Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Raspberry Pi smart garden monitor via Geeky Gadgets

I am always looking for ways to automate sections of my garden, especially for watering. While this is for indoor plants, it has some great info that can be applied outdoors, too. — Douglas

A new project has been published to the Hackster.io website providing a complete tutorial on how to build your very own Raspberry Pi smart garden complete with an Arduino connection to help monitor sensors and relay your plants environment and moisture content.

Created using a Raspberry Pi 3 Model B together with an Arduino Uno and Genuino development Board the project is capable of monitoring temperature, humidity, light levels and soil moisture. it is also equipped with an automated system that can water the plant if the soil is too dry and switches on a light when the environment is too dark for the plant. “This maintains an ideal and consistent soil condition for the plant, and makes it convenient for those who tend to forget to water their plants regularly. Also, the plant can continuously photosynthesise even when there is no sunlight.”

Read Raspberry Pi smart garden monitor via Geeky Gadgets


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Monday, April 15, 2019

Stringent, the $15 Wall Plotter via Arduino Project Hub

An amazingly detailed story about this Arduino project including multiple generations of the device and what they learned with each iteration. — Douglas

High accuracy wall plotting at minimal cost, enrich all the whiteboards around you with surprising artwork! 
Background 
I don't quite remember when it started, but I think around 1999 or so. Me and a friend that was into everything robotics and electronics was discussing building a robot for drawing on whiteboards. Of course we never had time to do anything serious back then, the ecosystem for hobbyist micro controllers was not what it is today. 
In 2002 my friend showed me the awesome work of Jürg Lehni and Uli Franke - Hektor. I was very pleased to see something similar to what we had been dreaming to build actually be constructed and shared with the world! I was at peace. 
Some time later I remember showing the Hektor project website to someone presenting how fantastic I thought it was. This time though I started looking more at the details realising it lacked one property I had initially envisioned a wall plotter to have. I wanted it to be self-contained, everything in one unit with just wires connecting it to the wall. If I recall it correctly, I looked into stepper motor weights at this point realising that my idea was not going to fly. 
Time passed and things happened in the space of hobbyist robotics. It was 2014 and I had been using Arduinos and RC-servos for various camera control projects, I had access to 3D-printing and actually some spare time (!?!). After stumbling over the dirt cheap 28BYJ-48 stepper motor I knew exactly what I was going to build:
The cheapest possible minimalistic wall plotter.
Read Stringent, the $15 Wall Plotter via Arduino Project Hub


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Thursday, April 11, 2019

Scratch 3, and upgrading our free resources via Raspberry Pi

Scratch is a graphic programming language that can be used to teach kids or adults about programming. It is great to see this impressive resource still growing after all these years. — Douglas

Scratch 3 is here

We love Scratch — it’s the perfect starting point for young people who want to try coding, and we’re offering a huge variety of free Scratch project guides for all interests and coding abilities.

Scratch 3 introduces a brand-new look and feel. The most obvious change is that the stage is now on the right-hand side; there are new paint and sound editing tools; new types of code blocks; and the blocks are now larger and easier to read.

Read Scratch 3, and upgrading our free resources via Raspberry Pi



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Tuesday, April 09, 2019

Pocket Sized Arduino Calculator Makes a Great First Project via Hackaday

This is a fairly complicated project but so much to learn here - -from soldering to perfboard, to button placement, to Arduino programming and beyond. If you or your students are looking for something a bit more complicated than the typical Arduino weather station, this could be just the thing! — Douglas

We’ve all got calculators on our phones, in our web browsers, and even in the home “assistant” that’s listening in on your conversations all day on the off chance you blurt out a math question is can solve for you. The most hardcore among us might even still have a real calculator kicking around. So in that light, building your own DIY calculator might not seem too exciting. But we can’t deny this Arduino calculator project by [Danko Bertović] would look good sitting on the bench.

In the video after the break, [Danko] walks us through the creation of the calculator, from placing all the through-hole components to writing the code that pulls it all together. Special attention is given to explaining the wiring, making this is a good project for those just getting started on their digital hacking journey. It also helps that the whole thing is put together on perfboard with jumper wires; no PCB fabrication required for this one.

Read Pocket Sized Arduino Calculator Makes a Great First Project via Hackaday


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Wednesday, April 03, 2019

Reading The Game: Walden via NPR.org

USC’s Game Innovation Lab created a new twist on video games based on Thoreau’s Walden. Find the story of their journey in the article below. — Douglas

For years now, some of the best, wildest, most moving or revealing stories we've been telling ourselves have come not from books, movies or TV, but from video games. So we're running an occasional series, Reading The Game, in which we take a look at some of these games from a literary perspective.

In any weather, at any hour of the day or night, I have been anxious to improve the nick of time, and notch it on my stick too; to stand on the meeting of two eternities, the past and the future, which is precisely the present moment; to toe that line.

That's the writer Henry David Thoreau — not my favorite line from his memoir Walden, but perhaps the most apt for what we're doing here, which is talking about the meeting point of past and future.

Read Reading The Game: Walden via NPR.org


Find more of Thoreau's Books and Thoreau information for Free at Archive.org

 

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Monday, April 01, 2019

Pi Zero Gives Amateur Astronomer Affordable Control Of Telescope via Hackaday

Raspberry Pi computers are getting so small you can include them inside of existing equipment and expand them with a large number of new abilities. This particular project looks so clean that you can’t even tell the RasPi was added at all. — Douglas

Like many other hobbies, astronomy can be pursued on many levels, with equipment costs ranging from the affordable to the – well, astronomical. Thankfully, there are lots of entry-level telescopes on the market, some that even come with mounts that automatically find and track heavenly bodies. Finding a feature is as easy as aligning to a few known stars and looking up the object in the database embedded in the remote.

Few of the affordable mounts are WiFi-accessible, though, which is a gap [Dane Gardner]’s Raspberry Pi interface for Celestron telescopes aims to fill. For the price of a $10 Pi Zero W and a little know-how, [Dane] was able to gain full control over his ‘scope. His instrument is a Celestron NexStar, a Schmidt-Cassegrain reflector with a 150-mm aperture, has a motorized altitude-azimuth mount. The handheld remote had enough room for him to add the Zero, powering it from the mount’s battery pack. The handset has an RS-232 serial port built-in, but with the level differences [Dane] just connected the Pi directly to the handset before the UART. Running INDI, a cross-platform astronomical instrument control library, he now has total control of the scope, and he can use open source astronomy software rather than the limited database within the handset. As a neat side trick, the telescope can now be controlled with a Bluetooth gamepad.

Read Pi Zero Gives Amateur Astronomer Affordable Control Of Telescope via Hackaday


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Monday, March 25, 2019

Home Automation Using RemoteMe & Arduino Remote LITE App. via Instructables.com

I have a variety of commercial home automation devices here at the house, but I have been thinking more and more of creating my own, too. This project is one way to go! — Douglas

In this project I will be sharing with you all, how to use RemoteMe & Arduino Remote Lite app to control relays. which can be used in multiple projects like home automation, etc. Using this you don't have to be in the house to control the relay as it can be done over the internet from any where around the world.

I will try to explain this in details still trying to keep it simple so this might be a long post.

If you have no experience with RemoteMe check out Control Devices Over Internet. and Simple Weather Station posts to get an idea.

With that been said, Lets jump right into it.

Read Home Automation Using RemoteMe & Arduino Remote LITE App. via Instructables.com


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Thursday, March 21, 2019

Amazon Echo Input Just Dropped to $20 via Tom's Guide


 

Today's Amazon deal offers a cheap and easy way to add voice control to your non-Alexa speakers.  
For a limited time, Amazon has its Echo Input on sale for $19.99. That's $15 off and the lowest price we've seen for this device.
The Echo Input connects to any speaker via its 3.5mm jack or Bluetooth. Once connected and set up via the Alexa app (Android and iOS), you can ask Alexa to play a song, read the news, or stream from Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon Music, or more.
Designwise, the Echo Input is a little larger than the Google Chromecast and is barely noticeable among your stereo setup. It features four built-in microphones with action and mute buttons to control them.


Read Amazon Echo Input Just Dropped to $20 via Tom's Guide



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Wednesday, March 20, 2019

YouTubers Are Going to Go Nuts for the New DJI Osmo Pocket via WIRED

Special use cameras just keep getting better and better. I admit, the Osmo Pocket has me thinking of ways I could use it for the various events we capture. Hmmmm, surely there must be a business reason I can grab one of these, right? — Douglas

BACK IN 2015, drone-maker DJI began putting some of its image-stabilization technology into hand-held camera gimbals. The first, called the Osmo, was well-received among the prosumer crowd, because it let users capture unshaky video on either a smartphone or on the device itself. Since then, DJI has released a series of updates to the Osmo, including the smartphone-supporting Osmo Mobile.

Now DJI is putting out its most pocketable Osmo ever—suitably named the Osmo Pocket. It’s DJI’s smallest three-axis gimbal so far, measuring slightly over four inches tall. It has a tiny color touchscreen, so you can see and control your video capture directly from the device, or you can attach your smartphone via USB-C or Lightning and use your phone as a viewfinder. And since the Pocket has the same camera sensor as the Mavic Pro, Mavic Air, and Mavic 2 Zoomdrones, it captures 12-megapixel still images and 4K video at up to 60 frames per second.

Read YouTubers Are Going to Go Nuts for the New DJI Osmo Pocket via WIRED



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Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Hands-on with Hyperkin's NES light gun for LCDs and Raspberry Pi DIY SNES kit via Neowin

My son has recently gotten deeply interested in retro gaming and now I see articles like this everywhere. A great use for a Raspberry Pi, enabling old technology to work with new. -- Douglas

Before CES, Hyperkin announced its latest devices for 2019, with the Hyper Blaster HD and RetroN DIY for SNES being the two stand out products. Although we are still a ways off from the retail release, we got some hands-on time with both units.

The Hyper Blaster HD is probably what most folks are excited about. After all, it solves the huge problem of the original NES Zapper from Nintendo: its incompatibility with modern displays. As you can see from the images, the Hyper Blaster HD comes in bright neon orange with gray accents, similar to Nintendo's original Zapper.

Read Hands-on with Hyperkin's NES light gun for LCDs and Raspberry Pi DIY SNES kit via Neowin



An interesting link found among my daily reading

Saturday, March 16, 2019

Historical Technology Books: Computer Gaming World Issue 1.1 (Volume 1, Number 1) (1981) - 14 in a series

Technology isn't just computers, networks and phones. Technology has always been part of the human experience. All of our ancestors have looked for ways to help the survive and do less work for more gain. Archive.org has a host of old technology books (from mid-19th to mid-20th Century) available in many formats and on a host of topics. Many of the technologies discussed within these books are being put to use again these days in the back to the land" and homesteading movements. You might even find something that could address one of your own garden or farm issues, but has been lost to time and history. Enjoy! --Douglas

Historical Technology Books: Computer Gaming World Issue 1.1 (Volume 1, Number 1) (1981) - 14 in a series
 
Another collection of technology magazines from the early days of computing! — Douglas
 
 

From the Editor...

 

In recent months I have been encouraged time and again when I see the tremendous interest out there for a magazine on computer gaming. Many people have expressed the view that the time for a magazine on computer gaming is OVERDUE. Hopefully we have corrected that problem.

 

CGW is designed to meet your needs as a computer gamer. Each issue will evaluate computer games, give advice on strategy and tactics, announce new products, and provide a forum for you, the reader, to become active in the rapid nationwide development of the computer gaming hobby.

 

We hope to have a “Letters to the Editor” column beginning with the second or third issue. Please write us and express your thoughts on the articles presented in these pages, and/or your thoughts about the hobby in general. It is my hope that CGW will become a forum for an intelligent dialog between gamers, designers, manufacturers and retailers.

 

The coming explosion in use of personal computers has just begun, we at COMPUTER GAMING WORLD are excited about being a part of it, and are glad that you have joined with us.

Identifier Computer_Gaming_World_Issue_1.1
Identifier-ark ark:/13960/t7wm6h95x
Ocr ABBYY FineReader 11.0
Pages 41
Scanner Internet Archive Python library 1.4.0
 
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Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Meet Squoosh, Google’s powerful new image converter that works in any browser via BGR



Google just launched a powerful new image converter called Squoosh at its Chrome Developer Conference that’s going to help you convert a bunch of image formats into the kind of image you want to use. Squoosh is an online tool that works in any browser, not just Google Chrome, but the entire process takes place on the computer and everything is saved locally.

Read Meet Squoosh, Google’s powerful new image converter that works in any browser via BGR


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Monday, March 04, 2019

Affordable Arduino linear actuator created by James Bruton via Geeky Gadgets

While making things on the computer is fun, making computers physically move and do something is even more fun. This inventor links the inside with the outside in order to make robots move! — Douglas

James Bruton well known for his YouTube channel which sees him creating a wide variety of huge 3D printed robots and electronic devices has this week published a new video looking at building an affordable lower power linear actuator using little Arduino hardware and programming. Check out the video below to learn more about the project that involves a little 3D printing and Arduino coding which is available for you to download directly from GitHub if you fancy building your very own linear actuator.

Read Affordable Arduino linear actuator created by James Bruton via Geeky Gadgets


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Sunday, March 03, 2019

Historical Technology Books: A+: The Independent Guide for Apple Computing (Volume 1, Number 1) (1983) - 13 in a series

Technology isn't just computers, networks and phones. Technology has always been part of the human experience. All of our ancestors have looked for ways to help the survive and do less work for more gain. Archive.org has a host of old technology books (from mid-19th to mid-20th Century) available in many formats and on a host of topics. Many of the technologies discussed within these books are being put to use again these days in the back to the land" and homesteading movements. You might even find something that could address one of your own garden or farm issues, but has been lost to time and history. Enjoy! --Douglas


Historical Technology Books: A+: The Independent Guide for Apple Computing (Volume 1, Number 1) (1983) - 13 in a series

I avidly read A+ when I was in college and beyond. I was an Apple II user first, so it was always the most interesting to me. Looking back over these old magazines is like opening a time capsule. There is so much there that is familiar, but you have to be reminded that it existed in the first place. — Douglas

Historical Technology Books: A+: The Independent Guide for Apple Computing (Volume 1, Number 1) (1983) - 13 in a seriesHistorical Technology Books: A+: The Independent Guide for Apple Computing (Volume 1, Number 1) (1983) - 13 in a series

Historical Technology Books: A+: The Independent Guide for Apple Computing (Volume 1, Number 1) (1983) - 13 in a seriesHistorical Technology Books: A+: The Independent Guide for Apple Computing (Volume 1, Number 1) (1983) - 13 in a series

Available in PDF, Text, JPG formats, and more

We have come an incredibly long way since those early days of personal computing in the mid- seventies, when only engineers and programmers could master the power behind the first personal computers. With the advent of mass-marketed hardware and software, personal computers are now used in all walks of life, by all kinds of people—people like you, who are using your personal computers for such diverse purposes as running your businesses, monitoring your investments, and educating your children. And as you know, because you had to make a choice among equipment, the personal computer market is intensely competitive. Industry analysts all concur that a “shake out” in the personal computer arena is imminent. With nearly a million units being used actively and new products in the offing, there is no doubt that Apple Computer will continue to be a leader in the personal computer field.

It is with this knowledge—that Apple Computer is a remarkably successful company that produces innovative products, attracts top-quality people, and has a vision for the future—that Ziff-Davis Publishing decided it was time to create a definitive magazine to serve the needs of

I am looking forward to the challenge of providing interesting and useful information on a monthly basis. the ever-growing Apple computer community. Thus, I welcome you to A + , the magazine for Apple computer users.

Some of you may know of me through my previous incarnation as the editor-in-chief of Infoworld, the newsweekly for microcomputer users. During my years there, I chronicled the growth of Apple Computer from a two-man, garage-based operation into a 4,000- strong Fortune 500 company. I met many of the main players at Apple, from Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak to Mike 10 Markula and John Scully. I was fortunate to get to know the people who designed, built, promoted, and delivered the products you use today. My overall impression was and still is of respect and admiration. That is not to say that Apple Computer has not had its share of flops and problems, but it is to say that Apple Computer is a company that embodies the American dream—an entrepeneurial dream come true. But equally important to financial success has been the vision that motivates the people who work for Apple. The energetic and youthful staff at Apple Computer fervently believes that the products it produces and sells are not only innovative, but that these products actually improve the world we live and work in, and enhance the meaning of the commonplace. Some might argue the merits of this mentality, however, I personally believe that this attitude will help Apple compete successfully against IBM. So, having covered Apple for years from the news point of view, I am pleased to join Ziff-Davis Publishing to create a new family of magazines for the Apple Computer user community.

As the editor of A + , I am looking forward to the challenge of providing interesting and useful information on a monthly basis. I am targeting the editorial at the typical Apple user, whom marketing types like to refer to as an “achiever.” An “achiever” can be described as a man or woman in the age group of 18-45, who is using an Apple computer for professional purposes. (Marketing types also like to include the go-getter, risk taker, and sports enthusiast in this definition, but not many of us Apple users are all those things, so I prefer to leave that to the marketeers.) Professional uses span the entire spectrum of the working world, from writing a manuscript to keeping the books to forecasting markets, from working at home to working in a large corporation. We will concentrate on the Apple II and Apple He for the obvious reason that they are the most prevalent products. However, we will include regular articles on the Apple III and the Lisa, as well as new products, such as the Mackintosh, when they are introduced.

The emphasis of the articles will be on practical applications, from word processing to database management to telecommunications and so forth. Although we are not aiming at the neophyte computer user, we do aim to educate. The goal of each issue will be to provide you with information on new ways to use your Apple and teach you how to use the available software and hardware to its fullest extent. Product reviews will be an integral part of A + . As the creator of the Report Card review section of Info- World, 1 am keenly aware of the importance of critically evaluating the myriad products you must try to choose from.

The emphasis of the articles will be on practical applications.

Although we will be emphasizing off- the-shelf software, we will also be running regular features on programming tips, what’s new in languages, information on utilities, and such. Fun is not to be neglected either, and each issue will have numerous game reviews in our That’s Entertainment section.

Besides monthly articles on how to use your Apple most effectively and hardware and software reviews, there will be regular departments on users’ groups, new products, questions and answers (Rescue Squad), interesting tidbits (Dispatches), and education, as well as tutorials and columnists. This first issue will give you a taste of what is to come as we forge ahead with A + .

Always, when you start a new project, you want to thank all the folks who helped you pull together what you thought was the impossible dream, but to thank all the individuals for their contributions in this project would take up half the magazine. However, I will take a little space to say thanks to the people in Ziff-Davis who worked so hard to produce the first issue of A + . And I would also like to thank Kathleen Dixon, John Fenwick, and Rene Olson of Apple Computer and Steve Rosenthal for their invaluable assistance in this first effort.

Finally, I have a request for our new readers. This magazine is in existence to serve you, so let me know what you think by writing me letters with criticisms and, if you will, suggestions for articles that you would like to see in . I am looking forward to hearing from you and making A + the best editorial product possible!!

Publication date 1983
Topics a+appleaplusa pluscomputermagazine
Language English
 
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Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Making Information Personal via Gresham College [Video]

Making Information Personal via Gresham College





Professor Wilks will discuss the notion of an artificial Companion, a long-term software agent that could be present in any device: a screen, handbag or even a furry toy - and which understands the person it 'lives' with and whose memories and knowledge it comes to acquire and manage through conversation. One can think of a core function of Companion as living with an elderly person, lonely and wanting to revisit their memories and memorabilia, but needing assistance with information and agency.

Yorick Wilks is Visiting Professor of Artificial Intelligence at Gresham College. He is also Professor of Artificial Intelligence at the University of Sheffield, a Senior Research Fellow at the Oxford Internet Institute, and a Senior Scientist at the Florida Institute for Human and Machine Cognition. Professor Wilks is especially interested in the fields of artificial intelligence and the computer processing of language, knowledge and belief. His current research focuses on the possibility of software agents having identifiable personalities.

Read/Watch 
 


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Tuesday, February 26, 2019

My New Chromebook - HP Premium Chromebook 14" ($268 USD from Amazon)

My New Chromebook - HP Premium Chromebook 14

After 4 years of hard use — including overseas trips to Italy, the UK, and New Zealand — my original Chromebook, also an HP, started to develop a few lines on the display. I tore the system apart, which I have done on a couple of occasions, but this appears to be more related to general wear and tear as opposed to a loose connection or card. 

I didn’t realize the Chromebook was 4 years old until I looked back through my Amazon history and found the original order. It has served made well and at a fraction of the cost of the Apple MacBook Pro, I used to travel with. I find that I can do about 90% of all my typical work on a Chromebook, leaving things like video and audio editing to my even more venerable Mac Mini 2011. 

My New Chromebook - HP Premium Chromebook 14I was recently updating my iPhone to a newer model and at the extremely high, unsubsidized price, I knew I was going to have to make some monetary decisions to keep my technology budget in shape. Since the Chromebook is so much less expensive I decided to consciously avoid purchasing a new Mac laptop, put the money into a new iPhone XS (where I do most of my reading and social media work) knowing that if I needed a new laptop anytime soon I could get a new Chromebook at a fairly inexpensive price. I am glad I did that because only 6 months or so after the iPhone purchase, I needed to replace my old Chromebook.

A few lines on the screen didn’t hamper me much with the older HP unit, but a lot had changed in the Chromebook environment since I made that first purchase. Looking at the various models available — some which approach Apple prices — I found a unit that took advantage of many of these advances and yet was missing some of the more esoteric features like touchscreens and 180º screens that allowed you to turn the Chromebook into a tablet.

The HP Premium Chromebook 14” is a more basic model but has a number of enhancements over the old one. First, the screen is capable of full HD 1920x1080 resolution. This is a nice step up in screen real estate and clarity of videos. Next. it also supports running Android applications directly. I am not sure how much I will use this particular feature, but I testing it out a little at a time. The HP Premium Chromebook 14” also supports access to a Linux system under the hood, allowing you to access command line programs like sftp, ping and a few others. I haven’t loaded up many other Linux apps yet, but I plan on playing around with this quite a bit. Having access to native Linux tools on the laptop could help bridge the gap when suitable Chrome-based extensions and apps don’t meet specific needs.

My New Chromebook - HP Premium Chromebook 14

On the hardware side, the HP Premium Chromebook 14” comes with 2 USB-C ports for both charging and peripherals. In the short time I have had the computer, it seems to charge much more quickly than its older counterpart, which I would credit to the USB-C. It also allows you to place the charging cable on whatever side the computer makes the most sense. Sometimes you want it on the right and sometimes the left — perhaps to get close to the wall outlet. This is a small update, but flexibility is always nice. The system has more SSD drive space at 32GB, up from 16GB but has the same 4GB of RAM. I wanted to have 8GB, but those systems came at a much higher price point. The SD Card slot is a mini-slot instead of full-sized. This doesn’t cause me any immediate issues and the world seems to be moving more to the mini-sized cards anyway. Finally, 2 USB 3.0 ports and a headphone jack round out the available connections. The processor is an Intel Celeron N3350 and already seems quite a bit more spritely than the old Chromebook. Four years can make quite a difference in technology. 

One port that is missing is the full-sized HDMI from the older unit. I didn’t use this a lot, but an HDMI to VGA Adapter allowed me to easily connect to projectors and TVs when desired. A quick look online shows a lot of options for USB-C to VGA and HDMI dongles that are available, so I will probably pick up one of those to ensure I can use this unit for presentations in the future.

The finish on the HP Premium Chromebook 14”  is pebbled rather than glossy and think this will help to keep fingerprints from marring the surface which made the older unit look at bit dirty at times. 

The HP Premium Chromebook 14” was available from Amazon and other sources. The price including tax (delivery was free) came to $258 USD. Currently, pricing shows $268 USD.

Some fancier Chromebooks — like Google’s Pixel line — can cost upwards of $800-$1000 USD. Yes, these systems are much more capable, with more memory, touchscreens and such, but I look at my Chromebook as a cheap laptop alternative that can take a hard life on the road and one I won’t mind replacing if something happens to it. I can replace it cheaply, which is not something that can be said for Apple or Google’s models.

I have been very happy with my Chromebook over the years and I expect that to continue. Each new software update brings new features, higher performance and continued great, functionality. I update you again in a few months.

Specifications

  • 14" Full HD Widescreen IPS WLED-backlit (1920 x 1080) Display, Intel HD Graphics
  • Intel Dual-Core Celeron N3350 Processor 1.1GHz
  • 4GB LPDDR4 Memory, 32GB eMMC Internal Storage
  • Chromebook OS,HD TrueVision Webcam,Headphone/Speaker jack
  • USB 3.1, 802.11,Bluetooth 4.2, No DVD Optical Drive

Monday, February 25, 2019

Setting up Steam Link on Raspberry Pi is easy - here's how via Tech Advisor

Amazing to see such a cool solution a discontinued product. The instructions look simple enough for anyone to follow, too. — Douglas

Valve’s Steam Link peripheral was launched back in 2015 and allowed players to stream games from their computers to a TV without a direct connection. It made it possible to enjoy Steam games on the big screen, as most people tend to have larger TVs than PC monitors.

However, Valve decided to shutter the product after over three years on the market, with the last of the Steam Link units now disappearing from store shelves. So, what are those that want to stream games to do?

Thankfully, Steam Link is now available to install and use on the low-cost Raspberry Pi, bringing game streaming to the masses without the £49.99 price tag of the Steam Link unit. The issue is that there is no Raspberry Pi App Store, so there are a few steps to installing the Steam Link app.

Read Setting up Steam Link on Raspberry Pi is easy - here's how via Tech Advisor



An interesting link found among my daily reading

Saturday, February 23, 2019

Arduino Day 2019 via day.arduino.cc

Join an existing Arduino Day event or host one of your own! — Douglas

Arduino Day 2019 via day.arduino.cc

About Arduino Day

Arduino Day is a worldwide birthday celebration of Arduino. It's a 24 hour-long event – organized directly by the community, or by the Arduino founders – that brings people together to share their experiences and learn more about the open-source platform.

Who Can Participate?

All user groups, makerspaces, hackerspaces, fablabs, associations, teachers, professionals, and newbies are welcome.

What Can You Do During Arduino Day?

You can attend an event or organize one for your community. It doesn’t matter whether you are a Maker, an engineer, a designer, a developer or an educator: Arduino Day is open to anyone who wants to celebrate the amazing things that have been done (or can be done!) with the open-source platform. The events will feature different types of activities, tailored to local audiences all over the world.

Read Arduino Day 2019 via day.arduino.cc


Arduino Boards and Components via eBay

 

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† Available from the LA Public Library


An interesting link found among my daily reading

Thursday, February 21, 2019

This New Trick Will Change How You Use Google Docs Forever via Time

It is just a few seconds, but when you are doing something a thousand times over, it really adds up. Create new Google Docs, Sheets and more using a new short URL. - Douglas

Google’s making it easier for everyone — especially power Google Docs users who spend their days in the company’s office software — to quickly start new projects right from the Chrome browser.

In a tweet a Google account, the company announced a new list of shortcuts to create documents, slideshow presentations, spreadsheets, sites, and forms right from your web browser. The best part? It works in any browser, not just Google Chrome.

You can type doc.new, docs.new, or document.new in your web browser to make a new Google Doc, just like you would type a website address. Use sheet.new, sheets.new, or spreadsheet.new for new Google Sheets. Forms.new or form.new will open a new Google Form. Make new Slides with slide.new, slides.new, or presentation.new. Site.new, sites.new, or website.new are for making new Google Sites.

Read This New Trick Will Change How You Use Google Docs Forever via Time


An interesting link found among my daily reading

Monday, February 18, 2019

Raspberry Pi touchscreen round-up: From cheap tiny displays to tablet-sized panels via TechRepublic

The $35 Raspberry Pi is a remarkably capable computer for the money but, unlike many modern devices, doesn't ship with a screen.

Due to the Pi's remarkable success, a broad range of displays are now available for the tiny machine, from pocket to tablet-sized screens.

Even better, many of these are touchscreens, letting the user control the Pi without hooking up a separate keyboard and mouse. And if you just need a simple black and white display that consumes very little power, you can even augment your Pi with an eInk screen.

Read Raspberry Pi touchscreen round-up: From cheap tiny displays to tablet-sized panels via TechRepublic


Get Raspberry Pi Boards and Components from Amazon
Get Raspberry Pi Boards and Components from eBay

* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out!
† Available from the LA Public Library


An interesting link found among my daily reading

Saturday, February 16, 2019

Favorite Alexa Skills: NPR turns comedy game show ‘Wait, Wait Don’t Tell Me!’ into an Alexa and Google voice app via TechCrunch

A little bit of weekly fun direct from your Alexa device! — Douglas

NPR  is turning its popular game show program “Wait, Wait…Don’t Tell Me!” into a voice application for smart speakers, including both Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant-powered devices. The new app lets listeners play along at home by answering the fill-in-the-blank questions from this week’s news — just like the players do on the NPR podcast and radio show, which airs on more than 720 NPR member stations.

Also like the NPR program, the new smart speaker game includes the voice talent of the comedy quiz show’s hosts, Peter Sagal and Bill Kurtis.

To get started, you just say either “Alexa, open Wait Wait Quiz” or “Hey Google, talk to the Wait Wait Quiz,” depending on your device.

Read NPR turns comedy game show ‘Wait, Wait Don’t Tell Me!’ into an Alexa and Google voice app via TechCrunch


Looking for an Echo/Alexa Device?
Check out these recent upgrades and additions to Amazon’s product line!


An interesting link found among my daily reading

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

It's Now Legal to Hack DRM to Repair Your Own Devices via Gizmodo

In a blow to manufacturers that use digital rights management (DRM) protections to prevent consumers from tinkering with their own property, the Library of Congress has adopted new rules allowing anyone to hack the software of their devices for the purpose of performing repairs. The changes officially go into effect on October 28th.Advocates in the “right to repair” movement have a lot of complaints about the various methods corporations use to control who repairs their products, box people into software updates, and force obsolescence. One of the complaints is that copyright law in the U.S. has made it illegal to break DRM that blocks a users access to a device’s firmware. Motherboard first noticed that all changed today.

Read It's Now Legal to Hack DRM to Repair Your Own Devices via Gizmodo


An interesting link found among my daily reading

Monday, February 11, 2019

Petoi Nybble via Arduino Project Hub

This is Rongzhong from Pittsburgh. Eight months after my first post on OpenCat, I have quite a lot to update. Most importantly, I’m going to launch my first kitten on Indiegogo on Monday, Oct 22nd! The kitten’s name is Nybble. Links will be posted here, on my Twitter @PetoiCamp, or on Petoi.com.

This is Rongzhong from Pittsburgh. Eight months after my first post on OpenCat, I have quite a lot to update. Most importantly, I’m going to launch my first kitten on Indiegogo on Monday, Oct 22nd! The kitten’s name is Nybble. Links will be posted here, on my Twitter @PetoiCamp, or on Petoi.com.

Read Petoi Nybble - Arduino Project Hub via Arduino Project Hub


Arduino Boards and Components via Amazon

Arduino Boards and Components via eBay

* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out!
† Available from the LA Public Library


An interesting link found among my daily reading

Sunday, February 03, 2019

Historical Technology Books: 73 Magazine (October 1960) - 12 in a series

Technology isn't just computers, networks and phones. Technology has always been part of the human experience. All of our ancestors have looked for ways to help the survive and do less work for more gain. Archive.org has a host of old technology books (from mid-19th to mid-20th Century) available in many formats and on a host of topics. Many of the technologies discussed within these books are being put to use again these days in the back to the land" and homesteading movements. You might even find something that could address one of your own garden or farm issues, but has been lost to time and history. Enjoy! --Douglas


Historical Technology Books: 73 Magazine (October 1960) - 12 in a series

Historical Technology Books: 73 Magazine (October 1960) - 12 in a seriesHistorical Technology Books: 73 Magazine (October 1960) - 12 in a series

Available in PDF, Text, JPG formats, and more

* Click these links for more books and magazine in that date or subject area

Learn more about the history of technology with these books

* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out!
† Available from the LA Public Library