It is my great pleasure to inform you folks that, almost after four years, I did a new release of LibSWD-0.7 , a low-level embedded systems access open framework. Special thanks goes to Andrew Parlane of Carallon Ltd  for his much appreciated contributions! Well now I feel like I need to invent some nice small device based on ARM Cortex-M0 CPU 🙂
I have recently started the OrangeADE project , that is Orange Autonomous Device Evaluation, an online platform to evaluate security level of network equipment and verify against known vulnerabilities. OrangeADE is released as Open-Source under the “new” 3-Clause BSD license. Enjoy the work in progress! 🙂
You just need to see this awsome Mars Curiosity  simuluator  made by NASAJPL  with Blender3D  Blend4Web  HTML5  WebGL  Free and Open-Source Software 🙂
Sony Xperia phones are my favorite. Very good and durable electronics, amazing photo camera, nice utilities on top of standard Google Android OS. I have also always respected Xperia for allowing users to unlock their phones for Open-Source Firmware Customization on this amazing hardware..
Unfortunately, Sony seems to have this habit to make a bad decisions, so amazing hardware is not always followed with a good software. This is why Open-Source Customization is so important. I have already found several nice devices with a really bad firmware. What is more, this corruption seems to spread, and Sony blocks factory firmware restore for an unlocked devices with their official Xperia Companion utility. This means unlocking a device does not only Voids a Warranty, but also silently makes it Impossible to Go Back to a Stock Firmware! This is really bad idea.
Luckily smart people tends to predict and help each other out. Developer team of Sony Mobile released EMMA utility (nice name by the way) that allows you to re-flash mobile that is unlocked in case something goes wrong or you simply want to get back to a stock firmware.
Open-Source Firmware Customization will become a standard, even for large enterprises, with mutual benefit to their customers, because looking at the big picture we are part of the same eco(no)system..
It was fun to take part in NXP Technology Days 2016. Last year fusion of Freescale into NXP looks good, lots of useful solutions and possibilities gathered in one place. Very interesting On-Chip Security Mechanisms for Embedded Systems and Open-Source implementations for i.MX6 CPU family. Let’s hope that (probably upcoming) fusion of NXP into Qualcomm will not affect Open-Source Community in a bad way..
I have just reported several issues and ideas related with this nice Google Hangouts Android application:
- The name Hangouts is not popular and hard to remember. Abandoning “Google Chat” or “Google Talk” was a bad idea. People tend to remember short names and popular words such as “Skype” or “Viber”. This may be funny but people really cannot remember “Hangouts” well.
- Receiving calls is misleading. There are several different ways to answer an incoming call in Hangouts. Most common way is to press a button and then drag it onto an icon that is not visible until you press a button. Another way is top view pop-up which could have color buttons in addition to small icons. Older people have problem with this. Average non-geek user simply needs Green Answer and Red Reject button.
- Hangouts would be simpler to use and more popular if it worked just as an ordinary Phone Call application. Non-geek users have this habit already on how to use Phone Call application, that Hangouts should leverage.
- Hangouts voice/video call should be available directly from a Contact Book if gmail address is present. Just as phone call.
- There are Android devices that offer hardware phone buttons (such as LG Wine Smart). Green Connect and Red Disconnect buttons should be also available to perform actions in Hangouts.
These simple ideas arised from observing older people trying to use Hangouts to videocall their family members..
It is possible to connect a game controller to Android based device and use it as input for your application .
Most modern Android based devices support USB OTG function . USB is a Host centric bus that means there is only one Host device and many different Devices can be connected to it. Using inexpensive USB-OTG cable it is possible to swich smarphone USB port from Device to Host, and connect external devices, if chipset and OS build allows this. Google provides detailed information on how to code USB Host  in your application.