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Showing posts from April, 2017

Classroom Timer V1

If you have ever been a teacher at any point in your life, you would have realized the importance of keeping your students engaged and on task at all times during the short period every day that you get to spend time teaching them. If you have just 30 minutes per day, you want to maximize the learning by having a structured lesson plan that moves smoothly from Introduction to New Material to Guided Practice and into Independent Practice. And if you have planned for the lecture properly, you would know how much time you want to spend at each stage doing each activity with the kids to ensure that the lesson is completed on time and doesn't spill over onto the next lecture.

You may have a clock in your class, but having a countdown timer makes more sense in competitive and group activities. When the kids see the time ticking down, and they rush to try to finish the activity on time, it can give them an adrenalin rush and bring excitement to the activity.

I am an engineer by professi…

tweet.sh on LinkIt Smart 7688 Duo (OpenWrt)

Temboo-less tweeting from the shellLinkIt 7688 Duo is a cheaper ($15.9 vs $74.95) and breadboardable version of Arduino Yun. Arduino Yun comes preloaded with Temboo whereas LinkIt does not have that preloaded. Temboo is a great go between service that allows your IoT project to talk to existing services like google drive, twitter or dropbox - but to do anything long term and meaningful with it, you have to upgrade from a free temboo plan to a paid plan - Arduino Yun is already expensive and this makes it even moire expensive. I used Arduino Yun and Temboo to make a shimmering lamp that reacts to tweets from your sweetheart - But now it was time to move on to better yet cheaper builds.

A Raspberry Pi running Node Redcan achieve a lot but here I want to focus on LinkIt because I am using it as a part of a larger "art" project. Since LinkIt has an AVR microcontroller (Arduino programmable over WiFi and Arduino Bridge), it allows for greater flexibility in interfacing to sensor…

Dealing with WiFi IP Cameras and .264 files

On a recent visit to China, I purchased a cheap IP camera which looks like a robot:

You can get one online from amazon for twice the amount that you might pay for it when you buy it from one of the shops in ShenZhen (I got it for around 150 CNY or 1500 INR). The camera is supposed to be installed in your house where you can configure it to connect to your home's WiFi router. That way you can connect to the camera from anywhere in the world (using your web browser or smart phone app) and watch and hear what ever the camera picks up. Here are some of the features of this camera:

Tech Specs (you can find these on the amazon page as well, although the model might say something else)Model: The packaging for my camera said "Mini Robot Wireless Camera H811 IP Camera"Power: DC Input 5V 2Amps (via microUSB connector)Image quality: 960P 1.3MegapixelWiFi:Out of the box, the camera defaults to WiFi master mode (i.e. wifi hotspot) . This is so that you can use the app on your smartph…