The Tiniest RetroPie

See the original posting on Hackaday

The RetroPie project is a software suite for the Raspberry Pi that allows the user to easily play classic video games through emulators. It’s been around for a while now, so it’s relatively trivial to get this set up with a basic controller and video output. That means that the race is on for novel ways of implementing a RetroPie, which [Christian] has taken as a sort of challenge, building the tiniest RetroPie he possibly could.

The constraints he set for himself were to get the project in at under 100 mm. For that he used a Pi Zero loaded …read more

Lessons Learned Building Large-Scale React Native Apps

See the original posting on DZone Python

We’ve built a number of great mobile applications on React Native. We recently wrapped up one of the largest we’ve done here at SmartLogic — largest in terms of user base, navigation depth, redux state, and sagas. With every app, our list of best practices and little tricks that work well for us grows, but with the larger apps, there are some additional best practices we’ve recently settled on.

We took some time to reflect back on some of the best lessons we’ve learned after completing over a half dozen React Native apps. Here are our top four takeaways and lessons learned from our experiences building large React Native applications.

Roomba’s creator made an autonomous lawnmower robot

See the original posting on The Verge

iRobot, the maker of the Roomba vacuum, announced its first autonomous lawnmower today, the Terra. While most autonomous lawn mowers require people to lay down wire to define their boundaries, the Terra only requires wireless beacons to be placed around the perimeter of a lawn — the idea being it’s a simpler setup. Users will also have to drive the mower around their lawn once using a companion app to teach it where to go and where to avoid.

The Terra has an hour of runtime and takes about two hours to charge fully, iRobot says. If it runs out of battery mid-route, it’ll go back to its charger and pick up where it left off. It’s completely weatherproof and is designed to live outdoors. It features two modular shears and spring technology…

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Continuous Computing The Analog Way

See the original posting on Hackaday

When your only tool is a hammer, everything starts to look like a nail. That’s an old saying and perhaps somewhat obvious, but our tools do color our solutions and sometimes in very subtle ways. For example, using a computer causes our solutions to take a certain shape, especially related to numbers. A digital computer deals with numbers as integers and anything that isn’t is actually some representation with some limit. Sure, an IEEE floating point number has a wide range, but there’s still some discrete step between one and the next nearest that you can’t reduce. Even if you …read more

Interfacing The Sidewinder Joystick to AVRs

See the original posting on Hackaday

The Sidewinder line was a series of gaming peripherals produced by Microsoft, starting in the 1990s. After some initial stumbles, several cutting edge joysticks were released, at a time when the home computer market was in a state of flux, transitioning from legacy interfaces like serial and parallel to the more modern USB. In this interim period, Sidewinder joysticks used a special method to communicate digitally over the game port interface, which more typically used a kludge to read joysticks in an analog manner. [MaZderMind] managed to reverse engineer this protocol, and implemented the interface on an AVR microcontroller.

The …read more

Plastics: PETG

See the original posting on Hackaday

You’d be hard-pressed to walk down nearly any aisle of a modern food store without coming across something made of plastic. From jars of peanut butter to bottles of soda, along with the trays that hold cookies firmly in place to prevent breakage or let a meal go directly from freezer to microwave, food is often in very close contact with a plastic that is specifically engineered for the job: polyethylene terephthalate, or PET.

For makers of non-food objects, PET and more importantly its derivative, PETG, also happen to have excellent properties that make them the superior choice for 3D-printing …read more

Follow The Bouncing Needles Of This Analog Meter Clock

See the original posting on Hackaday

Our community never seems to tire of clock builds. There are seemingly infinite ways to mark the passage of time, and finding unique ways to display it is endlessly fascinating.

There’s something about this analog voltmeter clock that really seems to have caught on with the Redditors who commented on the r/DIY thread where we first spotted this. [ElegantAlchemist]’s design is very simple – just a trio of moving coil meters with nice industrial-looking bezels. The meters were wired for 300 volts AC, so the rectifier and smoothing cap were removed and the series resistance was substituted for one more …read more

Don’t Toss That Bulb, It Knows Your Password

See the original posting on Hackaday

Whether it was here on Hackaday or elsewhere on the Internet, you’ve surely heard more than a few cautionary tales about the “Internet of Things” by now. As it turns out, giving every gadget you own access to your personal information and Internet connection can lead to unintended consequences. Who knew, right? But if you need yet another example of why trusting your home appliances with your secrets is potentially a bad idea, [Limited Results] is here to make sure you spend the next few hours doubting your recent tech purchases.

In a series of posts on the [Limited Results] …read more

Discarded smart lightbulbs reveal your wifi passwords, stored in the clear

See the original posting on Boing Boing

Your internet-of-shit smart lightbulb is probably storing your wifi password in the clear, ready to be recovered by wily dumpster-divers; Limited Results discovered the security worst-practice during a teardown of a Lifx bulb; and that’s just for starters: the bulbs also store their RSA private key and root passwords in the clear and have no security measures to prevent malicious reflashings of their ROMs with exploits, network probes and other nasties. (Thanks, John!)

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Don’t Toss That Bulb, It Knows Your Password

See the original posting on Hackaday

Whether it was here on Hackaday or elsewhere on the Internet, you’ve surely heard more than a few cautionary tales about the “Internet of Things” by now. As it turns out, giving every gadget you own access to your personal information and Internet connection can lead to unintended consequences. Who knew, right? But if you need yet another example of why trusting your home appliances with your secrets is potentially a bad idea, [Limited Results] is here to make sure you spend the next few hours doubting your recent tech purchases.

In a series of posts on the [Limited Results] …read more

This lamp with a hidden camera could be in your next Airbnb nightmare

See the original posting on The Verge

Earlier this month, Panasonic announced a new home security camera that’s integrated into the stem of a floor lamp. The terrifyingly named HomeHawk Floor is designed to be discreet — the whole idea is to let you monitor the inside of your home without the need for obvious cameras everywhere. Panasonic has launched an Indiegogo campaign to sell the lamp for prices starting at $185, as reported by Android Police.

The company boasts that the camera is capable of recording 1080p HD footage through its 140-degree, eye-level wide-angle lens. It has a motion sensor and the ability to save two seconds of footage recorded before the sensor detects movement, a mic and speaker for two-way communication, and an app for iOS and Android. It works…

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Follow The Bouncing Needles Of This Analog Meter Clock

See the original posting on Hackaday

Our community never seems to tire of clock builds. There are seemingly infinite ways to mark the passage of time, and finding unique ways to display it is endlessly fascinating.

There’s something about this analog voltmeter clock that really seems to have caught on with the Redditors who commented on the r/DIY thread where we first spotted this. [ElegantAlchemist]’s design is very simple – just a trio of moving coil meters with nice industrial-looking bezels. The meters were wired for 300 volts AC, so the rectifier and smoothing cap were removed and the series resistance was substituted for one more …read more

Xiaomi announces $90 Android Go budget phone

See the original posting on The Verge

Xiaomi announced the launch of the Redmi Go today, the company’s first Android Go phone. Like most Android Go phones, the Redmi Go comes in under $100 and runs a stripped-down version of Android called Android 8.1 Oreo Go Edition. The budget phones are meant to be used by people with limited internet connectivity and offer pre-installed versions of Google apps like Gmail Go and YouTube Go that are focused on saving space and data.

The phone’s specs hit the basics. It has a 720p, five-inch display, an 8MP rear camera and a 5MP selfie camera, and what should be pretty good battery life with a 3,000mAh battery capacity. WinFuture reports that it runs on a Snapdragon 425 processor with 1GB of RAM and offers 8GB of internal storage that can…

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Five affordable new gadgets and apps for bedroom producers

See the original posting on The Verge

Music production is more accessible than ever, thanks to at-home tools that are as common as your laptop and phone. But it’s no secret that the software and hardware needed to craft professional sounds from your bedroom can still be cost-prohibitive.

That’s why this year’s National Association of Music Merchants show, NAMM, felt like a breath of fresh air. All around, I saw reasonable and, dare I say, cheap options that put even more power into the hands of everyday musicians without asking them to empty their wallet.

Here are five of the best affordable solutions for bedroom producers we saw at this year’s NAMM show.

Adjustable speakers that can tune themselves to your room

So many solutions for bedroom producers focus on how music is…

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Simone “Shitty Robots” Giertz has big, makerish plans for her brain tumor

See the original posting on Boing Boing

John Cog writes, “Inventor extraordinaire Simone Giertz (YouTube’s ‘Queen of Shitty Robots’) (previously) is already planning funny new experiments for that ‘weird radiation mask’ that ‘looks like something from like a low-budget sci-fi’ that she’ll be wearing for her next six weeks of new radiation therapy for a non-cancerous (but scary) brain tumor (previously). ‘And fortunately, I get to keep it!’ she adds cheerfully. ‘So I’m just trying to think of — that’s like the one thing. I’m like, ‘Ooh, what projects could I do with this…?’

It’s inspiring to watch her bravely facing a major medical procedure with a healthy mix of courage, candor, and wit — and the heartwarming outpouring of online encouragement that she’s been receiving. Simone’s now even posting funny updates on Twitter as she counts down the 30 radiation treatments, one by one. (Wednesday she noted that they’d played Bob Marley’s ‘Don’t Worry About A Thing’ in her treatment room, ‘ but I still worried about a lot of things.’)

Best of luck, Simone!

How YouTube’s Queen of Robots Will Fight a Brain Tumor [David Cassel/The New Stack]

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Plastics: PETG

See the original posting on Hackaday

You’d be hard-pressed to walk down nearly any aisle of a modern food store without coming across something made of plastic. From jars of peanut butter to bottles of soda, along with the trays that hold cookies firmly in place to prevent breakage or let a meal go directly from freezer to microwave, food is often in very close contact with a plastic that is specifically engineered for the job: polyethylene terephthalate, or PET.

For makers of non-food objects, PET and more importantly its derivative, PETG, also happen to have excellent properties that make them the superior choice for 3D-printing …read more

All Xbox One bundles are $50 off at the Microsoft Store, Best Buy, and other retailers

See the original posting on The Verge

All Xbox One bundles are $50 off at the Microsoft Store, Best Buy, Walmart, and elsewhere. This includes the new Xbox One X bundle that bundles the upcoming title Metro: Exodus and its prequels, Metro: Last Light and Metro 2033. Most of the bundles, whether you’re shopping for an Xbox One X or Xbox One S, come with a different game, ranging from Fallout 76, Battlefield V, Forza Horizon 4, and others.

Depending on the bundle, there might be some other inclusions. All of the available options (excluding the Metro bundle) at the Microsoft Store include a digital copy of Gears of War 4, though one of the Xbox One S offerings comes with a three-month trial of both Xbox Game Pass and Xbox Live Gold in lieu of another game.

The savings are…

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