US Visa, Samsung Galaxy Note 8 Pre-ordered and Raspberry Pi

Last night, I couldn’t sleep very well. I was really anxious about getting a Visa; travelling is extremely important to me, and it would mean so much to me if my Visa application is approved. My Visa interview is next week and I really hope it goes well :).

Excuse me for changing topic a lot in this post, but I have a somewhat eventful month coming up and a few fun things to talk about.

Raspberry Pi

Recently, I bought a raspberry pi 3 b as I wanted to extend the WiFi range in my bedroom and create an access point without breaking the bank. I’m quite familiar with Linux, especially Debian, so setting up Raspbian was extremely simple. I’ve set it up such that my new phone will connect to the built in WiFi of the raspberry pi 3 b and this data will travel through the ethernet port into a network switch. The available guides online do not show you how to do this properly; the best guide I found allows you to set up an access point but it doesn’t allow you to connect to other computers on the same network (in the guide, the raspberry pi 3 b acts as its own DHCP server which is part of the problem.)

I didn’t want to spend much on this project and dedicated access points can be really expensive. If anyone else is interested in this, let me know… I have saved all of the commands and when I’m less busy, I’ll write a guide and post some photographs.

Samsung Galaxy Note 8

I am now prepared to own the Samsung Galaxy Note 8. Speaking of which, it was announced today and I have made a pre-order. It looks like a great phone, but for the price it would have been nice to see 256gb storage instead of 64gb, and I’d have liked it to be a bit cheaper and a bit lighter (it’s 195 grams.) I’m really looking forward to getting it :). It’ll be the first time I’ll get to try out my Garmin Fenix 5x with a phone! I’ll complete my review of the Garmin Fenix 5x when I get the Samsung Galaxy Note 8.

It must seem like I’m only interested in electronic devices, haha. I am actually obsessed with hiking the Pacific Crest Trail, I am just holding back a bit because if my Visa is declined I’ll be pretty sad to say the least. If it is declined, I’ll still be travelling somewhere but it won’t be the same.

I probably won’t be posting for about a week. I want to prepare myself for the interview and whatnot.

Samsung Galaxy Note 8 looks amazing

The specifications and design of the Samsung Galaxy Note 8 are pretty much known at this point, it would seem. That’s if we’re to believe the latest leaks and rumours.

I originally thought the Samsung Galaxy Note 8 would be too big, but at the alleged dimensions of 162.4 x 74.5 x 8.4mm, it’s going to be a similar size to the model above except it’ll be about 10mm taller. I’m not expecting it to feel much different in the hand. Of course, the leaks and rumours could be inaccurate but I doubt it at this point.

It is a slightly thicker phone, but interestingly leaks claim it will have a slightly smaller battery, at 3,300 mAh; I guess Samsung are being extra careful with the Samsung Galaxy Note 8, but I’m certainly not expecting the battery life to be bad.

The screen size of the Samsung Galaxy Note 8 is alleged to be 6.3 inches vs 5.7 inches of the previous model.

Americans can expect a Snapdragon 835, and the people here in the UK will likely get a Exynos 8895 chipset version of the phone.
Both should have 6GB of RAM, and there will likely be two storage variants: 64GB and 128GB sizes.

I’d love the larger storage version but I don’t know if I can justify the price difference.

A headphone jack, microSD card slot reader, etc. are all alleged to be there, so there’s nothing particularly bad about the phone from what I can see so far. Some people state the fingerprint scanner is going to be in a bad place, but I like using the iris scanner anyway.

I’ll definitely be pre-ordering one as soon as it’s available. I can’t wait :D.

Really busy the next few weeks

I won’t be able to write as much in the upcoming weeks. I’m really busy with work stuff and I’ve decided to move my Visa interview forward a tiny bit. Hopefully I can get an appointment around the end of next month (August.) Then after that I’m taking a week’s holiday.

Wish me luck! I really hope I can hike the Pacific Crest Trail in 2018, it would mean the world to me, haha :).

Gaining weight for the Pacific Crest Trail 2018

I’d like to gain about 30 pounds before I set foot on the Pacific Crest Trail in 2018. I’m fairly tall (6ft3) and I’ve always been slim. In my opinion it’s difficult to gain weight, and I’m sure many would disagree! haha.

I’ve taken protein supplements in the past, but the ones I tried did not contain any carbohydrates to speak of. I’ve spent the last few days thinking about how I could drink my calories and I’ve tried a new recipe today:

  • Oats (blend these first)
  • Two bananas
  • Ice cream
  • Peanut butter
  • Milk
  • Two scoops of protein powder

I was surprised at how well oats blend, and the taste is also surprisingly nice. I love chocolate, to the point I’m a chocoholic, but in my opinion the vanilla flavoured soy protein powder tastes nicer than the chocolate soy protein powder; however, the chocolate whey protein powder is nice! I used vanilla ice-cream as well, but chocolate protein powder and chocolate ice-cream might be nice.

You can add olive oil (I haven’t tried that yet) to boost the calories even more. I have a sweet tooth, but I’m going to try add a more citric fruit next time (in addition to the bananas) as it was perhaps too sweet.

I’ve looked around online and there’s a few different “serious mass” drinks you can get, I’m not sure how good they are in actuality and they’re awfully expensive. I’ll see how I get on with this idea first! A lot of ice-creams are fairly low in calories, so make sure you check the ice-cream you buy.

From my perspective, it’s really disappointing how all the foods these days are designed around helping over-weight people. There’s literally aisles upon aisles of low-calorie food in supermarkets, but there are no aisles dedicated towards high calorie foods. I mean, you’re effectively paying more for your “petrol” to do less mileage…

There’s millions of articles about how you should eat healthily and whatnot. I’m no dietitian, but the simple fact is that if you burn more calories than you eat you’ll lose weight, regardless of what you eat. Conversely, I just have to consume more calories :).

Using the Samsung Galaxy Note 8 as a portable backup device

I plan to buy the Samsung Galaxy Note 8 as soon as it’s released. With the previous model now called the Samsung Galaxy Note Fan Edition (FE), you can copy files using USB-OTG and a card reader. This is a good backup solution for the Sony a7rII.

You can get some insanely fast microSD cards now e.g. the Samsung Memory Pro Plus 64 GB Micro SD Card with Adapter. There’s also a 100MB/sec version available in the USA.

When I get the Samsung Galaxy Note 8, I will see what the USB speeds are. If I can find an SD card with a 90MB/sec read speed and a microSD card with a 90MB/sec write speed, I’ll be able to copy files from one to the other and see how it works in real world use. The Samsung Galaxy Note Fan Edition (FE) caps out at about 90MB/sec but that might be because my card at the time could only read/write at 90MB/sec.

They’re getting so fast that it might not even be worth buying a Samsung T3.

Strange DDOS attack

Rank Hits Flag Country IP Agent Platform Version
1 591 Unknown MSIE Windows 7.0
2 589 Unknown MSIE Windows 7.0
3 571 Unknown MSIE Windows 7.0
4 566 Unknown MSIE Windows 7.0
5 547 Unknown MSIE Windows 7.0
6 517 Unknown MSIE Windows 7.0
7 492 Unknown MSIE Windows 7.0
8 138 Unknown MSIE Windows 7.0
9 138 Unknown MSIE Windows 7.0
10 138 Unknown MSIE Windows 7.0

It’s funny, I’ve recently had spam requests trying to guess my admin password for the CentOS server I use to run this website. I can only assume it’s some kind of bruteforce attack.

Then even more recently, someone’s tried to trouble me with this attempted DDOS attack. In my opinion, as oxymoronic as this sounds, security through obscurity isn’t really security at all; however, WordPress is extremely popular and there are ways it can be violated/exploited. This specific type of attack probably wouldn’t exist if WordPress wasn’t so popular. I suggest reading about the “Disable XML-RPC Pingback” plugin and installing it.