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Hardware

Raspberry Pi 4 2GB jumps to $45 as 1GB model returns from the dead at $35

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Linux
Hardware

Citing chip shortages, Raspberry Pi announced its first price increase, bumping the RPi 4 with 2GB RAM up to $45. Meanwhile, the discontinued RPi 4 1GB has come back to life at $35.

In the spirit of Halloween, Raspberry Pi Trading has reanimated the 1GB RAM version of the Raspberry Pi 4 Model B, which it killed off when it dropped the price of the 2GB model from $45 to $35 in Feb. 2020. The company also increased the 2GB price to $45. With the 1GB version returning at its old $35 price, we have essentially turned back the clock to early 2020. (In which case, maybe we could get a second chance on stopping the pandemic.)

In the Raspberry Pi blog post announcing the changes, CEO Eben Upton cited industry-wide supply chain issues for its first price increase in Pi history. The chip shortages, combined with heightened demand, have caused severe shortages of the RPi Zero and the RPi4 2GB.

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Open Hardware and GNU/Linux Devices

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Hardware

  • ESP32 Clock Pushes Outrun Graphics Over Composite | Hackaday

    We’ve covered plenty of clocks powered by the ESP32, but this one from [Marcio Teixeira] is really something special. Rather than driving a traditional physical display, the microcontroller is instead generating a composite video signal of an animated digital clock. This could be fed into whatever device you wish, but given the 80’s synthwave style it’s pumping out, you’ll probably want to find a suitably retro CRT to do it justice.

  • The Quadrivium EnsembleBot Is A Labour Of Love

    The Quadrivium EnsembleBot project is a mashup between old school musical instruments and the modern MIDI controlled world. Built by a small team over several years, these hand crafted instruments look and sound really nice.

    [...]

    This project is by no means unique, lately we’ve covered controlling a church organ with MIDI, as well as a neat Arduino Orchestra, but the EnsembleBot is just so much more.

  • Common Sense – using the Raspberry Pi Sense HAT on Ubuntu Impish Indri | Ubuntu

    Dave Jones from the Canonical Raspberry Pi team has put together a helpful guide for those getting started with the Raspberry Pi Sense HAT on Ubuntu Impish Indri. We’ve reproduced an edited version below, or you can read the full post on his blog along with other great Raspberry Pi tips!

  • Wheeled payload robot can control elevators

    SLAMTEC’s wheeled “Hermes” robot runs Android on an RK3399 and can carry up to 16 kg payloads. The autonomous bot includes 360° Lidar, depth cameras, WiFi and 4G links, a 7.5-hour battery, and an elevator controller.

  • RK3399-based programmable wheeled robot works across multiple floors

    Powered by a Rockchip RK3399 mainboard, the Hermes robot platform supports autonomous path-finding, robot collaboration, cross-floor delivery, smart obstacle avoidance, safety features, and autonomous Recharging. It can be controlled with a REST API, programmed with C++ SDK, or a program called RoboStudio available for Windows and Android.

This Raspberry Pi add-on lets you control Lego robots

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Hardware

Raspberry Pi is releasing an add-on that will let you use many of its tiny, inexpensive computers to control certain Lego robot motors and sensors. The add-on is called the Build HAT (HAT stands for Hardware Attached on Top), and slotting it onto a Raspberry Pi’s GPIO pins will give you four ports that you can use to control Lego Education’s SPIKE components, which the HAT and its software are specially designed for. It’ll also connect to most other parts that use an LPF2 connector, including the components from the Lego Mindstorms robot inventor kit.

There’s also a Python library (basically a set of commands you can use to control the robot) available to go alongside the HAT, which will let you write software to control the robot parts you’ve got hooked up. Programing Lego’s SPIKE components with Python isn’t a unique selling feature from Raspberry Pi — the SPIKE kit comes with a hub that supports connecting six devices (compared to the Build HAT’s four) that can also store and run Python programs.

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Raspberry Pi LEGO HAT taps RP2040

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Linux
Hardware

Raspberry Pi has launched a $25 “LEGO Build HAT” for STEAM education based on its RP2040 MCU. The HAT can control up to 4x LEGO Technic motors and sensors and comes with Python library and an optional $15 power supply.

When Raspberry Pi launched its dual Cortex-M0+ based RP2040 MCU and RP2040-based Raspberry Pi Pico module, we speculated that one or both might show up in a Raspberry Pi HAT. Today, Raspberry Pi and Lego Education announced an official LEGO Build HAT based on the RP2040 designed for any 40-pin Raspberry Pi. The $25 HAT is designed for STEAM education and hobbyist hacking for anyone who owns the LEGO Education SPIKE Prime or SPIKE Prime Expansion sets, or other LEGO devices such as the LEGO Mindstorms Robot Inventor kit.

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Devices: Simply NUC, Pine64, Arduino

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Hardware
  • Ubuntu-ready Ryzen V2000 mini-PC starts at $639

    Simply NUC has launched a $639-and-up “Cypress” mini-PC with AMD’s Ryzen V2000 plus 2.5GbE, 2x HDMI, 2x DP-ready Type-C, 3x USB 3.2 Gen2, and a 128GB SSD for one of the 2x M.2 slots.

    Simply NUC (or SimplyNUC) has launched a Cypress Long Life Mini mini-PC, named for its 7-year supply guarantee. The system offers pre-installed Ubuntu or Win 10 running on AMD’s 7nm, octa- and hexa-core Ryzen Embedded V2000.

    Pricing starts at $639 for a Cypress LLM2v5Cy SKU with the hexa-core, 2.1GHz/3.95GHz V2516, $689 for the LLM2v6CY with the hexa-core, 3.0GHz/3.95GHz V2546, and $829 for the LLM2v8CY with the top-of-the-line, octa-core 2.9GHz/4.25GHz V2748. All these prices include 4GB RAM, a 128GB SSD, 1-year support, and either no OS or pre-installed Ubuntu.

  • Build A Dog Ball Launcher That Kinda Looks Like A Dog | Hackaday

    The design is straightforward. The 3D printed housing features a large funnel into which a ball can be dropped. A servo then holds the ball while a pair of rollers are spun up by brushed DC motors. After two seconds, the servo releases the ball towards the rollers which launch the ball out of the machine. A Raspberry Pi Pico runs the show, controlling the timing of the ball launch and varying the motor speed to change the distance the ball is launched on each firing.

  • Arm adds virtual testing platform for Corstone Cortex-A and -M ref designs

    Arm has launched an “Arm Total Solutions for IoT” initiative that combines its Cortex-A- and -M based Corstone SoC reference designs with a new “Arm Virtual Hardware Targets” platform for virtual, cloud-based testing.

    In 2018, Arm launched an Arm Corstone subsystem product line comprising prevalidated SoC reference designs that combine its core IP with security, debug, memory subsystems, and in some cases, NPUs. Now, Arm has expanded Arm Corstone with a cloud-based Arm Virtual Hardware Targets testing and development platform aimed at IoT. Together with a new Project Centauri ecosystem initiative for Cortex-M developers, the programs are wrapped up into an “Arm Total Solutions for IoT” umbrella platform.

  • 248: PinePhone Pro: Exclusive Interview with Pine64

    This week’s episode of Destination Linux, we’re being joined by Lukasz Ericenski of Pine64 for an Exclusive Interview about the new PinePhone Pro! Then we’re going to talk about NTFS improvements coming to the Linux kernel. Plus we’ve also got our famous tips, tricks and software picks. All of this and so much more this week on Destination Linux. So whether you’re brand new to Linux and open source or a guru of sudo. This is the podcast for you.

  • Amazon offered me half of what I paid for my Galaxy S20 FE 5G. The phone is so awful that I’m considering it. – BaronHK's Rants

    I’m considering a Pine Phone Pro.

    My spouse laughed at me when I said it runs GNU/Linux and lets you do whatever you want. It sounds like the anti-iPhone to me. No crAPPs. No vendor lock-in. No freemium junk.

    But Samsung has been going downhill for years. Now, they don’t even want to talk to you unless you have thousands of dollars for a phone that will be obsolete or broken in a matter of 24-36 months (the Z series).

    The Pine Phone Pro is going to be $399 and Amazon is offering me a $200 gift card for this Galaxy phone.

    Which is half of what I paid for it last year, but I’m considering it.

    The stupid thing barely even works at all since T-Mobile bought Sprint and put the T-Mobile Network Experience SIM card in it. The stupid thing malfunctions the worst when I have 5G turned on, but it’s not great in LTE mode either.

    When it can get a network signal, the piece of trash is either beeping at me because it’s Samsung wanting me to agree to a new EULA or use Microsoft products that are also trash that I don’t want. (With NSA backdoors.)

    In the past 5 years, Samsung phones have gone from a couple of crapplets, just disable them, whatever, to an entire phone screaming at you that you MUST use Microsoft products.

  • Arduino Brings USB Mouse to Homebrew computer

    When building your own homebrew computer, everything is a challenge. Ultimately, that’s kind of the point. If you didn’t want to really get your hands dirty with the nuts and bolts of the thing, you wouldn’t have built it in the first place. For example, take the lengths to which [rehsd] was willing to go in order to support standard USB mice on their 6502 machine.

Devices: Arduino Nano, HarmonyOS,and Pi

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Hardware

  • Arduino Nano Floppy Emulator For When Your Disk Is Not Accessible | Hackaday

    Among the plethora of obsolete removable media there are some which are lamented, but it can be difficult to find those who regret the passing of the floppy disk. These flexible magnetic disks in hard plastic covers were a staple of computing until some time in the early 2000s, and their drives could be found by the crateload in any spares box. But what about today, when there’s a need for a real floppy drive and none is to be found? Enter [Acemi Elektronikci], with an Arduino Nano based floppy emulator, that plugs into the floppy port of a PC old enough to have one, and allows the easy use of virtual floppy disks.

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  • HarmonyOS development board shows up for $11

    Last year, we noted the Hisilicon Hi3861 based HiSpark WiFi IoT development board with supports LiteOS and HarmonyOS that was available in China for just under $10, or as part of a devkit with baseboard and modules for around $60.

    Although not very practical, buying from Taobao was possible, but there’s now what appears to be a new revision of the Hi3861V100 based HarmonyOS development board in a wider form factor on Banggood for $10.99.

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  • Raspberry Pi CM4 handheld console looks like a Nintendo Switch Lite - CNX Software

    StonedEge and Dmcke5 have come up with an incredibly well-designed Raspberry Pi CM4 handheld console that looks like a Nintendo Switch Lite “clone”, and that can run Dreamcast and PSP emulators at full speed using RetroPie.

    The RetroLite CM4 The design includes a 5-inch display, speakers, all buttons, joysticks, and D-PAD controlled via a custom Arduino board, a micro HDMI port to connect an external display, and a 4000 mAh LiPo battery charged over the USB Type-C port, and it seems to work, albeit we are told there’s still some more work to do.

  • Lilbits: TCL’s concept smart glasses, PineNote E Ink tablet, and using the Raspberry Pi 400 as a keyboard
  • “Industrial Pi” Use Cases with Ubuntu and AMD

    DFI’s GHF51 mini industrial-grade motherboard, and the EC90A-GH mini fanless industrial computer, are the world’s first industrial computer products that have passed the Ubuntu IoT hardware certification and are equipped with high-performance AMD processors. The 1.8-inch motherboard of the Ryzen R1000 processor has the same small size as the Raspberry Pi but brings unprecedented powerful computing performance, powerful expansion capabilities, and durability tailored for industrial applications. Combining the online update mechanism of the Ubuntu Certified Hardware and the online application store, the breakthrough development of “Industrial Pi” will redefine the future of the Industrial Internet of Things. 

Digital Restrictions (DRM) on Printers

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Hardware

New Atari VCS Review: Retro Tech Meets Geek Chic

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Hardware
Reviews
Debian

Among other things, the year 1977 marked the beginning of (in my humble opinion) the two greatest entertainment franchises: Star Wars and Atari. Needless to say, the former is alive and well. And until recently, the latter has lived on through the sheer tenacity of its legendary gaming heritage. Now, three years after its hugely successful Indiegogo campaign, Atari at long last quenched retro gaming fans' thirst by finally releasing its brand-new console. Officially known as the VCS 800, this truly multifunctional hybrid gaming, entertainment and computing device is an amazing time machine to both the past and future.

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New Devices With GNU/Linux

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GNU
Linux
Hardware
  • Alibaba T-head RVB-ICE dual-core RISC-V SBC supports Android 10, Debian 11 - CNX Software

    The very first RISC-V single board computer with a 3D GPU reveals itself with “Alibaba T-head RVB-ICE” SBC available for pre-order for $399 together with a 7-inch display. The board is based on Alibaba T-Head “ICE” dual-core XuanTie C910 RISC-V processor with a Vivante GC8000UL GPU, and follows the announcement of Android 10 being ported to a RISC-V board earlier this year.

    Besides the dual-core RISC-V processor clocked at 1.2 GHz, the board is equipped with 4GB LPDDR4, 16GB eMMC flash, and offers Gigabit Ethernet, WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity, as well as a 48-pin GPIO header. But it lacks HDMI output, relying on an LCD interface instead, as well as full-size (Type-A) USB ports with only one micro USB 3.0 OTG port, and a USB-C port for serial console.

  • PCIe adapter adds four USB 3.2 ports to Raspberry Pi CM4 IO board

    Waveshare has introduced a non-standard PCIe adapter that adds four USB 3.2 ports to the Raspberry Pi Compute Module 4 IO carrier board in a way that does not take too much height.

    It’s non-standard as it can not be inserted directly into a typical computer PCIe slot, and Waveshare recommends a PCIe extension cable to connect it to a motherboard. Having said that It looks much better on the IO board.

  • Raspberry Pi 4, Rockchip RK3399 SBC’s get Arm SystemReady IR certification

    The first hardware platforms getting Arm SystemReady IR certification for IoT Edge applications were announced a few months ago with namely NXP i.MX 8 Mini evaluation kit and Compulab IOT-GATE-IMX8 gateway being able to run off-the-shelf operating system images such as Fedora IoT, OpenSuSE Leap 15.3, and Debian 11 thanks to UEFI firmware.

  • OAK-D Depth Sensing AI Camera Gets Smaller and Lighter

    The OAK-D is an open-source, full-color depth sensing camera with embedded AI capabilities, and there is now a crowdfunding campaign for a newer, lighter version called the OAK-D Lite. The new model does everything the previous one could do, combining machine vision with stereo depth sensing and an ability to run highly complex image processing tasks all on-board, freeing the host from any of the overhead involved.

    [...]

    Since the vision processing is all done on-board, even a Raspberry Pi Zero can be used effectively as a host.

  • Single board computer features AMD processors and graphics

    The IB952 offers hardware-based security and high-speed peripheral support.

  • The Pi 400 As A PC Peripheral | Hackaday

    The Raspberry Pi 400 all-in-one computer is a neat little unit that is powerful enough to take on most humdrum computing tasks while doing an excellent job of freeing up valuable desktop space. But what about those moments when both the Pi and a PC are needed on the same desktop? How can the Pi and the bulky PC keyboard share the same space?

    [Gadgetoid] may have the answer, with a clever bit of software that presents the Pi’s mouse and keyboard as peripherals on its USB-C power port. If your PC has a high-power USB socket that can run the Pi then it can use the small computer’s input devices just as well as the Pi itself can. It’s fair to say that the Pi 400’s keyboard is not it’s strongest point, but we can see some utility in the idea.

  • Simply NUC® Launches Cypress Long-Life Mini PC Powered by Latest AMD® Ryzen™ Embedded Processors

    Offering a variety of operating systems, Cypress can support custom needs on Windows 10, Ubuntu, and Fedora.

  • Simply NUC® Launches Cypress Long-Life Mini PC Powered by Latest AMD® Ryzen™ Embedded Processors

Open Hardware/Modding and Circular Electronics Initiative

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Hardware
  • This wizard-themed book nook diorama features a face detection system, LEDs, and an ePaper display | Arduino Blog

    The fantastical world of wizards and magic is one that can be explored by reading a book, and what better way to represent this than building your very own interactive diorama within a reading corner? Well, that is exactly what Andy of element14 Presents created when he combined a small display, computer vision, and LED lights into a fun bookshelf adornment, which would accompany readers on their journeys.

    To begin, Andy had to figure out how to get a computer vision system into a space that is no larger than a shoebox, and for this task, he settled on using the Portenta H7 board plus its Vision Shield to gather images and classify them. His attempts to integrate a string of NeoPixels and an ePaper display module with MicroPython were unsuccessful, so this required a switch to only using C with TensorFlow Lite and some custom functions to take the framebuffers from the camera and determine if a face is present.

  • PocketView is an LED display that shows info through clothes and other fabrics | Arduino Blog

    hen receiving a notification on your phone, it can be a tedious process to take the device out of a pocket, unlock the screen, and then read the message. In order to make viewing simple information much faster, University of Waterloo researchers developed a small pocketable display that can shine images and text through fabric. This means seeing the current time or directions can be done far more quickly since all the user has to do is look down.

    The technology driving this system consists of an Arduino Pro Mini board, an HC-05 Bluetooth module for receiving data from a host phone, an 8×8 RGBW NeoPixel matrix, and a single 420mAh LiPo battery cell for power. All of these components were assembled into a single unit and placed within a 3D-printed enclosure that can easily fit into the user’s pocket.

  • Ecodesign Directive: FSFE calls for Device Neutrality and Upcycling of Software

    As contribution to the revisal of the EU ecodesign directive and to help understand the impact of software obsolescence, the FSFE publishes a study on the sustainability of software. The findings of the study culminate in five core demands for a more sustainable digitisation, covering the interplay of devices, software, and infrastructure.

    In the European Union we currently see a strong desire to make digitisation more sustainable with the European Commission aiming at making products more resource-efficient as well as circular economy methods applicable. The ecodesign directive from 2009 shall be updated in this regard with the "Sustainable Products Initiative" (SPI) that aims "to make products placed on the EU market more sustainable". The SPI will then serve as the main European product policy instrument, in the electronic sector additionally complemented by the "Circular Electronics Initiative" (CEI).

  • Sousaphone sound-reactive lights

    It is just a Teensy 4.0 I had lying around, together with an audio board, a basic lav mic, and a spare 74XX245 from my grab bag held together with hot glue and proto wire. It drives a cheapo 300 LED RGB strip that is VHB’d to the bell. I think the LEDs will only last a few more transport sessions, but with any luck I’ll make a slightly more polished revision with better longevity in the not too distant future.

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