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+ - 1980's Soviet Bloc Computing: Printers, Mice, and Cassette Decks->

Submitted by szczys
szczys writes: Martin Maly rode the wave of computer evolution in the 1980's while living in the former Czechoslovak Republic. Computers themselves were hard to come by, peripherals were even more rare and so enthusiasts of the time hacked their own, like dot-matrix printers and computer mice. If your build was impressive enough, the government would adopt it and begin manufacturing the design somewhat widely. Was your first computer mouse built into a plastic spice container?
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+ - Radar that sees through walls built in garage->

Submitted by szczys
szczys writes: Building radar in his garage is nothing new to Greg Charvat. He has a PhD in this stuff and has literally written the book (and University course) on building your own radar system.

This time around it's Phased-Array Radar. This is more than just judging the speed of a baseball or Ferrari. This rig can actually see through walls. Greg uses the example of a soda can to illustrate the quality and resolution possible from this type of system.

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+ - Arduino Dispute reaches out to Distributors->

Submitted by szczys
szczys writes: Two companies are claiming ownership of the Arduino Trademark. The most recent development in this sad state of affairs is a letter from Arduino SRL to long-time Distributors of Arduino products. SRL is claiming they are the real Arduino, but there are some tasty tidbits including a Q/A section with some peculiar answers.
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+ - Direct programming the sub-$5 ESP8266 WiFi module means Internet for everything->

Submitted by szczys
szczys writes: The ESP8266 boards have been around for a while. They let you add WiFi to any hardware project for under five bucks. But most people are using them with the AT commands firmware which is a bit of a kludge. Since espressif put out a free SDK for them, it's pretty easy to program them directly. Here's an overview of what that takes which really highlights how easy it is to do.
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+ - There are two companies fighting to call themselves Arduino; here's what we know->

Submitted by szczys
szczys writes: Arduino is a household name in hobby electronics. But now there are two companies calling themselves Arduino and as you've probably guessed this is going to play out in the courts. How can this be? One company started the Arduino movement and used the other company, a contract manufacturer, to actually make the hardware. This went on for a few years before the trademark was actually granted. Elliot Williams did dome digging to help figure out how this all might shake out.
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+ - Calling Hackers to Fix the World->

Submitted by szczys
szczys writes: The 2015 Hackaday Prize kicked off today. A Grand Prize of a Trip to Space in a prize pool worth $500,000 challenges hackers to build devices to solve real problems in the world. These are things like growing/transporting food, curbing pollution, providing health care, etc. New this year is the Best Product prize with offers $100,000 to the best design which is ready for manufacturing.
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+ - One year of data proves the Hacker community is tight-knit and welcoming. ->

Submitted by szczys
szczys writes: The Hacker (sometimes called maker) movement holds sharing of ideas at its core. We are in the unique position to look at a huge data set from the last 365 day showing how people share their own work, and how they discover and interact with others. Check out these data visualizations which cover project topic distribution, views throughout year and by hour in the day, interactions between members of this community, and more.
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+ - Why you should care about Software-Defined Radio->

Submitted by szczys
szczys writes: It has certainly gained some traction in the last few year, but I think most geeks still have little understanding about why Software-Define Radio is an important concept. It's already found in some consumer devices, and as more "Things" join the "Internet of" we're going to see more and more of it. So here's your crash course in what SDR is and why you should give it a try.
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+ - Developer Saved Years Later by His Own Hardware->

Submitted by szczys
szczys writes: Would you do a better job designing hardware if your life depended on it? Chris Nefcy is in that exact position. Years ago he developed an Automatic External Defibrilator for First Medic. The device allows non-doctors to restart a human heart in the field. When Chris had a heart attack his ticker was restarted with shocks from his own hardware.

His story isn't just heartwarming, he also covers the path that led him into developing the AED and the bumpy road encountered getting the hardware to market.

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+ - 80's Person Computing Behind the Iron Curtain: Western Clones plus Black Market-> 2

Submitted by szczys
szczys writes: Obviously the person computer revolution was world-wide, but the Eastern Bloc countries had a story of PC evolution all their own. Martin Malý tells first hand of his experiences seeing Black Market imports, locally build clones of popular western machines, and all kinds of home-built equipment.

How do you build a 1980's computer around if 68000, 8080, and Z80 are all embargoed?

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+ - SatNOGS wins the 2014 Hackaday Prize for Satellite Networked Open Ground Station->

Submitted by szczys
szczys writes: SatNOGS have won the 2014 Hackaday Prize. The team of developers designed a satellite ground station which can be built with available tools, commodity parts, and modest skills. Data from each station can be shared via a networked protocol to benefit a much wider swath of humanity than one station could otherwise accomplish.

They have the option of a trip into space or $196.418

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+ - Open Source Offline Password Keeper Campaign Goes Live->

Submitted by themarmotte
themarmotte writes: A little less than a year ago Slashdot featured the start of a world-wide collaboration around an open source offline password keeper, the Mooltipass. The device enumerates as a keyboard and uses a PIN-locked smartcard to read the AES-256 key required to decrypt its credentials database. All password accessing operations need to be approved on its physical user interface to prevent impersonation.
As its beta testing phase is over, the Mooltipass crowdfunding campaign is now live and already achieved 15% of its $100k goal in less than two days.

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Computers are unreliable, but humans are even more unreliable. Any system which depends on human reliability is unreliable. -- Gilb

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