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Hardware

Devices: Allwinner, Yocto, Arduino

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GNU
Linux
Hardware

  • Allwinner H6 SBC offers dual Ethernet, four display outputs, M.2 expansion

    While the processor was introduced in 2017, there are only a few Allwinner H6 SBC’s on the market with, for instance, Orange Pi 3 or Pine H64 boards, and it never became as popular as solutions based Allwinner H3 processor.

    But Boardcon has now launched its own Allwinner H6 SBC targeting professionals with Boardcon EMH6 board combining a carrier board and a computer-on-module that can be integrated into products.

  • Automotive Grade Linux Releases UCB 10 Software Platform with Yocto Long Term Support

    Automotive Grade Linux (AGL), an open source project developing a shared software platform for in-vehicle technology, today announced the latest code release of the AGL platform, UCB 10, also known under the codename "Jumping Jellyfish."

    Developed through a joint effort by dozens of member companies, the AGL Unified Code Base (UCB) is an open source software platform that can serve as the de facto industry standard for infotainment, telematics and instrument cluster applications.

  • Arduino Blog » These cornhole boards react to your bean bag tosses

    The lawn game of cornhole has seen a surge in popularity over the last couple of decades. But if you’ve ever thought about raising its cool factor, then YouTuber Hardware Unknown has just what you’ve been waiting for: light and audio effects that react to your throws.

    Hardware Unknown’s foldable boards each feature an Arduino Nano for control. A vibration sensor is used to tell when a bean bag hits the board, and an IR break-beam setup senses when one goes into the hole.

Raspberry Pi CM3+ gets its own keyboard computer

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Hardware

Clockwork is pre-selling an $219 to $249, open-spec “DevTerm” retro AiO PC kit with a Raspberry Pi CM3+, a keyboard with gamepad, a 6.8-inch IPS screen, a thermal printer, and a battery holder. Future options will include RK3399 and Allwinner H6 models.

Clockwork’s open source DevTerm Kit runs Linux on a Raspberry Pi Compute Module 3+ Lite (CM3+ Lite) housed inside a keyboard chassis. Unlike the Raspberry Pi 4-like, keyboard form-factor Raspberry Pi 400, the fully hackable, retro-game oriented DevTerm boasts an integrated display and even a thermal printer.

Read more

Open Hardware: Librem/PureOS and Arduino

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Hardware
  • Technology as it Should Be

    In Imagine a world without apps Shira Ovide asks “a wild question: What if we played games, shopped, watched Netflix and read news on our smartphones — without using apps? Our smartphones, like our computers, would instead mostly be gateways to go online through a web browser.”

    This question can be extrapolated into a larger question: “What do we want from our technology?”

    The power of control by Big-Tech in the app store is but a small example of exploitation of our digital lives. If you don’t control the software, the companies who wrote that software control you. You become a digital prisoner.

    [...]

    The ability to encrypt your personal data with your own keys on your own device ensures that you fully control your digital life. With this as the starting point, you can then choose (aka opt-in) to share what you want with the people you want. This right is rooted in personal property rights, and is one of the most egregious abuses by Big Tech and those that have influence over them. If manufacturers, operating system developers, and software developers took a Hippocratic-like oath, one area society would agree on is the right that your personal data is your personal property and something you must retain control over and consent to share before it leaves your possession.

    Without regulatory assistance to protect personal data, society is left to fend for itself against the pressure from a multi-trillion dollar industry to exploit that personal data. There is no way to resist that pressure without the market creating convenient alternatives that honor that right while completely avoiding Big Tech. Purism creates products that are increasing in convenience daily, that fully protect you, and these products are the market answer to the worst abuses of Big Tech companies.

  • Arduino Blog » Control a wheelchair using an EEG headset and Arduino

    In an effort to help provide paralyzed patients with an easier way to operate their wheelchairs, these makers have developed a system that uses an OpenBCI brainwave cap to collect electroencephalogram (EEG) and electromyography (EMG) signals, literally from a user’s head. Data is then sent to a PC running OpenBCI software and passed along to an Arduino Uno via Bluetooth for control.

  • Arduino Blog » A military-looking cyberdeck with a built-in Geiger counter

    Looking inside the rugged case reveals a Raspberry Pi 3 that provides computing power along with an Arduino Leonardo for a custom joystick input device.

Open Hardware: Raspberry Pi, Arduino and RISC-V

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Hardware
  • Raspberry Pi 400 kit ships with 7-inch or 13.3-inch touchscreen display

    The Raspberry Pi Foundation has recently launched the Raspberry Pi 4 keyboard computer with impressive performance thanks to a well-designed cooling solution, and I think it’s a great tool for kids (and adults) who may want to carry a Raspberry Pi around. 

  • Shutdown button with Raspberry PI and Python - peppe8o

    Because of their low price, mini button switches are useful for many purposes. We have already analyzed how they work (ref. Using mini Switch Button with Raspberry PI and Python) and a funny use case (ref. Reaction Game (v2) with Raspberry PI and Mini Button Switch).

  • Arduino Blog » This remote-controlled storytelling apparatus is made up of Arduino-driven toy animatronics

    As an exhibit at the Phaneo Science Center in Wolfsburg, Germany, Niklas Roy and Felix Figus created a remotely-operated storytelling apparatus dubbed “Smart Fairy Tale.”

    When initiated, a little red ball rolls down the installation’s transparent tubing, triggering different interactions based on the interruption of light sensors along its path. 25 Arduino Nanos are used to control each individual animatronic part of the “story,” making the code manageable and allowing the overall machine to still work if there’s a malfunction in one section.

  • Pine64's PINECIL RISC-V soldering iron launched for $25

    We’ve previously mentioned PINECIL RISC-V soldering iron during Pine64’s release of PineCube open-source IP camera development kit, and the good news is the soldering iron is now available for $24.99 on Pine64 store together with optional sets of gross or fine soldering tips compatible with the one used with TS100 model The soldering iron is powered by GigaDevice GD32VF103TB 32-bit RISC-V general-purpose microcontroller and features a small display and two buttons for user interaction, as well as changeable tips.

Open Hardware: Raspberry Pi 4 and Arduino

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Hardware

  • Vulkan for the Raspberry Pi 4 with V3DV is now conformant and official | GamingOnLinux

    Great news for the Vulkan API and for fans of the Raspberry Pi 4, as the upcoming V3DV that will be part of the next Mesa release is now an official conforming driver.

    Sharing the news on the official RPi blog, guest poster Iago Toral from Igalia announced that nearly a year after being first announced, the V3DV Vulkan driver for the Raspberry Pi 4 now passes The Khronos Group's Vulkan 1.0 conformance tests and is now officially listed.

  • The smart video doorbells letting hackers into your home

                     

                       

    We tested 11 different doorbells found on eBay and Amazon, many of which had scores of 5-star reviews, were recommended as ‘Amazon’s Choice’, or on the bestseller list. One was labelled as the number one bestseller in ‘door viewers’. We found vulnerabilities with every single one.

  • Make your own virtual reality 3D Shooter

             

  • Homemade recycling rig turns plastic waste into new products

    While that plastic cup, bag, dish, or other item may have served its purpose, more than likely it could be formed into something new. With this in mind, the SOTOP-Recycling team of Manuel Maeder, Benjamin Krause, and Nadina Maeder developed an automated injection molding machine that can be built at home and is small enough to allow you to run your own recycling operation!

    [...]

    Everything is controlled by an Arduino Mega.

  • Delock MQTT-enabled power socket switches

    The included leaflet is sufficient to get started. Plugging the device into mains has it create a WiFi access point I connect to, and I can then configure it to connect to my home network. The Tasmota firmware spoke German to me all the time, and the only reason I can think of, as my browsers are all set to English, is that it was built that way for delivery here. Ronald confirms that and explains I can flash the device with an en firmware from here (I pasted the link to tasmota.bin into the firmware update page).

Raspberry Pi automation add-on offers ADCs, DIDO, and UPS

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GNU
Linux
Hardware

Edgedevices.io’s second-gen “Pi-oT 2” Raspberry Pi automation add-on offers 8x ADCs, 6x digital outputs, and Ethernet plus options including a 2-hour UPS, RS485, 4x 24V digital inputs, and a 12-24VDC input.

Last year, Cleveland-based Pi-oT, now called Edgedevices.io, launched a Kickstarter campaign for a Pi-oT industrial controller add-on for the Raspberry Pi that is housed within a DIN-rail mountable chassis. Edgedevices.io has now returned to Kickstarter with a Pi-oT 2 model loaded with plenty of new features including DIDO and an Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) while losing the 5x relays of the original.

Read more

Also: Giveaway: Win one of three Linux-friendly LABISTS Raspberry Pi 4 8GB RAM Starter Kits worth $129.99!

GNU/Linux on Devices and Open Hardware

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Hardware
  • Linux-driven module and starter kit tap Renesas RZ/G2

    TQ’s “TQMaRZG2x” module runs Linux on a dual- to octa-core, Cortex-A57 and -A53 based RZ/G2 processor with up to 8GB LPDDR4 and 64GB eMMC plus an optional dev kit and -40 to 85°C support.

    When reporting on the SMARC 2.0 SoM collaboration between Renesas and RelySys last week featuring Renesas’ scalable, 64-bit RZ/G2 processor, we saw that we missed a September announcement from TQ Embedded about its own RZ/G2 module. The 77 x 50mm TQMaRZG2x is listed as “new” and is available with an optional new Embedded Starterkit STKaRZG2x evaluation board. The module is the first of several Renesas based products from TQ.

  • Mass-Produced, Librem 5 Linux Smartphone Begins Shipping to Customers

    Their announcement notes their work on software making desktop applications "adaptive" to phone form factors, adding "This suite of software has now become the most popular software stack to use on other handheld Linux hardware." And they close with an appreciative comment from Purism's founder and CEO Todd Weaver:

    "Shipping the Librem 5 has been an immense multi-year developmental effort. It is the culmination of people's desire to see an alternative to Android and iOS and fund it, coupled with dedication from a team of experts addressing hardware, kernel, operating system, and applications that has turned a lofty near-impossible goal into reality. We have built a strong foundation and with the continued support of customers, the community, and developers, we will continue to deliver revolutionary products like the Librem 5 running PureOS."

  • Understanding Open Source Hardware

    Open source hardware is “a set of design principles and legal practices, not a specific type of object,” says Opensource.com. Thus, although the term is often associated with electronics, it can apply to other objects as well, including boats, houses, industrial machines, and medical devices.

    The main principles defining open source hardware are similar to those of open source software. The Open Source Hardware (OSHW) Definition 1.0 is in fact “based on the Open Source Definition for Open Source Software, which was created by Bruce Perens and the Debian developers as the Debian Free Software Guidelines.”

  • Evaluating Precursor’s Hardware Security « bunnie's blog

    Hardware security is a multi-faceted problem. First, there is the question of “can I trust this piece of hardware was built correctly?”; specifically, are there implants and back doors buried in the hardware? We refer to this as the “supply chain problem”. It is a particularly challenging problem, given the global nature of our supply chains, with parts pulled from the four corners of the world, passing through hundreds of hands before reaching our doorstep. Precursor addresses this problem head-on with open, verifiable hardware: the keyboard, display, and motherboard are easy to access and visually inspect for correct construction. No factory or third-party tool is ever trusted with secret material. Precursor is capable of generating its own secret keys and sealing them within the hardware, without additional tools.

    We also use a special kind of logic chip for the CPU – an FPGA – configured by the user, not the factory, to be exactly the CPU that the user specified. Crucially, most users have no evidence-based reason to trust that a CPU contains exactly what it claims to contain; few have the inspection capability to verify a chip in a non-destructive manner. On the other hand, with an FPGA, individual users can craft and inspect CPU bitstreams with readily available tools. Furthermore, the design can be modified and upgraded to incorporate countermeasures against hardware exploits discovered in the FPGA’s underlying fabric. In other words, the current trustability situation for an ASIC-style CPU is basically “I surrender”, whereas with an FPGA, users have the power to configure and patch their CPUs.

    [...]

    Once Precursor has been glued shut, we propose the easiest method to recover the ciphertext and to gain access to the JTAG ports is to put the Precursor device into a precision CNC milling machine, mill out the PCB from the back side, and then place the remaining assembly into a pogo-pin based mechanism to perform the readout. This of course destroys the Precursor device in the process, but it is probably the most direct and reliable method of recovering the encryption keys, as it is very similar to an existing technique used for certain types of attacks on iPhones. Storing keys in BBRAM can greatly complicate the task of milling out the PCB by creating a high risk of accidental key erasure, but a sufficiently precise CNC with a non-conductive ceramic bit, or a precision laser-based ablation milling system can reduce the risk of key loss substantially. Cryogenic cooling of the FPGA chip itself may also help to preserve key material in the case of very short accidental power glitches.

  • ASUS unveils Tinker Board 2 SBC with faster Rockchip RK3399 / OP1 processor

    ASUS surprised the maker community in 2017 with the introduction of the Rochchip RK3288 powered Tinker Board to compete as Raspberry Pi 3 Model B. It was followed by Tinker Board S with built-in storage and other new features, as well as Tinker Board Edge T and Edge R SBC’s both with an AI accelerator namely Google Edge TPU and the NPU inside Rockchip RK3399Pro. The company has now launched a new model called Tinker Board 2 without AI accelerator, but featuring Rockchip RK3399, or more exactly the higher grade Rockchip OP1 used in Chromebooks, delivering 96% faster single-thread performance and a 64% boost in multi-core performance compared to the Rockchip RK3288 processor found in the original Tinker Board, while the GPU is around 28% faster with glmark2-es2 off-screen benchmark.

  • $89 Lite3DP resin 3D printer fits in the palm of your hand (Crowdfunding)

    I thought Selpic A-star 3D printer we recently covered was already small, but if you’re looking for an ultra-portable printer, it will be hard to beat the Arduino-based, open-source hardware Lite3DP resin 3D printer that can fit in the palm of your hand, and weighs just around 350 grams.

User-hostile Hardware

Filed under
Hardware
Microsoft
Mac
  • Linus Torvalds wants Apple’s new M1-powered Macs to run Linux

    Earlier this month, Apple revealed its own ARM-based M1 processor, along with new MacBooks and a desktop Mac Mini powered by this chip. Reviewers across the globe have been praising Apple‘s first attempt, giving it high marks for performance and battery life.

    All this positive coverage has tempted many to take the plunge and buy one of the new machines — even if some apps are not running natively at the moment. Even Linus Torvalds, the principal developer of the Linux kernel, wants one.

    [...]

    Linux support on MacBooks would’ve made it a more attractive bet for programmers. However, I don’t think any engineers at the Cupertino campus plan to make that happen anytime soon. Sorry, Linus.

  • New Microsoft chip will come with added costs, says ex-NSA hacker

    Microsoft's new security chip, announced last week, will have an impact on hardware-only attacks, an American security professional says, adding that it could also assist in firmware security, but would result in added costs.

Open Hardware: RISC-V and Raspberry Pi

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Hardware
  • ESP32-C3 WiFi & BLE RISC-V processor is pin-to-pin compatible with ESP8266

    When we reported about ESP32-S2-MINI modules last September, we also noted Espressif teased us with ESP32-S3 and ESP32-C3 with close to no details. ESP32-S3 is expected to be a multi-core WiFI & Bluetooth processor with AI instructions/accelerator, but there were no details about ESP32-C3 at all, and we only found out it would be a RISC-V processor several weeks ago.

  • Raspberry Pi 4 doing domotics

    There does not seem to be any packages for Domoticz. The standard installation method seem to be using an installer shell script. By default, running that script with require root access, to add package dependencies, and will install Domoticz as you current user. I want a dedicated user to run Domoticz ; neither root, nor myself.

  • Classify your trash with Raspberry Pi

Open Hardware/Modding: AOSP and Arduino Projects

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GNU
Linux
Hardware
  • Khadas VIM3 & VIM3L SBC's become Android reference boards

    If you need to work on the very latest development version of Android or AOSP, you can either get one of the supported phones such as Google Pixel 5, one of the reference boards for Android which should be better for development and also fairly cheaper. We previously reported about Hikey, Hikey960, and DragonBoard 845c single board computers being part of the short list of reference boards for the Android Open-Source Project (AOSP), but Amlogic powered Khadas VIM3 and VIM3L have recently been added to the official devices page which makes them the first AOSP reference boards with a dedicated NPU / AI accelerator.

  • Arduino Blog » Monitor your heart rate while asleep with ZazHRM

    Have you ever wondered what your heart rate looked like when you were catching some Zs? Or perhaps you would like to check up on how someone nearby is sleeping, without actually disturbing that person. The ZazHRM monitoring system by Alan Do lets you do both, with a pulse sensor hooked up to an Arduino Uno, which in turn sends data to an Android phone in almost real-time via Bluetooth.

    The receiving device runs an MIT App Inventor routine, which can output alarms if the person under observation’s heart rate goes out of range. Results are also logged for later analysis.

  • Arduino Blog » What’s not to love about this realistic beating heart?

    This little motor rotates back and forth under control of an Arduino Uno, making it appear to pulse up and down on a table. One could see this enhanced in a variety of ways, perhaps with a bit of fake blood for an even more lifelike look, or with inputs to the Arduino for interactive capabilities.

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Kernel (Linux): Windows Assimilation, Wake-on-LAN, AMD and Intel

  • Tuxera First to Bring Network Bandwidth-Saving SMB Compression Feature to Linux Environments
  • Tuxera First to Bring Network Bandwidth-Saving SMB Compression Feature to Linux Environments

    Tuxera, a world-leader in quality-assured storage management and networking software, announced that the company's SMB server implementation, Fusion File Share by Tuxera, now offers transparent compression to platforms outside of Microsoft Windows. Compression is being rapidly and widely adopted in the storage industry as a feature in memory hardware, file system implementations, and also networking protocols such as Microsoft's server messaging block technology (SMB). The ability to compress files inline during transfer can significantly reduce bandwidth and transfer time. Microsoft released the transparent compression feature to their SMB protocol specification in early 2019. However, Tuxera is the first to implement SMB compression outside of Microsoft Windows, bringing this highly in-demand feature to Linux environments in enterprises around the world.

  • Wake-on-LAN

    With Wake-on-LAN (WoL) it can be slightly easier to manage machines in-house. You can fire up the workstation and start the day’s compile jobs (to catch up with overnight work by the KDE community, say) while drinking an espresso downstairs and doomscrolling. [...] If all the administrative bits are in place, then the simple way to wake up a machine is wake <hostname>. This requires root, since it sends specially-crafted (broadcast) Ethernet packets, which isn’t something that regular users can do.

  • AMD+SUSE Tackling Frequency Invariance For AMD EPYC 7002 CPUs - Phoronix

    Thanks to work by AMD and SUSE engineers, the Linux kernel could soon be seeing frequency invariance support for EPYC 7002 "Rome" processors for yielding greater performance and power efficiency. Over the past year we have seen a lot of Linux kernel work for dealing with frequency invariance but to now that on the x86 side has been focused on Intel Xeon processors. Now through the cooperation of AMD with patches led by SUSE, frequency invariance is being worked on for the EPYC 7002 "Rome" processors.

  • Intel Begins Landing Their Open-Source Vulkan Driver Ray-Tracing Support

    This week marked the release of Vulkan 1.2.162 with the ray-tracing extensions now finalized. As such Intel's stellar open-source team has begun landing their work around Vulkan ray-tracing ahead of the Xe HPG hardware availability that will support this functionality. Back in October I wrote about Intel preparing their open-source driver support for Vulkan ray-tracing ahead of Xe HPG and now with the updated Vulkan spec out there they are able to push more of their work.