Mapex P500TW Double Bass Pedal on Alesis Nitro Electronic Drum Kit

Wed Feb 14 2018 [Updated: Thu Feb 15 2018]

I've always wanted to play drums but a real drum set has been impractical due to space required and loudness.  Electronic drum sets seemed like a great solution but were too expensive.  Then I saw the Alesis Nitro kit available for $300 and the reviews were mostly positive.  So I ordered one and have been having a blast with it.  I enjoy some metal music and thought it would be great to have a double bass pedal.  The lowest priced one I could find was the Mapex P500TW.  I read mixed opinions online as to whether or not this would work.  My experience was that, with the original bass drum pad, the trigger area is too small for both beaters to get consistent hits registered.  I ended up building my own bass drum pad very inexpensively to provide a larger hitting area and so far it's working great.

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Modify Web Pages For Printing With PageChopper

Wed Feb 07 2018

I used to use a web browser extension called Aardvark that allowed you to remove parts of a web page before printing. I found this very useful to avoid wasting extra paper and to only print the parts of the page that were really important. That extension doesn't seem to be available any more, so I wrote my own version that works with the Chrome browser.

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Pool Pole

Wed Jan 24 2018 [Updated: Fri Feb 16 2018]

Are you frustrated with the cheap telescoping aluminum pool poles with the plastic "locking cam"? I've always had trouble with those cams slipping, and if you tighten them as much as possible to reduce the slipping then it gets so tight you can't release it. In addition, the pole itself is easily bent or broken. I found a great replacement at Lowe's.

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OpenMetronome

Tue Dec 13 2016 [Updated: Wed Jan 10 2018]

OpenMetronome is a Windows metronome program that started out as a project called “Weird Metronome” by David Johnston, was renamed to “OpenMetronome” and further enhanced by Mark Billington, and now I’ve added a few more minor modifications. If you’re ready to try OpenMetronome without reading through this whole article, you can scroll down to the end to find the installation instructions.

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NewAlbumFinder

Fri Sep 30 2016 [Updated: Wed Jan 10 2018]

NewAlbumFinder is a python application that can scan the MP3 music files on your computer to gather a list of the artists and albums you currently have in your collection. It then searches the iTunes database to get a list of available albums by each of those artists, and builds a list of those albums you don’t currently have. This list is saved in an html file on your desktop that you can open in your web browser, and includes the album art for each album. You can click on the album to be taken to the iTunes store for more information about the album.

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