Category Archives: Hardware

Telenor Internet Ubuntu Karmic Koala

I got a new laptop (asus ul30a) :) and I figured I need to have internet on the go

wimax is not an option (not available) so I chose cell usb modem from Telenor
data plan is prepaid, 3 GB for two months (a new year promotion that ends tomorrow)

I thought I was getting Huawei E1550 but I ended up with Huawei E620 ;)
that modem is not on their website (listed usb modems) nor in the manual I got with the thing
the manual talks about Huawei E1550

now why do I care so much about exact models? well because modem should run on my linux box
I saw Huawei E220 was well supported and Huawei E1550 had some glitches but could be made to work

first I used usb modem in Windows so that the autorun process can install device drivers
that’s just how it works the first time

in linux, I first installed usb-modeswitch package

lsusb wrote that it was Huawei E620 with id 12d1:1001

but after searching for that ID I found references to Huawei E169 with that same id?!

on the plus side ubuntu Network Manager Applet works great with this modem
I defined a new connection, specified my country and mobile network provider and it just worked! :)

Smart Homes

I just read an article at linux journal about smart homes

now, I had no previous experience with smart homes and it sounded intriguing so I gave it a look

the story is simple, you have one master device (actually a wifi router with probably some logic) and a bunch of small devices for various things like dimming lights, turning them on/off, controlling garage door, room movement, security cameras etc.

they work just by plugging it in the socket since it uses wifi for communication

there are also some other details but read that yourself

Wimax Install

today I helped a neighbour get and install wimax at his home

we waited about an hour and a half at verat.net offices since it was Saturday and only one worker was in the office dealing with customers

basically they ask you to sign a contract for up to 12 months of service at about 2300 RSD and about 1500 RSD for the wimax device

when I got to my neighbour with the device I installed Ubuntu Linux and everything worked out of the box

but only the test account has been enabled on the device with the rate limited to 5 kilobytes/second

after reading the manual, I put username/password and everything worked, he got his 2 megabits of downlink :)

I’m glad wimax has finally come here, we needed it since the government doesn’t want to invest into new wires, they just suck out the profit from existing telephone bills

Get Your Openmoko

it seems Neo Freerunner is finally beeing shipped to the distributors :)

for those who have no clue what Neo Freerunner is, it is a mobile phone running Linux

backed by FIC (First International Computer of Taiwan) it is finally going mass market

it is designed to rival the original Iphone

the phone is unlocked (works with any mobile phone network provider) and uses open standards

the hardware specs are 500MHz Samsung S3C2442 CPU, 128MB RAM, 256MB Flash, 4.3″ diagonal display in 640×480 VGA Color TFT LCD, 3D graphics, 2 3D accelerometers, audio, USB port, WiFi b/g, Bluetooth, GPS

the recommended price is 400 USD

I like it :)

read more about it at linuxdevices

Wiimote Fun

today, a friend sent me to a link to see a guy having fun with wiimote

wow!

actually it is simple

the wii remote has a infrared detector and you use something that emits or reflects infrared light

the efects he’s doing with it are remarkable, take a look for yourself

and here’s the link to Johnny Chung Lee website

http://www.cs.cmu.edu/~johnny/projects/wii/

Cold Boot Attacks on Encryption Keys

the idea of using encryption for your hard drive is to protect your private data

but, it seems that this kind of protection is not as safe as it used to be any more

the thing is, now you can make a copy of RAM (computer memory) as soon as it is turned of or at any time if the computer is in sleep mode and you’ll find the encryption key there

many disk encryption programs are at risk, including Windows BitLocker, linux dm-crypt and Mac software

take a look at this video

MSI Heat Powered Cooling Fan

MSI wants to save on electricity so they’re building a cooling fan to run not on electricity but on the heat produced by the computer motherboard.

they use a Stirling engine where the heat makes the gas expand and move the pistons thereby generating fan movement

while I think this is a great idea, I wouldn’t use it since the fan puts dust in the air and I’m allergic to dust/dust mites

here’s a video of the device

MacBook Air

A month or so ago, Apple presented MacBook Air to us. Probably the wolds thinest laptop ;) it looks to me like a tray, a plateau where you put your food (now that’s a good application ;) )

It’s god a 13″ screen, no DVD, a CPU that was specially made by Intel, a convenient power plug etc.
External USB DVD is an option but you can also use a CD from any computer nearby to you if you install the provided software.

SSD (Solid State Disk) is an option if you’ve got the cash for it (it’s pretty expensive).

You can read more about it here.

BugLabs Lego Gadgets

Well these aren’t your tipical Lego parts. Here, a part is actually a piece of hardware that you can combine with other pieces to build something.

There are parts for a camera, gps and other stuff. And the interesting thing is that all of them communicate via HTTP, which makes it easy to use and programm.

I’ll go and read about these a lot more later. Don’t wait like me, check it out now.