25 May 2014

Gaggia Classic. Steam wand upgrade.

You should not expect to have a great steam wand in entry level domestic espresso machine. Gaggia Classic is not an exception - it is coming with a plastic "Panarello" frother, which might be good for the customer who just wants to make "bubbly" milk foam quickly.

28 March 2014

Gaggia Classic. Controlling temperature using PID.


This post describes the temperature instability issues with single boiler home coffee machines, highlights the reasons and the ways of overcoming them. Installing PID controller seems the best way to improve temperature stability and introduce possibility of temperature adjustment to achieve better espresso flavours and consistency between shots. The remaining part of post describes my own experience of equipping Gaggia Classic coffee machine with PID controller. The post might be interesting for home coffee enthusiasts with DIY skills.

4 December 2011

DSLR Sensor cleaning

I have decided that it is a time to clean the sensor in my Pentax *istDS DSLR camera after five years of its active use. The dirty sensor causes you to spend more time on raw photos processing, as you have to remove these spots to make the photo look great. I followed the cleaning manual described by photograper Pavel Kosenko in his blog. It appeared much easier that I expected - just 40 minutes of patience and persistence.

29 November 2011

Moustache season - last day

Hello everyone. Today is the last day of Movember. As you know, I have been growing moustache for the whole month to rise finds and awareness for prostate and testicular cancers that affect men.

I would like to thank everyone who donated to my support of Movember this month. I am grateful to all you, and really appreciate your willingness to donate. With your help I have raised £50. Though, it does not sound much, it is undoubtedly a good contribution to Movember funds that will be directed to important health programmes.

My moustache would not be that fine without your support!

Thanks again,
Ruslan Kabalin

25 November 2011

Mahara 1.4 Cookbook is out

Mahara 1.4 Cookbook written by Ellen Marie Murphy is a great source of information on Mahara features and functionality. It offers a number of useful "recipes" on Mahara that are grouped into chapters, each of which is focused on the particular area such as Groups, Social and professional portolios, text and graphics activities.
No matter if you are the teacher or administrator, you will definitely find something new and useful. The book can be used as a reference to find an answer “How to do that in Mahara” or just as a source of useful approaches for Mahara practitioner. Each recipe provide in depth step-by-step guide on how to achieve a particular result, starting from brief description, requirements, steps that user need to perform and explanation of what has been done, which is useful for understanding the logic behind the performed action. Where applicable, the references to related recipes in the book are provided as well.
Being Mahara core developer, I think that anyone using Mahara will find this book pretty useful, does not matter if you are a newbie or an experienced user. The book is primarily focused on Mahara 1.4, which has been released in June 2011, but some recipes may work with earlier versions as well.
Many thanks to Packt Publishing for a copy of the eBook for review.

15 November 2011

Moustache season - halfway through

Hello everyone. This is an update on my moustache growing this Movember. For thouse who missed my post on Facebook a couple of weeks ago, I am donating my top lip to the cause for 30 days in an effort to rise vital awareness and funds for cancers affecting men. Just imagine that 1 in 9 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in their lifetime, that is a dreadful figure unfortunately.

Thanks everyone who donated so far. If only more people would be able to donate, my moustache growing would be more advantageous to people around. If anyone willing to donate to my support of Movember, you are still welcome to do so. Just follow this link, choose the any amount you are willing to donate and complete payment. All money goes to Movember foundtaion and will be spread among the programmes they fund, for more details take a look at the "Programmes We Fund" section on the Movember website.

When you have a spare moment, take a look at some fun facts about moustache.

Thank you in advance.

28 July 2011


Привет! Для русскоязычной немногочисленной аудитории я переезжаю в ЖЖ. Все мои новые посты отныне будут публиковаться там. Часть своих старых постов я тоже перенесу в ЖЖ. Если вы ищете какой-то пост здесь и не можете его найти, скорее всего он уже переехал :)