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Hardware

The best Android phones of 2014

Filed under
Android
Hardware

This last year has been a big one for Android. Displays have started moving beyond 1080p, devices keep getting bigger, and Android 5.0 brings the most fundamental change the platform has seen in a very long time. Some of the phones that were released in 2014 were huge successes, and other fell short of expectations, but which one was the best? That depends on how you frame the question, so let’s split it up a few different ways and find out.

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[Video] Hands-On Review of the Samsung Gear S wrist strap – Cobalt Blue

Filed under
Linux
Hardware
Reviews

In all respects this is the Samsung quality as the original Gear S strap you are currently using, so you know this product well, but it is currently selling for £40 in the UK, which is about $62USD. This is a good product, but it’s at a premium price and you have to ask yourself, Do I really need it?

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Turn on your computer from anywhere with an Arduino Server

Filed under
Hardware
OSS

Unless you live off-the-grid and have abundant free electricity, leaving your rig on while you go away on trips is hardly economic. So if you’re like [Josh Forwood] and you happen to use a remote desktop client all the time while on the road, you might be interested in this little hack he threw together. It’s a remote Power-On-PC from anywhere device.

It’s actually incredibly simple. Just one Arduino. He’s piggybacking off of the excellent Teleduino software by [Nathan] who actually gave him a hand manipulating it for his purpose. The Arduino runs as a low-power server which allows [Josh] to access it via a secure website login. From there, he can send a WOL packet to his various computers to wake them up.

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From Gongkai to Open Source

Filed under
Hardware
OSS

Compared to the firmware, the hardware reverse engineering task was fairly straightforward. The documents we could scavenge gave us a notion of the ball-out for the chip, and the naming scheme for the pins was sufficiently descriptive that I could apply common sense and experience to guess the correct method for connecting the chip. For areas that were ambiguous, we had some stripped down phones I could buzz out with a multimeter or stare at under a microscope to determine connectivity; and in the worst case I could also probe a live phone with an oscilloscope just to make sure my understanding was correct.

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Intel Haswell HD Graphics End Of 2013 vs. 2014 Benchmarks

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks
Hardware

Following on from yesterday's Phoronix testing that provided an extensive look at AMD's incredible open-source driver advancements over 2014 by benchmarking the open-source graphics stack from the end of 2013 compared to the end of this year, out now is similar treatment for Intel HD Graphics with their open-source Linux driver for Haswell hardware.

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Banana Pi project forks, as competing gen-2 SBCs emerge

Filed under
Development
Linux
Hardware

SinoVoip is prepping an “Banana Pi M2″ update built with a quad-core Allwinner A31 SoC, while LeMaker has begun shipping a competing A20-based “Banana Pro.”

It appears that the Banana Pi project has forked into two rival groups that are now pushing their own Banana Pi updates: SinoVoip’s “Banana Pi M2,” which is announced but not yet shipping, and LeMaker’s recently released “Banana Pro.”

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Best of open hardware in 2014

Filed under
Hardware
OSS

Open hardware is the physical foundation of the open movement. It is through understanding, designing, manufacturing, commercializing, and adopting open hardware, that we built the basis for a healthy and self-reliant community of open. And the year of 2014 had plenty of activities in the open hardware front.

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Fedora 21 Released For POWER & AArch64 Hardware

Filed under
Red Hat
Hardware

While Fedora 21 was officially released last week, coming out today is the release of Fedora 21 for the PowerPC and ARM AArch64 architectures.

Fedora 21 and its packages are now officially available for IBM POWER servers as the only PowerPC systems being officially supported by the PPC release. Support for Apple's older PowerPC systems is mentioned as a PPC platform that's most likely broken and will not be working out-of-the-box. Fedora for POWER in the 21 release offers an installer for the Fedora Server product, support for 32-bit Power has been dropped in favor of 64-bit, and there's numerous enhancements to Fedora on POWER compared to older releases.

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Also: Red Hat and IBM Ratchet-Up Linux Partnership

Generic TrustZone Driver Proposed For Linux Kernel

Filed under
Hardware

ARM's security extensions are in the process of being bettered on Linux.

TrustZone is the marketing name for ARM's security extensions. TrustZone exposes two virtual processors with hardware access controls to let the application core switch between the two virtual states to avoid potentially leaking any information from one state/world to the other. TrustZone has been around going back to the ARMv6 days and there's been Linux support but it's largely been platform specific. Now, however, a generic TrustZone driver might finally come to the Linux kernel.

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Open source and Made in Italy: Arduino are circuit boards with a sense of style

Filed under
Hardware
OSS

One of the more surprising applications has been the natural marriage between the Arduino board and Lego. Once seen only as a child's building block toy, Lego is finding startling utility as an instant mechanical prototype maker for Arduino ideas.

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More in Tux Machines

Bazel, Google’s Open Source Build System

One of the most important, yet unsung, applications in a software developer’s life is the Make utility, or its equivalent. Make first appeared in 1977 and has been with us ever since. There are a very large number of build utilities, some based on Make, others completely different. The principle remains the same. The build system has a set of rules that tell it how to build an application from source files, usually fetched from a version control system. The Make utility reads the rules, then runs the compilers and linkers to do the build. The really good ones will run tests, as well. Google has been using their own system, called Blaze, and open-sourced part of it as the anagrammatically named Bazel — recently released at alpha status. In this article I’ll give a general overview of Bazel. Read more

A MAN WITH HIS FINGERS IN MILLIONS OF PIES

Over 5 million Raspberry Pis have been sold. That’s the same as the number of ZX Spectrums sold in the 80s. And like the Spectrum, the Pi is likely to have a far-reaching and transformative legacy, helping the next generation of games designer and computer scientists find their feet. There are countless numbers of people who have helped make this happen, but Eben Upton has been there from the beginning. He’s the founder and the CEO, and he’s still shaping every aspect of the Raspberry Pi, from its hardware to the software, albeit now with a little more help than when the foundation started. We met with Eben a couple of weeks before the launch of the monumental model 2 where he generously answered our questions despite a terrible cold. Read more

BackBox Linux 4.2 Is a Complete Penetration Testing Distro Based on Ubuntu 14.04.2 LTS

BackBox Linux, a distribution based on Ubuntu 14.04.2 LTS, developed perform penetration tests and security assessments has just received a new update and is now ready for download. Read more

Imagination to release open MIPS design to academia

Imagination is releasing a free version of its Linux-ready MIPS MicroAptiv CPU to universities called “MIPSfpga,” which will offer fully transparent RTL. Imagination Technologies has developed a Linux-ready academic version of its 32-bit MIPS architecture MicroAptiv processor design, and is giving it away free to universities for use in computer research and education. As the MIPSfpga name suggests, the production-quality RTL (register transfer level) design abstraction is intended to run on industry standard FPGAs. Read more