The last couple of months have been absolutely hectic. From getting my license back, to looking like I was going to lose it again only to successfully get my good behavior bond, to working 7 days a week and finally getting ontop of a large number of bills only to have more come in.
Such is life.
Work has been hectic but stable as of late. Day time hours are occupied mostly by my new support position at RCS – four months and counting – which is what inspired me to jump on Vultr and trial out our software in a purely virtual cloud space.
Zetta – our playout software – and GSelector – our music scheduling software – have run fantastically on a rather restrictive Windows VPS hosted by Vultr. As per my previous posts, I ended up getting the SMB share hosted on a VC2 instance with about 125GB of SATA storage. SMB is shared over the internet via a VPN to the playout machine which created some headaches with the shares disconnecting, however Zetta’s content management services have kept the session alive and well. Zetta handles a lot of it’s workload using cache and buffering in the RAM, so although it takes a moment for the SMB connection to properly reconnect, Zetta has everything it needs stored locally so it hasn’t gone off air during any of the prolonged tests at all.
I’m utilizing virtual audio cables for audition/sequencer assignment. Using VLC, I’ve successfully been able to stream these virtual audio outputs without interfering with Zetta’s playout at all which has allowed for me to successfully run a fully online, automated, streamed radio station for days at a time without downtime – all for $40/month worth of VPS. I did have a slight scare with choppy audio coming out of the machine but it ended up being my own mistake as I used WDM audio instead of WASAPI/KS, the later of which resolved 99% of the chopiness.
With further improvements to the networking side of things, I could probably have a perfectly un-interrupted stream from the server however that would require more effort to put into a POC than is neccersary. Regardless, it’s taught me a lot about how flexible our software can be, especially when paired up with Zetta2Go.
Drum roll please…….
I have been working at BMCP again.
Save your applause, just come spend money with us.
Anyone who knows me knows that I basically live at this cafe. It started in one of the founders back yards, where we congregated just to smoke amazing shisha and make friends. When the cafe opened in 2014, I asked for a job to pay for some uni textbooks and never left until 2015 when I was pushing to get SubOhm in a more automated/customer-friendly space.
With SubOhm on the back burner due to contracting commitments and work having dried up in 2017, I announced my return to BMCP to once again get me through some financially frustrating times and can’t see myself leaving again.
Our lack of social media push recently hasn’t inhibited our patrons loyalty, with the cafe clocking it’s sales records twice since we started service food. We might not be raking in the cash like some of the other businesses on Church Street, but we’re still one of the busiest cafes with the best customer-focused culture, and we’re still raking in those 5 star reviews.
Since the return of Mike and I we have also seen the return of a lot of familiar faces, making our job even more enjoyable.
Business is hard, mmkay. Especially when you’re already working two jobs.
SubOhm has been a great side business to have. It’s given me access to some great mods in my personal collection and helped me meet more people than I can remember. Last year we celebrated reaching over 1000 likes on our Facebook page and have seen our engagement double that for event posts, despite Facebook blocking us from boosting posts.
Our sales have been steadily increasing year-on-year however the business isn’t self sustaining just yet.
September 2017 (now) marks the first time in nearly four years where the website will go offline. Some of our original customers will remember that we did this prior to launch; offline public facing website with a secret backend for existing customers. This time is a little different; no secret back door access nor any Facebook sales. This time, we have big plans.
Our latest shipment is due in this week and will be the final round of goods that go up for sale before the entire business see’s a complete, top-down overhaul. Those businesses that are in our little “collective” know fully well what the plans are, and they all know that this is going to be huge.
All I ask is that our loyal customers be patient as we undergo the biggest make over in the business history. I’ll be hand-building everything myself (with the help of a few friends of course) to provide probably the single best flavour-addict haven in Australia. Social media presence will also be revamped, and we’ll be dropping teasers along the journey.
If you have recently purchased items from us don’t fret; you’ll still receive total Facebook and IRL support from myself. We just won’t be doing any further sales.
Ya’ll know me, I can’t just do one thing.
The vape project is currently suspended due to lack of free time. The framework has been built, it’s just coding the individual utilities which is the major time consumer.
The social media project I’ve mentioned to people has also been suspended for a very long time. It’s a huge project and I basically need to be on a passive income to finally get most aspects finished. Fucking it right off until then.
The secondary vape project is also suspended. SubOhms current renovation needs to be complete before I’ll have access to the resources I need to get this off the ground. This will be my second biggest investment to date, but one I hope will greatly reward not only myself, but also most vapers in Australia.
The news project has come along nicely. With my renewed activity in Forex trading it has been given a higher priority (and taking up all of my lunch breaks). It’s another instance of the framework having been built and just having the niggly bits causing issues. I’ve extended the functionality to pull basic article content for later analysis by a yet-to-be-thought-about AI. Yes, AI. Fuck I don’t look forward to that. Until I get to that hair-ripping stress, I need to design a flexible method of pulling only article content for analysis and not extra filler, which is proving to be difficult.
I could run the news project solely off the RSS feeds of major outlets, however I need it to go a lot further than that, and I’m basically coding a web crawler from scratch. Fun.
Oh, I’m also starting a photography thing called “I Am Not A Photographer”. It’s been super slow going because I never have any fucking freetime
That’s all for now. That’s enough procrastinating.