The journey for wisdom starts with knowledge
Various topics on technology, mainly computers, software, open source, and the like.
Slashdot is a news web site for technology and nerds alike that has been active for over two decades.
The site changed ownership a few times. The current owners employed young moderators who were not around when the site was still privately owned and managed by the same team who created it.
One glaring example of the disconnect between the current moderators, and the site's history is the total ignorance on what the icons and logs attached to stories mean.
Here are a few examples from recent months:
A month ago, Dave Schwartz completed a design for a Smart Hand Controller (SHC) for the OnStep open source telescope controller.
After completing the hardware, I ported the firmware for it, from the Teensy 3.x to the lower cost ESP32.
Here is a video that I did demonstrating the features.
Here is an image of the SHC PCB, V1.03.
Last Monday, I gave a talk at the KWLUG on Microcontrollers and The Internet of Things (IoT).
It covered topics such as: how microcontrollers are different from 'computers', the Arduino and Arduino IDE, the ESP8266 and ESP32 WiFi enabled microcontrollers, and using MicroPython on them. Also covered the very low cost STM32 ARM Cortex microcontroller.
Recently I got a Raspberry Pi 2, which is said to be 6 times faster than the original Raspberry Pi B. This makes it more suitable for tasks like being a media player.
Getting a full CanaKit Raspberry Pi 2 Ultimate Starter Kit adds many components for experimentation (LEDs, resistors, breadboard, 40-pin ribbon cable, ...etc.). The price was attractive since with Amazon you get free shipping, and therefore it will be cheaper than getting it directly from CanaKit.
I tried out the Kobo Arc 10HD for a few days, because it went on sale for $199.99, down by $100 from the regular price.
As I write this, the price is down $20 further, to $179.99 at BestBuy.
Here is a quick review of the pros and cons. Note that I am not evaluating as an eReader, but rather as a regular tablet.
When using nvflash or APX Tool to repartition an Acer A500/A501, some people get data errors, and assume their device is bricked, and is good only for parts.
For example, the command:
nvflash --bct flash.bct --setbct --odmdata 0x100c0105 --configfile flash.cfg --create --bl bootloader.bin --sbk 0x... 0x... 0x... 0x... --go
failed executing command 11 NvError 0x120002
command failure: create failed (bad data)
bootloader status: failed to create the partition (code: 10) message: nverror:0x3 (0x3) flags: 0
Attached below are the slides from my presentation at the KWLUG on Virtualization using KVM and libvirt.
Having moved away from Rogers Cable TV to over-the-air (OTA) using a TV Antenna, I needed a way to record programs so I can watch them later.
For this, I got the MediaSonic HomeWorx HW150 PVR, which is inexpensive ($50 with price matching).
As part of Software Freedom Day 2014, I gave a talk on how to make a living from free software.
The slides are attached below.
An audio recording is also available.
This article describes why I decided to move off Rogers for the internet, what options are currently available in the local Kitchener/Waterloo area, and the details on how to switch from Rogers.
Rogers internet service is quite good from a functionality point of view. Their technical support is also acceptable, though sometimes you need to have more than one call to get an issue resolved.
OnStep is a full featured telescope controller. I created a low cost controller based on the STM32 Blue Pill.
More info here:
Sofa Bed NZ