E-Ink Equipped Sourdough Starter Jar Monitoring CO2 Production And Height Stats With MQTT Output

Date Published: Sun, 4 Jul 2021 12:07:24 +0200

Also known as sourdough starters, they are usually found in jars with curious names written on top, living off a mixture of flour and water. They require close monitoring to keep them healthy and to determine when they are ready for baking.

Noah wanted to be able to see recent CO2 production and height stats right on the jar, a ESP32 module with onboard E-ink display was used. To draw air over the CO2 sensor at a constant rate, a small extraction fan was also added. Power is provided by a small LiPo battery. For long term logging, the data is sent over MQTT to a server running Mycodo environmental regulation software.

There are still several software improvements Noah would like to make, including battery life, user interface and alerts, but everything is open-source and available on GitHub, so feel free to jump in and build your own.

See E-Ink Equipped Sourdough Starter Jar

#technology #opensource #sourdough #hardware


One of the unexpected side effects of our this pandemic is a sudden growth in the global population of captive colonies of Lactobacillus bacteria and yeast. Also known as sourdough starters, they a…

Acorn will be an environmentally friendly open source farm automation vehicle powered by Python, Raspberry Pi, solar, etc

Date Published: Fri, 2 Jul 2021 12:44:56 +0200

The robot is known as Acorn and is the project of [taylor] who farms in California. The platform is powered by an 800 watt solar array feeding a set of supercapacitors for energy storage. It uses mountain bike wheels and tires fitted with electric hub motors which give it four wheel drive and four wheel steering to make it capable even in muddy fields. The farming tools, as well as any computer vision and automation hardware, can be housed under the solar panels. This prototype uses an Nvidia Jetson module to handle the heavy lifting of machine learning and automation, with a Raspberry Pi to handle the basic operation of the robot, and can navigate itself around a farm using highly precise GPS units.

Right now it's a prototype as no working tools were demonstrated. It seems the vehicular control and sensors are first being finalised, but it's an open source project, so the invitation is also out there for others to contribute and get involved.

See url=https://hackaday.com/2021/07/01/automate-the-farm-with-acorn/]Automate The Farm With Acorn[/url]

#technology #farming #opensource #raspberrypi #environment #


Farming has been undergoing quite a revolution in the past few years. Since World War 2, most industrial farming has relied on synthetic fertilizer, large machinery, and huge farms with single crop…

British right to repair law goes into effect today but doesn’t cover smartphones or computers

Date Published: Fri, 2 Jul 2021 11:20:51 +0200

The law requires manufacturers to make spare parts available to both consumers and third-party repair companies, and it applies to any product bought starting today. Companies have a grace period of up to two years to make spare parts available whenever a new product is launched.

As reported by the BBC (via 9to5Mac), the purpose of the new law is to extend the lifespan of products up to 10 years in order to benefit the environment and consumers. It aims to tackle “built-in obsolescence”, which is when manufacturers deliberately build products to break down after a certain length of time has passed.

Spare parts won’t be available for everyone either, as some parts that are not easy to replace will only be available to professionals who can make those fixes. In the case of dishwashers, the replacement of a PCB in a dishwasher can only be sold to a professional, and those parts only need to be available for seven years.

Really, a PCB board is held with screws or plastic lugs and has a few wired connectors that plug on! And sorry this does nothing then as those PCB's must be designed to change out easier otherwise. So I suppose this is only a half-hearted start, and not going to make any real impact yet.

See British right to repair law goes into effect today but doesn't cover smartphones or computers

#technology #righttorepair #obsolescence #RTR #repairs


A British right to repair law has gone into effect from today... but it doesn't cover smartphones or computers. Read more here.

Hi, I’m Disaster Bot - An Indonesian mapping platform is turning social media chatter into life-saving information during natural disasters

Date Published: Thu, 1 Jul 2021 19:50:27 +0200

Jakarta floods, and Jakartans tweet. When they wake up in the morning and see the thick smog of car exhaust and coal fumes outside the window, they tweet. When they realize the road is blocked because of high water, they tweet.

Today, if a Twitter user in Jakarta tweets the word “banjir,”which means flood in Indonesian, they get a jaunty response from a Twitter account with the handle u/PetaBencana: “Hi, I’m Disaster Bot. To report flooding near you, reply with #flood.” If they do that, the bot will send them a link to a site where they can locate the flood on a map, report how high the water is, and submit a photo of the damage. PetaBencana’s success in Indonesia, where it is now used by government agencies, NGOs, and ordinary citizens, has led to it being adopted in the Philippines, Hong Kong and Vietnam.

Perfect sort of bot to be developed as part of hackathon events to crowdsource citizen reports.

See How a ‘Disaster Bot’ in Indonesia maps crises in realtime

#technology #socialmedia #crowdsourcing #disaster #hackathon


PetaBencana, a mapping platform, turns social media chatter into life-saving information during natural disasters.

16 Best Free and Open Source RSS Feed Readers for Linux in 2021 - Because RSS is News without Algorithms

Date Published: Thu, 1 Jul 2021 18:38:26 +0200

There is a wealth of information on the web that you probably want to keep up to date with; from news to how-tos, guides, tutorials, and more. Imagine having to visit, on a daily basis, all your favorite blogs or websites – it’s a bit of a challenge, especially if you have a tight schedule. This is where RSS comes into play.

RSS (Rich Site Summary or also Really Simple Syndication) is a popular and standardized web format used to deliver regularly changing content on the web. It is employed by blogs, news-related sites as well as other sites to deliver their content as an RSS Feed to Internet users interested in it.

RSS feeds enable you to see when blogs or websites have added new content so you can get the latest headlines, videos, and images within a single interface, immediately after being published, without necessarily visiting the news sources (you have taken the feeds from).

To subscribe to a feed, simply go to your favorite blog or site, copy the RSS URL and paste it into your RSS feed reader: do this for sites you visit frequently.

Some of these are desktop installable applications and some are self-hostable that you access with your browser or a mobile app. A few will also install on Windows and macOS. My own blog also contains an RSS feed, which I often use to replicate my posts elsewhere.

See 16 Best RSS Feed Readers for Linux in 2021

#technology #news #RSS #opensource #linux


There is a wealth of information on the web that you probably want to keep up to date with; from news, to how tos, guides, tutorials and more.

Battery recycling boosted by dentist-style ultrasonics, if manufacturers can cooperate

Date Published: Thu, 1 Jul 2021 18:23:24 +0200

Electric vehicles may come with impressive green credentials, at least while they're being driven, but as any laptop owner knows batteries come with a finite lifespan. End-of-life EV batteries may find a second use as backing storage for power grids but there will come a time when they need to be recycled – and the current process is neither clean nor easy.

"This novel procedure is 100 times quicker and greener than conventional battery recycling techniques and leads to a higher purity of recovered materials," claimed Andy Abbott, professor at the University of Leicester. "It essentially works in the same way as a dentist's ultrasonic descaler, breaking down adhesive bonds between the coating layer and the substrate."

"It is likely that the initial use of this technology will feed recycled materials straight back into the battery production line. This is a real step change moment in battery recycling," he added.

As expected though, masses of research is going into more efficient batteries as well as ways to recycle and re-use them, so the overall situation only keeps getting better.

See Battery recycling boosted by dentist-style ultrasonics, if manufacturers can cooperate

#environment #EV #batteries #recycling


New technique quicker and greener, but needs batteries to be designed for dismantling

Flora Incognita - a grant funded advert-free automated plant identification application using an open platform

Date Published: Thu, 1 Jul 2021 13:51:06 +0200

Does not appear that the actual Android or iOS apps are open source software, but the data platform is an open one.

The Flora apps use traditional methods of species identification and benefit from the latest methods of artificial intelligence. This is already inspiring experts from biology and computer science – but also a large community of laymen and interested people.

Modern artificial intelligence techniques are used to perform this complex task. An image set of an individual is created with the camera of the smartphone. Here, the plant itself and additional plant parts relevant for the determination are taken up from clearly defined perspectives. The resulting data set allows an image-based taxon determination based on so-called „Deep Learning“ algorithms possible.

Taxa identified are transmitted together with their location, time of observation and additional data to central databases of nature conservation authorities and research institutions, where they can then be made available to interested parties and authorities in an open platform.

See The Flora Incognita research project | Flora Incognita - en

#technology #flora #AI #machinelearning #taxonomy


24. June 2020 by Jana Wäldchen Jana Wäldchen and her team from the Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry have played a key role in developing the plant identification app, Flora Incognita. We discussed with her how being...more ...

Microsoft wasn't joking about the Dev Channel not enforcing hardware checks: Windows 11 pops up on Pi, mobile phone - so why limit it?

Date Published: Thu, 1 Jul 2021 13:25:51 +0200

The enthusiast community has thumbed a nose at Microsoft's hardware requirements for Windows 11, with Insider builds demonstrated on Raspberry Pi hardware and the inevitable mobile phone.
The latter will delight Windows Mobile holdouts, still mourning the death of their beloved operating system and stung by Microsoft's latest take on a telephone, which runs Android.

A video surfaced yesterday showing the operating system running on a Lumia 950XL, inadvertently demonstrating that the operating system is less than ideal on the small screen, even if such wonders as screen rotation appear to work well.

Could it be that Windows 11 is respecting not competing head-to-head with Linux across all devices?

See Microsoft wasn't joking about the Dev Channel not enforcing hardware checks: Windows 11 pops up on Pi, mobile phone

#technology #windows11 #raspberrypi


So what's with the TPM malarky?

The Internet Is Rotting - Too much has been lost already. The glue that holds humanity’s knowledge together is coming undone, and it's affecting court cases and more

Date Published: Thu, 1 Jul 2021 10:35:07 +0200

As far back as 2001, a team at Princeton University studied the persistence of web references in scientific articles, finding that the raw number of URLs contained in academic articles was increasing but that many of the links were broken, including 53 percent of those in the articles they had collected from 1994. Thirteen years later, six researchers created a data set of more than 3.5 million scholarly articles about science, technology, and medicine, and determined that one in five no longer points to its originally intended source. In 2016, an analysis with the same data set found that 75 percent of all references had drifted.

Deletion isn’t the only issue. Not only can information be removed, but it also can be changed. Before the advent of the internet, it would have been futile to try to change the contents of a book after it had been long published.

So yes it is a very real problem and due to the decentralised nature of the Internet sites, blogs, books, and even government sites get deleted and changed. On the site/hosting side this will not change, so right now our hope really lies in the Internet Archive's Wayback Machine (and that it keeps getting funding) and efforts like Amberlink, as it is unlikely that any legislation will change this reality. The fact is, we are doomed to lose a lot of human knowledge though the Internet, at least for now.

See The Internet Is Rotting

#technology #archiving #knowledge #internetarchive #waybackmachine


Too much has been lost already. The glue that holds humanity’s knowledge together is coming undone.

Android App Bundles are replacing APKs - They can handle bigger apps but can only exist within the Google Play Store

Date Published: Wed, 30 Jun 2021 23:18:32 +0200

For apps that need more than 150MB, App Bundles introduce a new feature to replace OBBs called Play Asset Delivery. Using better data compression and dynamic delivery strategies, this PAD system promises faster downloads for non-code assets as well, perhaps even while already playing the game. Future updates can also be smaller because PADs won’t contain all the new assets but only what changed between different versions of the assets, a.k.a. their deltas.

This definitely sounds great, at least for users, but it does come with one subtle fine print. All of these features are available only on Google Play Store, which sounds like a no-brainer but has important implications for some Android developers. Unlike APKs, Android App Bundles cannot exist outside of Google Play and cannot be distributed outside of it. This means that developers switching from APK to App Bundles can no longer provide the exact same package or experience on other app sources unless they opt to maintain a separate APK version.

So we'll have to see how the analysis unpacks this all over the next month or so. But certainly, if the dev is no longer producing a separate APK file, the days of sideloading outside of a region etc maybe at an end.

See Android App Bundles are replacing APKs – why it matters

#technology #android #sideloading #google #apps


Google Play Store is constantly evolving to meet the growing needs and demands of Android users and developers. Many of those improvements rely on automated systems powered by AI and machine learni…

Subscribe to GadgeteerZA Blog Posts