How To Program A Really Cheap Microcontroller

See the original posting on Hackaday

There are rumors of a cheap chip that does USB natively, has an Open Source toolchain, and costs a quarter. These aren’t rumors: you can buy the CH552 microcontroller right now. Surprisingly, there aren’t many people picking up this cheap chip for their next project. If there’s no original projects using this chip, no one is going to use this chip. Catch 22, and all that.

Like a generous god, [Aaron Christophel] has got your back with a working example of programming this cheap chip, and doing something useful with it. It blinks LEDs, it writes to an I2C display, …read more

A Lightweight AVR IDE

See the original posting on Hackaday

It’s entirely possible to do your coding in vim or emacs, hammering out hotkeys to drive the interface and bring your code to life. While working in such a way has its charms, it can be confronting to new coders, and that’s before even considering trying to understand command line compiler settings. The greenhorn coder may find themselves more at home in the warm embrace of an IDE, and [morrows_end] has now built one for those working with AVR assembly code.

The IDE goes by the name of Simple AVR IDE, or savr_ide for short. Programmed in C++ with the …read more

A Lightweight AVR IDE

See the original posting on Hackaday

It’s entirely possible to do your coding in vim or emacs, hammering out hotkeys to drive the interface and bring your code to life. While working in such a way has its charms, it can be confronting to new coders, and that’s before even considering trying to understand command line compiler settings. The greenhorn coder may find themselves more at home in the warm embrace of an IDE, and [morrows_end] has now built one for those working with AVR assembly code.

The IDE goes by the name of Simple AVR IDE, or savr_ide for short. Programmed in C++ with the …read more

Pikuniku is a weird and whimsical adventure for the Switch

See the original posting on The Verge

It can be difficult to find time to finish a video game, especially if you only have a few hours a week to play. In our biweekly column Short Play we suggest video games that can be started and finished in a weekend.

Pikuniku is hard to describe. Despite its simple, colorful aesthetic, there are a number of complex and subtle choices to how the game is structured, and how it plays that make it hard to categorize. It’s often an adventure game with platforming controls like Night in the Woods, while at other times it’s more of a puzzle platformer like Semblance. But the game’s charm comes from how earnestly silly it is, not just in its writing, but also in its gameplay.

In Pikuniku you control what looks like a red oval with legs. They…

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Infinity Icosahedron Is Difficult To Contemplate Even Looking Right At It

See the original posting on Hackaday

Cubes and pyramids are wonderful primitive three-dimensional objects, but everyone knows that the real mystical power is in icosahedrons. Yes, the twenty-sided polyhedron does more than just ruin your saving throws in tabletop RPGs – it can also glow and look shiny in your loungeroom at home.

[janth]’s build relies on semitransparent acrylic mirrors for the infinity effect, lasercut into triangles to form the faces of the icosahedron. The frame is built out of 3D printed rails which slot on to the acrylic mirrors, and also hold the LED strips. [janth] chose high-density strips with 144 LEDs per meter for …read more

Find your perfect side hustle with this freelancer’s bible

See the original posting on Boing Boing

There’s a reason you’re hearing about the gig economy in every other business story these days. More than ever, people are finding income from more than one source. And if you find the right one, a side hustle can do more than just pad your pockets – it can allow you to finally get paid for doing what you love. Looking to dive in? A great way to start is with The Ultimate Side Hustle Bundle: Amazon FBA & Freelancing.

In this nine-course online learning package, there’s a good emphasis on how to launch, market and grow a business selling goods on FBA (Fulfillment by Amazon) – with good reason. If you can make it, FBA can move it, as long as you lay down the right foundation with solid marketing and SEO savvy. But the bundle also gives a broad overview of how to make sure a freelance career works for you, without it absorbing too much time. And if what you’re selling is your own know-how or talent, you can learn how to break into the ranks of the most-watched videos on YouTube.

Lifetime access to the entire Ultimate Side Hustle Bundle: Amazon FBA & Freelancing is available now for $49. Read the rest

Command Line Utilities… in the Cloud?

See the original posting on Hackaday

Although many people think of Linux-based operating systems as graphical, really that GUI is just another application running over the bare operating system. Power users, remote administrators, and people running underpowered computers like a Raspberry Pi have a tendency to do more with command line tools. [Igor] did a FOSDEM19 presentation you can see below about how he’s providing web-like services to the command line using web servers and curl as a client.

This is subtly different from just accessing an ordinary web server via curl. The output is meant for display in the terminal. Of course, you could also …read more

The Magnetic Rubik’s Cube

See the original posting on Hackaday

Ern? Rubik has much to answer for when it comes to the legacy of his namesake cube. It has both enthralled and tormented generations, allowing some to grandstand in the playground while others are forced to admit defeat in the face of a seemingly intractable puzzle. It just so happens that [Tom Parker] has been working on a Rubik’s cube with a novel magnetic design.

Yes, that’s right – [Tom]’s cube eschews the traditional rotating and sliding mechanism of the original cube, instead replacing it all with magnets. Each segment of the cube, along with the hidden center piece, is …read more

Motorola’s 5G Moto Mod will have proximity shutoff sensors to limit exposure to millimeter waves

See the original posting on The Verge

Last August, Motorola announced what might still wind up being the world’s first true 5G phone — the Verizon-exclusive Moto Z3 with an optional 5G Moto Mod. It’s a snap-on module that the company promised would give you an insanely fast 5Gbps cellular connection, faster than most landlines these days. But Moto Z3 buyers had to take the company’s word for that, because the 5G Mod wouldn’t be available until “early 2019,” when Verizon’s 5G NR network is due to launch in the United States.

Well, the 5G Moto Mod just crossed the FCC today, and it came with a surprise in tow — a document that has more details about how it’ll work than I thought the company would ever publicly reveal.

And one of those details is sure to surprise some people,…

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Drones Rain Down Rat Poison on the Galapagos

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If your favorite movie is Ratatouille, now would be a good time to read a different article. Rats on the Galápagos Islands are an invasive species and eradication is underway. This is not a first for the islands, and they are fiercely protected since they are the exclusive home to some species including the distinctive tortoise from which the island derives its name and of course finches. Charles Darwin studied the finches while writing On the Origin of Species. So yeah, we want to keep this island from becoming unbalanced and not disturb the native wildlife while doing …read more

TCL’s first foldable phone could slap-bracelet itself into a smartwatch

See the original posting on The Verge

We’ve seen practically as many different folding phone concepts as there are phone manufacturers, but one particularly intriguing idea may soon be coming back from the dead — CNET reports that BlackBerry and Alcatel brand owner TCL is working on as many as five different foldable devices, one of them a phone that can bend around your wrist like a bracelet, per the image you’re seeing immediately above these words.

That’s actually not a new idea: one of the very first folding phone prototypes we saw from Lenovo was a bracelet-watch, back in 2016. Here’s a video of that one from Moor Insights & Strategy analyst Anshel Sag:

To be honest, details on TCL’s devices are pretty scarce. CNET’s only got the renders above and an image from a…

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The NBA app-controlled ‘smart jersey’ of the future lets you change your player name and number

See the original posting on The Verge

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver gave the world a peek at the future of jerseys during this week’s NBA All-Start Technology Summit, an event dedicated to illustrating how technology might advance the sport by 2038.

In addition to mentioning fans gaining entry into games via facial recognition, hologram mascots, and more personalized game experiences, Silver demonstrated the future of jerseys: a piece of smart clothing that can change the name and number displayed on them through a mobile app. Details on how the jersey is made weren’t shared, but it’s a neat, concept and something we haven’t seen before.

You can check out the demo below:

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Build Your Own Dial-up ISP With A Raspberry Pi

See the original posting on Hackaday

The bing-bongs, screeches, and whiirings of a diai-up modem are long forgotten now. For good reason. Dial up was slow, and if you’re one of those unlucky people reading this and waiting for the animated gif above this paragraph to load, you have our condolences. But still, nostalgia. It bit [Doge Microsystems] hard, and now there’s a dial-up ISP on [Doge]’s desk.  Why? For fun, probably, and if you’re going to retrocompute, you might as well go the whole way.

The setup for this astonishing feat of dial-up networking is an ISA modem inside a ‘lunchbox’ computer running what is …read more

10 new trailers you should watch this week

See the original posting on The Verge

I’ll keep this week’s intro (relatively) short and simple: if you haven’t already seen Into the Spider-Verse, you should do it. The animation alone is worth the price of admission — there’s nothing else on screen that’s quite like it in terms of look and feel.

The film is also a perfect example of how you can tell the same basic story over and over again (it’s still Spider-Man, after all), but still make it feel fresh by infusing the details with characters that draw you in and make you care about them. And this film does that with the perfect balance of earnestness and humor.

Check out 10 trailers from this week below.

Aladdin

Oh my god, Will Smith as a genie. On one hand, it’s horrifying. On the other, maybe it’s the role he was born…

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Here are the best Presidents’ Day 2019 deals

See the original posting on The Verge

In the US, Presidents’ Day is on Monday, February 18th. Banks will be closed as will some other stores and institutions, so check before you make the trek out if you have the day off. The biggest retailers, like Best Buy, Walmart, and Target, are all on the clock, though, and we’re seeing some of the best deals of the year from them.

Some of the price cuts begin on Monday or even Tuesday in some cases, but there are a lot of sales that you can take advantage of right now. We’ll be updating this post when a deal you should know about goes live.

Phones and accessories

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Apex Legends players think its in-game items are way too expensive

See the original posting on The Verge

Respawn’s Apex Legends is a huge hit. The free-to-play battle royale shooter is closing out its second week since release, and it’s still retaining its top spot on the Twitch leaderboards following its successful first e-sports event. Top streamers like Ninja and Shroud continue to play the game on a daily basis, and it’s looking like it could have a healthy life as a top-tier competitive game if Respawn puts the resources into building out a proper tournament structure.

But one element of the game that may affect its long-term popularity is its business model, with many players worried that Apex’s in-game prices are too expensive.

As a free-to-play title, Apex Legends has to generate revenue somehow, and the best way to do that in an…

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Lego Monorail From Your 3D Printer

See the original posting on Hackaday

If you had to guess the age of a person hailing from a country in which Lego is commonly available, you might very well do it by asking them about the Lego trains available in their youth. Blue rails or grey rails, 4.5, 9, or 12 volt power, and even somewhat unexpectedly, one rail or two. If that last question surprises you we have to admit that we were also taken aback to discover that for a few years in the 1980s everybody’s favourite Danish plastic construction toy company produced a monorail system.

[Mike Rigsby] had a rather ambitious Christmas …read more

Everything we think we know about the Samsung Galaxy S10

See the original posting on The Verge

We’re just a few days away from Samsung’s giant 10th anniversary Galaxy S10 event on February 20th, and it’s looking like it’ll be one of the biggest phone announcements Samsung has ever made. Fortunately, given that we live in a world where leaks are plentiful and manufacturers aren’t even trying to keep secrets anymore, we already know a ton about Samsung’s new phones.

So if you can’t wait for the official announcement on February 20th, here’s everything we know so far:

Image: Evan Blass

The S10 and S10 Plus

The core of Samsung’s lineup will stay the same as the last few years: there’s a regular S10 model and a larger S10 Plus, this time with 6.1-inch and 6.3-inch displays, respectively. And thanks to a complete…

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Transportation Weekly: Didi woes, how Nuro met Softbank, Amazon’s appetite

See the original posting on TechCrunch

Welcome back to Transportation Weekly; I’m your host Kirsten Korosec, senior transportation reporter at TechCrunch. This is the second edition and seriously people, what happened this week? Too much. Too much! Never heard of TechCrunch’s Transportation Weekly? Catch up here. As I’ve written before, consider this a soft launch. Follow me on Twitter @kirstenkorosec to ensure you […]

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