September 1, 2014

The Power of Tinkering

I finally got my Personal Weather Station (PWS) to upload current weather data to Wunderground1 last night. You have no idea how happy this made me, considering  I started this project over a year ago but then got interrupted with life.”

I dedicated my first Raspberry Pi to Bitcoin mining, so I needed a second one (Pi’s are addicting, and cheap) to finally get my PWS up and running on the Internet. Luckily I saved the original SD card with all my Wifi settings on it and just plugged it in and fired up the Pi.

Previously I was trying to get PWS to export weather data, in real time, to Wunderground using the PYWWS python module. I never got it to work after pulling out my hair for several nights.  Then I got busy with life and put the project on the shelf.

Fast forward to yesterday at lunch, I stumbled upon the Weewx python module, while surfing the Internet.  I went home, fired up the Pi, and started to download the modules and install them.  I was up and running in 2 hours.

I plan on writing a detailed tutorial on how to use this because I had to cobble one together from various parts of the Internet, and on top of that the PWS I have doesn’t play very nice in general (you get what you pay for). Stay tuned for that.

In closing, I just want to say that tinkering, while frustrating at times, is immensely rewarding to me. I feel like a kid at Christmas this morning!  I’m a believer that innovation is really driven by the tinkerers, the people who say how does this work, what happens if I do this, wouldn’t it be cool if we did this,” etc.  There are young and old tinkers out there building their own cube satellites or launching weather balloons that photograph the curvature of the earth in space.  How cool is it that we live in a time period where we’re able to do stuff like this?

Always remain curious and always Tinker.

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