Sunday, August 11, 2019

Faithful Maytag washing machine gives up after 30 years

Our Maytag washing machine made screeching noises and smelt of burning this morning after 30 years of hard service.

I think we've had it serviced twice in that time. It's been moved a few times and bashed about a bit in the process.

This machine has handled the nappies and clothes from two babies and given reliable service along the way. Recently I put some bleach in the bleach input and noticed that it drained out on the floor.



Do washing machines even have settings for Permanent Press any more? I enquired about repairs and the bloke that took the call laughed and said "you've had a good run". Spares are difficult to get and service people aren't keen to open them up.


Made in Newton Iowa, USA. Max working pressure: 10 bars. I doubt the replacement will last 30 years, mind you.. I may not either.

The replacement has arrived. I wonder if the touch sensitive buttons will last as long as the mechanical knobs did. Great that it shows how long to go.


Where's the permanent press cycle?


Hmm, sounds ominous.

Manly to Spit bridge Sydney walk

It was cool but sunny. A spectacular day to do the walk from Manly to the Spit bridge on Sunday with Peter, VK2EMU.


There are spectacular harbour views along the way. (Click to enlarge).


The city looks great too.


We did the walk pretty quickly and it does involve some steps up and down.


I felt pretty tired and sore the next morning but would recommend this walk to anyone visiting Sydney. A great way to do it is to start by catching the ferry to Manly.

Friday, August 09, 2019

NSW house sale prices data for free

I have a new interest in the prices that houses in my state have sold for recently. Searching for this data turns up many services that provide it but generally they ask for a fee or even a subscription to give access. It seemed to me that surely this is public information that the government has for stamp duty or other reasons.

The information is available on a weekly basis from Property NSW on the Bulk property sales information page. The data "is available under open access licensing as part of the NSW Government Open Data Policy and is subject to the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 Licence". Great stuff!

Each of the blue buttons is a zip file of .DAT files with sales data in them, the format is a little inconvenient but is well documented here.

To make use of this data, by loading it into a spreadsheet, I've written a little python 3 program that takes a folder with downloaded zip files, extracts the .DAT files, parses them and outputs tab delimited CSV files that will open in a spreadsheet.

# Read house price data files from: https://valuation.property.nsw.gov.au/embed/propertySalesInformation
# B;001;4229165;5;20190805 01:00;;;86;MAURICE RD;POKOLBIN;2320;1.038;H;20190613;20190725;850000;;R;RESIDENCE;;;;0;AP418234;

# Directory that contains the zip files
DOWNLOAD_DIR = "Downloads"
FIELD_NAMES = ["Record Type",
"District Code",
"Property Id.",
"Sale Counter",
"Download Date / Time",
"Property Name",
"Property Unit Number",
"Property House Number",
"Property Street Name",
"Property Locality",
"Property Post Code",
"Area",
"Area Type",
"Contract Date",
"Settlement Date",
"Purchase Price",
"Zoning",
"Nature of Property",
"Primary Purpose",
"Strata Lot Number",
"Component code",
"Sale Code",
"% Interest of Sale",
"Dealing Number"]

import os
import zipfile

def main():
printFieldHeaders()
files = os.listdir(DOWNLOAD_DIR)
for azipfile in files:
zip_file_path = os.path.join(DOWNLOAD_DIR, azipfile)
archive = zipfile.ZipFile(zip_file_path)
data_file_list = archive.namelist()
for data_file in data_file_list:
if data_file.endswith(".DAT"):
for line in archive.open(data_file):
lineStr = line.decode('UTF-8')
if lineStr.startswith("B"):
fields = lineStr.strip().split(";")
for field in fields:
print("%s\t" %field, end='')
print()


def printFieldHeaders():
for fieldName in FIELD_NAMES:
print("%s\t" %fieldName, end='')
print()

if __name__ == "__main__":
main()