My personal home network may be a little more complicated than average. I used to work as a full time Unix/Linux sys-admin so I have some specific ideas about how I like to do things. But I suffer from a similar problem as many, many other people: I have more than one computer spread through my house and they aren’t all in the same room as my DSL router. To complicate things I have an upstairs and a downstairs basement and it would be impossible to run cables every where I need to go.
I work with small electronics boards and components as part of my day job. I don’t really have a nice concise job title for myself, but lately it would be something like “UAS Embedded Flight Control Engineer”. I come from primarily a software / computer science background, but when you have an obstinate electronic gizmo sitting on your desk and no one to hold your hand, it’s time to get up to speed on some basic electrical engineering concepts.
What I want to do: Control RC Servos from a Gumstix Overo
I have a project where I need to drive standard RC servos from a Gumstix Overo. It doesn’t appear that the Overo ships with any built in PWM drivers. I did quite a bit of googling, and still couldn’t find a single drop-in driver that worked well for driving RC servos. I did find some great help though, rolled up my sleeves, and stitched pieces together to make the mother of all RC servo drivers.
Scott Ellis @ jumpnowtek.com has a nice introduction to programming the Overo hardware
This weekend I took the plunge into Fedora 15 with Gnome 3. This is a major change from previous versions of Fedora.
Fedora 15 is very different from previous Fedora releases. The main reason is the upgrade to Gnome 3 which is entirely different from Gnome 2. In Gnome 3 your entire desktop experience is completely (and I say completely) changed. This is no small thing. As with any change, there is good and bad; some things I like, some things I miss.
This is a story on ABC about the Pacific Garbage Patch. The story features Charles Moore (a private individual) who has focused his life on researching and bringing awareness to this situation.… Read the rest... >>
Being out on the open ocean is an awe inspiring experience. The ocean is incredibly powerful and unforgiving. The wind and waves are relentless. The sunsets are the most incredible of any place I’ve ever been. This is my collection from a NOAA research cruise through the Pacific straight north of the Hawaiian Islands:
In the spring of 2008 I joined the ATI team on a NOAA research cruise into the “North Pacific Gyre”, AKA “North Pacific Garbage Patch” — an area north of Hawaii the size of Texas where floating plastic debris collects. Plastic can break into smaller chunks but it doesn’t really decompose, or it degrades so slowly that it is accumulating much faster than it is disappearing. This leads to an increasing colleciton of junk and garbage on the surface of our oceans and is an ecological problem. I’ll leave it to others to debate the magnitude … Read the rest... >>
On April 2, 2008 I found myself on a 224′ NOAA research ship, the Oscar Sette. We were sailing about 1000nm north of Hawaii in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. This was day 10 of a nearly 3 week cruise. Our mission was research. The task for the day was to search for debris. We had entered the North Pacific Gyre two days earlier. This is often called the “garbage patch”. A debris field of floating plastic junk the size of Texas. It is made up of human generated plastic waste that never really decomposes, instead it … Read the rest... >>
I’ve debated whether it is worth posting an article about building your own PC. Anyone who’s a serious builder can come up with something that fits their budget and performance requirements better than I can. Anyone who’s not a serious PC builder might be better off not messing around with the idea. It’s easy to get yourself into trouble and ruin parts if you don’t know a little bit about what you are doing. On the other hand, it isn’t that hard, and the end result can be a great system for minimum cost.
This week I upgraded my phone to a Google Nexus S (sold at Best Buy). I just wanted to share a few thoughts and impressions about the phone. For the past two years I have owned the original G1 android phone and have really liked the environment and the available free apps. The last update they pushed out for my old phone was v1.6 and since then a lot has changed with android and with many of the apps.
There are a ton of choices these days with Android based phones. You can look at screen size, camera megapixels, processor, … Read the rest... >>