Monday, February 25, 2008

Remote Reset

[reading: Neil Gaiman, "Eternals"]

Someone at work was complaining the other week about the difficulties of testing with the OSE board. The board needs to have the reset button pressed after each test, and the problem was that the board lives in the machine room at the other end of the building.

I remembered that I had an old Lego Mindstorms set rotting in the cellar, so I decided to help out:


One of the motors had died in the meanwhile, but a contraption to press a button only needs a single motor. The software had rotted quite badly too—the old software that came with the set wouldn't work with XP, and there didn't seem to be any updates on the Lego website.

Open source to the rescue: the NQC compiler together with the Bricx IDE sorted out the 6 line program that I needed, and so remote reset was born.


Sunday, February 10, 2008

Picture Sale

[reading: Yannis Haralambous, "Fonts and Encodings"; recently Joss Whedon, "Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Long Way Home"]

Apparently I (sort of) sold my first picture last week, which was a framed print of this one:


The details are little less impressive: I gave the picture to a charity shop after a clear out. They put it in the window for £9.99 and it was there one day, gone the next.