The Other Site

Looking For More Power - In a Mazda 3 Fuse Box

In my Civic I installed an after-market audio/hands-free Bluetooth kit from GROM. It provided Bluetooth, AUX, and iPod audio interfaces (the iPod USB connectivity also provides charging power). I now have a Mazda 3 and need some of the same features.

The built-in USB connectivity provides the iPod feature but the port does not provide enough power.
To get both the iPod features and power I can get a cable from Amazon that splits the power and data:

(Amazon link)

But before we get to that and if Bluetooth is good enough then lets look at the wiring for the USB power connection first.

Here is a picture the of the interior fuse box:

Fuse Box Numbered

And I did some tests when power is available on the fuses:

Fusebox details

It looks like fuse #5 is one to use if power is needed at all times, engine running or not. Or fuse #11 which only has power when the ignition is on.

I haven't wired everything up yet and there is one more necessary part. Since the car's voltage is 12v and USB requires 5v we need a converter. This comes in handy:

(Amazon Link)

More to come later… stay tuned.

Would you like more of this? Become a Patreon.


TiVo All The Way

This article is intended to provide a guide to setting up a home TV environment with combined OTA (over-the-air) or 'trimmed' cable subscription and on-line streaming services. The hart of the setup is a TiVo DVR with additional devices in each room.

• A home network. For best streaming quality a hard-wired network is recommended. This can consist of a co-ax network or an ethernet network. The ethernet network is most versatile because other devices, such as gaming devices or printers can be connected. However a co-ax 'network' can be used if it exists from a previous multi-room cable TV installation.

• An Internet service provider. Technically the ISP does not matter, at&t, Comcast, etc. all work as long as the download speed is fast enough to allow video streaming. Also pay attention to your data usage as to not exceed the data caps the ISP imposes, a 1TB data cap my be sufficient.

• Traditional cable subscription or TV antenna. Get receive basic local TV channels you'l ether need an antenna available from electronics stores or on-line. A simple leave antenna will work. Alternatively a normal cable subscription when reception is inadequate (at&t U-verse, DirectTV, Dish or other fiber-based TV service does not work with TiVo).

Buy your own hardware
Skip the rental fees. The ISP will happily charge ever-increasing fees while keeping the monthly subscription the same. However, some ISPs require their special hardware (e.g. at&t U-verse or fiber installations).

Choose The DVR
TiVo* makes a variety of DVRs and multi-room devices. Their offerings include OTA or multi-stream CableCARD, or combination of both:

  • TiVo BOLT
  • TiVo BOLT+
  • TiVo Roamio and Roamio Plus or Pro,
  • TiVo Premiere 4 and XL4/Elite,
  • TiVo Roamio OTA

TiVo currently offers the BOLT VOX for cable and antenna or the Roamio OTA VOX. Study the specs carefully before making a selection. Selecting the OTA devices requires an antenna and good reception. Selecting the digital cable option requires a CableCARD from a cable TV provider (at&t U-verse and IPTV-type services will not work).

Multi-Room Installation

Tiro's multi-room device include

The Minis allow live TV to be streamed to each device. For cable service, this means that only one cable drop is necessary in your home and the only CableCARD is installed in the DVR. The antenna signal is also streamed/available on each Mini. Of course all the popular streaming services are available on the main DVR as well as the Minis.

* This is not a TiVo payed-for or sponsored article.

Logitech Harmony Favorites Images

Here is some channel art for Logitech's Harmony 650 universal remote:

ABCIcon AEIcon AMCIcon AnimalPlanetIcon BBCIcon BETIcon BravoIcon CartoonNetworkIcon CBSIcon CNNIcon ComedyCentralIcon CWIcon DiscoveryIcon DishIcon DisnetXDIcon DIYIcon EIcon ESPNIcon FooNetIcon FOXIcon FoxNewsIcon FXIcon HBOIcon HGTVIcon HistoryIcon IFCIcon IonIcon LifetimeIcon NASAIcons NatGeoIcon NatGeoWildIcon NBCIcon NetflixIcon QVCIcon SciIcon SpikeIcon SundanceIcon SyfyIcon TBSIcon TLCIcon TNTIcon TVLandClassicIcon TVLandIcon TWCIcon UnivisionIcon USAIcon

Need a channel not shown, leave a comment.


Apple TV: What's On

I had some time and looked at the Apple TV apps and took some notes on what was free, required subscriptions, or required a TV broadcast provider. I did not sign up for all the services but checked if they required one to identify their broadcast provider. Some apps provided limited content without a subscription. Of course, this is subject to change.
Read More…

Apple's Loosing It

It’s annoying.

Apple is now selling Mac Book Pros with tiny little hard drives making them useless if you have any sizable movie/video or music collection.

I’m still miffed about the removal of Web Sharing. Which brings to mind other notable features removed from the OS. One used to be able to receive and send SMS text messages via Bluetooth (oh wait, that’s new feature now).

Why does Pages, Numbers, Keynote tell me about free updates that are incompatible with the current OS. Where can I turn off the software update check - because I’m not planing up update the OS anytime soon (who know what features have been removed that I use).

I bought my current Mac Book Pro for around $2,400 which included Apple Care. It’s an 2.2 GHz i7, 8GB RAM, and 750GB hard drive. It also has an internal optical drive and a 1680x1050 15-inch display. None of the Mac Book Pros Apple currently sells are ready for use, they all require additional adaptors for wired Ethernet, Firewire, and optical drive. The storage capacity on the Mac Books Pros are non-starters if you have large number videos or photos.
If I spec-out a current Mac Book Pro with equivalent or (involuntary) improvements, the price comes to about $3,300,

And why is Apple still selling Aperture since they announced it will discontinue development:

Is it the money?

So here is my plan. Next year or when my current Mac Book Pro becomes unusable, the plan is to by a used Mac Mini (because the current line up is laughable) and attach my drives. It’s very likely the Mini will go into the living room connected to the TV. My everyday computer will be something that runs Linux.

If iTunes WiFi sync will continue to be broken (likely since Apple doesn’t fix anything in older OS’s) my iPhone will see less and less updates. It’s unlikely that I’ll switch the TV to the mini and fiddle with cables to connect my phone. Eventually the iPhone will become obsolete. When its time to replace the phone, an iPhone will not be an option (iMessage, FaceTime, etc is just not enough).

Here are a few things that don’t work anymore or don’t work well:

  • Sleep
  • iTunes WiFy sync
  • iMovie Theater
  • Mac App Store
  • External drive spin-down
  • iPhoto (too slow to be usable)

I really just need things to work, not see features I use get removed in a ‘update’ in hopes that some other simple issue gets resolved.

I already stopped using Macs for servers - since I develop Java-based web applications the Mac OS makes no difference. Me thinking about alternate platforms for my day-to-day computing is ‘the other shoe to dropping.’
At the moment Lightroom, Coda, Pixelmator, VirtualHostX and a few other applications are saving Apple, however change is afoot.

Update: iMovie allows you to open multiple movie libraries that can be anywhere on your system.

(I’ve been using Macs since the Macintosh 512K around 1986.)