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Open Hardware: Portable Guitar Amp, IP Camera, and OpenKobold

Filed under
Linux
Hardware
  • Portable Guitar Amp – Is That A Linux In Your Pocket?

    When it comes to music production and audio engineering, Linux isn’t the most common choice. This isn’t for lack of decent tools or other typical open source usability issues: Ardour as a highly capable, feature-rich digital audio workstation, the JACK Audio Connection Kit for powerful audio routing, and distributions like Ubuntu Studio packing all the essentials nicely together, offer a great starting point as home recording setup. To add variation to your guitar or bass arrangement on top of that, guitarix is a virtual amp that has a wide selection of standard guitar effects. So when [Arnout] felt that his actual guitar amp’s features were too limiting, he decided to build himself a portable, Linux-based amp.

  • Customising a $30 IP Camera For Fun

    WiFi cameras like many other devices these days come equipped with some sort of Linux subsystem. This makes the life of a tinkerer easier and you know what that means. [Tomas C] saw an opportunity to mod his Xiaomi Dafang IP camera which comes configured to work only with proprietary apps and cloud.

  • Love Open Source but Hate People? Get OpenKobold

    [Tadas Ustinavičius] writes in to tell us of his latest project, which combines his two great loves of open source and annoying people: OpenKobold. Named after the German mythical spirit that haunts people’s homes, this tiny device is fully open source (hardware and software) and ready to torment your friends and family for up to a year on a CR1220 battery.

Make your own DIY head unit with Crankshaft, Raspberry Pi 3

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Hardware

There are a lot of options now for people who would want an Android Auto compatible head unit, but they are undoubtedly expensive. Plus, if you have an older car, chances are the newer head units won’t fit on your dashboard. A developer has shared a way for you to DIY your way to an Android Auto head unit, if you like doing DIY projects and if you’re willing to see what you can make out of the Crankshaft Android Auto software, a Raspberry Pi 3, and its touchscreen.

What is Crankshaft? Well, it is a free “turnkey” GNU/Linux distribution that you can install onto a Raspberry Pi 3 with touchscreen. Then you can place the “head unit” on your old car, connect your phone to use Android Auto, and drive away. That’s pretty easy when you read it, but there is real work involved in putting these things together. That said, it should be pretty straightforward for people who are used to DIY electronic projects.

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Raspberry Pi goes Android Auto: Now you can build your own cheap car head unit

Filed under
Android
Linux
Hardware

A student-developer put off by the price of Android Auto head units has released the Linux-based Crankshaft OS that turns a $35 Raspberry Pi 3 with the official $60 Raspberry Pi seven-inch touchscreen into a functioning, unofficial Android Auto head unit.

Built by Huan Truong, Crankshaft is based on the recently released OpenAuto project, an aasdk- and Qt-based emulator for running Android Auto on a Raspberry Pi.

But whereas OpenAuto requires configuration work, Truong says Crankshaft is a "turnkey GNU/Linux distribution", which only needs to be downloaded and written to an SD card for the Raspberry Pi 3 tablet.

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Also: The SMACH Z gaming handheld has switched to AMD Ryzen & Vega, pre-orders start soon

Thread-optimized IoT gateway adds Ubuntu Core support

Filed under
Hardware
Ubuntu

Rigado announced that its i.MX6 UL based Vesta IoT Gateway, which offer Ethernet, WiFi, BT, Thread, and optional LTE, LoRa, and PoE, will soon be available with Ubuntu Core and Canonical’s IoT app store.

Starting this summer, Portland, Oregon-based Rigado will offer its Edge Connectivity gateway solutions with Canonical’s IoT-focused, transactional Ubuntu Core distribution. Rigado is referring to its low-cost, Yocto Project powered Vesta IoT Gateway, which launched in Dec. 2016 without the Vesta name. The new Ubuntu Core support will enable “sophisticated control, monitoring and tracking applications,” as well as “connected guest experiences,” says Canonical in its version of the announcement.

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Also:

  • BeagleWire, GitHub DDoS Attack, Open Source Bonus Winners and More

    Ubuntu 16.04.4 LTS (Xenial Xerus) was released yesterday. The update includes "security updates and corrections for other high-impact bugs, with a focus on maintaining stability and compatibility with Ubuntu 16.04 LTS". See the release announcement for more info and links to downloads.

Devices: Embedded Linux Controllers, BeagleWire, Open source Protocol Decoder Scripts

Filed under
Hardware

Open Hardware News

Filed under
Hardware
OSS
  • Keyboardio Hits a High Point in Open Hardware

    My expectations for Keyboardio’s Model 01 were high. I pre-ordered the keyboard during its 2015 crowdfunding campaign, and waited for over two years with increasing frustration as one delay in manufacturing followed another. Then, in 2017, the first Model 01s shipped — but not mine. By the time mine arrived in February 2018, my expectations were so high that I was sure that the reality could not possibly match my expectations.

    I was dead right.

    Reality exceeded my expectations, and by more than I could possibly imagine. The Model 01 is not the first programmable keyboard. Nor is it the first open source keyboard, the first keyboard with mechanical switches, or the first ergonomic keyboard. However, so far as I’m aware, no other keyboard has combined all these features at once. Combining aesthetics, ergonomics, hardware customization, and software customization, Keyboardio’s Model 01 is a keyboard in a class of its own.

  • Trinamic Licenses Codasip’s Bk3 RISC-V Processor for Next Generation Motion Control Applications

    Brno, Czech Republic and Hamburg, Germany, 28th February 2018. - Codasip, the leading supplier of RISC-V® embedded processor IP, announced today that Trinamic, the global leader in embedded motor and motion control ICs and microsystems, has selected Codasip's Bk3 processor for its next-generation family of products.

  • GreenWaves Puts Another Spin on IoT Chips

    Rather than using the ubiquitous Arm Cortex-A or -M cores, GreenWaves relies on the potentially ubiquitous RISC-V design. The benefits here are twofold: RISC-V is free (as in free beer), and RISC-V permits user-defined extensions. GreenWaves took advantage of both characteristics to build itself a complex multicore MCU that’s tweaked for image, audio, and sensor processing. The idea is to make the edge-node processor smart enough that it doesn’t have to upload raw data to a smarter device upstream. Do your data-capture, analysis, filtering, and massaging right at the point of collection and you’ll save yourself time, money, and power.

    GAP8 has nine identical RISC-V cores: one for overall housekeeping and eight for massaging incoming data. The housekeeping side looks like a very traditional MCU, with a UART, SPI and I2C interfaces,

Can Open-source Hardware Be Like Open-source Software?

Filed under
Hardware
OSS

Hardware and software are certainly different beasts. Software is really just information, and the storing, modification, duplication, and transmission of information is essentially free. Hardware is expensive, or so we think, because it’s made out of physical stuff which is costly to ship or copy. So when we talk about open-source software (OSS) or open-source hardware (OSHW), we’re talking about different things — OSS is itself the end product, while OSHW is just the information to fabricate the end product, or have it fabricated.

The fabrication step makes OSHW essentially different from OSS, at least for now, but I think there’s something even more fundamentally different between the current state of OSHW and OSS: the pull request and the community. The success or failure of an OSS project depends on the community of people developing it, and for smaller projects that can hinge on the ease of a motivated individual digging in and contributing. This is the main virtue of OSS in my opinion: open-source software is most interesting when people are reading and writing that source.

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Also: GreenWaves Intros Open-Source AI Processor GAP8

Crankshaft: Open Source Car Computer

Filed under
Hardware
OSS

Modern cars and head units are pretty fancy gadget-wise. But what if your car still has an 8-track? No problem. Just pick up a Raspberry Pi 3 and a seven-inch touchscreen, and use Crankshaft to turn it into an Android Auto setup.

The open source project is based on OpenAuto which, in turn, leverages aasdk. The advantage to Crankshaft is it is a plug-and-play distribution. However, if you prefer, you can build it all yourself from GitHub.

Read more

Also: Oreo-driven dev board showcases octa-core Snapdragon 845

5 keys to building open hardware

Filed under
Hardware
OSS

The science community is increasingly embracing free and open source hardware (FOSH). Researchers have been busy hacking their own equipment and creating hundreds of devices based on the distributed digital manufacturing model to advance their scientific experiments.

A major reason for all this interest in distributed digital manufacturing of scientific FOSH is money: Research indicates that FOSH slashes costs by 90% to 99% compared to proprietary tools. Commercializing scientific FOSH with open hardware business models has supported the rapid growth of an engineering subfield to develop FOSH for science, which comes together annually at the Gathering for Open Science Hardware.

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‘No Company Is So Important Its Existence Justifies Setting Up a Police State’

You’re talking about very — about specific manifestations, and in some cases in ways that presuppose a weak solution. What is data privacy? The term implies that if a company collects data about you, it should somehow protect that data. But I don’t think that’s the issue. I think the problem is that it collects data about you period. We shouldn’t let them do that. I won’t let them collect data about me. I refuse to use the ones that would know who I am. There are unfortunately some areas where I can’t avoid that. I can’t avoid even for a domestic flight giving the information of who I am. That’s wrong. You shouldn’t have to identify yourself if you’re not crossing a border and having your passport checked. With prescriptions, pharmacies sell the information about who gets what sort of prescription. There are companies that find this out about people. But they don’t get much of a chance to show me ads because I don’t use any sites in a way that lets them know who I am and show ads accordingly. So I think the problem is fundamental. Companies are collecting data about people. We shouldn’t let them do that. The data that is collected will be abused. That’s not an absolute certainty, but it’s a practical, extreme likelihood, which is enough to make collection a problem. A database about people can be misused in four ways. First, the organization that collects the data can misuse the data. Second, rogue employees can misuse the data. Third, unrelated parties can steal the data and misuse it. That happens frequently, too. And fourth, the state can collect the data and do really horrible things with it, like put people in prison camps. Which is what happened famously in World War II in the United States. And the data can also enable, as it did in World War II, Nazis to find Jews to kill. In China, for example, any data can be misused horribly. But in the U.S. also, you’re looking at a CIA torturer being nominated to head the CIA, and we can’t assume that she will be rejected. So when you put this together with the state spying that Snowden told us about, and with the Patriot Act that allows the FBI to take almost any database of personal data without even talking to a court. And what you see is, for companies to have data about you is dangerous. And I’m not interested in discussing the privacy policies that these companies have. First of all, privacy policies are written so that they appear to promise you some sort of respect for privacy, while in fact having such loopholes that the company can do anything at all. But second, the privacy policy of the company doesn’t do anything to stop the FBI from taking all that data every week. Anytime anybody starts collecting some data, if the FBI thinks it’s interesting, it will grab that data. And we also know that the FBI and other such agencies are inclined to label protesters as terrorists. So that way they can use laws that were ostensibly adopted to protect us from terrorists to threaten a much larger number of us than any terrorist could. Read more Also: Numerical Analysis Software Global Market Analysis & Forecast: Analytica, Matlab, GNU Octave, Plotly, FlexPro

Today in Techrights

Android Leftovers

3 tips for organizing your open source project's workflow on GitHub

Managing an open source project is challenging work, and the challenges grow as a project grows. Eventually, a project may need to meet different requirements and span multiple repositories. These problems aren't technical, but they are important to solve to scale a technical project. Business process management methodologies such as agile and kanban bring a method to the madness. Developers and managers can make realistic decisions for estimating deadlines and team bandwidth with an organized development focus. Read more