The moon blew up without warning and for no apparent reason

Intriguing title, no? These are the first eleven words of Neal Stephenson’s novel Seveneves, which set up the remaining 600 pages as an extended treatise on the future of humanity as it copes with certain annihilation. I thoroughly recommend it, as long as you can deal with hundreds of pages of orbital mechanics. In this post I will numerically explore this post-lunar age, to verify for myself if it would be as deadly as described.

Continue reading

Advertisements

Extractor attractor

Recently the extractor fan in my bathroom has started malfunctioning, occasionally grinding and stalling. The infuriating thing is that the grinding noise isn’t perfectly periodic – it is approximately so, but there are occasionally long gaps and the short gaps vary slightly. This lack of predictability makes the noise incredibly annoying, and hard to tune out. Before getting it fixed, I decided to investigate it a bit further.

Continue reading

Transaction analysis web app

As a poor student, I always tried to keep a close eye on what I spent. This usually amounted to skimming statements and manually keeping track of what went where, a decidedly sub-optimal solution.

Thanks to an initiative called MiData, you are now able to download transaction histories from your current account in CSV format, which is ripe for analysis. I built a small tool for myself, which I put online here for your enjoyment. I should note this is the first slightly complex thing I’ve written in Javascript, so if it breaks in unexpected ways feel free to get in touch and let me know.

Continue reading