Blog

instagram archive -- October 1, 2020

Instagram the home of my art work and a few personal photos, 2012 - 2020. Hello Internet I’m archiving/deleting/disabling my Instagram today! I haven’t regularly checked Instagram in years. Basically it was a place to post my art and share that with friends. The way I share content has changed and I’m no longer interested in being part of Instagram / Facebook. Take control of your data friends!

small images + folderpics demo -- September 14, 2020

Why small images? Don’t send a 1.4mb png when a 30kb jpg will do. Image optimisation is nothing new. As many of my other developers who touch frontend code know, don’t send huge images to the browser it will slow down page speed. Same applies to the messages you send you colleges. The last half year, while working from home, more of my communication has been digital than ever before. I knew about image optimisation before, even contributed to an image service lambda at work.

micro blog plugin demo -- August 23, 2020

Fediverse > Twitter Over the last few months I’ve transitioned from using twitter to my own self hosted social network instance on the Fediverse. After seeing the complete mess the U.S.A in with sensational politics on Twitter the platform lost its appeal to me. I joined something different. The Fediverse. I started with vis.social and eventually moved to my own instance plorma. I’ve had a lot of great interactions there with creatives and programmers all over the world.

holland -- August 10, 2020

Welcome to Holland so many wind turbines Just got back from a week on vacation in the Netherlands 👋 🇳🇱. 1 Corona Is it ok to travel? Use airports? See friends? Traveling right now for me is a grey area. Corona has hit Europe pretty hard and my household is still taking quarantine measures. Ex. Have not seen people outside my girlfriends family in months. But how does vacation fit this?

2019/2020 ski gear -- August 7, 2020

Ski season 2019/2020! It had its ups: getting into ski touring with my girlfriend and conquering many routes 👍, its downs: broken metacarpal 👎. But overall it was a great season. What allowed for such adventures was good fitness and good gear. Here I touch on the gear. Late last season I broke my pair of Lines Sir Francis Bacon free ride skis 😠. Turns out spring slush can get rocky in the Alps.

year-progress demo -- July 26, 2020

Today I’d like to demo a fun little Rust cli app I wrote. It’s a little app to print a progress bar of the year called year-progress. Being my first rust project it is dead simple. Basically just wires together a few simple rust libraries/crates: clap: rust cli app framework indicatif: progress bar library chrono: datetime library for calculating number of days since the start of thee year The source code is available via my sourcehut repos:

archiving corona cal -- July 23, 2020

Time to archive my Corona Calendar project. It was a lot of fun to work on. Learned a lot about Svelte, Python + Flask, and K8s Helm Charts. screencshot Source Code Currently my git repos are everywhere, (GitHub, GitLab, private server with no frontend, SourceHut). My goal eventually is to selfhost a SourceHut instance. Until I figure that out this projects repos will be hosted on the public instance:

camping in mayrhofen -- July 21, 2020

Spent last weekend trying to stay dry while exploring the end Zillertal valley. Hiking thought the clouds, cooking under a tarp, and driving a high alpine road back, it was a proper Austrian weekend. We stayed in Campinplatz Mayrhofen on the recommendation of a friend. While not very wild the comforts of a clean hot shower where nice on such a rainy weekend. We pull in to the campground just before dark.

peertube instance launch -- July 20, 2020

🎉 video.travisshears.xyz launch! 🎉 Today I’m happy to announce the launch of my new PeerTube instance https://video.travisshears.xyz ! A self hosted instance of an open source web torrent backed video hosting site. The goal: a home for my screencast tutorials and personal videos. By selfhosting I avoid tying my content in YouTubes censorship, privacy, and ad driven culture problems. This is part of a bigger push in my life to move away from big tech and be more independent.

weekend in frankenjura -- July 5, 2020

Finally we escaped the Munich area! Corona lockdown have not been easy and weekend in Frankenjura was perfect distraction. Great place for climbing and SUP adventures. Climbing The amount of climbing on Frankenjura is incredible. Multiple 1000s of routes spaced out in approx 2000 square km and two thick guide books. It is primarily single pitch bolted sports routes ranging from 15m to 40m. When selecting an area for my partner and I went for:

personal site walk through -- June 1, 2020

Trying something new here. I’m documenting how I do my personal site via screen cast. Got the workflow figured out for creating tutorial videos. Thought, might as well do some videos for myself. Topics covered: hugo static site generator s3 buckets cloud front distrbutions travisshears-deploytool plugin architecture svelte webring Screen Cast: *I’m also considering doing a video tutorial series on crating static sites with hugo + aws

first svelte app -- May 2, 2020

Corona Quarantine has been hard on all of us. To fight the boredom I started collecting online events. Now I’m sharing them via an app I built, /corona_cal. Take a look. The events mostly centre around my interest in art, gaming, and technology. Tech I’m in the process of learning Python and Svelte currently in my side projects. Corona Cal fits fits this stack perfectly. I did the backend layer in python and the frontend in Svelte.

teaching javascript -- May 1, 2020

This semester I’ve started teaching JavaScript as part of REDI School. What was an in person class went online in wake of the corona pandemic. We meet with students in twice weekly video call lectures + small group session calls. Through this great community of teachers and students I’ve learned a great deal myself from teaching. Teaching programming online is challenging stuff. All the concepts, tools, and practices we use everyday are not so easy to teach absolute beginners.

project sunrise -- April 30, 2020

Project Name: Sunrise Goal: Provide a sunrise via synchronised iot lights What we achieved: Controlling a single light via secure webapp Repo: https://gitlab.com/BTBTravis/sunrise Sunrise, a really fun project to control IOT lights. Teamed up after several years once again Steven and I united powers to make something for this the April 2020 Rokkin Cat Hank and Tell. We learned a good deal along the way and ended up with something half way functional.

galtenberg ski tour -- March 17, 2020

Last ski tour of the season. Last last weekend before the Germany coronavirus border closure. Route: outdooractive guide 1900 meters. Got to get high for decent snow. Talking with a guide at the Deutscher Alpenverein Library he recommend Kitzbühel range so off we went. Goal, summit Galtenberg. salomon kit Setting off from Inneralpbach we had a thin layer of snow over mud. We followed a shaded cross country track for a kilometre before heading up hill.

first climb kochel -- March 16, 2020

Last weekend I was ski touring in the Kitzbühel range and this weekend sport climbing in Kochel. Can’t get this everywhere. Bavaria makes for a good home. The alps a playground. With snow still visible on the summits, the lower elevations are starting to warm up. Thanks to a very mild winter the south-facing walls are in prime condition. Ready to climb. The season has begun. Not bad timing either, with Coronavirus quarantine the gyms are closed.

cross-country skiing -- March 2, 2020

Location: Bayrischzell, Deutschland Ski poles, the worthy opponent. They struck first but not last. And so goes the tail of how I broke my hand and got revenge. one in my hand, one in the pack Skiing on the flat ground for a change. 40deg, 30deg, 20deg, now 0deg. First time cross country since I was a school child. Once upon a gym class we marched around the sports fields in skis.

rofanspitze ski tour -- February 19, 2020

Get out of the car, take the skis off the roof, beacon partner check, and head up the gondola. A day of touring starts. Location: Achensee, Tirol, Österreich Goal: Von der Erfurter Hütte auf die Rofanspitz Was taken aback by expansive sun bathed rock faces skinning near Erfurter Hütte. True high alpine environment. Leaving the ski resort we passed an automated beacon checker. Austria keeps its skiers safe. What looks very steep from the resort, up close was passable.

lenggries avalanche course -- February 7, 2020

assessing fresh avalanches Last weekend Masha and I took a crew of eight friends down to Lenggries for an avalanche safety course. Besides learning about avalanches and ski touring we got to put our skills to the test. The basic itinerary was: tour up to Florianshütte in the morning of the first day, spend the rest of the day learning theory at the hütte, then do a demo tour the second day.

mountain safety reminder -- February 6, 2020

In the last few weeks, I’ve witnessed several close calls in the mountains. Also recently having taking an avalanche safety course I’ve had responsibility in the mountains on the mind. Here I share some resources to make your next trip safety and a story of warning. Last week I spent my days ski touring out of a hütte in Scoul Switzerland with friends. After returning to the hut one evening and we noticed a few members of the group missing.

scuol hütte -- February 3, 2020

masha and i Today I’m back after six days of adventuring from mountain hut near Scuol. It was a great trip with several successful ski tours high into Swiss alps. I had an outstanding partner and many warm nights sharing a meals with friends. After the week we covered nearly every skiable face both inside and above the resort and as a result learned a great deal about ski touring and German culture.

start of ski season -- January 12, 2020

Marked by the start of the ski season winter is officially underway in Munich. The lack of snow in the city has been made up for by weekends in the mountains. Already took my new skis down some steep lines on the glaciers Hintertux and Stubai. During the weeknights skiing has also been on the mind researching avalanche safely in preparation to learn ski touring this year. Unfortunately not everything went as smoothly as planned.

the return of snippets -- January 11, 2020

When I first started a personal site years ago I maintained a blog post full of little snippets / tricks I picked up along my journey of learning to program. Today I had an idea for one to add to that list but that post had since died, as it was not rolled over in between several iterations of my site. Here are my thoughts on why write about snippets and a technical demo of how I brought the snippets back to life, added a bunch more, and the new snippets section of my site.

climbing grade converter tool -- October 19, 2019

Project: Climbing Grade Conversion Tool Site: climbinggrades.xyz Repo: github Pics: desktop screenshot The App After a recent trip to Arco, Italy climbing with friends I realized I’m missing a familiarly with the different grades in use throughout Europe and the world. As climbing continues to take me to new places I wanted something I could reference so I built climbinggrades.xyz. Its a little web app to convert between the difficulty grades.

arco -- October 9, 2019

Drinking red wine and enjoying the warm breeze overlooking the lights reflecting off Lake Garda, wait how did I get here? I was suppose to be in the Balkans. Well 24 hours prior to when we were set to leave Munich for Kosovo the carrier we booked, Adria airline, went bankrupt and canceled all flights, what luck. So we moved to a backup plan of a weekend climbing and doing via ferrata in the Arco area on Lake Garda.

lofoten -- September 29, 2019

The Lofoten archipelago, a Norwegian chain of islands in the arctic circle and the destination of my most ambitious backpacking trip to date. Myself along with a group of 7 friends and colleges got together and for a week to become trekking team exploring the land of breath taking views, fjords, and midnight sun. where is lofoten? trip planning near isar river bergen airport last meal in civilation, bodø

laberdolomiten -- September 24, 2019

Update 09-24-19 Excited to proclaim success! Last weekend I summited on the route I had attempted earlier in the year with a different climbing partner. This time nothing but sunshine. We employed the swinging leads method of climbing with notable success and made the climb in just under 3.5 hours, slow but for the longest climb to date for me I’m ok with it. It was a relief to summit because the day had been a bit stressful.

hacking health in zurich -- September 23, 2019

“Hacking health” in Zurich, this weekend I attended a health” in Zurich. I attended a hackathon focused on innovation in the health care sector. Getting outside Munich for reasons other than mountaineering or tourism, what a concept! The event opened me up to exploring the wonderful city if Zurich with friends, go to my first European hackathon, and learning a bit of Go lang. Zurich, similar to Munich, feels like a really big village.

iceland -- September 2, 2019

Originally wrote this post in German in an interview form. So here is the translation back to English by hand. moon walk Q: Welcome back, where did you go? A: Today I’m returning from an Iceland round trip. During my Iceland tour I saw black beaches, picturesque mountains, breathtaking nature. Dyrhólaey rock arch Q: This is your second trip to the Nordic region. Why do you enjoy traveling in Iceland and Norway?

frauenwasserl -- August 19, 2019

Frauenwasserl is a great beginner friendly crag just outside Oberammergau. I’ve been there a few times now and with groups, five to seven, usually including some first time climbers. With fifteen routes there are plenty of 4-5 UIAA routes to start off with and then some more challenging ones to hone skills. Its a great place to start climbing outside then expand into other crags in the area. my mentor

karwendelspitze -- July 21, 2019

Hiking Mittenwald—Karwendelspitze Route: https://www.komoot.com/tour/63845277?ref=wtd Parking: Mittenwald Bahnof Primary photo source: https://www.instagram.com/antonpkazakov/ This weekend I had the good fortune to visit Mittenwald for summit hike with friends. It was another step in furthering my integration into Bavarian traditions where a summer weekend is not complete without mountains and a beer garden. The hike proved a good workout featuring views into Austrian Alps and after Mittenwald was more exciting then expected. tree line

scanning for meaning -- July 14, 2019

Project: Scanning for Meaning Site: scanning-for-meaning.travisshears.xyz Repo: gitlab Pics: menus collapsed menus expanded full-screen Revive Excited to bring my little over a year old art project, Scanning for Meaning, back to life today. The project comes out of this cyberpunk dream of living with these pixel waterfalls. Putting this project on a large screen and just letting the colors wash over the room excites me. It’s also an experiments in the “web app” as an medium for artistic expression leveraging the frontend development I was doing at the time.

canada -- July 12, 2019

Trip overview Recently my mother was doing a tour up the east coast in her small RV and I made my way out to join for the Nova Scotia portion. Having completed other trips prior I relied on her for most of the planning and she delivered a nice adventure for us. I flew Munich, Montreal, Halifax from which we imminently headed north to Green Oaks for some tidal bore rafting.

switzerland + liechtenstein -- July 5, 2019

Trip overview This being the start of my first full German summer it was time for a road trip to share experiences with the friends I had made over winter. During the three day weekend I was properly introduced to Switzerland and Liechtenstein with mountain hiking, valley camping, and historic city tours. Day 1: Munich -> Lauterbrunnen Hike: Lauterbrunnen valley up around Allmendhubel Camping: Camping Jungfrau Holiday Park Memory: Day one we had a beautiful hike but what I remember most was grilling out at camp with friends.

army cook bot -- July 1, 2019

Educational twitter bot that tweets about WWII era military cooking. Twitter account: @ArmyCookBot1 twitter account on launch day Army cooking bot like most of my projects came out of a mixture of artistic vision and ich to explore a new technology. I find twitter bots a compelling form of communication. This haze around what content is human authored, machine, or a combination of the two is a fun playground. Currently this bot leans more toward the outwardly machine, but that may change as I attempt to instill the army spirit.

klettergarten bad heilbrunn -- May 19, 2019

From over a grassy hill, a group appears. A party of adventures trecking through farmland in search of rock walls. As they come into view gear laden packs adorned with climbing helmets are visible. Off to the left and right peeping in and out of view are the smiling faces of two girls pouncing, summer salting and, giggling their way through the open land. All from different backgrounds coming together for one thing, climbing.

reviving dotfiles -- April 29, 2019

Dotfiles, sharing your Unix environment preferences since the dawn of personal computing. This week I was going through my dotfiles repo and cleaning up when I learned a few things. Ended up completely restructuring my repo and rewriting my sync script. Repo: https://gitlab.com/BTBTravis/dotfiles/tree/master Sync Script: https://gitlab.com/BTBTravis/dotfiles/blob/master/write.sh 120k dotfile repos on github One of the problems I faced how to split between mac and linux. I started with a separate branch for mac but after a while that became a complete mess as the sync script diverged.

git hosted npm packages -- April 17, 2019

How to install npm packages directly from a gitlab, (or any other git host) The problem With so many Javascript/Purescript/Elms side projects going, all with diverse build/bundling setups, getting them somewhere presentable like my personal site is a challenge. I’ve iterated over several solutions over the past few years and today I’m excited to share a new one, node modules! This solution builds on what I learned in previous attempts and continues to streamline my personal site continuous integration and deployment.

corsica -- April 10, 2019

With winter thawing, vacation days soon expiring, and few months of no travel I threw together a planned and set out on a ten-day solo adventure to explore Corsica. Ended up pushing my limits with rough mountain trails, very dynamic conditions, and challenging wild camping. Hopefully, the following information will help others seeking to tests their resolution against these island mountains. Trail: First half of the Mare a Mare Nord

try pijul with docker -- April 1, 2019

Apparently pijul is the nerd’s nerd version control so natrally I had to try it out. I was attracted by the associative nature of the patches and the more pure implmentation of patch theory then the likes of git. Not wanting to install rust on my mac I came up with this docker workflow. I think the concept carries into trying many things out locally from dev tools to server side applications.