dot or I won’t let you almost die of happiness a fourth time,” she said.

Boy, was she sweet.

Rant on.


Link that motivated this post:

Forgiven If Only Once

Subtitle: How I came to coin The Land of The Free To Be Stupid.

Bet you’re curious where I got that from, eh worst-reader? But don’t worry. It’s more than just stupid begets stupid. And. Don’t worry more: you don’t owe me a nickel every time you use what worstwriter has coined as your mind goes through the rigamarole of continuing to avoid the obvious. Indeed. The land of free to be stupid is from having learned back in suburban hell #Americant, and having gone to make-you-even-stupider High School, that for certain things done, forgiveness or absolution is only available once. That’s right. The adage: three strikes you’re out… Doesn’t apply to the politics at hand. That’s what makes me better than you, dear worst-reader. That’s what makes little old moi, the dude that jumped ship, the expat-galore living the/a high life without having to resort to petite bourgeois tendencies of not facing (my) demons, so so so so much better than…

Get this: the vid (above) and the corresponding newz link (below) have one thing in common that all #Americants have in common. That’s right. The most important issue and/or subject matter that is the current iteration of politics is not ever mentioned. Curious as to what that is? Well here you go: as bad as socialism for the rich is, as bad as republican and/or conservative politics one-upping Dubya Disp$hit Bush, etc., none of it is half as bad as those who make it all possible. While Trump, progressive news casts, or dysfunctional newz reporting, the one thing that is NEVER mentioned is the true cause of it all. That’s right, dear worst-reader. It’s not just Trump. It’s not just Dems and/or Repubs. And it most certainly ain’t the fake newz galore. The thing never mentioned is the people that make it all happen. That’s right. The regular folk. The folk that think they can think. The doers of all evil doings. Spoiled rotten #Americants that lost their way. Which brings me full circle to the title of this post. For certain things done, there is no forgiveness! That’s why I learned back in the 80s, after my first ever vote, that I would never again vote for a republican. And to this day I never have. Nor have I ever voted for anyone or any party that enables what republicans stand for. As bad as Dems are, in my life time (1963+) there is no precedence where they have pursued politics of a nature that would give rise to Bush, the Tea Party, Sarah Palin, and now Trump–and of course, Faux Newz. And please: no both-siderism bull$hit! And so…

Of all the magnanimous, delightful, shinny #Americants that complain about losing hold on any claim to a living standard and/or alleviating the threat of personal bankruptcy due to what is virtually a scam-based economy and social system that they seem to love more than anything, I can only ask this question: how many of you have voted republican in the last forty years? I haven’t voted for a republican since 1982–my first ever vote! Indeed. Never again. Which means I have earned my own forgiveness. So while you’all are out there trying to figure out your both-siderism and why you’re so fcuked–first try and tear yourself away from the TV of your WWE life. Oh. And. Before I forget: Fcuk you!

Rant on.


Link that is worth reading cause it, along with vid (above) helped motivate this post:

  • GM doing what GM does because, well, #Americants, deep down, being so stupid, want it that way |

Correspondance: Getting My Head Unstuck

Re: and we talk about Americans…

Dear Old Friend,

Well, since you’re into the patriarchal + sadistic nature of rural and privileged white-people, I wouldn’t worry so much about Aussies and their sexual perversions. Twin females embracing what most western females have been doing all along—which in turn has lead to Trump being elected by a majority of not just really, really ignorant people but also really, really stupid (white) females—is just another blatant and wanton example of human nature run amok. Perhaps you should give more research to finding out what it is that most powerful white men actually do with THEIR sexual perversions—that we never hear about and are never shown in foreign press reports. It’s obvious that powerful and un-powered white men have found a hero in Trump because of his misogyny and sexual perversions made commonplace. You know: men who like being pissed on, fcuking whores, fcuking porn-stars without condoms, fcuking those same porn-stars while wife is recovering from birth, etc. Yet, if it were at all possible, I wonder what would be revealed if one were to actually lift the veil that covers the ugly, sadistic, perverted white men of evangelical patriarchy. Indeed. It actually hurts my mind to imagine what all those ugly, hideous white men do with women and anything else penetrable while they are protected by religious zealotry (run amok). 

Oh well. At least your entertained with all those links. 


Hi Tom,

I was reading on trash media (yahoo) when checking my email and I had to see this:

Now I would not mind being the BF for a day:

Now I assume you can see that since they are from Australia.  Now I would put this right up there at the top of bizarre on just about every level imaginable. 

I am glad we don’t have any monopoly on strange.  Of course some Japanese dude marrying a hologram is pretty up there as well:

Or a game character:

Your Old Friend

PS Any more click bait out there?

Correspondance: Money Laundering

Re: Canada Real Estate China

Dear Old Friend,

FYI, I can’t access the article you sent because 1) I use adblockers at the client level and 2) I use adblockers at the DNS level  ( But I was able to read the title of the article and the first few lines—which is all one needs when one reads fake news, right? And so…

Ah. Money launder(ing). Yes. Let’s go there, shall we. It’s been so long since we’ve toyed with your favourite Trump et al. 

Fortunately (or not) Marx indirectly addressed the issue of money laundering almost two hundred years ago. He wrote chapter after chapter analysing criminal activity that is the ultimate outcome for non-capitalists thinking they are capitalists. On a side note: perhaps that’s where Mark Twain got his infamous quote: “Americans all think they are just millionaires down on their luck.” Anywho. The amount of money laundering (criminal activity) that has taken place in our lifetime correlates perfectly to Marx’s theory. In short, Capitalism, once its reached its fail-upward nadir but is still emboldened by BELIEVERS (#Americants), it gladly and willingly enables those BELIEVERS with FEELINGS that they’ve actually accomplished something. As this process (these FEELINGS) self-perpetuate through generations—the proverbial scrapping what one can from the system is all that’s left. Hence money laundering. Marx knew, as Capitalism inevitably milks the cow to the hilt and there’s no productivity left, and there’s also no capability to work (as in PRODUCE) a way out of any of the extreme oscillations (of Capitalism), that Capitalists will then seek to marginalise those who actually think they do or have done something (with their measly lives). Oh well it works, eh. The reality is, though, most have done nothing because, well, …fiat money/value based on interest rates from non-productive activity e.g. real-estate, truly is the end of the line. 

Ain’t it obvious why so many love Trump?


Hey Tom,

Why not get your head unstuck from that treadmill of idiocy you are so fascinated with and check this out.  Fun stuff to read / see.  Learn how to launder billions under the communist government in china and the laissez faire capitalist of the west.

Your Old Friend

Subject: Canada real estate China

Sent from my Samsung Galaxy smartphone.

Getting Some Tech On


Subtitle: How To Get Some Tech Freedom With SBC

As previously mentioned here, I’ve been dabbling of-late in the world of SBC (Single Board Computing). Reason? I’m on a long and curvy path to weaning myself from/of Apple and its hellacious eco-system. In fact, I’m currently fiddling around with the idear of getting off the whole greed $hitshow that is personal computing and digital eco-systems. I mean, come on, dear worst-reader. Am I wrong here? Am I the only one who feels a bit perturbed, penetrated, pissed-off at how one of the most successful industries in all of human history has managed to deject customers to the point of mutiny? Nomatter.

After installing three Raspberry Pi’s in my home network (2xclient; 1xserver), I’ve concluded that the time is ripe for not only SBCs but also Linux. Recent purchase and concurrent fiddle-diddle with an RPi 3B+ has done more than completely blow me away. But then again, I might be the only one looking deeper into the recent mega-purchase of Red Hat by IBM. Even though this huuuuge corporate transaction is about enterprise computing, what it really does is finally bring Linux to the forefront as an alternative to the fail-upwards, exploitative and non-competitive conglomerates of Microsoft, Apple, etc. Of course, even though IBM has a reputation for being just as exploitative as any other corporation, the one thing they can’t totally control is the Linux kernel that Red Hat was born out of . But before I get too far off subject.

These little beauts, SBCs, at least for me, have reached validity and user value above and beyond anything available in the old-school tech world of personal computing. Seriously. Although the RPi 3B+ isn’t quite there yet as a total desktop replacement, it is very, very… almost. At the least, the RPi has motivated a lot of others to fill the gap of producing alternative ARM-based desktop replacements, e.g. Intel. So far my little experiment with SBC’s, e.g. OpenMediaVault (OMV) NAS, RasPlex (media player) and Volumio (digital audio player), have all turned out to be solid functioning devices. I’m especially tickled with the RPi 3B+ and its enhanced but still limited ethernet–which is not quite gigabyte because of dependency on a USB2.0 bus. Nonetheless, I can honestly say, it’s a rockin file-server. In fact, it works so well, I’ve completely deleted my wish list for things like a Synology or a Drobo.

Although I was skeptical at first of the RPi 3B+ as a NAS–again, because of limited ethernet bandwidth–after a few months of use my skepticism is null. Easy setup, slight learning curve for OMV, take advantage of already owning several old 3.5″ HDDs, including powered hard-drive enclosures and… Boom! So far, the RPi and OMV, with 2x2TB HDDs connected via USB2.0, has worked flawlessly. Oh wait.

There was one issue when I hooked up the second HDD. I dug out another old hard-drive enclosure and after installing the HDD and then hooking it up to the RPi, I couldn’t get the RPi to restart. Note: the micro-USB power connector is what I consider the only serious flaw of the RPi. I’ve had trouble restarting them before. But after hooking up this second HDD, the problem really showed its nasty face. I’m not sure if this has anything to do with the HDD or just the RPi’s power source. Keep in mind, I’m using powered HDDs so there’s no excess draw on the RPi’s board. Also, I’ve purchased dedicated micro-USB power cables (5v-3a) for two of my RPi’s. (The third RPi uses a 12v-4a connector albeit via the HifiberryAmp2 daughter board; this is the best powered RPi I’ve used so far!) Eventually the RPi and OMV restarted but this seems to be a recurring issue if/when I have to perform a hard-restart. My guess so-far is that the problem is the micro-USB power connector of the RPi board. But let’s move on.

After a few months of use, I’m sold on SBCs. Even though I’ve not really taxed my setup with anything but samba, AFP, FTP and a TimeMachine backup server, including my entire music library to the HifiberryAmp2, which is my living-room music player, it works. Considering the price of SBCs, the small amount of know-how required to get them going, their low power consumption, they are definitely the beginning of a future without monopoly-monolithic products we have to deal with now. And so… In my search for a Linux desktop replacement, and fully satisfied with RPi as client device, I recently went ahead and splurged and tried something new.

After research and review, I concluded that it was time to break from Raspberry Pi. So I bought a Rock64 (4GB) from Pine64. I’ve been using it for several weeks now. Compared to the RPi, the Rock64 has true gigabyte ethernet and a faster processor. It also has 1xUSB3.0, 2xUSB2.0 and an emmc slot for increased data transfer compared to the micro-SD. Although this device has slightly higher specs than the RPi, including increased price, it’s my new favourite SBC. The Rock64 is even closer to being a desktop replacement than the RPi. With that in mind, the Rock64pro, the Rock64’s bigger brother, looks like it is the replacement SBC I’ve been looking for. Yeah, now you know my current wishlist.

The Rock64 isn’t officially offered in #eurowasteland yet. So I paid almost double for it in tariffs and import taxes. But that’s neither here nor there. After initial use, dabbling with several Linux distros, the Rock64 is a winner and I’m even sold on Pine64 and the software made available by DietPi. It definitely rival Raspberry Pi. So far, I’ve got VNC running so I can practice/learn Linux (headless9, Pihole blocking obnoxious internet advertising and I was even able to install WordPress and download this entire blog to it locally.


Worstwriter’s home network setup so-far:

  • Media Server(s):
    • MacPro[^2010 MacPro 5,1] with Plex Server
      • PlexMedia Players on various devices
    • MacPro/iTunes
      • 2xAppleTV, 4xiOS devices
    • RPi/OMV-NAS/Music (filesever)
      • HifiberryAmp2, Volumio (DAP)
  • RPi/OMV-NAS (test bed):
    • Samba file server
    • FTP
    • TimeMachine Backup (this works better than Mac Server App on my MacPro!)
  • Rock64 (test bed):
    • Pihole – DNS server and home network ad-blocker
    • VNC – Remote desktop, headless SBC
    • LXDE GUI but mostly used for SSH access to learn Linux
    • – installed WordPress and imported this blog locally

Rant on.


Pseudo-Review #7- Charger GX At 6,000km, Winter Is Coming

Psuedo-Subtitle: The good, the bad, and not much to report.

Here is a tag-link to all my e-bike posts.

Let us begin, dear worst-rider, with the truth. The truth is, as of the writing of this worst-post, I’m surpassing 6500km in the next day or three. With that in mind, there is no need to answer any inquiries regarding the stature of my trusted Germania e-vehicle. It is and has been pretty much in the same shape since about 4000km. Or was that 2500km? Nomatter. This transport device has been holding up very well. Then again… it’s not quite two years old. Anywho.

The Good

Other than some standard tear & wear, i.e. brake pads, tyres (“tires” for my #Americant brethren) and a part removal–plus a recommendation for a few other part replacements (more on that below)–this e-bike extraordinaire has held-up better than all three of my x-wives. (Or is it 4?) And I assure you, fellow e-traveler, them x-wives were never as enjoyably ridden as this vehicle. Yes. Oh wait. (It was 3!) But on that note, I do… die-gress.

As you may or may not notice in the pics, I’ve finally gotten around to removing that silly rack from the front. Don’t get me wrong, dear worst-rider. It was a gallant effort on the part of those German engineer-types that put this and any Riese & Müller together. But in the end, unless you used it just like that dude in the video from the R&M website last year… You know, the long haired, bearded guy that peddled around a dessert with full panniers and a rolled up blanket or camping matt attached beautifully to the front rack? Yeah, that guy. Anywho. Unless you used the rack in the same manner, i.e. storing something on it that is soft and light, it was a useless rack. I did, of course, try to make it useful. I tried lugging around a case of wine once. You know, six bottles of Chianti along with a can of fava beans. Although the effort worked, i.e. I got the wine home unbroken, it was a terrible riding experience. I also tried lugging around a spare 500W battery strapped to the rack. Yeah… No. For you see, fellow worst-rider, the rack is truly meant, as indicated in the minimalist manual issued with the vehicle, to carry no more than 3kg. If I were to give R&M any advice, I’d tell them to stick with the 3kg weight allotment for the front rack but add that whatever is strapped to it, should be soft and cuddly. Anything above 3kg that is also hard & heavy means not only that your steering will be obnoxiously uncomfortable, but your bike balance, your tip-weight when using the kick-stand, etc., is waaaaaay off. In fact, while breaking my distance record last spring by riding 90+ km and carrying a spare battery strapped (with protection and cushioning) to the front rack, I decided then and there, the rack was a goner. By-the-buy, I have noticed that R&M has completely changed the front rack design of their new Chargers. The rack is attached to the frame of the bike and not the the steering/head tube. Well learned, grasshopper!

All in all, at this point, pushing two years old, replacing a car, I really can’t complain about this bike and there’s not much new to report. Even without the front rack, it’s still quite a useful carrier vehicle. As you can see in the pics, for the onslaught of Euro-winter, I even use the vehicle to carry ca. 15kg of firewood. Also, when it’s dirty and I clean it, it feels like new again. As long as I keep the chain and derailleur clean, I never have the feeling the drive train is even close to needing replacement (more on that in a sec). I do perhaps have one regret. When I replaced my rear tyre (tire) for the second time, I actually went ahead and ordered another tyre knowing that the rear only lasts about 2500km. I’ve since concluded that I want to replace the knobby tyres with something more urban, perhaps Schwalbe super-moto-x tyres. I’ll decided that soon enough. But if I do replace them, that means I bought an extra tire for naught. Oh well.

The Bad

When I had the 5000km inspection done a few months back, where I also had the rack removed, the shop told me that although not needed immediately, probably by the next inspection, it’ll be time to replace the chain and sprockets. At first I let the remark pass. Then I got to thinking. From the beginning I vaguely remember being told/sold the idear that this quality of chain and derailleur would last around 10000km. Why then is the dealer already talking of chain renewal?

Soon after the inspection, I gave my Charger a thorough cleaning, especially the chain. With a second and more thorough look, for the life of me, I don’t see why I can’t squeeze another 3000-4000km out of this chain set. Am I being naive? Of course, I might just invest in one of those chain measuring tools on account I have the feeling the bike shop might be taking advantage of me and my generosity for actually paying/affording all these inspections. Heck, the only reason I give the bike up for these dealer inspections is to protect the value of it on account I might want to trade it in after three years. Here in Germany proof of inspections can be an advantage. On the other hand, 100 ,-€ per inspection, plus whatever parts are needed, is adding considerable cost to this vehicle. Which raises another question: should I have taken the Rohloff transmission? The Rohloff is supposed to cost less than a chain/derailleur in the long run, is it not? But when I think/remember test driving a Rohloff I still vividly remember all those gears churning at the behest of every pedal movement. Yeah, churning gears are a big turn-off.

Not Much To Report

Yeah, I’m still diggin’ this e-bike. In fact, I haven’t touched my Giant TCX in almost all year. Then again, once I started to get into e-biking, I kinda knew that analog biking’s days were numbered. Which begs another worst-rider question: what to do, what to do, what to do… when the weather turns as it’s doing as I worst-write this? Winter is indeed coming. And if I learned one thing from last winter… The region of Germany I live in (NRW) has had great weather this summer and fall. I’ve been doing a lot of biking. But my temperature limit for biking is around 7° celsius. Anything below that makes me nervous for various reasons.

  1. Frozen fall foliage on the streets lets tyres slip away no matter how sharp your knobbies and then there’s German curbs and other road knots hiding underneath all that foliage and when you can’t see them and your front tyre gets caught while trying to ride around mothers and strollers… WHAM! You’re on arse toot-sweet.
  2. I learned last winter that gear shifting with thick gloves is a pain in the arse and urban riding requires constant gear shifting and when it’s cold and your worried about freezing your arse off you’re not thinking about gear shifting which means at every traffic light your in the wrong friggin gear… (How’s my bitchin & moanin solar?)
  3. Riding with thick clothes is a pain in the arse and even though I know, if managed correctly, you can ride an e-bike without breaking a sweat… but still, after too much wine the night before, the sweat comes out all the same and then those thick clothes turn out never to be thick enough and and and…
  4. Hours of cold riding has no comfort zone cause I’m such a wuss and when e-biking and sweating out too much drink from the night before… Oh wait. I’m being repetitive.
  5. And let’s not forget how a cold and hard that leather saddle from heaven is…
  6. But enough bitchin’ & moanin.

This bike is just too good to be true. (Knock on wood.)

Worst-ride on, baby.

Rant on, too.


Sizing Up Your Read

sizing up books.png
This pic is a screenshot

While e-book shopping the other morning I couldn’t help but notice this image. Why in the world does Bezos & Co. think it necessary to provide a size-comparison of a friggin book as part of their tech-enormity galore? Then again, considering that this corpo-giant is what it is because, well, at this state (iteration) of capitalism run-amok, the day of the scavengers has arrived. So. I guess. Sizing up books seems as good a tech-idear as any.

Rant on.


Pseudo Tech Test 1: RPi OMV NAS Is First Step To Freedom?

RPi OMV server
RPi-3B+ OMV NAS (sorry for worstwriter’s lack of photo skills).

Would you believe, dear worst-reader, that I spent the last few weeks reading up on SBC’s (single board computer) because…

  1. these little (miracle) devices are so silly-inexpensive AND extremely useful that I can just keep buying them in order to busy my early-retirement existence,
  2. I already have three of them in full use so why not change-up a bit w/ something different like a Rock64?
  3. I’m all poo-poo on Apple on account it’s going full stupid w/ its iOS Krapp.

But I digress.

As of a few weeks back I now have a rockin’ OpenMediaVault NAS running on a RPi 3B+. Connected to it are 2x2TB USB external HDDs that I’ve had lying around. One of the drives is currently being tested as a TimeMachine backup server for all my Macs–and it’s been working great so-far! FYI, even though I possess the capability of offering TM backups on my ageing MacPro with Apple’s MacOS Server App (and only that app), after various attempts using it, I’ve decided it’s a no-go. TM, Apple Macs, home network, etc., don’t really work well together–even though such a claim is sacrilegious as an Apple fan-boy. The reality is, I have never been able to set up my home network–most likely due to krappy networking of ISP issued home router–so that any of my Macs at any given time can access the network for a TM backup. For whatever reason (beyond my comprehension) there has always been network access issue prohibiting TM from working. Put another way: the MacOS Server App, combined with krappy ISP routers, sucks bat-balls!

The second drive of my OMV NAS has a copy of my digital music library, which is my entry-way to perhaps creating a media server for the future–that will replace my ageing MacPro. To play that music I’m using a RPi3 with a Hifiberry Amp2 connected to it (see pic below). My music player -of-choice is Volumio. FYI, I am currently experiencing the best audio/stereo listening of my life with this set-up. Obviously I’m old school when it comes to listening to music which also means so-called smart speakers are not on my consume-to-survive radar anytime soon! Yeah. Smart speakers suck bat-balls, too.



(Pics of my 3 RPi’s: w/ OMV (ext HDDs left); w/ Hifiberry DAC+Pro used as a Plex client for work-room TV; w/Hifiberry Amp2 and Volumio.)

I have a third RPi as a RasPlex client which is attached to my TV. FYI we don’t have any sort of TV connection to the outside world. I use the TV as a screen for work (presentations) and for streaming w/ Plex and sometimes AppleTV. I guess that means I’m a cord-cutter. Keep in mind, for the last ten or so years we’ve been an Apple household but recent Apple product announcements (especially from 2018), not to mention the rip-off of iTunes, have convinced me to stay the course in my choice of maintaining my own media library.

The pseudo-tech-test.

The question I’m currently asking is how capable is an SBC? Up to this point, using a RPi 3B+ for NAS, experimenting with old HDDs connected via USB 2.0, figuring out Openmediavault, etc., has proven to be viable. Although skeptical of the RPi’s limited ethernet bandwidth that is dependent on USB 2.0, at this point the system works without flaw. There were some glitches when I used an old duel HDD case set to JBOD. The RPi/OMV was unable to access the drives. Since then I’ve acquired two HDD cases with separate power sources. Such a setup is space consuming and requires lots of electric sockets; luckily I have both in abundance.

Indeed. Linux here I come!

I was on the verge of ordering a Rock64 SBC the other day thinking that the RPi’s network capability was too weak. The Rock64 has true gigabyte ethernet–whereas the RPi, dependent on USB 2.0, has only around a third of that. But then I came to my senses. According to my worst-research the Rock64 might be a bit too much for my NAS needs. Up to now I’ve just gotten over certain learning curves of both the RPi and OMV. And even though I’m not using RPi/OMV for streaming video, it has passed with flying colours both backup networking and audio networking.

In short, so far, I am able to backup three Macs, stream music to my Volumio client and also stream HD audio (96khz-24bit) to my Mac using VLC and then playing that music through a TEAC amp (very loudly) via USB–all at the same time. That means I had multiple devices streaming from the RPi-OMV NAS–with its limited Ethernet–and everything worked great.

OMV sys info.jpg

Conclusion (so-far): there is no need to run out and by a higher-end SBC. At least not yet! As soon as I can figure out how to do it, I’ll install Plex on OMV and then do the same test but with video. Needless to say, I am encouraged so far w/ everything SBC. My limited tech skills are able to fiddle-faddle with these Linux devices and even connect hardware (RPi + Hifiberry) here and there to make things not just work but work really, really well. The main task at hand is to find a viable ersatz for Apple. Why, you ask? Because, well, Apple is seriously starting to suck once again–just like it sucked before Steve Jobs returned. As long as I can easily and conveniently backup my Macs, have access to a file server, and have great audio from my digitised music collection, I can’t imagine having to stick with Apple and it preposterous über-expensive shinny unicorn stuff in the future.

Rant on.