Thursday, May 30, 2013

Droning on

Last week I finally received my quadrotor kit that i backed on kickstarter.  There are other available kits, with the LA Robotics Club.   I should begin assembly of the critter next week and I will keep you posted on my progress. 

The proliferation of drones poses more threats on our privacy.  Yahoo news had an interesting article today on the issues involved with drones and privacy.  Highly recommended.  I do not think kits such as the one I am building are a threat, since the battery life is about 6 minutes but I can imagine commercial versions would have far greater operational cycles and pose a threat to our privacy.  Hopefully  organizations addressing aerial surveillance will be created and be the equivalent of Carnegie-Mellon's CyLab.  More on this in future posts.  Later.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Bequeath the Bits

I found this article in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that discusses preparing a Digital Assets Inventory for your estate.  If you are part of the 61% that does not have a will, this exacerbates the problems since there is no law that governs how digital assets will be distributed when one kicks intestate, sans will.  Even if you have user names and passwords, you may be violating the law accessing the account.  Fortunately many social networking sites do have policies for deceased users to provide family or executor information on how to access the accounts.  You may even be able to have your family collect your  frequent flyer points and get all those kickstarter arduino boards!

On less morbid fronts I finally have everything ready to start working with FPGAs  using my Mojo board.  Hopefully the next post will discuss my adventures.  It sure was harder than it should be to get the environment in place.  Later!

Saturday, May 4, 2013

You have potential and Mojo.

I am a fan of John Maeda's book, The Laws of Simplicity, and refer to it in each of my courses.  Recently I came across his most recent blog, always being told you have potential, and thought it was appropriate for all aging and not so aging hackers out there.  Well worth the read.

On the hardware front I am working to crank up my FPGA  programmer, the Mojo board.  Startup has been longer than expected, since I do not have a windows or linux machine.  I have temporarily opted to create a Ubuntu bootable usb stick for my Macbook Air.  I will acquire a real Windows machine this summer and perhaps get a ubuntu machine too or at the very least dual boot.  Raspberry Pis running debian are not enough for the IDEs of some of these boards.  Hopefully my next post will be on the Mojo up and running.

So until that next post know that you have potential!  Later.