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Super Efficient Boat Computer

I was needing an upgrade for my office computer for work and needed a replacement computer that was super power efficient due to the nature of limited electric power on a boat when using an inverter to power stuff.

Here are the components I used to build a system that uses 15 to 17 watts of power sitting at the desktop browsing the internet. The 24 inch monitor uses another 21 watts of power.

Nothing special about the case other than the USB3 ports on the front and the space size constraints of where I planned on mounting it in the boat.. Any Matx compatible case would work. This memory is listed by model number by the manufacture of the motherboard as compatable. I spent a few extra dollars over the cheap memory but it is worth it to know it works. I had a hard time picking a motherboard. There were several good choices but this one had more sata 3 and usb 3 connectors and was a bit cheaper than other comparable motherboards. So far I am pleased with it. Here is where we get pricey. This power supply is one of the best of the best. It is rated platinum level which means it is 94 or 95 % efficient. It is fanless and even so after running for a month or two solid you can touch the power supply and it feels cool to the touch. I already had a pcie ssd card in my old computer with ubuntu linux installed on it and I just moved it over to this computer. The same with 2 3tb data drives. I purchased this to hold a database that needed the fast access and larger size. I went to order the i7-3770T processor but found the Xeon version […]

The Ergonomics of Living on a Boat, Spice and Tea Racks

We have been living aboard for a year now. It has highlighted some of the drastic downfalls of boats and storage. The Downeaster 38 has a huge amount of storage space, however it isn’t particularly of a shape or size to make efficient use of. We are gradually rebuilding all the storage compartments etc into better shapes to hold particular goods both efficiently and securely. One such project that I just finished day before yesterday was tea and spice racks.

I like to drink hot teas and being me go a bit overboard on the acquisition and storage of lots of different loose leaf teas. I have about 40 plastic containers with O ring seals with tea’s in them. At the house it was no big deal, I had a cupboard that they all neatly stacked in. On the boat there is no cupboard the right size and being that it moves they would fall over anyways and end up in a big jumble. In real life I found that a big jumble just due to the shape and size of the storage areas available was how things stayed.

I also like to cook and tend to have about a dozen spices, oils and other condiments that I use on a daily to weekly basis, with another 20 or so that I use weekly to monthly. Again, can we say jumble. I could never find what I wanted.

This state of affairs both in the teas and the spices tended to leave me a bit grumpy and irritated at having daily usability issues. If something is bad enough that it is affecting my outlook on life then it needs to be fixed. What to do though? I really didn’t like the cabinets as a solution as small stuff gets hidden […]