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Thursday, December 23, 2021

My Tech Recommendation for 2022 - Wyze Cam v3

It's a little close to Christmas to make this a gift suggestion, though if you're lucky your local Home Depot may have one in stock, but if you are looking for a cost effective solution to home monitoring / security then the Wyze Cam v3 is tough to beat.

This little 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi enabled indoor / outdoor camera sells for just $33 US or $44 Canadian and has a terrific set of features:

  • Starlight CMOS Sensor for ultra low-light conditions
  • IP65-rated weatherproof with "extreme" temperature tolerance from -4°F to 113°F (-20°C to 45°C)
  • Local Storage (microSD card required) or store in the Cloud (limited to 14 second clips unless subscribed to Cam Plus)
  • 1920x1080p Full HD
  • 20 frames per second (fps) day time and 15 fps night time
  • 3 mounting options
  • Simultaneous 2-way communication via the Wyze app and camera speaker / microphone
  • Speaker can emit mini siren when triggered by the Wyze app
  • Near-IR and Far-IR lights for indoor and outdoor night vision

Wyze Cam v3

The object recognition is quite good with the Wyze Cam v3 and Wyze app, they're able to send alerts when recognizing simple motion or sounds (you set the threshold) but also can distinguish between vehicles, persons, pets, and packages and send specific alerts for each.

Wyze app vehicle detection

I have a Google Nest Hub and Wyze has made it simple to connect to that device, a single "Stream living room camera" command and the two work great together to act as a real time monitoring solution. You can also monitor through the Wyze app on your Android 5.0+ or iOS 9.0+ mobile device.

Google Nest Hub streaming camera video

If there is a knock on the Wyze Cam v3 it's fairly minor, in my case, but there are no battery options. It's USB powered via an included 6' micro USB cable / AC block which means you are limited to where you can place it based on proximity to an AC outlet and you'll have to provide your own backup power solution incase of power disruption. Of course your internet connection will also have to have a backup option or you'll need a microSD to save locally, but alerts will be affected without internet connectivity.

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Snowbirds Fly By 05/06/2020
Operation Inspiration

Thursday, July 25, 2019

Apollo 11 Guidance Computer Restored

Being that we are all celebrating the Apollo 11 mission to the moon, I found this to be one of the more interesting things happening from a geek's perspective. Head on over to the YouTube channel "CuriousMarc" where he's gotten his hands on and restored the Apollo 11 Guidance Computer!

Also, if you've not already done so... check out the website "Apollo 11 in Real-time" where you can experience the mission as if it were happening at this moment.

Monday, July 22, 2019

Minelab continues to tease new metal detector

Back in May Minelab teased a new metal detector named Vanquish. While nothing but the video was released, and much has been speculated, we still know nothing about the new machine specs, price or availability.

Last week another video surfaced, this one longer but still a teaser, that again seems to be taking aim at Garrett another big company in the space.

Why the US refuses to go metric

The Verge provides us with 3 reasons why the United States has been a hold out regarding the adoption of the metric system.

Having experienced the transition to metric by Canada in the 1970's I can tell you it's not that scary, but I'll be honest I still convert in my head. I have also never referred to my height in meters or my weight in kilograms.

Friday, July 19, 2019

Windows 10 Emoji Picker

Here's a pro tip:

On Windows 10 machines, use the Windows key + period to open the emoji picker!


Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Google Docs Shortcut That You'll Thank Me For

Okay, so here's a little trick that's worth coming out of blogging retirement for! 

It seems that Google purchased the top level domain (TLD) .new some time ago. So what? Well they've just made life a little easier if you are a Google docs, sheets, or slides user (maybe more). 

You'll love this: 

When in the Chrome browser and signed into your Google account type one of the following in the address bar -,, or The result is you'll be directed to... a new Google doc, sheets, or slides page saving you 4 clicks (Google apps, Drive, New, Docs). 

You're welcome.

Sunday, June 3, 2018

I 💘 Cats, Robots and Neural Networks

I'm a cat guy, I've had more than a couple Roombas (Roombai?), and I know a little about Neural Networks so when I saw this it was like the whole peanut butter meets chocolate thing!

Saturday, June 2, 2018

A year of Wired and a YubiKey 4 for $21

As a long time fan of Wired magazine and a former subscriber I was a little bummed a while back when had gone to a paywall model. That is, I was bummed until I visited the site this morning and learned that I could get a year of Wired, access behind the paywall, and a limited-edition WIRED branded YubiKey 4 for $10 Canadian + $10 shipping and tax. 

When you consider that a YubiKey 4 is being offered on for $53.00 that's a heck of a deal! What does a YubiKey 4 do for you?

  • Strong two-factor hardware based authentication
  • Easy and fast authentication with a single touch
  • Reduces IT operational costs
  • Multiprotocol support on a single key
  • Crush-resistant and waterproof
  • Choice of USB-A and USB-C form factors
  • Made in the USA & Sweden

Basically, it's a small USB dongle that you insert into your PC and use to login to websites. It provides you with the 2 factor authentication that security experts have been urging you to use for years! 

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Should all locks have keys? Phones, Castles, Encryption, and You.

It has been a very long time since I've posted anything to the blog, I guess once you get out of the habit it's really tough to get back to it. However this is one of those times where I felt particularly compelled to share something. "Grey" over at has put together a great video discussing the difference between physical and digital locks... or encryption. It's 5 minutes worthy of your attention. There is a difference between the rules that govern our physical properties and those that govern our digital ones, or at least there had been. A debate is on, most notably in the U.S., that has some law makers asking for the golden key to your, and everybody else's data. in nearly all cases.
The proposed Burr-Feinstein Encryption Bill requires that all companies providing any kind communications or data service be able to give information to the government in an ''intelligible format.'' If the company made the data unintelligible, it must provide ''technical assistance'' to undo it. In case there is any question about the aim, the bill defines intelligible as ''decrypted, deciphered, decoded, demodulated, or deobfuscated to its original form.'' 

Being a Canadian citizen I was appalled to learn, but not really surprised, of the recent disclosure in a Quebec court case that the RCMP had Blackberry's global encryption key since 2010 giving them access to all communications between consumer Blackberry devices. The RCMP have effectively implemented a "man in the middle" attack, with Blackberry's consent, on all non Government or Enterprise Blackberry communication and fought hard to keep this information from becoming public.

Blackberry Executive Chairman and CEO John Chen responded with this blog post full of vague catch phrases like "do what is right for the citizenry" and "comply with reasonable lawful access requests". To this I ask is it reasonable to provide access to the communications of millions of users to target the communications of a few? Who makes Blackberry or it's CEO the arbiter of what is "right for the citizenry"?

If you haven't already you should assume that your communications are accessible unless you've taken care, beyond what you are told by your service provider, in protecting it. Governments globally are using the naivety of the general public and scaremongering tactics to influence our acceptance of their excessive use of powers and are seeking the power to circumvent our security in the name of what is "right for the citizenry". One of the few methods of ensuring some measure of privacy is encryption and granting Governments the keys to this kingdom is extremely dangerous.   

Please also have a quick read of this Electronic Frontier Foundation document on "the crypto wars".