Archive for the "hacking" Category

ITEAD Studio IBOX – Part 3: Installing Java and Processing

ITEAD Studio asked me how to install Processing 2.1.1 on Debian 7.0 running on the IBOX, because they want to use the IBOX as a Lampduino controller. This article describes the installation procedure. All of the commands must be typed into a shell Terminal. 1. Install openjdk and librxtx # apt-get update # apt-get install openjdk-7-jdk [...]

ITEAD Studio IBOX Part 2: Booting up Debian Linux 7.0

My IBOX came shipped with Android TV A20 pre-loaded in the NAND flash. I plugged a Microsoft keyboard and mouse into the USB ports, and used my Panasonic plasma TV as a HDMI display.  The boot screen is a bit confusing, because it implies that the device has WLAN support: You can ignore the big [...]

ITEAD Studio IBOX – Part 1: First Look

ITEAD Studio recently contacted me to let me know that they’re going to display my Lampduino project at the Shenzhen Makerfaire. I thought that was a pretty cool idea, and am honored to hear that. They also asked if I wanted to test out their IBOX mini multifunction single board computer, which is currently in its final [...]

Noritake 24×6 Character VFD Module

I’ve always thought VFDs were pretty cool. They used to be the rage in high end consumer electronics. Back in the mid 70′s, I built a VFD alarm clock. Recently, I got my hands on a modern VFD module to play with. The Noritake-itron SCK-Y100-24063-N14 is a very flexible 24×6 character VFD module in the same [...]

Logging Rainforest RAVEn/EMU-2 Data to ThingSpeak (node.js on Raspberry Pi)

Last year, I bought a Rainforest EMU-2 energy monitor.  It wirelessly talks via zigbee to the smart energy meter that SCE installed at my house a couple of years ago. Unfortunately, its logging capabilities are rather primitive. All it does is give you a crude bar graph of the current and previous day’s usage. SCE [...]

Logging Nest Thermostat Data: Update 1

I have updated my Nest thermostat data logger. The changes are as follows: added fan status, heater status, and AC status. polling interval increased from 15 min to 1 min. data are pushed to ThingSpeak only if at least one field changes. The new node.js code: The corresponding ThingSpeak Channel also needs to have 3 [...]

Logging Nest Thermostat Data

I recently had a Nest Thermostat installed at my house for free by my gas company as part of a pilot program that they’re running. It’s a pretty cool device, though I wouldn’t spend $250 to buy one. I like the fact that it’s a lot easier to use than my previous smart thermostat, especially [...]

TP-WR703N: Adding Storage Space – EXTROOT

Once you have your TP-WR703N running OpenWrt, you’ll find that it doesn’t have a lot of free space for adding your own files. Here is the output from df from after installing attitude-adjustment: root@OpenWrt:/# df -h Filesystem Size Used Available Use% Mounted on rootfs 1.1M 352.0K 736.0K 32% / /dev/root 2.0M 2.0M 0 100% /rom [...]

Hacking the TP-Link TP-WR703N – Part 2: Bring it back from the dead (How to unbrick it)

This morning, I realized that I actually had a 3.3V UART in my house that I could use to connect to my bricked TP-WR703N‘s serial port .. the Raspberry Pi runs on 3.3v! I dug up the instructions on how to hook it up on the OpenWrt forum. After hooking it up, configuring it, and firing [...]

Hacking the TP-Link TP-WR703N – Part 1: Brick it and then hack its serial port

I’m working on an embedded project that needs to be able to run node.js over WiFi. There aren’t too many cheap boards that can run linux. The $25 Raspberry Pi and the discontinued Pogoplug V2, which can be had for about $15 immediately came to mind. However, each of these boards had their shortcomings.  The [...]