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SciFi

9 open source robotics projects

Filed under
OSS
SciFi

Open source isn't just changing the way we interact with the world, it's changing the way the world interacts back with us. Case in point: open source robotics.

Robots are playing an increasing role in our world, and while we perhaps haven't reached the utopian future with robotic housekeepers imagined for us in the Jetsons, robotics are making advances in fields that fifty years ago would have been completely unimaginable.

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Introducing MrRobot, Ubuntu Touch App Enabled Robotics Powered by Raspberry Pi

Filed under
Linux
SciFi

Today we have the great pleasure of introducing you to a brand-new project developed during the Ubuntu ShenZhen hackathon by Joseph Wang. It is called MrRobot, just like the TV show we taked about in a couple of articles right here on Softpedia.

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Linux-based bipedal robot endures kicks and dodgeball attacks

Filed under
Linux
SciFi

OSU demonstrated its speedy, bipedal ATRIAS robot withstanding a barrage of kicks and dodgeballs. ATRIAS runs on ROS and a real-time Xenomai Linux kernel.

Researchers at Oregon State University’s Dynamic Robotics Laboratory have demonstrated their Linux-driven ATRIAS robot withstanding a considerable beating while keeping its cool. OSU recently posted videos of its unusual torture testing procedures, which include human kicks and a barrage of dodgeballs, as reported by IEEE Spectrum. Eventually, the human-sized bipedal robot is knocked from its feet, but not before it absorbs a lot of hits. The robot protects itself with strategies such as side stepping and hopping on one foot

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Linux for Astronomers

Filed under
GNU
Linux
SciFi

I've looked at specialty distributions that were created for engineers and biologists in previous articles, but these aren't the only scientific disciplines that have their own distributions. So in this article, I introduce a distribution created specifically for astronomers, called Distro Astro. This distribution bundles together astronomy software to help users with tasks like running observatories or planetariums, doing professional research or outreach.

From the very first moment of booting up Distro Astro, you will notice that this distribution is aimed at astronomers. The look and feel of items, from the boot splash screen to wallpapers and screensavers, have all been given an astronomical theme. Even the default wallpaper is a slideshow of Hubble images.

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Imitate Fake Hollywood Terminal Hacking Melodrama with This Amazing App for Ubuntu

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Movies
SciFi
Humor

We all know that Hollywood movies are the worst place to see some accurate depiction of anything from real life and that includes computer terminals. Well, there is a solution for that now and we can only hope that some misguided producer will see the new "hollywood" package made for this exact purpose.

Hollywood movie producers invest a lot of time and money in custom interfaces and GUIs that don't really do anything, but they think they’re nice and interesting on film. Most of the time, someone is hacking away by typing frenetically while windows with crazy stuff open and close. This is why this kind of image is now seared into the public's consciousness and hacking looks more exciting than in real life. It isn't.

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NASA’s R2 bot to receive legs via SpaceX

Filed under
Linux
SciFi

The 330-pound Robonaut 2 measures 3 feet, 4 inches tall from the waist, and is equipped with more than 350 sensors. Its stomach-located brain runs Linux on 38 PowerPC-based processors. The robot is operated remotely by humans, using the Robonaut Tele-operation System (RTS). This telerobotics system requires a ground- or space-based user to wear a 3D visor, vest, and pressure-sensitive gloves. (For more on the R2, see our original coverage.)

According to the OSRF, the R2 team also uses the open source Gazebo simulator to simulate R2 for development and testing. NASA and ROS.org released their Gazebo models of the R2 and the ISS as open source.

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Top 10 tech tricks we're sick of seeing in movies

Filed under
Movies
Sci/Tech
SciFi

cnet.com: Think how awesome it was the first time you saw a lightsaber in action. Or how your mind was officially shredded when Neo mastered the Matrix. Technology in movies is cool. But for every thrilling example of cool-ass tech, Hollywood seems to produce a tired, dated cliche.

Michael Crichton, million-selling science-fiction author, dies at 66

Filed under
SciFi
Obits

latimes.com: Best-selling author Michael Crichton, who wrote such novels as "The Andromeda Strain" and "Jurassic Park," and created the popular TV drama "ER," has died at 66, his family said today.

George Lucas Talks More 'Star Wars' TV

Filed under
SciFi

cinematical.com: In a two-part interview with TV Guide, George Lucas talked some more about those two Star Wars TV series he currently has in the works.

BBC confirms Doctor Who series five

Filed under
SciFi

the register: The BBC has announced there will be a fifth series of Doctor Who, although it won't be until 2010 and David Tennant is doubtful to reprise his role as the Time Lord.

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More in Tux Machines

Mirrors for Speedier Downloads

To put it briefly, PureOS provides ISO images and packages for download. Recently, we’ve seen increased traffic on our download site, and we expect that traffic to grow. We’re hoping to address increased traffic with mirrors for both package updates and downloads. We’re very happy to announce that Sonic, a highly-ranked and privacy-respecting ISP, has offered to host a mirror for PureOS. This will alleviate some of the traffic, especially for those in North America, without compromising security. The security of the packages remains guaranteed by our signatures; the mirror simply holds another, identical set of packages, signed with Purism’s key. The mirror is easy to use. For example, if you’d like to use the mirrors for downloading an image, simply use this URL: https://mirrors.sonic.net/pureos/downloads/. And here’s the link to the most recent GNOME Live build. Read more

Audiocasts/Shows

  • LHS Episode #303: The Weekender XXXIV

    It's time once again for The Weekender. This is our bi-weekly departure into the world of amateur radio contests, open source conventions, special events, listener challenges, hedonism and just plain fun. Thanks for listening and, if you happen to get a chance, feel free to call us or e-mail and send us some feedback. Tell us how we're doing. We'd love to hear from you.

  • 09/20/2019 | Linux Headlines

    The first Open Core Summit, an activist programmer takes aim at Chef, a French court disagrees with Valve’s licensing model, and Lennart Poettering wants to rethink the Home directory.

  • Too Good To Be True | TechSNAP 412

    It's TechSNAP story time as we head out into the field with Jim and put Sure-Fi technology to the test. Plus an update on Wifi 6, an enlightening Chromebook bug, and some not-quite-quantum key distribution.

Graphics: AMD, GNOME Shell on Wayland and NVIDIA Nsight Graphics

  • AMD Pushes Back 3rd Gen Threadripper & Ryzen 9 3950X Until November

    While the Ryzen 9 3950X and 3rd Gen Ryzen Threadripper processors were reportedly on track for launching in October with updates as of a few weeks ago, today AMD announced a slight delay in launching these new processors.

  • AMD have delayed the Ryzen 9 3950X and 3rd generation Threadripper until November

    Today, AMD sent out a brief statement about a delay in their 16 core Ryzen 9 3950X and the 3rd generation Threadripper. [...] So if you were looking to grab either, keep an eye out in November. Will share any more news when they send it about the expected date and pricing.

  • AMD Sends In Initial Batch Of Fixes To Linux 5.4 - Includes Dali Support

    While just yesterday the big DRM feature pull was sent in for Linux 5.4, AMD has also volleyed out their initial batch of fixes for this next version of the kernel. This new AMDGPU pull isn't strictly fixes but as anticipated does include the recently reported Dali APU support. Dali along with Renoir -- also newly-supported in Linux 5.4 -- are some of AMD's 2020 APUs. Dali will be targeting the lower-end of the spectrum it's expected for value mobile/embedded. From the driver code, Dali looks like a newer revved version of the current-gen Picasso APUs. Both Dali and Renoir are based on the Vega architecture.

  • Linux Plumbers Conference 2019, part 2

    Pain points and missing pieces with Wayland, or specifically GNOME Shell: GNOME Shell is slower Synergy doesn't work(?) - needs to be in the compositor With Nvidia proprietary driver, mutter and native Wayland clients get GPU acceleration but X clients don't No equivalent to ssh -X. Pipewire goes some way to the solution. The whole desktop can be remoted over RDP which can be tunnelled over SSH. No remote login protocol like XDMCP No Xvfb equivalent Various X utilities that grab hot-keys don't have equivalents for Wayland Not sure if all X's video acceleration features are implemented. Colour format conversion and hardware scaling are implemented. Pointer movement becomes sluggish after a while (maybe related to GC in GNOME Shell?) Performance, in general. GNOME Shell currently has to work as both a Wayland server and an X compositor, which limits the ability to optimise for Wayland.

  • NVIDIA's Nsight Graphics 2019.5 Released With Better Vulkan Coverage

    NVIDIA this week released Nsight Graphics 2019.5 as the newest feature update to their proprietary developer tool for graphics profiling and debugging across multiple APIs. The Nsight Graphics 2019.5 release brings support for more than a dozen new Vulkan extensions, a variety of user-interface improvements, compatibility enhancements, and better syntax highlighting.

Ubuntu: Video Encoder Performance, Ubuntu Touch, LZ4 Compression

  • Clear Linux vs. Ubuntu 19.10 Video Encoder Performance On The Core i9 9900K

    Often when doing cross-distribution benchmarks, readers often comment on the performance of Clear Linux particularly for video encoding use-cases as surprisingly different from other distributions. Some argue that it's just over the default CPU frequency scaling governor or compiler flag defaults, so here is a look at that with Ubuntu 19.10 daily benchmarked against Clear Linux. On the same Core i9 9900K system I recently ran some benchmarks looking at Clear Linux vs. Ubuntu 19.10 and then Ubuntu 19.10 with various common tunables to make it more akin to Clear Linux. Ubuntu 19.10 was used due to its recent software components being at similar versions to Intel's rolling-release distribution.

  • Serge Hallyn: First experience with Ubuntu Touch

    For the past few weeks I’ve been using a nexus 4 running ubuntu touch as, mostly, my daily driver. I’ve enjoyed it quite a bit. In part that’s just the awesome size of the nexus 4. In part, it’s the ubuntu touch interface itself. If you haven’t tried it, you really should. (Sailfish ambiances are so much prettier, but ubuntu touch is much nicer to use – the quick switch to switch between two apps, for instance. Would that I could have both.). And in part it’s just the fact that it really feels like – is – a regular ubuntu system.

  • Ubuntu 19.10 to use LZ4 compression to boot even faster

    anonical’s Ubuntu 19.10 “Eoan Ermine” will boot even faster than its predecessor, Ubuntu 19.04 “Disco Dingo” according to Ubuntu’s kernel team. After extensive testing on a variety of compression options on the Ubuntu installation image, Canonical engineers determined that the LZ4 decompression method provided a most appreciable gain in speed.