Applewood hanging light fixtures

Another addition to the applewood series, five hanging light fixtures.  Three I kept and two were given off as gifts. Applewood being so crooked and irregular, I had to come up with a simple design that would still bring about the staggering beauty of that weathered wood while not turning this project into a jointing an planing nightmare.

Applewood light fixture

The end product turned up to be pleasantly retro-modern and a nice addition to our interior. Each different, each unique.

Applewood light fixture Applewood light fixtureIMG_8031

The pandemic has meant for me a sudden halt in my clinical rotations at the hospital and confinement at home. It was rather frustrating to see the crisis unfold in our healthcare system and especially in our senior’s residences and stand here by the sidelines. However, I soon found a way to partake in this vast effort to fight off Covid-19 by volunteering along with dozens of my peers for the project:

Our website is dedicated to helping healthcare professionals find accurate and up-to-date information about the best ways to manage and treat patients affected by the COVID-19 outbreak.

How I Treat Covid-19 banner

Most other volunteers dedicated themselves to sifting through the vast amounts of scientific publications coming out each day. As for myself, I renewed with my previous job as a web developer and got busy building the platform and some of it’s editorial processes.

Every little bit (of code) truly helps in this fight.

Access control list (ACL) extension on MediaWiki

MediaWiki is meant to be an open platform and was not conceived with fine-grained access control in mind (like ACL). For most cases, that’s ok, but on a project I’m working on I’ve felt the need for keeping some parts of my wiki private and secure from indirect access using transclusions or searches.

In order to achieve that, I’ve entirely revamped the Semantic ACL extension, which had been left unmaintained for some years, but had great potential.

Here’s the list of features (more will be added when needed):

  • Works through transclusions: If a page is transcluding a page or a subset of the page that has a protection in place, users not allowed to view that content will see a placeholder message instead.
  • Works with files: If a file is protected, users not allowed to see the file will be denied access to the file page and will see placeholder content where the file is used in other pages. If a file is uncategorized or part of category that an anonymous user is not allowed to see, placeholder content will be displayed instead.
  • Works with search results: Search results including a page that a user is not allowed to see won’t display the content of the page, only its title.
  • Works with Structured Discussions and talk pages: A talk page or a structured discussion will get the same protection as its associated content page.
  • Works within the wiki: No need to edit LocalSettings.php to modify restrictions, everything is done from inside your wiki.
  • Works with many use cases: Restrictions can be enabled for anonymous/registered users, user groups or individual users.

All the docs are on the extension’s page.

Applewood bench

Applewood bench (closeup)Latest in the applewood series, a bench I had started making a couple years ago and that I just got to finishing last fall. It’s made almost entirely from the wood of an old apple tree we had to fell due to disease and that I turned into timber. With enough room to sit two people, I used the straightest  cuts but still had to do a lot of planing and jointing to get something I could actually do proper woodworking with. The bench top itself is a full slice of the tree cut and glued to alternate the grain’s direction and then screwed to a backing of plywood for stability.

Applewood bench

The whole project is assembled using screws hidden behind walnut plugs. The finish is Danish oil for a smooth shine that really enhances the natural beauty and the weathering of this imperfect wood. I’ll admit the end result is most satisfying and sturdy. It found an obvious home in the entrance of our apartment, providing a sitting area where shoes can put on or off and be stored.

Applewood bench

Applewood table lamp

Applewood table lamp closeup
Base details

Latest in my applewood series, a small table lamp put together using reclaimed parts from another derelict lamp that had been sitting around in the basement for ages. It features a bit of detailing in brass rod and an SPST switch to control it.  For the finish, I used danish oil as I feel it does the best job at bringing out the beauty of the intertwined patterns of sapwood and hardwood.

Applewood table lamp