Archive for the Development Category

oh my god!

Posted in cheap obsolete tech, Development, Embedded, General niff naff and trivia, Hardware, Linux, The downside of Opensource on September 24, 2014 by asteriondaedalus

My ODROID-W turned up. The thing is the size that could almost fit in a matchbox. I am sold! You are right Broadcom, this little board is a threat. Good job Hardkernel.

How hard is it to program a eeprom?

Posted in cheap obsolete tech, Development, DSP, DSP Laboratory, Hardware on July 29, 2014 by asteriondaedalus

Pretty tricky if it is obsolete so no programmers around for it.

The AT17C65 is the eeprom configurator used in the eval board that the ADMCF328 sits on.

You can probably see where I picked up the fidgety RS232 approach with the AD chip and the optocouplers.

Now I know what you are thinking.  Swap it out for another chip.

Kooky idea.

Except the of the three chips that the ADMCF328 are design to work with (XC17165E, AT17C65, or 37LV65) the AT17C65 is the only one I can readily find on the aftermarket in China.  Absolutely no programmers for it though (although ATMEL have a tease page for a programmer but you can’t get it anymore, and why would you as the chip isn’t stocked anymore).

Thank you Mouser for one idea of how to build a programmer.

Although clincher came from ATMEL site along with the software for the configurator.  So, since the software seems to install on my Windoze box, I just need a DB25 parallel port – yes I said a DB25 parallel port.

Now, this goes either of two ways.  First is a USB to DB25 cable and driver, hopefully the configuration software recognises that arrangement.  Total cost $1.98.

Failing that, $6 to $11 dollars for a PCI card with DB25 parallel port and the ATMEL configurator software.

Failing that, ATMEL has also provided AVR code for programming AT17C65 so I would just code something up on my Arduino MEGA1250.

Okay, so either of 3 ways, 4 if you count no can do – which we don’t do we!

Why all this trouble?

Later chips work slightly differently and there is no guarantee the ADMCF328 will read other chip types.  Since getting a flashing LED on this little DSP chip will be proof I can program it having the right eeprom makes sense to avoid compounding the problem.

Although, the first flashing LED experiment will be against serial port boot.

Stay tuned.

PS, no Maker get out clause no way no how … I like it.



Posted in Design rather than hacking, Development, Open Source can be professional, Software Framework on May 30, 2014 by asteriondaedalus

Elektor do for $150 what Quantum Leaps gives away!

Although it might be closer to ArduBlock? Although ArduBlock doesn’t cover ARM etc.

Accelerate 2

Posted in Development, Parallel Talk, Python RULES! on April 20, 2014 by asteriondaedalus

Okay, so a half day fidgeting to get pyOpenCL working.

Turns out it was easy.

I have a INTEL CORE i5  CPU and you just need to install the Intel OpenCL runtime.  The SDK won’t install anyway unless 1) you have something other than VS Express or 2) there appears to be a cheat to install it anyway.  It isn’t need for pyOpenCL.

Then install the relevant exe for pyOpenCL and run that.  I installed the 32 bit version because I opted for 32bit given the raft of libraries I wanted to use. I did try installing the AMD OpenCL SDK, thinking I would need it for the Radeon, but it turned out that wasn’t it at all. Experimenting with code examples from various places it looks good.

I have copies of a couple of OpenCL books so I can dabble in the background. This is primarily for prototyping and learning the ropes of OpenCL.

I am holding off on my ARM cluster, I was about to jump in and get 3 ODROID U3 but I can wait until they bring out the U4, hopefully with an RK3288.  The ODROID XU has OpenCL (via Octa chip set) but too expensive.


Accelerate …

Posted in Development, Python RULES!, The downside of Opensource on April 15, 2014 by asteriondaedalus


I was looking for GPU cards when I thought to look closer at my current desktop.  It has a AMD RADEON HD 6570 in it, not a really hot card for gaming (apparently) but for getting a feel for OpenCL development and also playing with PyOpenCL (and OpenCL extensions of OpenCV) I think it will do.

Having trouble at moment getting pyOpenCL working.  I have tried downloading and installing both 64 and 32bit versions to get different error against same python example.  Will scratch me head a little sort this out over study breaks during the next week off before LAST MASTERS EXAM EVER!

Upgrading game pad – 2

Posted in Android, Development, Python RULES! on April 10, 2014 by asteriondaedalus

Had to laugh.

Installed QPython on the JXD 7800 to find it includes twisted and pygame already – or at least the androidafied version  oh, and Kivy.

Can’t loose.

Will have a look at getting SPADE and potentially PROFETA working also.


Posted in Development on March 23, 2014 by asteriondaedalus

So, last assignment for Master’s done save for re-reading and touching up references.  Two weeks ahead of when it has to be handed in so plenty of study time before exam.

In the meantime, some dusting off of projects in order I think.

So many, so which ones?

Might just dabble a bit with PROFETA.

I am going for a Samsung Galaxy S4 for my phone account upgrade so I can through the S2 back into the place I wanted it for – robotics experiments workhorse.

I might also get back into the FPGA bits and pieces as a couple of other toys have long turned up and waiting play:

Of course I also ordered the LOGIBONE with camera for FPGA vision experiments.  It hasn’t turned up yet since the chore of Kickstarter is getting in too early isn’t it.

Still I still have the other hack boards and now course is over with, and Telstra is sorted (so far) I can get back to the Altera video training etc.

Let the fun begin …

Posted in Development, Hardware, Sensing on December 13, 2013 by asteriondaedalus

… and still I need to cut up my VISA card


Okay, I won’t.

So, I jumped on net to find a MPU-9150 breakout as I have started soldering up the propeller proto board to take the ITG 3200 for the phubar experiments.

Propeller Prototype

I am going to add two sockets to allow swapping out between the two sensors.

ITG 3200 Breakoutmpu 9150 breakout

Found a 9150 breakout for $16 odd dollars (although buying 5 for $50 was tempting).

In the meantime found a depth sensor with apparently 1cm resolution, 5 for $20 plus $8 postage.

depth gauge(Post script: the seller retracted the sale, they put the wrong price up – too good to be true afterall.  They don’t appear to be subject to Australian law and not means to force them to honor the “contract”).  You are looking for the MS5803-14B .

This will do for the submersible experiments with the old video camera diving houses.  Of course, some has already written Arduino code to use exactly this sensor (gotta love open source … sometimes).

sony cam

Exam tomorrow …

Posted in Development, Hardware on December 11, 2013 by asteriondaedalus

Just having my morning wake up coffee and day dreaming.

So, I got curious after my last post and an accidental find on the internet (or at least a trillion of them).

Seems many GAL/PAL etc that I use to play with have, relatively recently, gone obsolete (go figure) BUT that means trillions of them on the internet for $1 or less.


Et cetera.

Problem is programming the pesky things.

I have downloaded CUPL (ex commercial and now free – go figure) and a couple of DOS based PALASM (just to be really kooky).

The problem is that you need a physical programmer.  The chips are, more or less, like PROM chips and you need to blow fuses et cetera.

Luckily a blast from the past is GALBLAST which has Eagle files still available.

galblastsch galblastpic

Go figure, might be fun trying to source some of the components on the thing – but doable.

It restricts the number of chips you can burn but that’s fine.

Since I have Eagle PCB editor installed I am tempted to get rid of the DB25 and replace it with either of …




To make it a serial programmer.  Although it is tempting to just make a cable to drive it from my MEGA.



One of these USB to DB25 parallel adapters. This might be simplest first up as it only needs changing the PC programming code around port output and no PCB design work.

Beaglebone Black Setup

Posted in Development, Hardware, Linux, Networking on June 15, 2013 by asteriondaedalus

bbb setup

Above is my setup for the Beaglebone Black development.  What fun!

None of the example setups for using the USB alone seemed to work (the ttyUSB* device never turns up on the Debian box).  There are a wealth of people (given the “bleats” on the various user groups) with the same problem.  So, while running it all through the USB seems a neat solution, I recommend going through the Ethernet.  Now I don’t necessarily recommend you go overboard such as the way I have, but I had an afternoon of huffing putting together Ikea furniture and I wanted something therapeutic to do – so there.

I didn’t want to dual boot my Windows desktop especially as  I wanted to potentially run different processes at the same time across the network so the Debian Wheezy 64 bit (the 3GHz HP desktop) went into the entertainment cabinet downstairs.

I VNC into the Debian box and did, for a time, have the BBB on a USB port of the Debian box but that meant going up and down stairs to hit reset buttons or read signals.  To fix this I got a wifi extender with four ports so I sftp to the BBB over wifi from the Debian box but power the BBB and also talk to it by the USB on my Windows box.  This means I can Tera Term VT into the BBB (as well as the Debian box) from Windows.  I can also SSH to the BBB from the Debian box (via TightVNC of the Debian by the Windows box).  The BBB also comes up on the Debian box via sftp.

Though there seems ample ways of getting to the BBB with this setup there is also the serial connection and I will soon sort that out as well.

With the four ports on the wifi extender I can now set up my Beablboard XM as well (as a desk top) and also start the vision experiments with the Android webcams I bought, remember the?:

android webcam