A new open source operating system for embedded systems: RT-Thread Smart is working to open source the world of IoT and edge computing

Date Published: Sat, 10 Jul 2021 13:11:08 +0200

There's a growing demand for embedded operating systems, and it's best when the one you build upon is open source. The RT-Thread project's R&D team has spent three years of research and intensive development to arrive at the project's latest offering: RT-Thread Smart. It is a microkernel operating system aimed primarily at midrange to high-end processors such as RISC-V with a memory management unit (MMU) and provides a competitive software platform for all industries in the embedded space.

RT-Thread Smart is a professional, high-performance, microkernel operating system for real-time applications. It offers an open source foundation for embedded devices in any market, including security (e.g., internet protocol cameras), industrial control, onboard devices, consumer electronics, and anything else using embedded technology (which is increasingly coming to mean "everything"). It's significant because, unlike traditional IoT operating systems, a microkernel operating system can fill the gap between a traditional real-time operating system (RTOS) and a comparatively large operating system like Linux to achieve the best balance between real-time performance, cost, security, startup speed, and more.

See A new open source operating system for embedded systems

#technology #opensource #IoT #embeddedsystems


There's a growing demand for embedded operating systems, and it's best when the one you build upon is open source. The RT-Thread project's R&D team has spent three years of research and intensive development to arrive at the project's latest offering: RT-Thread Smart.

Samsung’s TV Plus is now streaming on the web for free, but has geoblocking limited to the U.S.

Date Published: Sat, 10 Jul 2021 12:52:57 +0200

So you no longer need an actual Samsung mobile device or TV but I noticed it only worked in my country with a VPN. There is some good content, but it is a throwback to the pre-streaming on demand days, with channel scheduling and TV ads.

It gives viewers in the U.S. access to around 140 streaming channels, with its lineup including channels like ABC News Live, PBS Kids, ION Plus, Vice and a number of genre-specific Vevo channels. These channels can be accessed by anyone, regardless of whether they own a Samsung device or not, but some channels do require users to sign in with a free Samsung account.

See Samsung quietly launches TV Plus streaming service on the web

#technology #streaming #TV #Samsung


Samsung’s free streaming service is now also available to anyone who doesn’t own a Samsung phone or TV.

Newer study of 875 Fitbit-wearers shows Fitbits detect lasting changes after COVID-19

Date Published: Fri, 9 Jul 2021 21:11:57 +0200

One in five Americans uses a Fitbit, Apple Watch or other wearable fitness tracker. And over the past year, several studies have suggested that the devices — which can continually collect data on heart rates, body temperature, physical activity and more — could help detect early signs of COVID-19 symptoms.

Now research suggests that these wearables can also help track patients’ recovery from the disease, providing insight into its long-term effects.

In a paper published Wednesday in the journal JAMA Network Open, researchers studying Fitbit data reported that people who tested positive for COVID-19 displayed behavioral and physiological changes, including an elevated heart rate, that could last for weeks or months. These symptoms lasted longer in people with COVID than in those with other respiratory illnesses, the scientists found.

“We want to kind of do a better job of collecting long-term symptoms so we can compare the physiological changes that we’re seeing with symptoms that participants are actually experiencing,” Radin said. “So this is really a preliminary study that opens up many other studies down the road.”

See Fitbits detect lasting changes after COVID-19

#health #wearables #illness #fitbit #covid #technology


Last spring, when the nation’s COVID-19 cases were soaring and tests were in short supply, some scientists wondered whether a new approach to disease surveillance might be on Americans’ wrists.

Another Myth Busted: 2021 Study shows red meat not associated with heart disease, cancer or early death; but higher intake of processed meat is

Date Published: Fri, 9 Jul 2021 15:12:38 +0200

This further vindicates those lifestyle diets based on unprocessed meats, and whole foods. With meat as the common denominator, one can only assume the issue with processed meats (and other processed foods) is the additional chemical and flavour agents that get added to processed foods.

The Prospective Urban Rural Epidemiology (PURE) Study is a cohort of 134,297 individuals enrolled from 21 low-, middle-, and high-income countries.

"In a large multinational prospective study, we did not find significant associations between unprocessed red meat and poultry intake and mortality or major CVD. Conversely, a higher intake of processed meat was associated with a higher risk of mortality and major CVD."

See Processed Meat Linked to Higher Risk of Mortality and Cardiovascular Disease

#health #LCHF #redmeat #cancer #heartdisease #mortality


Multinational study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition suggests that consumption of moderate amounts of unprocessed meat is Read More

How interoperability could end Facebook’s death grip on social media after all ActivityPub and other open standards already exist for social media

Date Published: Fri, 9 Jul 2021 12:33:28 +0200

If one factor explains the competition problem in social media, it’s network effects. The more members a social network onboards, the more valuable the platform becomes. After all, when all your friends and family are already on Facebook, you may feel the need to become a member in order to stay in the loop. And you might also end up spending far less time on other networks. This makes a tough road for all those Facebook alternatives out there.

If past judgements such as U.S. v. Microsoft are a guide, U.S. courts don’t smile on big companies that get a competitive advantage simply by being big. One way to mitigate Facebook’s network effects would be to make it less (socially) costly for people to stay on smaller, competitive networks. That’s why the concepts of portability and interoperability are so important.

Good precedents are given around phone number portability, and the fact that large social networks have had to quickly adapt their protocols before for changes such as Stories, Clubhouse, etc. What is not mentioned though is that open standards such as XMPP and ActivityPub already exist, and which successfully interconnect profiles, messages, posts, likes, media sharing between completely different social networks, and each of these social networks exists still on their own, but you can be on any one, and follow or be followed from any other network.

For those worrying about Facebook then being able to access their profiles or posts on these other networks... that possibility was always there anyway.

See How interoperability could end Facebook’s death grip on social media

#technology #monopoly #BigTech #openstandards #Facebook


The U.S. government forced wireless companies to let you take your phone number with you when you switched carriers. A similar move may be called for again.

OpenUK's latest report: It's the foundation for established vendors even when their products are proprietary, and it is the toolbox enabling entrepreneurs and startups

Date Published: Thu, 8 Jul 2021 16:51:41 +0200

OpenUK has released the second of its three-part probe into the state of open source in Britain, finding that an overwhelming majority of businesses use the wares – but noticeably fewer are willing to contribute code back.

Figures shared in the report, which surveyed 273 randomly sampled UK companies of varying sizes and across numerous sectors, would appear to back that up. OpenUK has reported that an impressive 97 per cent of businesses surveyed use some form of open source software, with 48 per cent having increased their use in 2020 compared to the year before.

The report found a split between business sectors, particularly when it came to use of open-source operating systems such as Linux and the BSDs: While 90 per cent of technology, media, and telecommunications companies and 93 per cent of banking, insurance, and financial service sector companies reported using open-source operating systems, just 63 per cent of companies in the public sector, health, and pharmaceutical markets reported the same. Why is government lagging behind the private sector? Too much taxpayer funds?

See OpenUK's latest report paints a rosy picture of open source adoption

#technology #opensource #UK #innovation #startups


Might be nice if a few more of those adopters turned to contributors, though

Roblox, explained - Up to 42 million daily players with live concerts and virtual worlds

Date Published: Wed, 7 Jul 2021 22:39:33 +0200

It’s a platform where you can play millions of different... experiences... specifically created for the platform. A vast majority of those experiences are games, but you can also do things like attend concerts or visit Stranger Things’ Starcourt Mall re-created in Roblox. Roblox has a huge range of virtual worlds that you can go to and games to play that can take place in any kind of environment that a developer can imagine.

And while more than 50 percent of Roblox players are under the age of 12, it’s not just kids playing it; 30 percent of players are older than 17.

You could set up a private party in Roblox’s dedicated space, which can almost feel like a virtual rave. But I’d expect that more Roblox birthday parties look like a bunch of friends opening up the app, partying up, and just jumping from game to game and world to world right from the launcher. In the span of an hour, you can hop through all kinds of different experiences because the app loads everything really quickly, which means it’s pretty easy to replicate the chaotic energy of a real kids’ birthday party.

Lil Nas X threw a concert, towering over crowds of tiny dancing Roblox avatars and teleporting them to new virtual stages for each song. The concerts were a smash hit, garnering 33 million views across two days and four shows.

See Roblox, explained

#technology #gaming #roblox #virtualworlds #concerts


Games, experiences, Lil Nas X concerts, and more.

E-Paper Pocket Map Goes Where Your Phone Can't - In Bright Sunshine And Battery Lasting Days

Date Published: Wed, 7 Jul 2021 15:54:41 +0200

The IndiaNavi, a modernization of the classic paper map that’s specifically designed to avoid the pitfalls that keeps your garden variety smartphone from being a reliable bushcraft tool. The color electronic paper display not only keeps the energy consumption low, but has unbeatable daylight readability. No signal? No problem, as the relevant maps are pre-loaded on the device.

The India Navi uses a 7-color ePaper Display combined with OpenStreetMap Data that is specifically rendered to look good on the ePaper. No notifications, no calls no texts. Just a map with our position on it.

The energy efficiency of e-paper displays cause this device to last for several days on just one battery charge. Technically, I suppose you could turn it "off" and keeping seeing the map display, and then turn it on to update your position periodically. Seeing it's power consumption is so light, you could even embed a few small solar panel units somewhere on it.

See E-Paper Pocket Map Goes Where Your Phone Can’t

#technology #opensource #maps #hiking #indianavi


It’s easy to take for granted the constantly-connected, GPS-equipped, navigation device most of us now carry in our pockets. Want to know how to get to that new restaurant you heard about? A …

Starlink Terminal Unit Firmware Dumped

Date Published: Wed, 7 Jul 2021 15:22:09 +0200

There’s a lot of expense in what telephone companies call “the last mile” — delivering service from the main trunks to your home or business. StarLink wants to avoid that cost by connecting you via an array of low-orbit satellites and some users are already using the service. In Belgium, Lennert Wouters managed to dump the terminal’s firmware and has some interesting observations.

Development hardware is geofenced to only work in certain predefined areas, most of which are clearly SpaceX locations. SpaceX is likely notified if development hardware is used outside these predefined geofences.

Note that SpaceX actively encourages people to find and report security issues through their bug bounty program.

See StarLink Terminal Unit Firmware Dumped

#technology #hacking #starlink


There’s a lot of expense in what telephone companies call “the last mile” — delivering service from the main trunks to your home or business. StarLink wants to avoid that co…

DIY Open Source Air Quality Sensor Using An e-Ink Display

Date Published: Wed, 7 Jul 2021 11:10:06 +0200

The core sensor is the SGP40, which detects volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in the air while consuming less than 3 mA (compared to the 48 mA of the previous generation). There’s a temperature, barometric pressure, humidity, and light sensors in the package as well.

Andrew not only designed the sensor but has done a thorough job on the documentation. Check out the GitHub repository of the project for a complete data package covering all aspects of the design, including the weather forecasting app note by John Young (an NXP engineer, not the astronaut).

See DIY Air Quality Sensor

#environment #airpollution #airquality #opensource #technology


[Andrew Lamchenko], who has built a number of small e-ink-based sensors this year, released another design called the eON Indoor Air Quality Sensor. As his previous sensor designs, the eON b…

Subscribe to GadgeteerZA Blog Posts