- brick — uncompressed versions of popular web fonts. The difference between compressed and uncompressed is noticeable.
- micio.js — clever hack to communicate between Arduino and mobile phones via the microphone jack.
- Exponentially Weighted Moving Averages for Go — Go implementation of algorithm useful for dealing with streams of data.
"hardware hacking" entries
Raspberry Pi MITM, Industrial Robot SDK, Cheap Mill, and Open Source State Replication in Go
- Raspberry Pi Wireless Attack Toolkit — A collection of pre-configured or automatically-configured tools that automate and ease the process of creating robust Man-in-the-middle attacks. The toolkit allows your to easily select between several attack modes and is specifically designed to be easily extendable with custom payloads, tools, and attacks. The cornerstone of this project is the ability to inject Browser Exploitation Framework Hooks into a web browser without any warnings, alarms, or alerts to the user. We accomplish this objective mainly through wireless attacks, but also have a limpet mine mode with ettercap and a few other tricks.
- Industrial Robot with SDK For Researchers (IEEE Spectrum) — $22,000 industrial robot with 7 degrees-of-freedom arms, integrated cameras, sonar, and torque sensors on every joint. […] The Baxter research version is still running a core software system that is proprietary, not open. But on top of that the company built the SDK layer, based on ROS (Robot Operation System), and this layer is open source. In addition, there are also some libraries of low level tasks (such as joint control and positioning) that Rethink made open.
- OtherMill (Kickstarter) — An easy to use, affordable, computer controlled mill. Take all your DIY projects further with custom circuits and precision machining. (via Mike Loukides)
- go-raft (GitHub) — open source implementation of the Raft distributed consensus protocol, in Go. (via Ian Davis)
The industrial Internet will bring abstraction and modularity to the physical world.
The Internet has thrived on abstraction and modularity. Web services hide their complexity behind APIs and standardized protocols, and these clean interfaces make it easy to turn them into modules of larger systems that can take advantage of the most intelligent solution to each of many problems.
The Internet revolutionized the software-software interface; the industrial Internet will revolutionize the software-machine interface and, in doing so, will make machines more accessible. I’m using “access” very broadly here — interfaces will make machines accessible to innovators who aren’t necessarily experts in physical machinery, in the same way that the Google Maps API makes interactive mapping an accessible feature to developers who aren’t expert cartographers and front-end developers. And better access for people who write software means wider applications for those machines.
I’ve recently encountered a couple of widely different examples that illustrate this idea. These come from very different places — an aerospace manufacturer that has built strong linkages between airplanes and software, and an advanced enthusiast who has built new controllers for a pair of industrial robots — but they both involve the development of interfaces that make machines accessible. Read more…
As more data from a sensor-laden world becomes available, we'll need better tools for reducing it to useful, simple, informed prescriptions.
The Bicycle Barometer (@richardjpope) — Richard Pope, a project manager at Gov.uk, built what he calls a barometer for his bike commute: it uses weather and transit data to compute a single value that expresses the relative comfort of a bike commute versus a train commute, and displays it on a dial. It’s a clever way of combining two unrelated datasets and then applying algorithmic intelligence. As more data from a sensor-laden world becomes available, we’ll need better tools like this one for reducing it to useful, simple, informed prescriptions.
Scada Security Predictions: 2013 (IndustryWeek) — Tofino Security founder Eric Byres predicts that 2013 will be the year that tablets start to show up on the plant floor. “We won’t see a full invasion of iDevices on the plant floor in 2013,” he writes, “but the wall will be breached.” Security researchers I’ve spoken with usually say that iOS is a remarkably secure platform, but connecting more devices to industrial control systems means more endpoints that make the job of securing an industrial system much more complicated.
Adaptation (The New Yorker, subscription required for full article) — Some smart-city systems, especially targeted communications and infrastructure monitoring, have become important elements of disaster preparedness. Read more…
Broadband Data, Being Evil, DIY Access Control, and In-Place Web Page Editing
- International Broadband Pricing Study Dataset for Reuse — 3,655 fixed and mobile broadband retail price observations, with fixed broadband pricing data for 93 countries and mobile broadband pricing data for 106 countries.
- The Dictator’s Practical Internet Guide to Power Retention — tongue-in-cheek “The goal of this guide is to provide leaders of authoritarian, autocratic, theocratic, totalitarian and other single-leader or single-party regimes with a basic set of guidelines on how to use the internet to ensure you retain the most power for the longest time. The best way to achieve this is to never have your authority contested. This guide will accompany you in the obliteration of political dissidence. By having everyone agree with you, or believe that everyone agrees with you, your stay at the head of state will be long and prosperous.” (via BoingBoing)
- Ultra Cinnamon (GitHub) — arduino-based monitor & access system for restricted locations.
RSS Dashboard, Hardware Filesharing, Making is Learning, and Revenue/Customer
- NiftyUrls — open source elegant wee RSS dashboard. I haven’t looked into the source yet, but I’m already thinking of applications.
- The PirateBox — small piece of hardware that creates a wifi network for local filesharing. Not connected to the Internet. (via BoingBoing)
- More Hammer, Less Yammer (Julian Bleecker) — If you’re not also making — you’re sort of, well..basically you’re not doing much at all. You’ve only done a rough sketch of an idea if you’ve only talked about it and didn’t do the iteration through making, then back to thinking and through again to talking and discussing and sharing all the degrees of material — idea, discussions, conversations, make some props, bring those to the discussion, repeat. Why O’Reilly prefers makers to fakers.
- Revenue per Unique Visitor (BusinessInsider) — Amazon makes $189/user, Google $24/user, Yahoo! $8/user, Facebook $4/user. (via Greg Linden)
- A Room to Let in Old Aldgate — a lovely collection of photographs of lost buildings from The Society for Photographing Relics of Old London. Think of them as the Wayback Machine of their day. (via Fiona Rigby on Twitter)
- Wikipedia Fundraising A/B Tests — get a glimpse into the science that resulted in Jimmy Wales’s hollow haunted gaze staring at you with the eerie intensity of a creepy hobo talking about how tasty human liver is.
- It Takes A Lot of Money to Stay in Business (Ponoko) — guest blogs by Chris Anderson on the lessons and rules of maker businesses. Most Maker businesses that I’ve talked to have to hold parts inventory closer to 25% of their annual sales.
MySQL as NoSQL, Handmade SLR, Mac App Store, and Datamining Privacy Workshop
- Using MysQL as NoSQL — 750,000+ qps on a commodity MySQL/InnoDB 5.1 server from remote web clients.
- Making an SLR Camera from Scratch — amazing piece of hardware devotion. (via hackaday.com)
- Mac App Store Guidelines — Apple announce an app store for the Macintosh, similar to its app store for iPhones and iPads. “Mac App” no longer means generic “program”, it has a new and specific meaning, a program that must be installed through the App store and which has limited functionality (only one can run at a time, it’s full-screen, etc.). The list of guidelines for what kinds of programs you can’t sell through the App Store is interesting. Many have good reasons to be, but It creates a store inside itself for selling or distributing other software (i.e., an audio plug-in store in an audio app) is pure greed. Some are afeared that the next step is to make the App store the only way to install apps on a Mac, a move that would drive me away. It would be a sad day for Mac-lovers if Microsoft were to be the more open solution than Apple. cf the Owner’s Manifesto.
- Privacy Aspects of Data Mining — CFP for an IEEE workshop in December. (via jschneider on Twitter)
Place Context, iPod Hardware, Mobile Cognitive Surplus, and Music Hacking APIs
- BBC Dimensions — brilliant work, a fun site that lets you overlay familiar plcaes with famous and notable things so you can get a better sense of how large they are. Example: the Colossus of Rhodes straddling O’Reilly HQ, the Library of Alexandria vs the Google campus, and New Orleans Mardi Gras began at the headquarters of Fred Phelps’s Westboro Baptist Church. (via this piece about its background)
- Podapter — simple plug that takes mini-USB and goes into an iPod or iPhone. (via Tuesday product awesomeness)
- New NexusOne Radio Firmware — a glimpse of the world that’s sprung up sharing the latest goodies between countries, carriers, and developers. For everyone for whose products the street has found a new use, the challenge is to harness this energy, enthusiasm, knowledge, and devotion. In terms of cognitive surplus, this far exceeds the 1 LOLCAT minimum standard unit. (via YuweiWang on Twitter)
- Echoes Nest Remix API — access to database of song characteristics and tools to manipulate tunes. See the Technology Review article for examples of what it’s capable of. (via aaronsw on Twitter)