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Stewart's Blog

Stewart Watkiss website to the world ...

(Children, computing, first aid and other ramblings ...)

Archive for the 'General' Category

Raspberry Pi Christmas Project – Christmas House and Neopixel Snowman

Monday, December 17th, 2018

This year I’ve been creating a 3D model of a building for an outdoor model railway. Technically it’s a building for a weigh bridge rather than a house, but I’ve given it a Santa’s Grotto make-over for Christmas and so Christmas House sounds better. The building is designed in TinkerCAD based on a real building […]

Model Railway – designing a G-Scale building for an outdoor model railway in the garden – part 1

Saturday, November 24th, 2018

This is my first attempt at creating a proper scale model for 3D printing. In this case I am creating a weigh building in G-Scale. This has been a huge learning curve. I’ve since learned from some of the issues in the first model and so part 2 will improve on the techniques shown. The […]

Updated Linux and Raspberry Pi Tutorials

Tuesday, March 27th, 2018

One of the things about creating a web site is having to keep it up-to-date as changes happen. In the case of my PenguinTutor web site that is the changes in Linux and the Raspberry Pi over the last few years. In particular a new release of Raspbian was created last year (based on Debian […]

ESA European Astro Pi Project – Mission Zero – Code that ran on the International Space Station

Thursday, February 15th, 2018

The ESA European Astro Pi Project – “Mission Zero”, involved school children creating code that actually ran on the International Space Station (ISS). My son joined with a friend (both aged 9 at the time it was submitted) to create a Python program that ran on the International Space station during February 2018. Here’s his […]

OMSCS Studying online – MSc in Computer Science with Georgia Tech

Wednesday, January 24th, 2018

I’ve recently completed an online Master degree with Georgia Tech. This has been a huge commitment in terms of time, but I’ve learned a lot. “University Master Degree – same as on-campus but it’s online” As an online course the cost is only a fraction of on-campus classes, and in my case my employer covered […]

The power of open source – Creating a GUI with Python and guizero

Saturday, January 13th, 2018

This isn’t going to be a guide about how to program a GUI (graphical user interfaces) using guizero (hopefully I’ll add some instruction on that in future), but it does explain which I chose guizero, some of the concepts I used and a bit of an insight into this open source software library. Adding GUIs […]

Birmingham Christmas Market, Ice Rink and Big Wheel

Monday, November 20th, 2017

There have been some changes to Christmas in Birmingham this year. Watch the video to see more details:

Fire and Rescue Service Challenge Day 2017

Monday, July 3rd, 2017

I went to see the Rescue Challenge at Webbs of Wychbold, near Bromsgrove in Worcestershire. This is an event where various Fire Services from around the UK compete in simulated rescue situations. The most dramatic of which is the two vehicle extraction where one car is positioned on top of another. I recorded one of […]

Networking challenge quiz for school IT and computing fair

Thursday, February 2nd, 2017

In the UK, Year 9 (age 13 to 14) is an important stage which can influence the student’s future career. It is during this year that the students first decide on what subjects to pursue, and in particular whether they will continue to study computer science. I recently attended a computing and IT careers fair […]

Gloucestershire and Warwickshire Railway Santa Special Steam Train

Wednesday, December 21st, 2016

This Christmas we visited the Gloucestershare and Warwickshire Railway for the Santa Special steam train. The train was from Cheltenham Racecourse railway station. The train was fully booked, but there were enough tables for everyone to find a comfortable seat. We started with a train journey to the “North Pole” station. The carriage was decorated […]


UK days out, children and holiday information is also available on the Days Out Diary web site
Linux, LPI and the Quiz / Test Program posts are also available on the Penguin Tutor website
First Aid Information, first aid games and first aid practice test / quiz entries are also available on the First Aid Quiz Web site