Etsy – The Importance of Sales Goals

It’s hard to say what sort of sales rate is reasonable or average for a new Etsy store. I spend a fair amount of time in the team forums, and the general consensus I’m getting is that it’s really hard to make any/many sales for smaller shops, but that larger shops (100+ items) tend to make several sales per week. Given that understanding, I have set a goal for myself that I think is aggressive but achievable. Continue reading Etsy – The Importance of Sales Goals

Laser Cutting for Fun & Profit

Laser Cut Flower
I’ve been experimenting with laser cutting lately, and starting to get some results I like. It turned out to be more accessible than I expected, and what started as a single-purpose project is growing into an interesting creative outlet (You can follow my experiments on my Etsy store). Here’s what I’ve learned so far. Continue reading Laser Cutting for Fun & Profit

Snake Attack!

Here’s a quick post to show off my first project using the LED canvas I have been working on (nicknamed Square Wave). It’s based on the old snake game, where the player controls a snake that slithers around looking for apples that appear and disappear. When he finds (and eats) an apple, he grows. When he crashes into himself, he dies. Continue reading Snake Attack!

Communique From 1863

I picked up a telegraph sounder on ebay this week. I don’t know much about its heritage, but it definitely looks vintage. I wrote some code (see below) to get my Arduino to clack away on it. In the video, the sounder is tapping out the Gettysburg Address, which is the example text in the code. Continue reading Communique From 1863

Testing Singletons in Ruby

Ruby’s standard library includes the Singleton module, which lets you easily implement the singleton pattern. It can make unit testing a little difficult, though, because you cannot easily instantiate different versions of the class. This post will look at three solutions, two of which are hackish/wrong, and one of which is basic and clean (imho). Continue reading Testing Singletons in Ruby

Braintree 10% Time: LED Strip

At Braintree, the developers get every other Friday to work on non-work-related projects of their choosing. Collaboration is encouraged, but even if you end up working on something alone, it’s a great way to spread your excitement about whatever interests you at the moment (and it’s a nice perk to the job).

This week, my project was to get some LED strips unboxed and working. The strips are flexible circuit boards, with full-color LEDs dotting one side. Each “LED” is actually three LEDs clustered together (one red, one green, one blue), and with 21 control bits, they can display more colors than the human eye can distinguish. I bought a variety of strips, with different features, and I don’t know exactly what I’m going to do with them, but step 1 is to learn how to use them. Continue reading Braintree 10% Time: LED Strip