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Hardware

Hardware With GNU/Linux

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GNU
Linux
Hardware
  • Papa's Got a Brand New NAS

    At the beginning of my search, I started down a more traditional route with a cheap 1U server and a modern motherboard, but I quickly started narrowing down the motherboards to small, lower-power solutions given this machine was going to run all day. As I started considering some of the micro ATX solutions out there, it got me thinking: could I use a Raspberry Pi? After all, the latest iteration of the Raspberry Pi has a reasonably fast processor, a decent amount of RAM, and it's cheap, so even if one by itself wasn't enough to manage all my services, two or three might do the trick and not only be cheaper than a standard motherboard but lower power as well.

  • Traditional PCs Continue To Decline

    I’m joining the 21st century by switching to GNU/Linux on ARM instead of what the remains of the Wintel monopoly ships. 2017 should be the last year an x86-based PC runs in my home, except for a print-server. I don’t have an ARMed driver for the damned printer, but that printer is getting old. Maybe it will die…

  • Programming the Open-V Open Source CPU on the Web

    You can now program the Open-V on the web, and see the results in real time. The code is compiled in the web IDE and then flashed to a microcontroller which is connected to a live YouTube live stream. It’s pretty neat to flash firmware on a microcontroller thousands of miles away and see the development board blink in response.

  • Linux ready COM taps FPGA/ARM Arria 10 SoC

    Enclustra’s “Mercury+ AA1” COM runs Linux on an Altera Arria 10 FPGA/ARM hybrid with up to 8GB DDR4, up to 8GB eMMC, PCIe Gen 3, and -40 to 85°C support.

    Swiss FPGA specialists Enclustra announced a Mercury+ AA1 computer-on-module built around Intel/Altera’s dual-core, Cortex-A9 Arria 10 FPGA/ARM hybrid SoC. The 74 × 54mm module is open for pre-orders, and is said to be “already in use,” suggesting it has entered the sampling stage.

'Opening' Hardware

Filed under
Hardware
OSS
  • Open source reaches processor core

    Whether for budgetary, philosophical, or other reasons, an increasing number of embedded systems are being designed using open source elements. For the most part, these elements are software based, although there are some open source board designs in use as well. Now, the microcontroller that empowers a PCB design is available as an open source design.

    A little over a month ago, startup SiFive announced a milestone product in the development of the RISC-V (pronounced risk-five) open source microprocessor instruction set architecture (ISA). Originally developed for research and education, the architecture began moving toward industry implementation with the creation of the RISC-V Foundation in 2015. SiFive advanced that movement by developing a microcontroller design implementing the RISC-V ISA. The company has now proven that design in silicon and donated the RTL code for the design to the open source community.

  • A $12,000 open-source hardware platform to develop electric vehicles

    The automotive industry has always been capital-intensive and therefore, it has often been difficult for startups to carve themselves a space in it. But the electric vehicle revolution is disrupting the industry enough that it is opening up opportunities for startups to accelerate the pace of innovation.

    OSVehicle, a company based in Italia, is trying to help them to just that with their new platform.

    They released the second generation of the TABBY EVO, an open-source hardware platform to develop electric vehicles and electric vehicle parts. The platform enables companies or individuals wishing to develop parts for electric vehicles, or even full EVs, to leapfrog some of the development and test the parts in an open platform.

  • Renault will release its Twizy EV hardware system as an opensource platform

    The Renault POM represents the first foray by a big automaker into truly open-sourcing its vehicle platform.

  • Renault announces partners for open-source electric-vehicle platform

Synfig 1.2.0

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Hardware
OSS
  • Synfig 1.2.0 released

    This release summarizes the results of our work for last 16 months, since the start of new development cycle in August 2015. Much thanks to everyone who supported our efforts by contributing to crowdfunding campaign, purchasing training course, donating via downloads and providing continuous support through our Patreon page! You really made this release happen.

  • Open-Source Animation Software Synfig 1.2 Released
  • Synfig Studio 1.2 Released With New Render Engine

    The Synfig 1.2 release has a complete rewritten render engine developed over the past year and is now better optimized, a new lipsync feature, UI changes, support for multiple threads when rendering via the command line, and other improvements.

Reviewing the Librem 15

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Hardware
Reviews

Following up on my previous post where I detailed the work I’ve been doing mostly on Purism’s website, today’s post post will cover some video work. Near the beginning of October, I received a Librem 15 v2 unit for testing and reviewing purposes. I have been using it as my main laptop since then, as I don’t believe in reviewing something without using it daily for a couple weeks at least. And so on nights and week-ends, I wrote down testing results, rough impressions and recommendations, then wrote a detailed plan and script to make the first in depth video review of this laptop. Here’s the result—not your typical 2-minutes superficial tour:

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'Opening' Hardware

Filed under
Hardware
OSS
  • Open source tool for wave and tidal arrays

    Wave and tidal energy design tool DTOcean has been launched as an open source software package. The tool’s developers say it will assist project developers to design wave and tidal energy arrays by identifying optimal layouts, components and procedures.

    An active but growing user community is emerging around DTOcean, which industry and research communities are encouraged to join.

  • CES 2017: ARM gets an assist in Renault’s open-source electric vehicle, Twizy

    The open source movement has had a profound impact on the tech sector over the last two decades, and now those notions are moving beyond software and operating systems to form the basis for flexible yet standardized complete systems – including automobiles.

  • Open Source Reaches Processor Core

    Whether for budgetary, philosophical, or other reasons, an increasing number of embedded systems are being designed using open source elements. For the most part, these elements are software based, although there are some open source board designs in use as well. Now, the microcontroller that empowers a PCB design is available as an open source design.

  • 3D Printing Market to More Than Double by 2020

A Guide To Buying A Linux Laptop

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Hardware

It goes without saying that if you go to a computer store downtown to buy a new laptop, you will be offered a notebook with Windows preinstalled, or a Mac. Either way, you’ll be forced to pay an extra fee – either for a Microsoft license or for the Apple logo on the back.

On the other hand, you have the option to buy a laptop and install a distribution of your choice. However, the hardest part may be to find the right hardware that will get along nicely with the operating system.

On top of that, we also need to consider the availability of drivers for the hardware. So what do you do? The answer is simple: buy a laptop with Linux preinstalled.

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Also: The Open-Source / Linux Letdowns Of 2016

Computing Devices: EOMA68, Raspberry Pi

Filed under
Linux
Hardware
  • Earth-friendly EOMA68 Computing Devices: A20 Prototype progress, RK3288 PCB CAD complete, and more.

    This is a big update: a lot has been going on, with bursts of activity and the need to adapt to changing circumstances.

  • You Can Now Create Your Own Remix of Raspberry Pi Foundation's Raspbian PIXEL OS

    GNU/Linux developer Arne Exton announced recently that he managed to create a remix of Raspberry Pi Foundation's Raspbian with PIXEL desktop operating system for PC and Mac.

    If you're reading the news lately, you should be aware of the fact that Raspberry Pi Foundation modified their widely-used, Debian-based Raspbian GNU/Linux distribution for Raspberry Pi single-board computers, with the new PIXEL desktop environment, to work on x86 computers and Macs.

    When we said "modified" above, we actually meant to say that there's a new spin of Raspbian PIXEL, which you can use on your PC or Mac, but there's a catch. It appears that there's currently no installer including in this image to deploy the Linux-based operating system on your personal computer or laptop.

Linux Devices

Filed under
Linux
Hardware
  • The Firefly-RK3399 Looks Like An Interesting 6-Core ARM 64-Bit Developer Board

    This board is being officially supported by Android and Ubuntu 16.04 LTS. I/O includes HDMI 2.0, PCI Express M.2, DP 1.2, eDP, USB 3.0, and more. Storage varies from 16GB eMMC and 2GB of RAM up to 4GB of RAM and 128GB eMMC. Pricing starts out at $139 USD for the base model.

  • Peace comes to troubled embedded-Linux-for-routers community

    In May 2016, disgruntled developers of the embedded-Linux-for-routers distribution OpenWRT forked the project and headed off to do their own thing.

    The Linux Embedded Development Environment – LEDE – project felt that OpenWRT was heading in the wrong direction and lacked engagement with the wider developer community.

    Now, in the shadow of Christmas, it looks like the two factions have all-but made peace.

8 fun Raspberry Pi projects to try

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Hardware

For many of us 2016 flew by, and we didn't complete all our New Year's resolutions or mark everything off our "2016 To Do" lists. I didn't have nearly enough time to play with the Raspberry Pi this year, and my list of projects I want to do keeps growing. In this article I've rounded up 8 recent Raspberry Pi projects that I haven't made yet, but that made it onto my "2017 To Do" list.

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Quad-core, 64-bit ARM hacker SBC has onboard wireless and eMMC

Filed under
Linux
Hardware

The tiny, open-spec, Kodi-oriented “Khadas Vim” SBC has a quad-core, -A53 Amlogic S905X, plus WiFi, BT, 2GB RAM, and 8GB ($50) or 16GB ($65) eMMC.

A Chinese startup called Khadas has launched an open source Khadas Vim single board computer that runs on the Amlogic S905X, a lower-cost upgrade to the quad-core, Cortex-A53 Amlogic S905 found on Hardkernel’s Odroid-C2 hacker SBC. Primarily aimed at media player applications, the Khadas VIM supports Android 6.0 Marshmallow with built-in Kodi-17 media software, as well as Ubuntu 16.04, Buildroot, and 7.0 versions of the Kodi-supporting OpenELEC and forked LibreELEC.

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Leftovers: Ubuntu

Linux Devices

  • AsteroidOS 1.0 Alpha on the Asus Zenwatch 3
    In a previous article, I published a small userspace image and Linux kernel for the Zenwatch 3 that enables root access with SSH over USB on the watch. By now, I reached my initial goal to get AsteroidOS, the alternative Android Wear operating system, running on the Zenwatch 3. Similar to SailfishOS and Ubuntu Touch, AsteroidOS uses the original Android kernel - a patched Linux kernel - with a GNU/Linux userspace that, in turn, also uses some of the original, closed-source Android libraries to access certain hardware like the GPU. As the Android libraries expect a different software ecosystem, e.g., a different C library called bionic, we cannot simply call the Android libraries from within a common GNU/Linux application. Instead, we need an additional software layer that translates between the Android and the common GNU/Linux world. This layer is called libhybris.
  • How Ironic: Harman Kardon’s Microsoft Cortana Speaker Is Powered by Linux
    Harman Kardon, the company recently acquired by Samsung, has developed its very own Cortana speaker, which is very similar to the Amazon Echo but featuring Microsoft’s famous digital assistant. And since Cortana is the key feature of this little device, it only makes sense for Harman Kardon to turn to Windows 10 to power the device. And yet, it looks like the so-called Harman Kardon is actually running Linux.
  • MontaVista® Launches Carrier Grade eXpress®(CGX) 2.2 Linux® for 5G and IoT at MWC 2017
  • The Numbers Article for Mobile in 2017 - All the Statistics You Could Ask For
    Mobile is the hottest industry. Banking and payments are rushing to mobile. Governments doing healthcare and education with mobile. Travel from airlines to taxis to trains and busses to hotel bookings is going mobile. Your driver's licence is migrating to the mobile phone as are your keys to your home. And all the other big tech stories from Internet of Things (IoT) to 'Big Data' analytics to Cloud computing - are all dependent on mobile. And next week we have the massive industry event in Barcelona, Mobile World Congress. My brand new TomiAhonen Almanac 2017 is now finished and is released today. So this is the perfect time to do my annual 'State of Mobile' blog of the major statistics. What are the big numbers. Lets start with reach. Yes, mobile is by far the most widely-spread communication technology humankind has ever witnessed.
  • Tizen Store Expands Its Service Coverage to 222 Countries
    The Tizen Store, as the name suggests, is the Tizen Application Store for developers to publish their free and paid for Tizen apps. In April 2015, we saw the store expand it’s coverage to include 182 countries, which was mainly for FREE apps, but we saw this as setting the foundation for providing paid for apps further down the road.

Android Leftovers