As no-one apart from Brian had brought anything to share, the conversation roamed across a range of non-computing topics.
Brian had however solved the problem he had had over booting a Raspberry Pi from a USB drive.
You need to obtain a UASP compatible housing for the SSD. Use the Raspberry Pi Imager desktop application on Linux to put the OS on an SD card; then prime the Raspberry Pi with the firmware update, permitting bootup from a USB drive, which comes from the Raspberry Pi Imager app and only needs to be run for a matter of seconds for the Pi to be updated; then copy the Raspberry Pi OS from the SD card to the USB drive as described in this walk-through. Thereafter the Raspberry Pi will boot from the USB drive.
Brian also shared his experiences of trying to obtain thermostatic radiator valves which do not rely on Zigbee.
Other topics included AliExpress which started as a business to business service before consumers were allowed to use it and which Brian demonstrated and, following an update from Darren on his Open University modules, the start of the year in different calendars.
The Julian calendar had been brought in by Julius Caesar to stop the priests, who were responsible for deciding when to put a thirteenth month into the Roman calendar to re-align it with the astronomical year, from making the decision for political reasons rather than astronomical ones. The Gregorian calendar, which rectified a problem with the Julian calendar in 1582, was not implemented in England and its colonies until 1752 as Darren demonstrated with:
cal sep 1752 September 1752 Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su 1 2 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30
The Roman year had started in March and the start of the English year had varied between January and March over the last millennium with Lady Day (25 March) becoming the end of the financial year; after protests that losing eleven days in 1752 was unfair, the end of the financial year was moved to 5 April in England.Past Meetings