SlimFold Wallet Review

I love Tyvek. It can be terribly thin, durable, recyclable, and inexpensive. The SlimFold Wallet is a new design, consisting of only 4 layers of Tyvek, sewn, rather than folded like the Dynomighty Mighty Wallet. Both versions measure less than 2mm thin, beating out my Ripstop Nylon All-Ett by nearly 1mm.

They come in a variety of attractive, distinctive colors that play nicely with the natural texture of the material. The printing is high quality, and hasn’t rubbed off on anything in the weeks I’ve been using mine.

Original

SlimFold Original
The SlimFold Original is designed to hold 11 cards, including an ID slot, with a pocket for cash. It uses a vertical split deck design that bends easily when folded. Each slot is designed to grip one card, and the manufacturer warns against stretching the slots.

The horizontal split deck of the All-Ett puts the natural fold between your cards at odds with any cash you may have inside. The vertical split deck of the SlimFold Original bends so easily when loaded with bills that you might forget there’s cash in it. With four card slots in a row, it’s much longer than your cash, so it can have a bit more bulk on one side when folded.

MICRO

SlimFold MICRO
The SlimFold MICRO is a simple bi-fold, otherwise similar to the Original in its construction. The description claims it’s designed to hold 8-12 cards, one of them an ID slot. I wouldn’t try to put more than 7 in it; 5 is more comfortable. You really shouldn’t carry more than that anyway.

When you keep the MICRO in your pocket, the part that isn’t held rigid by your cards will bend, which can be unsightly. Any cards you keep in the back bulge out when folded, making a distinct ridge. Overall, I prefer the Original, but you might find it perfect.

Summary

The SlimFold Original is my new favorite wallet, edging out the Big Skinny Tri-fold. It lies incredibly flat, even when full of cash. The one disadvantage is that there’s no suitable place for my wallet pen, so now I’m in the market for the ideal pocket pen (spoiler: it’s not a Fisher Space Pen, though I do love the shape of the Bullet version). By any other comparison, the Original has the advantage over other wallets I’ve tried.

Disclaimer: I was provided samples in the colors pictured above. The photos are copied from the manufacturer’s site. I strive to keep my reviews fair, frank, and honest. If you’d like to see photos of mine after a few more weeks of wear, please say so in the comments.

Defeating Google SafeSearch

For some reason, which I won’t be trying to uncover, “AMI” is a restricted term in Google SafeSearch. If you have SafeSearch turned on, and you search for “amazon linux ami,” Google will helpfully remove “ami” and search only for “amazon linux.”

The word “ami” has been filtered from the search because Google SafeSearch is active.

Luckily, Google will also helpfully correct your spelling, so search instead for “amazon linux amih” and it will show you the results you were looking for.

Showing results for amazon linux ami
Search instead for amazon linux amih

Problem solved!

I’m sure there are other nefarious things a young person might do with this bit of know-how, but I won’t be exploring it.

Configuring Tunnelbroker on DNS-O-Matic

Hurricane Electric’s Tunnelbroker provides free 6in4 IPv6 tunnels. DNS-O-Matic provides a single Dyn-compatible interface to update all of your dynamic DNS resources. I use DNS-O-Matic because I want to update DynDNS, OpenDNS, and Tunnelbroker, all at the same time. I had a hard time finding the correct configuration for Tunnelbroker on DNS-O-Matic. There’s conflicting information because Tunnelbroker also provides a non-Dyn-compatible interface that uses different data. Their Dyn-compatible endpoint is at https://ipv4.tunnelbroker.net/nic/update.

User ID: Your Tunnelbroker Username (Account Name), the one you use to log in, not your long hashy User ID as suggested elsewhere.
Password: Your Tunnelbroker Password, the one you use to log in.
Host/Identifier: The DNS fully-qualified name of your tunnel, not the numeric Tunnel ID. This is of the form <user>-<index>.tunnel.<tunnel-server>.<datacenter>.ipv6.he.net.

Pete vs. Phil?

No one is quite sure of the origins of Phil’s name… but there are stories that he was indeed originally called “Punxsutawney Pete” when the first observations of Groundhog Day were held in the 1800s.  One popular story is that a newspaper reporter kept erroneously calling him “Phil,” and that name eventually stuck.

At 12:40 PM 1/27/2004, you wrote:
My family has been trying to figure out if there was ever a Punxsutawney Pete.  Some of use remember there being one, but I couldn’t find any evidence on your website.  There are some brief references to such a groundhog on the web .

Can we get an official (or at least semi-official) statement from the Punxsatawney Groundhog Club to settle this?

Thanks!

Andrew Jorgensen

——————————————-
Alan Freed, Webmaster
PunxsutawneyPhil.com / Groundhog.org
America’s Second Favorite Holiday!
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ChromeOS SSH with Public / Private Keypairs

Update: The Secure Shell Native Client Chrome app now supports ARM chromebooks, and provides a better overall experience than the following.

Samsung’s ARM-based Chromebook is still the #1 Best Seller in Laptop Computers on Amazon, and rightly so! Unfortunately for many of us, the Secure Shell chrome app doesn’t work properly on ARM yet. That could be a deal breaker, right? Not so! Chrome may not have a built-in terminal, but ChromeOS does, even (with some restrictions) when not in Developer Mode, and it has an SSH client.

I don’t allow passwords to connect to my servers, only keypairs. To use an ssh private key you have to jump through some extra hoops.

  • Download your key to the Downloads directory. I keep an encrypted copy of my key in Google Drive.
  • Press Ctrl-Alt-T to open a terminal tab.
  • At the crosh> prompt, type the following:
    • ssh
    • user <your-user-name>
    • host <your-host-name>
    • key <your-key-filename> (no need for a full path, it searches for it in Downloads)
    • connect
Welcome to crosh, type 'help' for a list of commands.
crosh> ssh
ssh> user newbie
ssh> host server.domain.com
ssh> key id_rsa
ssh> connect
Enter passphrase for key '/home/chronos/user/.ssh/key-d0395ccd-28c4-4460-8d71-39c797bfb0ee': 
Last login: Tue Jan 15 21:48:48 2013 from some-ip.isp.net
newbie@server:~$

Driving in the Snow

I don’t like to drive in the snow. Here’s why:

Winter of early 2011, snow started coming down lightly in the evening. Much later in the evening, now snowing hard, I finally started to make my way home from my friend’s house. As I entered the freeway I flipped around about 270 degrees, so that I was perpendicular, but off on the shoulder. I called highway patrol because this was just past a bend in the freeway and I couldn’t see far enough to get straightened out before someone ran into me. Maybe an hour later they came and helped me know when my best chance was and I pulled away.

Utah has a lot of sections of freeway that go over smaller rural roads, so there are a lot of hills. I barely made it up many of these hills and decided there was no way I was driving all the way home so I pulled off on Provo Center Street, parked, and called my Dad to come pick me up in his little four-wheel-drive SUV. He didn’t answer. I called a few more times and still no answer. I had to pee.

Eventually I decided I’d brave the streets again and make my way to my parents house. On 9th East I saw a snow plow roll past so I fell in behind it. This was not as much of an improvement as I hoped.

When I arrived I saw my brother’s car, so I called his phone. No answer there either. I still had to pee so I checked all the doors to see if one was unlocked. My parents live in a very safe part of town, but no luck. I went behind the trash cans where there was some gravel. I’m not proud of this. I slept a bit, off and on, in the car while I waited for morning.

Fairly early in the morning my brother called, having finally checked his phone, which he either silenced or left in his bag, and unlocked the front door. I slept on the couch downstairs until the snow plows came through, drove home cautiously, and slept until early afternoon.

Last month I finally got new tires. They help, but I’m still shaken. I probably shouldn’t own a little rear-wheel-drive truck anymore. It helps that nobody drives into Seattle when there’s snow on the ground and I can work from home.

Samsung Galaxy Nexus Vehicle Dock Review

DO NOT BUY! There’s a reason there are no reviews or ratings on devices on the Google Play.

Update: 3 months later; Yes, THREE months later I finally have a refund for this horrible product.

Remember the HTC Nexus One Car Dock? It cost $55, plus free shipping, but, hey, it had a Bluetooth audio device and some speakers on it. It was attractive and well designed. Mine broke after nearly a year, but HTC replaced it.

And the Samsung Nexus S Navigation Mount? That sold for around $40, plus $4 shipping. Kinda steep considering it didn’t have any electronics in it at all. A little hard to get your phone out of, but it felt secure in the durable but flexible hard rubber frame. If you were in a hurry you could leave it in the frame and pop it off the mount. It was thin and light enough you could almost imagine they meant for you to leave it on all the time. I’m sure some people do.

But the Samsung Galaxy Nexus Vehicle Dock, for $54, plus $10.50 shipping! is probably the worst piece of equipment I have ever had the misfortune to purchase. If you ordered one please do yourself a favor and cancel. If the UPS guy rings your doorbell tell him you’re refusing shipment. The product description says, “The custom fitted cradle holds the handset securely during long rides.” What it means is, “If you can get your phone into it, don’t plan on getting it out. It’s in there for the long haul.”

There’s about a half inch of hard, inflexible plastic in every direction. If you press hard enough you’ll feel lucky if don’t break off your volume buttons, power button, and the pogo pins inside the dock. When you hop out of the car to catch the express bus into town just insert your crow bar in the back and have your catcher’s mitt ready for when your beloved Galaxy Nexus flies out the window onto the hard, unforgiving pavement. The brainless middle-manager who personally designed this abomination “design can’t be that hard, right?” should be sent back to middle-school with a sign on his back that says “kick me!” “c’mon, real funny, guys. ha ha.”

It has pogo pins, button extenders, a 3.5mm audio jack, and a micro-USB plug. Jail cells have a toilet. Good thing, right?

Don’t believe me? Here’s a link to the similar product (without the electronics) on Samsung’s own website. Be sure to sort by “most helpful first”.

What’s that you say? A re-stocking fee? No, I don’t think that’s going to happen. A 15% re-stocking fee for this monstrosity? That’s $8.10 for the privilege of opening this enormous box and fathoming the depths of my disappointment. Can I at least pay the return shipping cost?

Shame on you, Samsung. Shame on you, Google.