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Open Hardware: Adafruit, Arduino, Librem 5 and More

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Hardware
  • RFCat N32 Long Range nRF52832 Bluetooth Board Delivers 30x the Transmission Power with an Amplifier

    Bluetooth 5.0 has two main new features: high speed (2Mbps) and long-range. But as we’ve seen in our nRF52840 vs nRF52832 vs nRF52810 comparison is that only nRF52840 supports Bluetooth 5.x long range.

    Bluetooth 5 long range is achieved with two new lower bit rates of 500 kbps and 125 kbps. So what do you do if you’d like a longer range and keep using the higher bit rates? You add a power amplifier and LNA to your board, and that’s exactly what Nikolaj (RFCat) did with RFCat N32 board based on Nordic Semi nRF52832 wireless SoC.

    [...]

    The board is pre-loaded with Adafruit NRF52 bootloader supporting OTA, FreeRTOS, and Arduino. Source code and samples are available on Github. The Arduino library is based on Adafruit nRF52 Arduino Core and for some reason, only shared as a zip file (rfcat.zip in the Github repo).

  • Meet MrK_Blockvader, a little mobile robot that’s lots of fun

    One of the simplest ways to make a mobile robot involves differential steering, where two wheels move at different speeds as needed to turn and a ball caster keeps it from tipping over. The MrK_Blockvader is an excellent take on this type of bot — demonstrated in the first clip below — featuring a nice blocky body comprised out of 3D-printed parts, RC truck wheels driven by tiny gear motors, and an integrated roller on its back.

    The MrK_Blockvader is controlled via an Arduino Nano, along with an nRF24 breakout that allows it to receive signals from a radio transmitter unit. The build includes LED lighting as well as a piezo buzzer for all the beeps and boops. It can also take advantage of various sensors if necessary.

  • PoE FeatherWing Brings PoE, Unique MAC Address to Adafruit Feather Boards (Crowdfunding)

    After the launch of Microchip SAMA5 powered Giant Board last year, Silicognition LLC (Patrick Van Oosterwijck) is back with another Adafruit Feather compatible board.

    PoE FeatherWing is an expansion board that adds PoE support to Adafruit Feather board and can handle up to 4 Watts of power. The expansion board also comes with a built-in globally unique MAC address. It’s similar to the official Ethernet FeatherWing, but with the addition of PoE and a unique MAC address.

    [...]

    Since the board re-uses the same WIZnet W5500 Ethernet controller, it is fully compatible with existing software written for the Adafruit Ethernet FeatherWing meaning it can easily be programmed with Arduino or CircuitPuthong using standard libraries.

  • Tiny modules unlock i.MX8M Mini and Nano

    Keith & Koep’s Linux-friendly 48 x 32mm “Myon II” and “Myon II Nano” modules feature the i.MX8M Mini and Nano with 8GB and 4GB LPDDR4, respectively, along with eMMC expansion, GbE, MIPI-DSI and -CSI, and up to -40 to 85°C support.

    Germany-based Keith & Koep has added two new members to its 48 x 32 x 4.2mm Myon family of compute modules. While the Myon I runs Linux on a Snapdragon 4.0, the pin-compatible Myon II and Myon II Nano integrate NXP’s i.MX8M Mini and i.MX8M Nano, respectively. The company previously showcased the i.MX8M Mini in its larger, SODIMM-style Trizeps VIII Mini, which was announced last year along with an i.MX8M-based Trizeps VIII module.

    [...]

    Since Keith & Koep does not post press releases, we are not sure when the Myon II arrived, but they are listed as “new” and we have yet to see any coverage of the modules. Both the Myon II and Myon II Nano support Linux Kernel 4.14, Android 9, and Windows 10 IoT Core.

  • Librem 5 Dogwood Update 3

    The battery shipping with dogwood is 3600mAh, roughly 80% more battery than previous batches. Combined with early kernel optimizations usage is now measured in multiple hours, and with additional kernel work will continue to see leaps forward.

    A diffuser has been added between the screen and the indicator light. This makes notifications easier to notice at extreme viewing angles and overall better appearance.

    The volume buttons have become a volume rocker increasing usability.

    In previous versions, the headphone jack was recessed and not centered. In Dogwood it’s now flush with the top of the phone and centered in the frame.

More in Tux Machines

Linux Foundation Broadens Relationship With Surveillance

  • Facebook joins The Linux Foundation as a platinum member

    Most web-based companies are built on Linux and open-source software. Two-billion member social network Facebook is no different. For years, Facebook has not only relied on open-source, it's been an active contributor to major open-source projects. These include the React JavaScript library; the Open Compute Project, which open sources data-center hardware; and Linux's cGroup2 container software. Now Facebook is joining The Linux Foundation membership at the Platinum level. [...] While Facebook has been criticized for how it deals with privacy and politics, it has impeccable open-source credentials. It was already the lead contributor of many Linux Foundation-hosted projects, such as Presto, GraphQL, Osquery, and ONNX. The company also employs many Linux kernel key developers and maintainers.

  • Amundsen Joins LF AI as New Incubation Project

    LF AI Foundation (LF AI), the organization building an ecosystem to sustain open source innovation in artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), and deep learning (DL), today is announcing Amundsen as its latest Incubation Project.

  • LF AI Accepts Amundsen as Incubation Project

    The Amundsen data discovery project has joined the LF AI as an incubation project. Amundsen is a data discovery and metadata engine aiming to improve the productivity of data analysts, data scientists and engineers by indexing data resources. “Think of it as Google search for data,” the LF AI announcement said.

Graphics: Mesa 20.2 RC2 and DXVK 1.7.1

  • mesa 20.2.0-rc2
    Hi list,
    
    Available today is mesa 20.2.0-rc2. This is the second release candidate for
    the 20.2 release. Currently our open to close ratio on blocking bugs is looking
    really good. This release is dominated by changes to radeonsi, radv, and aco,
    with a few additional changes sneaking in for freedreno, meson,  etnaviv,
    st/mesa, anv, and a few utility fixes.
    
    Dylan
    
    
  • Mesa 20.2-RC2 Released With Many Fixes For RadeonSI + RADV Drivers

    The second weekly release candidate of the forthcoming Mesa 20.2 is now available for testing. Mesa 20.2 is aiming for release around the end of August or early September depending upon how the bug situation plays out. This quarterly feature release to Mesa3D brings many new Vulkan extensions, the RADV driver using ACO by default, initial support for Navi 2 GPUs, initial support for Intel Rocket Lake and DG1, OpenGL 4.3 for LLVMpipe, and much more as outlined in last week's article.

  • DXVK 1.7.1 Released With Many Game Fixes For Direct3D Over Vulkan

    It's been nearly three months without a new DXVK release for mapping Direct3D 9/10/11 atop the Vulkan API while finally today there is a big feature release out. DXVK 1.7.1 was released a few minutes ago as the first update since May. While the version number isn't significant, this version does have many changes.

  • Direct3D to Vulkan translation layer DXVK 1.7.1 is out, lots of game fixes

    After a few months since 1.7 went out, DXVK 1.7.1 is now live to further improve Direct3D to Vulkan translation. This is the project that helps to power Proton, the compatibility layer for Steam Play. This release adds support for newer Vulkan extensions, fixes bugs and has new GPU driver requirements. On the driver side, the VK_EXT_transform_feedback extension is now required which has been supported in drivers on Linux since late 2018 / early 2019. Specifically you will need at least NVIDIA 415.22 and for AMD / Intel it looks like Mesa 19 covers both.

Devices/Embedded: Raspberry Pi and Android Devices

  • Indoor air quality HAT for Raspberry Pi boasts high-res TVOC sensor

    Avnet’s $49.95 “Renesas ZMOD4410 Indoor Air Quality HAT for Raspberry Pi” can be used to measure volatile organic compounds, humidity, and temperature, as well as estimate carbon dioxide levels. Avnet has launched a Renesas ZMOD4410 Indoor Air Quality HAT for Raspberry Pi (AES-RHSEN-ZM44-G) that joins other indoor air quality measurement add-ons for the Pi including Metriful’s $44.50 Sense module and Pimoroni’s $57 Enviro+ pHAT. The ZMOD4410 HAT lacks some of the extras of those boards, but appears to offer a higher quality total volatile organic compound (TVOC) sensor with its Renesas ZMOD4410, which offers resolution ranging from parts-per-billion to parts-per-million.

  • Tiny module and dev kit run RT Linux on STM32MP1

    Exor’s 25.4 x 25.4mm, extended temp “NanoSOM nS02” module runs real-time Linux and its XPlatform industrial IoT software on a soldered, 800MHz STM32MP157 with up to 1GB DDR3L and 32GB eMMC. An “OpenHMI nS02” dev kit with 5-inch touchscreen is optional. Italian embedded technology firm Exor Embedded has launched a NanoSOM nS02 module that runs real-time Linux on the new 800MHz version of ST’s dual-core, Cortex-A7 based STM32MP157. As with the recent, Apollo Lake based, FPGA-enabled GigaSOM GS01 module, Exor announced the product with Arrow, which will be distributing the module and an OpenHMI nS02 Development Kit (see farther below).

  • Zidoo Z10 Pro & Z9X Realtek RTD1619DR 4K Android Media Players Launched for $229 and up

    We previously wrote about some upcoming Realtek RTD1619 media players targeting the videophone and audiophile crowd, and expected them to launch very soon with models from Zidoo and Dune HD. Zidoo has now launched two models with the awaited Zidoo Z9X and a new, higher-end Zidoo Z10 Pro which can be purchased on Aliexpress for respectively $229 and $349 with free shipping.

  • Snapdragon 626 Powered Rugged Tablet Comes with NFC, RFID and Barcode Readers

    Estone Technology has launched another rugged tablet with UA-80 IP-67 waterproof rated, and MIL-STD-810G compliant rugged Android tablet powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 626 mobile platform driving an 8″ capacitive touchscreen display.

Python Programming

  • Announcing the new Jupyter Book

    Jupyter Book is an open source project for building beautiful, publication-quality books, websites, and documents from source material that contains computational content. With this post, we’re happy to announce that Jupyter Book has been re-written from the ground up, making it easier to install, faster to use, and able to create more complex publishing content in your books. It is now supported by the Executable Book Project, an open community that builds open source tools for interactive and executable documents in the Jupyter ecosystem and beyond.

  • Holdgraf: Announcing the new Jupyter Book

    On the Jupyter blog, Chris Holdgraf announces a rewrite of the Jupyter Book project. LWN looked at Jupyter and its interactive notebooks for Python and other languages back in 2018; Jupyter Book extends the notebook idea.

  • EuroPython 2020: Live Stream Recordings available

    We’re happy to announce the public availability of the live stream recordings from EuroPython 2020. They were already available to all conference attendees since the sprint days.

  • Learn Any Programming Language with This Learning Plan

    All it takes to master any programming language is the right learning plan. If you know anything about programming you should be aware that often you can’t tell whether what you are doing is wrong until it’s too late. That’s what makes programming a frustrating skill to master — long hours doing the wrong things. But hey, whether you want to make programming your full-time job or just a hobby, you can always make the learning curve less steep. The secret to getting it right with coding is this: have a learning plan! While the plan will not do the hard lifting for you, it will definitely provide the much-needed elbow grease to keep you grounded and focused as you learn programming.

  • Deploying Django to AWS ECS with Terraform

    In this tutorial, we'll look at how to deploy a Django app to AWS ECS with Terraform.

  • Matt Layman: Rendering Calendars - Building SaaS #68

    In this episode, I worked on rendering a calendar of important events in a school year. We built out the appropriate data structures, and I wrote some new model methods and added tests. On the last stream, I created a new model to track breaks in the school year. The app now shows the calendar for the school year, and I want to display the breaks on the calendar. Before digging too far into the code, I provided my thoughts about using Docker for development from a question that came from the chat.