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Archive for category hack-the-planet
There’s an interesting Windows PowerShell e-book available for free download. You can grab the e-book and the associated demos at Microsoft Switzerland.
Source 1: e-book
Source 2: demos
…on their journey to Mongolia…
“Ze Germans …are coming! We’re taking on the Mongol Rally 2007. 13.000 kilometers, 5 mountain ranges, 2 deserts, some of the worst roads in the world and all this in car most people wouldn’t trust to get them to the local shops.”
And as of today they are on the road doing the rally:
“If you read this after about 8am, then we are on the road and on our way to London. Thanks to Mirko, all our SMS Updates will also be posted here, so stay tuned! And for God’s sake, wish us luck!”
“Apparently in Windows Vista, Microsoft still enforce and hard-limit (hard coded in tcpip.sys) the maximum simultaneous half-open (incomplete) outbound TCP connection attempts per second that the system can make, as in Windows XP SP2, in order to protect the system from being used by malicious programs, such as viruses and worms, to spread to uninfected computers, or to launch distributed denial of service attack (DDoS). When the limit is hit, in Event Viewer, there will be such an entry:”
How to fix that and the needed tools can be read and downloaded here.
Source: Patch for EventID 4226
The trailer for this years FIWAK is done:
I did some research and some tweaking on the servers that are hosting schrankmonster yesterday. I hope your experience is faster now.
Someone put the $80 down and got himself a replacement laser unit of a Playstation 3. And he disassembled it:
Many more interesting pictures and facts after the jump.
It just seems like make is going to get some interesting pictures tomorrow:
“We’re using weather balloons to go up to approximately 100k feet armed with 4 cameras… 20 megapixels of camera! We’ll be taking shots every 7 seconds for two hours and measuring the temperature with the Make: controller and thermistors!
It took 16 people working on this, countless cases of mountain dew, lots of take-out food, and a lot of sleepless nights, and we intend to fly Sunday!
Cloud cover, snow, and mechanical failure may postpone the launch, but we’re ready to give it our best shot this weekend.
In this Make: Video Podcast, you’ll learn all the details of how to put a weather balloon up into space! The weather balloon will make it up to about 100,000 feet. That’s almost 20 miles up and more than twice the height of being in an airplane. It’s high enough that the sky is black and you can see the curvature of the earth.”
ATTENTION: The information in this article are not final and are subject to be changed during the plannings.
In less than 2 months the 23c3 takes place in Berlin/Germany (December 27.-30th 2006). And the plannings are in full progress. We had several brainstorm sessions and I think that we finally do have a plan. First of all: We learned a lot from the 22c3 live streaming and recording work. And to give you an overview of the things we want to achieve this time:
- permanent working live streams of all 4 lecture halls
- high quality recordings without using our DV-Tape fallback
- making low/mid/high quality recordings in different codecs available for download within 24 hours
To achieve these goals we’re going to need considerably more hardware than last year, which means:
- 4 WMV Live Encoding machines
- 1 MPEG-2 encoding machine with 4 MPEG-2 encoder cards
- 4 video editing machines
- 6 19″ TFTs + 1 4
- at least 1 monitoring machine
- more than 1 Tbyte of storage space
- 5 cameras + 1 video mixer
- a lot of helping hands (yes, we need help chaos angels!!)
So. The camera setup is almost identical to the last one. But this time we want to use a better FBAS signal instead of the in-house HF-cable-TV. The WMV encoding stays as it was last year. We plan to install an additional MPEG-2 hardware encoding machine which produces high-quality MPEG-2 data (which gets edited and compressed for download distribution as fast as possible).
Since we’re sill in planning stage we cannot speak about bitrates, live streams and such. Everything is subject to change, it’s just a draft. But stay tuned and read frequently. Oh… and comments are welcome.
Source 1: https://events.ccc.de/congress/2006/Home
Source 2: https://events.ccc.de/congress/2006/Angel_FAQ
“What do you get when you take 38,240 PixelBlocks, excessive amounts of free time, and a love of built-in Windows time wasters? A six foot tall recreation of Minesweeper! You’re looking at dozens of hours of work and over $900 worth of colored pegs.”
Do you remember the landing of the two mars exploration vehicles calles Spirit and Opportunity in 2004? Well I think you do. They were built to last 90 days. But it’s now more than 1000 days – more than 10 times the timespan.
Well well, the two sneaky space travellers are kind of tattered – ones wheel isn’t working anymore and the other one had to get his brain “reformated” several times…but all over all they are in good shape for very old fellas.
Everybody will need one of these when the guardians attack zion…
“In 1990, we started to develop a Wearable Power Assist Suit, and in 1991 we fabricated a Powered Arm constructing the master and slave system in one unit by utilizing a rubber tube air actuator and sensing cuff, [ref. 1]. In 1994, we developed a Wearable Powered Suit constructed with powered arms, a powered waist, and powered legs [ref. 2], and finally in 2002, we developed a Stand Alone Type Wearable Power Assist Suit [ref. 3]. This suit was composed of newly developed air bag actuators driven by micro air pumps, newly developed muscle hardness sensors, and an embedded micro computer. The muscle hardness sensor was developed for detecting the muscle force driving joints. The micro computer was for calculation of the necessary joints torques to lift heavy objects. The calculation equations was derived by body mechanics. This suit could run continuously 20 minutes with 12 volts Ni-Cd portable batteries. The latest power assist suit can generate higher assist power, and is composed of compact body, a compact embedded micro computer, small and flat rotary sensors, and has newly designed muscle sensors which are embedded in 3-D mesh [ref. 4].”
While cleaning my keyboards the idea came up to actually use dvorak keyboard layout I wrote about more than a year ago.
After creating the “dovrak german type 2” keyboard layout file with Ukelele I am now slowly learning the new layout… quite hard after more than 16 years on QWERTZ/QWERTY…
Well… both Apple Keyboards are now dvorak-layouted… looks a bit strange when you’re only known to QWERTZ/QWERTY
If you like you can download the OS X keyboard layout here.
Source 1: dvorak article(german)
Source 2: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dvorak_Simplified_Key…
Source 3: Ukelele
Source 4: btk_Dvorak.zip (3,21 KB)
Ever wondered what 1000 cars at once might look like? Wonder no more!
I knew that there are some serious protection techniques inside those thinkpads…but I didn’t imagine they are this sophisticated:
Somedays you wake up and think: Well…what to do with this day? Oh, I know! Let’s build a full size 747 flight simulator…
I don’t know if that’s how it all got started for Matthew Sheil, but:
“In 1998 I began the design and constuction of my 747-400 simulator. The approximate size of the simulator is 13ft wide x 11ft long and 9ft high. It will include every switch and panel in the 747-400. The Simulator has been built to accept full motion and visuals at a later date.”
If you think the inside looks impressive…look at the outside:
I am running into several Do-it-yourself websites these days; and one of them is zedomax.com. This website tells you very interesting electronic tales, like this one:
Once upon a time, I wanted to get me a segway. But since I didn’t want to bite the bullet I just made one myself…
“The author says, “The current software, now in C running in an onboard 8-bit microcontroller, is only 500 lines of code.””
Stitching software and digital cameras make panoramic photos far easier than ever before. However, to get the best results, you need a special tripod head. These can cost hundreds of dollars, but making your own isn’t that hard. Even better, it’s dirt cheap.
The iRex iLiad e-ink e-book reader is such a fantastic device, a friend of mine is willing to put the >600 euro down to get one. And if he reads this, he’ll be even more motivated to bite the bullet:
“From the factory, the Iliad only uses and maintains Internet connectivity for a very short time and for one specific purpose; to connect to the Rex site. Some enterprising device owners put a little hack together with a PDF file and some http for an address bar and they’re now surfing the web as long they like on the Iliad.”
“A CAPTCHA (an acronym for “completely automated public Turing test to tell computers and humans apart”, trademarked by Carnegie Mellon University) is a type of challenge-response test used in computing to determine whether or not the user is human.”
This technology is mainly used to filter all those spammers from the normal commenting users. Schrankmonster even uses this technology. Kiesow doesn’t like very long captchas and I don’t like dumb ones…like this one which was sent in by Tomasz Naumowicz:
I want to share with you a fantastic page where Pascal Buire discusses his investigations on Google Earths tiling and algorithms:
“This is my analyse about how google map works, et specially how the tiles are encoded. Google map uses pre-rendered tiles that can be obtained with a simple url. This article explains how to build the url for a tile from its geo coordinates (latitude/longitude)”
Google Earth mirroring anyone?
Well it’s just a great looking USB hub that plays a sound on your PC when you press the big red button…
Source: buy it…or not
More than 2 years from now I wrote about Super Mario War. And now it’s time to take another look on the project and the upcoming version.
Super Mario War is a Super Mario multiplayer game. The goal is to stomp as many other Marios as possible to win the game. It’s a tribute to Nintendo and the game Mario War by Samuele Poletto. The game uses artwork and sounds from Nintendo games. We hope that this noncommercial fangame qualifies as fair use work. We just wanted to create this game to show how much we adore Nintendo’s characters and games.
- Up to four players deathmatch fun
- a whole bunch of game modes (featuring GetTheChicken, Domination, CTF, …)
- Comes with the leveleditor – you can create your own maps…
- … and a lot of people did so. There are currently over 400 maps
- More fun than poking a monkey with a stick
- The whole source code of the game is available
- uses SDL and is fully portable to windows, linux, mac, …
- CPU Players
- will make you happy and gives you a fuzzy feeling
Source 1: Super Mario War in 2004
Source 2: http://smw.72dpiarmy.com/
“Winternals and Sysinternals have been acquired by Microsoft. Winternals is a leading provider of systems recovery tools for Windows-based enterprises worldwide and Sysinternals is one of the leading community and enthusiast sites for people interested in information about the internals of the Windows operating system.”
It starts fairly early this year: even FeM is already preparing and planning for this years live streaming and recording. The public wiki of 23c3 is online and even the Call for Participation screams: visit me!
So, remember: beside the official wiki pages, you can always come and check here for information about FeM activities on 23c3…(streaming, recording,…)
Source: FeM 23c3 recording and streaming project (no website, no link)
The americans managed to crack…well they call it different but the fact remains that they cracked the PRN codes of the european global non-military positioning system called “Galileo”
“Because GPS satellites, which were put into orbit by the Department of Defense, are funded by U.S. taxpayers, the signal is free — consumers need only purchase a receiver. Galileo, on the other hand, must make money to reimburse its investors — presumably by charging a fee for PRN codes.”
With just 5 minutes of play my girlfried made the new nintendo game display things that weren’t supposed to be displayed (look at the top of the screenshot…and the movie)
A small movie:
“2001 seconds is a complete re-edit of Stanley Kubrick’s original Space Odyssey from 141 minutes to 33 minutes 21 seconds.”
What these guys created is just stunning:
What happens when an API uses guessing to identify which character encoding is actually used in a text file:
- Open Notepad
- Type the text “this app can break” (without quotes)
- Save the file
- Re-open the file in Notepad
And the explanation: Notepad uses as windows system method called “IsTextUnicode()“. In the MSDN Library article on this method you can read:
“This function uses various statistical and deterministic methods to make its determination, under the control of flags passed in the lpi parameter. When the function returns, the results of such tests are reported using the same parameter.
The IS_TEXT_UNICODE_STATISTICS and IS_TEXT_UNICODE_REVERSE_STATISTICS tests use statistical analysis. These tests are not foolproof. The statistical tests assume certain amounts of variation between low and high bytes in a string, and some ASCII strings can slip through. For example, if lpBuffer indicates the ASCII string 0x41, 0x0A, 0x0D, 0x1D (A\n\r^Z), the string passes the IS_TEXT_UNICODE_STATISTICS test, although failure would be preferable. “
That simply means, that the method fails on detecting the correct character encoding. Aftermarket Pipes tells us:
“It actually runs a couple of heuristics over the first 256 bytes of the data and provides its best guess. As it turns out, these tests aren’t terribly reliable for very short ASCII strings that contain an even number of lower-case letters, like “this app can break”, “
digital display (computer screen), 12 feet tall and 12 feet in diameter. Vertical
columns of multi-color LED (light emitting diode) clusters spin around a vertical
axis at 90 revolutions per minute. At a radius of 6 feet, they move at 41 miles
per hour. 2880 LEDs are turned on and off by a computer in precise synchronization
with the rotation of the columns, creating the illusion of a cylindrical digital
display. Spin has a vertical resolution of 16 pixels (picture elements), each
of which can display one of 8 colors. As horizontal position is determined by
time in Spin, the horizontal resolution is theoretically infinite, but for the
sake of data manipulation efficiency it is be limited to 360 pixels all the
way around the cylinder.”
We like surveilance cameras, don’t we? Well sort of: Only if we can use them for fun purposes. Dalini sent me the link to this great piece of having-fun-technology:
- Full range frequency scanning from 900-2520MHz
- 2.5 Color TFT high resolution monitor
- Full range video protocol auto switching for PAL/NTSC, CCIR/EIA
- Dual internal power (4 x AA batteries not included)
- External power supply
- Auto and manual scanning mode
- LCM indicator shows the frequency allocation and setting details
- Alarm signal out put for more extended applications
“This bike mounted POV is unique, there have been quite a few floating around recently but I have never seen one that calculated and displayed the RPM of the device. Based on wheel diameter the current speed would also be easy to calculate and display.”
When you don’t have the chance to watch the football world championship live on tv, you can watch it on a very nerdy way: ascii-art telnet livestream.
You cannot deny the similarities to the actual tv picture…but you need to be very nerdy and/or very desperate to watch it this way…
Especially for our reply2all team…:
It’s a real classic. It’s a great game and I am waiting for it’s newest incarnation: The New Super Mario Bros. for my also awaited Nintendo DS lite. Besides that: my apologies that the animated gif is 10 pixels wider than usually.
and allows to jump again, boosting from the wall. In the example image on the right, three walljumps are performed.
Theory: Walljump happens because the game does a floor check (a simple “is position divided by 16 even? Is there a solid block below him?” test) even during a wall-ejection. Wall-ejection is SMB’s mechanism to adjust Mario’s horizontal position properly when his left side and right side have a different inside-wall status. The game ejects Mario towards the opposite of his steering.”
To perform a walljump, you need two things:
- Some horizontal speed (towards the wall)
- Mario’s feet must hit the wall exactly at a block boundary (every 16 pixels)
It’s possible to perform walljump from any non-lethal solid material (bricks, pipes, etc).”
Source: Super Mario Bros. Tricks
Virtually silent and vibration free, quietrevolution is ideally suited to both urban sites and exposed locations.
The simple and robust design (patent pending) has just one moving part, maximising reliability and minimising maintenance requirements.”
Vertical-axis wind turbines not only look very sci-fi, but when you add LEDs to the border of the turbine you can use them as a display:
So I leave you with a patent pending revolution which produces power and is virtually silent…whatever that means.
Ralf of videobasics.de created a great time-lapse movie of a house demolition. See how things end:
Music by 2-RD. (I added this)
You can get the movie iPod-compatible via the muckefuck podcast feed.
I always knew that there is the bad taste of crime and the smell of illegality involved when it comes to mathematics…
“The first illegal prime to be announced, when interpreted a particular way, describes a computer program which bypasses copyright protection schemes on some DVDs. Because that program has been found illegal by courts in the United States of America, this has produced debate about whether the number itself could be considered illegal.”
There are gamers who don’t enjoy the games the same way the average gamer does. They are called runners. And they are doing Speed-Runs through games.
For example: the complete HalfLife 2 in 1 hour 36 minutes and 57 seconds…
And there is an archive to give you an insight on what is going on in the speed-run-scene:
“SDA is the home of speed runs done on many computer and console games. A speed run is a video of a player striving to complete a video game in as fast a time as they can manage. Sound easy? It’s not! A large number of tricks are usually used, possibly skipping whole areas of a game in the process, and there will always be mistakes.”
“this is an example of technology being clearly understood and accepted by the general public. something democratic evolves and develops and therefore often even receives a totally different usage than was originally intended. given the current, often exotic use of USB, it would even be argued that there is a ‘USB subculture’!”
I thought many times of such an application. A tool that would allow me to use almost every MP3 player available on the market to sync with iTunes…
This solution does work – there are no worries. But it’s not the perfect solution of the problem. The perfect solution would be an application that runs on the MP3 player (Windows Mobile, eh?) and allows the MP3 player to pretend it is actually an iPod. Than no software on the Mac/PC is necessary to sync…
Anyone got the iTunes/iPod sync protocol documentation ready?
“iTunes Agent is a small application resting in your system tray constantly looking for new MP3 players and other music capable dev”ices connecting to your system. When a device it recognizes is connected to the system, it will create a playlist for the device in iTunes and it will synchronize that list with tracks on your device.
You may then modify this list, add and remove tracks, before you tell the iTunes Agent to synchronize the list with your player”
Still in the testing phase the instructables step-by-step how-tos are quite a good concept for online collaboration….
Instructables is a venue for showing what you make and how others can make it.
Making things is part of being human. Whether you make bikes, kites, food, clothing, protocols for biology research, or hack consumer electronics, good instructions are critical.
Instructables is a step-by-step collaboration system that helps you record and share your projects with a mixture of images, text, ingredient lists, CAD files, and more. We hope to make documentation simple and fast. Show your colleagues how to operate a machine, show your friends how to build a kayak, show the world how to make cool stuff.
…and Project Gotham Racing 3 is thinking it too…well sort of…
place 0 in league 2 what are you guys want to tell me?
I wrote about the NES gaming the last week and yesterday toniq pointed me to “Press Play on Tape” – a retro band which plays game tunes … in this particular case they play the title tune of “Cannon Fodder” with the help of… game console controllers…Just go and have a look at the great video:
Everybody knows me as the gadget-loving guy who cannot resist any chance to play with technology. And this night was once again time to play.
I was in bed complaining about the fact that I have to get up to change the track iTunes is playing at the moment. I thought: It should be possible to remote control iTunes and everything else on any machine in the room.
I instantly got up and looked for something that might do what I wanted… And what I found outdid my expectations by far: Salling Clicker is the name of the tool.
What’s the point of the tool? It’s simply a server and a client. The server runs on any Windows or Macintosh machine and accepts connections via TCP/IP or bluetooth. I am using bluetooth at the moment… The client runs on almost any phone, in my case a Windows Mobile 5 phone.
The installation is painless – on the Mac it comes as a Preference Pane:
This represents the menu you have on your client…on my phone in this case…
You even can configure phone events…for example: What happens when the phone rings?
The user interface is very similar to an iPod. You simply control it with the D-Pad of the phone. Clicking the D-Pad is selecting…
To give you an idea what it looks like to play a song…look:
Yes there is cover art…and track rating…
And … you can search… and find…
This is the first tool for about two years that flashed big way. I instantly registered my copy (the 30 click-limitation is quite annoying) and got a serial number within minutes. As I am exploring the tool I even found extensions for the remote control to acces my eMail…my ICQ…oh well and remote controlling Powerpoint presentations is one base feature…
The tool is, like I said, available for Windows and Macintosh – so take a look it’s really worth the try.
WOW! Why didn’t we think of that?
Did you ever wonder how fast data is actually travelling on the wires that come out of your machines? So take a look at this diagram to find out:
So here we are: We got a EIB bus in our office and thought: Oh well – that’s something to play with. But this guy wired and automated his complete house.
I cannot even imagine what information he is getting from “toilet flushed 3 times today”…but hey – why not 🙂
You Played Mario Brothers 1 2 3 On The NES You Loved It You Even Played It On Your PC In An Emulator Then Theres Prob
You played Mario Brothers 1, 2, 3 on the NES? You loved it? You even played it on your PC in an emulator? Then there’s probably something new for you: A brand shiny new version of the Mario Brothers. It’s not officially from Nintendo but made by some guy who calls himself “DAHRKDAIZ”.
For the download you get nothing more than completely new worlds and levels, modified graphics, new gameplay features, new power ups,… and many many more.
It’s “just” a hack – but it’s a great one. Almost a complete re-new-make…
We had a project which used the RSA SecurID token for authentication. But that was more than a year ago. Now what’s left are several unused token which are free for some fun…
“Your RSA SecurID token contains delicate and sophisticated instrumentation. The token casing, LCD and silicon chip will break if abused. Protect your RSA SecurID token from phyiscal abuse. Do not immerse it in liquids, do not expose it to extreme temperatures, and do not put it under pressure or bend it.” (RSA SecurID manual)
Let’s bend it, put it under pressure, expose it to extreme temperatures and liquids. Let’s physical abuse it so that it breaks…