this whole day was about game 4 between the buffalo bills and the new england patriots. if new england can win, they will have gone 4-0 during their brady hiatus, which would be a big statement to the commissioner that regardless of what he may do to the team (suspensions, fines, lost of draft picks), the patriots still find some way to win. alas, it was not meant to be.

i woke up early for some reason (9am), had a weird dream about going back to work, and trying to figure out the strange new work culture. in the dream, everything seemed dark, interactions were awkward, and i felt scared more than anything else.

my father called me at 11am, asked me to stop by the cafe on my way to belmont because he lost his internet connection. i called him back minutes later, trying to solve it over the phone. i asked him if the lights were on. he described the lights on the modem, 2 blues, 1 white. what about the router? it took him a while to understand what i was asking, as he thought the modem was the router. in fact, he didn't think of the router because it'd been unplugged. he plugged it in but it still didn't work, no lights were on. that's when he noticed a power switch button on the back of the router. once he turned that on, everything worked again. i'm guessing maybe my 2nd aunt tried to reset the router by unplugging it last night, and accidentally turned off the router by mistake (simple to do, the button is right next to the power cord).

i biked to belmont. i didn't think it'd rain, but it was still very wet and overcast outside, and i didn't want to take the motorcycle in the off chance that it might rain. it was also kind of cold, and my logic was that it'd be warmer riding the bicycle than the motorcycle.

as for the game, the bills managed to shut out the patriots to a score of 16-0. it wasn't so much a dominating performance by rex ryan, as the patriots defense was still powerful enough to prevent buffalo from running up the score in the 2nd half. but the defense still made plenty of mistakes, like blown coverages and inability to tackle. as for the offense, new england just couldn't advance the ball. most of the plays were run plays with little yardage, and for whatever reason (coaching decision or hurt thumb) quarterback brissett didn't throw many long passes. jacoby also took some serious hits, none of which were called for penalties. i was starting to think there was a conspiracy to call everything against the patriots. when the game was finally over, i was just thankful the torture had stopped. fans will mourn the loss overnight, but tom brady will be back in the team tomorrow morning, so new england can't be too sad about the outcome.

i fell asleep briefly after the game, hearing myself snore while my mother was busy crocheting a new hat. it was cold in the house (i was only wearing a t-shirt), but i have a high tolerance for low temperature discomfort. once i woke up, i went to the kitchen to mix the ground beef patties for burgers tomorrow. i bought my leftover blue cheese and unused scallons and mixed about 2 lbs. of beef (costco) with chopped garlic, horseradish mustard, and vietnamese hot sauce.

i biked back home after dinner. i brought home the spare contigo mug (matte blue finish), now that i have a use for it ever since i started drinking hot teas again starting from yesterday. the classic contigo mug (metallic green) i'm normally carry doesn't seem to be insulating anymore. during the summer it'd sweat from the ice water inside, and i noticed yesterday it was almost too hot to the touch when i filled it with tea. i'm not surprised, given i've dropped this mug more than a few dozen times, from china to the US. it's dented like a well-used piece of beloved luggage, but i think it's virtually indestructible, even though it's lost some of its insulating capability.

i spent the rest of the night playing around with the raspberry pis. once more i tried to see if i could get wifi working on the pi zero. i have a new theory why it didn't work: it has something to do with the wifi router. at my parents' place, they use the verizon FIOS gateway/router, but at my own place i have a tp-link TL-WR841ND router. i began to think it wasn't because of a bad OTG cable because they're fairly simple piece of hardware; besides, my mouse and keyboard were still working funneled through the OTG cable, as well as USB thumb drives. shouldn't the USB wifi dongle be the same? i wasn't able to test out my theory at my parents' place (couldn't find a USB keyboard), but i was able to test it out back at home. besides my own router (and my own wifi network), i can also connect to the comcast xfinitywifi. a different network entirely, but at least it'd allow me to test my incompatible router theory. and sure enough, when i connect to the xfinitywifi ( versus my tp-link (, the wifi never drops, and i'm able to self-ping and self-nmap the pi zero just fine, even going online and downloading software. the browser however is painful slow, enough so that it's not even usable. i can live with that.

connected back to my tp-link router, the wifi would connect initially, but would later drop and attempt to reconnect over and over again without any success. so i went into the wpa-supplicant.conf file and added some more settings (proto=RSN; pairwise=CCMP; auth_alg=OPEN). after a reboot, that seemed to have stabilized the connect, as i was no longer getting drops. self-ping and self-nmap were good, i could retrieve software packages over the internet, but i couldn't use the browser (even slower if that's even possible). despite the fact that i could nmap/ping myself on the pi zero, i couldn't nmap/ping to the pi zero remotely from my computer. at the same time, something is fairly weird with my network, as i can't access my router admin tool using the address, but i can using tp-link's special hardware ip address (found at the bottom of the router). so at this point, the culprit seems to be my router. the edimax wifi dongle running off of the pi zero is incompatible with the tp-link TL-WR841ND router. maybe if can fix the access issue, that may also fix the edimax incompatibility issue.

but this problem is very specific, as the raspberry pi 3 doesn't have any of these problems. in fact, the pi 3 runs as smooth as better, never drops packets, and i can remotely ssh and VNC to it all i want without problems, on my router. if i want to do a project, it's so much easier to do it off of the pi 3 than the pi zero. the only sticking point is the pi 3 costs $35 whereas the pi zero costs only 99¢. anyway, i ended up playing with the pi 3, after having exhausted my patience for the day with the pi zero. this morning i created some simple mock signs for the digital cafe signage project. i showed my father from the HDTV using the TV's built-in slideshow capability. but i wanted to recreate it on the pi. i tried earlier using the image viewer application on the pi zero, but for some reason it'd give me an early during the slideshow, saying my jpeg's weren't jpeg's, despite the fact that i could open up the files individually (just not in a sequence with the image viewer). this must be a bug, and i got the same error when i switched to the pi 3. i even tried resaving the jpeg files which worked, but when i added some other images, those broke for no reason. i decided to find another application.

i came across fbi, the command line linux framebuffer imageviewer. it took some fiddling around but i finally wrote a string of commands that successfully ran a slideshow. now all i have to do is embed the command in a script and have the script autostart. now the hard part is creating some good signs. i also thought it'd be cool if it could run some movie loops, so i could have some animated signs as well.