Building a cold smoker for smoking trout

I have always liked smoked trout, wondered how it is prepared and not come across a cold smoker before. When I started fly fishing a couple of years ago I developed the taste for trout which now features often in our cookery at home.

So, looking for a project to work on during the early 2021 COVID lockdown, I decided to build my own cold smoker. This blog post goes through how I did the build. See other posts for the testing and my views on the end product!

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Using Obsidian for personal knowledge management

I have recently been looking at my use of Personal Knowledge Management (PKM) software and in particular to create a curated knowledge base to store articles, bookmarks and notes.

There are three options that have received particular attention from experts in this area recently, Roam Research, Obsidian, and Craft. I decided to try Obsidian and have been populating it with my content and getting used to the syntax.

Obsidian and Markdown

In Obsidian, everything is based on a collection of Markdown files, which means you control your data and can easily get it out of Obsidian if you wish to use other PKM tools in the future.

Markdown is a lightweight markup language for creating formatted text using a plain-text editor. Files created in this way can be read on virtually any device and are ‘human readable’ with the markup code. I store my files in a Dropbox folder which Obsidian reads from in order to create searches, edit and tag.

The following screen shot from Obsidian’s web site shows a typical page with the dynamic graph that is built upon internal links between the Markdown files.

Quick Release

Obsidian has a substantial feature set and super-quick release cycle. They provide updates weekly, sometimes multiple times a week. Obsidian’s developers have thus far made an app that gives you all the expected PKM tools: Wiki-style links, backlinks, and graph view.

I will report back on the progress with my Obsidian knowledge base and, in particular, how it plays with other software across my computer.

COVID-19 carpet tiles

In the depths of a global pandemic, businesses have had to get ever more innovative with their product development. I love that carpet tile manufacturers have produced these special edition tiles to display reminders on the need for social distancing.

Those that install them need to remember to keep the original to replace it with when better times return!

Dangers of remote working

Interesting article on the long term effects of Remote Working.

Recommended reading

Recommended reading for Procurement and Supply Chain

I have recently been asked by students of my course ‘Cost Management, Procurement & Tendering‘ for recommendations for further reading on the subjects of procurement and supply chain.

The most comprehensive book on procurement is ‘Procurement and Supply Chain Management‘ by Kenneth Lysons and Brian Farrington. It is now 10th edition and is considered one of the best on the subject. Try to find this edition if you can because it represents the latest thinking on the topic.

Another good one is ‘101 Models of Procurement and Supply Chain Management‘ by Paul Jackson, Barry Crocker and Ray Carter. This contains various management models covering procurement and wider topics. There is not a huge amount of detail against each model but it is a useful reference for each. I would look elsewhere if you are searching for detailed assessments of models because this is designed as high level reference material.

The Chartered Institute of Procurement & Supply (CIPS) has a good bookshop with various texts, some of which include case studies. A lot of these are to support procurement and supply chain qualifications but make useful reading if you have a general interest in the subjects. See here:

Hope this is helpful. See below for links to the books mentioned.

Details of courses referred to in this post:

Importance of computer backups

Anyone who is serious about improving their computer backups should read this article by David Sparks aka ‘MacSparky’.

He uses a ‘belt and braces’ approach which guarantees availability of data if the worst happens. I use a similar approach but not as well documented!

Best places to work in the UK

Interesting results in this ‘best place to work’ survey from Glassdoor. Lots of tech companies mentioned. Culture, care and flexible working seem to be the key to success.,22.htm

Codecademy sees 350% growth in 2020

Codecademy, the online learning platform for teaching people to code, announced a 350% year-over-year increase in B2B sales. This follows the beta launch of ‘Codecademy for Teams’ last year.

Codecademy for Teams is the platform’s first B2B product, which empowers organisations to provide technical training and education opportunities for employees.

Codecademy for Teams provides full access to Codecademy’s interactive curriculum, and includes business features like progress reporting, making it engaging and accessible for workforces to unlock in-demand skills and reach their full potential.


How to master the Camera app on iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro

Really useful article and video on getting to grips with the new camera features on the iPhone 12 Pro.

Full article here:

Virtual working

WorkRamp raises $17M to ramp up its enterprise learning platform

LMS provider WorkRamp has raised more cash to expand its platform offerings.

See this TechCrunch article for more: