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Hardware

Raspberry Pi and Arduino

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Hardware
  • This clock really, really doesn’t want to tell you the time
  • Raspberry Pi's Cheapest Computer Could Ease Ventilator Shortage

    The Raspberry Pi Foundation has seen a recent surge in demand for its boards due to the covid-19 pandemic. Part of that demand comes from people experimenting with the cheap computers with newfound time to kill at home, but the foundation is reserving some of its Pi Zero inventory for hospital ventilators. The $5 single-board computers are not only ideal to use as control boards, but the Raspberry Pi Foundation also has the ability to produce orders quickly for ventilator manufacturers.

  • Raspberry Pi to Power Ventilators as Demand for Boards Surges

    A little slice of Pi could play a big role in the fight against Coronavirus. The Raspberry Pi Foundation is ramping up production of the Raspberry Pi Zero because ventilator manufacturers are using the $5 computer to power their life-saving devices. Demand for all Raspberry Pi Models has surged in recent weeks as people use the inexpensive computers for tasks such as remote learning and doing maker projects at home.

    As the need for ventilators grows, manufacturers are looking for control boards to serve as the brains of their devices. Recently, Intel was reportedly asked to produce 20,000 Broadwell processors to meet demand from medical companies. Because of its production abilities, Raspberry Pi Foundation is able to provide those orders quickly.

  • Raspberry Pi like Apollo Lake edge-AI SBC launches with community site

    Adlink’s “Vizi-AI” dev kit for machine vision AI runs Linux, Intel OpenVino, and Adlink Edge middleware on an Apollo Lake based Adlink “LEC-AL” SMARC module running on an Adlink carrier equipped with an Intel Myriad-X VPU.

    Adlink, Arrow, and Intel have teamed up on a development kit for entry-level AI industrial machine vision. The Vizi-AI Industrial Machine Vision AI Developer Kit is available on an Arrow shopping page for $199, but is currently sold out, which is sometimes another way of saying it’s on pre-order.

  • 4 of the Best Operating Systems to Use with Arduino

    Arduino IDE is designed to run well on Windows 10, macOS, and Linux. However, in contrast to Raspberry Pi, which is a fully-fledged computer, Arduino runs as a single-board microcontroller. Therefore, a real time operating system (RTOS) is preferred in actual Arduino projects since it has a smaller footprint, better control over the tiny peripherals, and no buffering delays.

    The following is our list of industry recommended operating systems for Arduino’s embedded environment.

Coronavirus: Raspberry Pi-powered ventilator to be tested in Colombia

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Hardware

A team in Colombia is to test a ventilator made with a Raspberry Pi computer and easy-to-source parts.
The design and computer code were posted online in March by a man in California, who had no prior experience at creating medical equipment.
Marco Mascorro, a robotics engineer, said he built the ventilator because knew the machines were in high demand to treat Covid-19.
His post prompted a flood of feedback from healthcare workers.
He has used the advice to make improvements.
"I am a true believer that technology can solve a lot of the problems we have right now specifically in this pandemic," he told the BBC.
The Colombian team said the design was important for their South American country because parts for traditional models could be hard to obtain.

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Devices/Embedded, Rock Pi 4 and Android TV

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GNU
Linux
Hardware
  • Events Calendar Launched for Open Source or/and Embedded Systems Exhibitions, Workshops, Seminars…

    Last month after writing about Arrow Embedded To Go online event, I was told: “it would be great to have a ‘event’ area on the site…” So I looked into it and installed a plugin to provide just that with an Events Calendar page.

    Currently, there are two events listed, but if you are organizing any events related to embedded systems, open-source hardware, the maker community feel free to submit your event on the page.

  • SGET SMARC 2.1 Hardware Specification Allows Up to 4 Cameras, 4 Ethernet Interfaces

    There are plenty of standards for systems-on-module that are supposed to allow interoperability between vendors. For example vendor 1 may create a Qseven SoM that works with vendor 2’s Qseven compliant carrier board which should accept any Qseven compatible module, although in practice, there are always some small differences that may cause problems.

  • Rock Pi 4 and Android TV

    Rockpi.org has a newer Single Board Computer (SBC) called a Rock Pi 4. The Rock Pi 4 supports the ability to be used as an Android TV as well as running Linux distros.

    In this article, I will explain how to make an Android TV for the Rock Pi 4.

Devices/Embedded With GNU/Linux: SEGGER’s J-Link, GNU/Linux on Phones and Boards

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Linux
Hardware
  • SEGGER's J-Flash now available for macOS & Linux

    The v6.70 release of SEGGER’s J-Link software includes tools that are now available on the most popular operating systems (OS) options: Windows, macOS and Linux.

    The J-Link software and its accompanying command line tools have been cross-platform for many years, but the applications with graphical user interfaces (GUIs) have only been available on Windows.

    These have now been rewritten, one at a time to give the package much wider OS compatibility.

  • [Older] Linux on Mobile Part 1: Reasons Why We Bother

    To be fair, Android is technically Linux-based in as far as it uses a quite old version of the Linux kernel. It also does comply with the letter of the law as far as releasing open source code goes. That’s pretty much where it ends, though, and the ecosystem that has admittedly made Android successful, particularly Google Mobile Services, is as closed as proprietary software can get. And when doors are closed, the easier it is for backdoors to be created in secret.

    This isn’t a claim that open source software and, by extension, open source phones, are more bug-free or are a breeze to fix. The history of open source and recent vulnerability reports prove that’s not the case. It also doesn’t mean that anyone, even non-developers, will be able to spot a security exploit, much less close it on their own. What an open source Linux phone and ecosystem means is that the chances of backdoors, spyware, and such getting through source code are much less when there are more eyes looking at it. And more eyes will indeed be able to look because it isn’t hidden behind closed doors.

  • Linux on Mobile Part 2: Where we are now

    Making smartphone hardware is a complicated and expensive process (foreshadowing part 3 of this series) and, to give credit where credit is due, Google has done a lot of work to even get hardware makers and suppliers to pay attention to its Android platform. But while that means that Android can easily tap into that smartphone hardware, it also means that only Android is able to tap into that proprietary hardware.

    Rather than go through the lengthy and risky process of reverse engineering firmware, open source developers opted to make a compromise and developed libhybris. In a nutshell, it is a compatibility layer that allows traditional Linux software to talk to the hardware via the usual Android hardware libraries. It’s not a perfect solution but it has at least allowed a few Linux-based projects to hit the road running rather than starting from the ground up.

  • Rugged Coffee Lake systems offer a mix of PCIe and MXM expansion

    Adlink has launched four Linux-ready “Matrix” edge computers with 8th and 9th Gen Coffee Lake CPUs: the compact MXE-5600 and similar, but up to 3x PCIe MXC-6600 and the MVP-5100-MXM and similar, up to 2x PCIe MVP-6100-MXM.

    Adlink announced the release of its next generation of Matrix embedded computers, which follow earlier Matrix models such as the Intel 6th Gen Skylake powered MVP-5000 and MVP-6000. The four new Matrix models run Ubuntu 18.04 or Windows 10 IoT Enterprise on 8th Gen Coffee Lake and 9th Gen Coffee Lake Refresh processors.

  • M2MC Releases PG Board, a New Version of NB-IoT Prototyping Kit

    Earlier this month M2MC introduced the latest version of the PG Board. It’s designed for the Narrowband generation of the Internet of things, also known as NB-IoT. PG Board now includes an improved antenna, a larger button for testing the network signal, and new light wires for the LED and light sensor alike.

    This prototyping kit has dual functions: it will work as a prototyping device for creating and debugging IoT firmware while also working overtime as a full-featured multi-purpose sensor for end customers. M2MC is the first manufacturer to tackle these two applications with just one solution.

    PG Board ships with five of the most popular sensors, but you can always connect additional sensors to create a unique multi-functional IoT module. STM32 chips from STMicroelectronics are used as well for those looking to utilize smaller sensors.

Ventilators With 'Open' Slant

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Hardware
  • The Curious Case of Open-Source Ventilators

    Recently, the entire planet has been taken over by COVID-19 pandemic. As I started writing this article, the total death count due to this virus was 113, 296.

    This pandemic has created a shortage of ventilators which is a crucial mechanism to treat a COVID-19 patient who are unable to breath on their own. Last year, the total number of ventilators needed to meet the worldwide (or I’d say planet-wide) demand was 77, 000. Now, additional 33,000 ventilators are needed in the New York alone. The biomedical manufacturers have boosted their production by 30%-50% but cannot alone meet a 1000% increase in demand.

  • PMB engineers ready to re-start ventilator production, “open source” blueprints

    Almost 20 years ago, Clifford Machines of Pietermaritzburg stopped producing a ventilator specially designed for local conditions because public sector gatekeepers demanded bribes.

  • Hear From The Doctor Behind UF’s Open Source Ventilator

Hardware/Devices With GNU/Linux Support

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Hardware
  • HummingBoard Ripple SBC Targets AI Applications with NXP i.MX 8M Mini SoC & Gyrfalcon Lightspeeur 2803S NPU

    SoliRun has made good use of its i.MX 8M Mini SoM which – as its name does not imply – comes with both an NXP i.MX 8M Mini processor and Gyrfalcon Lightspeeur 2803S AI accelerator, and can now be found in HummingBoard Ripple SBC part of the new HummingBoard-M family and based on a cost-reduced version of HummingBoard Pulse baseboard which we covered in 2018.

    Note that HummingBoard Ripple board is also available with the earlier SoliRun i.MX 8M module, and comes with up to 4GB RAM, Gigabit Ethernet, USB 3.0, Micro HDMI. Compared to HummingBoard Pulse SBC, it does without MIPI-DSI nor digital audio, and removing one Gigabit Ethernet port, and one MIPI-CSI connector.

  • Quad-HDMI Ryzen V1000 signage system has four M.2 slots, too

    Axiomtek has launched a “DSP600-211” 4K digital signage player that runs Linux or Win 10 on a Ryzen Embedded V1000 along with 4x HDMI 2.0, 4x USB, 2x serial, 2x GbE, and 4x M.2.

    Axiomtek has “released” a 4K digital signage player powered by AMD’s Ryzen Embedded V1000 processor, according to an announcement on Automation.com. The DSP600-211 is aimed at video walls, digital menu and directory boards, and interactive kiosks. The system is notable for offering more expansion slots than other V1000-based signage players — it offers 2x M.2. slots for wireless and 2x for storage, including NVMe.

  • Thin Mini-ITX SBC brews Coffee Lake with triple HDMI and PCIe x16

    Avalue’s “EMX-H310DP” is a thin Mini-ITX board with 8th or 9th Gen Coffee Lake CPUs, up to 64GB DDR4, 3x HDMI, 2x SATA, 3x GbE, 3x USB 3.1 Gen2, 2x M.2, PCIe x16, and a 12-28V input.

    A few weeks after announcing an 8th Gen Whiskey Lake based EMX-WHL-GP thin Mini-ITX board, Avalue has unveiled an EMX-H310DP SBC with the same low profile form factor that instead taps Intel’s other 8th Gen platform, the higher-end Coffee Lake. The EMX-H310DP also supports Intel’s 9th Gen Coffee Lake Refresh processors.

  • Nano-ITX board gets Whiskey Lake squared away

    Portwell’s Linux-friendly “NANO-6051” SBC builds on Intel’s 8th Gen Whiskey Lake platform with up to 32GB DDR4, 2x GbE, 2x mini-DP, 2x USB 3.1 Gen2, and 2x M.2 slots.

    American Portwell announced the first Nano-ITX SBC we’ve seen that features Intel’s 8th Gen Whiskey Lake platform. The 120 x 120mm form factor, which Portwell has used in boards such as the Intel 5th Gen “Broadwell” based NANO-6050, has just slightly less board space than the roughly 146 x 101mm 3.5-inch form factor. There have been at least a half dozen Whiskey Lake based 3.5-inch SBCs, including Aaeon’s recently announced GENE-WHU6.

  • MediaTek Caught Cheating but Says Benchmarks Just Represent Peak Performance

    Silicon vendors have been cheating in benchmarks for years, mostly by detecting when popular benchmarks run and boost the performance of their processors without regard to battery life during the duration of the test in order to deliver the best possible score.

Open Hardware and Some Traps

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Hardware
OSS
  • AgVa Phone Ventilator Connects to a Smartphone to Fight COVID-19

    One major highlight during this COVID-19 crisis is the lack of enough ventilators for patients, a piece of critical equipment that greatly affects the breathing of critically ill patients. There are not enough ventilators available in hospitals right now for all of the potential patients who will be struck by the virus, so it is clear we need more ventilators. Makers are joining the call to service with their existing maker tools, and an example is the attempt to make a low-cost, open-source Arduino ventilator device.

  • Raspberry Pi Dev Server Manages Triple-Boot System With Help From Ubuntu

    This Raspberry Pi project covers all of your on-the-go developer needs. Designed by a developer known as CodeF.red, it uses a Raspberry Pi 4 running Ubuntu to help manage his triple boot laptop rig. With the portable dev server, he can easily swap between the Windows, macOS and Linux.

    The server is running Ubuntu off an NVME drive connected via USB (we have also detailed how to install Ubuntu on Raspberry Pi). The unit is controllable with a Bluetooth keyboard and also features a touchscreen. The maker also upgraded the Pi's cooling capabilities with a 5V Noctua fan with a super-low noise profile.

    The dev server uses Docker and can be controlled via SSH. Since it uses Ubuntu, you can add plenty of additional tools, like Glances for cross-platform monitoring features.

    Like many other Pi projects, the creator crafted this one using hardware already had on hand. CodeF.red said via Reddit that he considers the NVMe drive "overkill," especially since the performance is limited by the USB connection. But after removing the drive from an old Mac, it was gathering dust and needed to be put to use.

  • Digital making at home: a guide for parents
  • NXP WiFi 6 Solutions Launched for Home, Enterprise, IoT and Automotive Markets
  • 3.5″ SubCompact SBC Leverages Intel Whiskey Lake Processor for Embedded & AI Applications

    The company provides Windows drivers for graphics, audio, I2C, touch controller, Ethernet, etc… Linux will certainly boot in the board, and I’d expect most features to work, but it’s still possible that some specific hardware features, like the touch controller, may not work properly or at all.

Google Chromebook vs. Gallium Chromebook

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Linux
Google
Hardware

Chromebooks have been improving a lot over the years. They’re not just web browsers with keyboards anymore. Many Chromebooks can now run Linux programs via an included Crostini virtual machine container, and many can also run Android apps. (As long as it’s not enrolled in enterprise management: Be careful about buying refurbished Chromebooks.) Those additions can greatly improve the usefulness of Chromebooks and greatly reduces their limitations.

A few months ago, I wrote that a $99 Chromebook with Gallium OS installed is so much better. That was just an editorial with a “how to” though and I didn’t provide any in-depth experimentation or proof, so that’s what we’re going to do in this article.

I bought two refurbished $60 Lenovo N22 Chromebooks and installed Gallium OS on one of them while letting the other one update itself to the latest version of Chrome OS 80. This is after I got them un-enrolled from Google’s Enterprise Management of course.

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Devices: Rockchip, Olimex, DragonBoard and Axiomtek

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Linux
Hardware

Rugged, Linux-driven IoT gateways are optimized for sensor monitoring

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Linux
Hardware

Neousys’ IGT-33V and IGT-34C gateways run Debian on a TI AM3352 and offer PoE+ PD, isolated DIO, and 8x 0-10V (33V) or 4x 4-20mA (34C) analog inputs. They follow similar IGT30 and IGT-31D models that focus on digital outputs.

We missed Neousys’ January announcement of its IGT30 and IGT-31D IoT gateways, both of which run a Debian 9 Linux stack on a Texas Instruments Sitara AM3352 SoC. Now, the company has followed up with similar IGT-33V and IGT-34C models. The rugged new DIN-rail systems specialize in analog inputs and digital outputs compared to the earlier digital input focused models. All four IGT-30 series models, which are aimed primarily at sensor monitoring, among other industrial IoT applications, are covered below.

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More in Tux Machines

Programming Leftovers

  • Pocket Lisp Computer

    I recently built three Lisp Badge computers with some help from my kids. I bought a hot air soldering station and learned TQFP soldering. The kids did some through-hole and SMT soldering and really enjoyed it! The hardware assembly and debugging process was really fun, other than worrying several times that I had put too much heat into a component, or set the wrong programmable fuse. During that phase I received some advice from the board’s designer, which really helped. I’ve learned from the hardware people at work to always order extra parts, and I did, including an extra PCB. I was half expecting to damage stuff while learning, so I was really happy that we ended up with all three boards fully working, after locating and fixing some cold solder joints.

  •        
  • CY's Take on PWC#067

    This is a part of Perl Weekly Challenge(PWC) and the followings are related to my solutions.  [...] The discussion of Perl 7 in blogs.perl.org # was so hot last week made me too shy to write PWC experience (stop, it's just an excuse!). Some discussions were quite technical for a beginner. Anyway as a beginning coder in Perl 5, I would add "use warnings" in my final coding stage from now on to prepare for the change.

  • Glyph Lefkowitz: Zen Guardian

    Moshe wrote a blog post a couple of days ago which neatly constructs a wonderful little coding example from a scene in a movie. And, as we know from the Zen of Python quote, there should only be one obvious way to do something in Python. So my initial reaction to his post was of course to do it differently — to replace an __init__ method with the new @dataclasses.dataclass decorator. But as I thought about the code example more, I realized there are a number of things beyond just dataclasses that make the difference between “toy”, example-quality Python, and what you’d do in a modern, professional, production codebase today.

  • Ian Ozsvald: Weekish notes

    I gave another iteration of my Making Pandas Fly talk sequence for PyDataAmsterdam recently and received some lovely postcards from attendees as a result. I’ve also had time to list new iterations of my training courses for Higher Performance Python (October) and Software Engineering for Data Scientists (September), both will run virtually via Zoom & Slack in the UK timezone. I’ve been using my dtype_diet tool to time more performance improvements with Pandas and I look forward to talking more on this at EuroPython this month.

  • Quickly Use Bootstrap 4 in a Django Template with a CDN
  • PSF GSoC students blogs: [Week 5] Check-in
  • PSF GSoC students blogs: Weekly Check-in #6
  • PSF GSoC students blogs: Weekly Check-In: Week 6

today's howtos

MX-19.2 KDE Beta 1 available for testing

We are pleased to offer MX-19.2 KDE Beta 1 for testing purposes. MX-19.2 KDE is an Advanced Hardware Support (AHS) enabled 64-bit only version of MX featuring the KDE/plasma desktop. Applications utilizing Qt library frameworks are given a preference for inclusion on the iso. This will be first officially supported MX/antiX family iso utilizing the KDE/plasma desktop since the halting of the predecessor MEPIS project in 2013. MX-19.2 KDE includes the usual MX tools, antiX-live-usb-system, and snapshot technology that our users have come to expect from our standard flagship Xfce releases. Adding KDE/plasma to the existing Xfce/MX-fluxbox desktops will provide for a wider range user needs and wants. Read more

Audiocasts/Shows: Noodlings, GNU World Order and This Week in Linux

  • Noodlings | Amiga 1200, openSUSE Leap 15.2 and Documentation
  • GNU World Order 361

    Pdfmom is a macro set for Groff meant to make it simple and intuitive. Here's an example MOM document. .TITLE "My example mom doc" .AUTHOR "Klaatu" .CHAPTER 1 .DOCTYPE CHAPTER .PRINTSTYLE TYPESET .PT_SIZE 10 .LS 12 .START .PP This is some sample text. I hope it comes out alright. It probably will. Thanks to \fBpdfmom\fP. Process it with the **pdfmom** command: $ pdfmom example.mom > my.pdf

  • This Week in Linux 108: Linux Mint 20, openSUSE 15.2, CutiePi Raspberry Pi Tablet, and more!

    On this episode of This Week in Linux, we’ve got some big Distro News from Linux Mint, openSUSE and there may be a way to have a Rolling Release of Ubuntu now. We’ve also got some Linux Mobile news thats to the team at XDA Developers making it possible to put Ubuntu Touch from UBports on a lot of Android based devices. We’re going to talk about a new Kickstarter that is going on right now to develop a Raspberry Pi based Tablet called the CutiePi. In App News, were going to talk about a new Task Manager app called Planner and there’s some changes coming to the Matrix Client, Riot.im which is much needed so I am excited for that. We’ve also got some odd news from Microsoft as they have decided to release an Antivirus for Linux called Microsoft Defender ATP. Apple recently announced they are dropping Intel for their own processor platform and we’ll discuss how that will relate to people wanting to run Linux on that hardware. Then we’ll round out the show with some awesome Humble Bundles that are live right now. All that and much more on Your Weekly Source for Linux GNews!