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Hardware project: FlickrBicyclePi

Submitted by Roland on Sun, 2014-08-31 22:27

Somehow Element 14's UK PR found me and asked me about doing a hardware project with their hardware which they would send me in return for blogging about it. So here's my project:

FlickrBicyclePi! What is it? It's custom device that is mounted on my Bicycle and takes photos every minute while the bicycle is in motion and geoetags them and posts them to flickr.

What hardware will I use (Bold stuff is supplied by Element 14 UK thanks, rest is on my dime)?

  1. Raspberry PI
  2. Raspbery PI Camera Module
  3. GPS
  4. WiFi
  5. Accelerometer to detect when the bicycle is in motion
  6. some sort of case TBD
  7. SD Card
  8. Battery
  9. Power Supply to handle the Battery
  10. a small matter of programming in Python :-)

Wish me luck. This will take lots of help from cool folks like Kip. Want to help? Twitter me. @rtanglao or email roland at rolandtanglao.com

Always available Personal Algorithms + Personal Data = Programs that matter

Submitted by Roland on Thu, 2013-03-07 18:17

Always available Personal Data + Personal Algorithms = Programs that matter. Inspired by David Ascher's Personal computing in a decentralized world: a hopeful direction. What if you could keep all of your personal data and personal algorithms in two places so that you always had a backup?

  1. In your home on something cheap and cheerful like a Raspberry Pi AND
  2. With you at all times in your pocket or on your wrist with a portable use anywhere computer like the StormFly.

What if programming wasn't so hard that you had to learn something so rigid like Pascal (the language of Algorithms + Data Structures = Programs) or C++ or even JavaScript but something approachable and more flexible (e.g. IFTTT, scratch, heck even a more accessible version of R). I predict that would allow people to use their personal data in all sorts of "helpful in real life" ways we can't even imagine!

And I don't see why this won't be possible in less than 10 years if not sooner.

Single Purpose Server Apps on multiple Raspberry Pis to overcome tyranny of the cloud & tyranny of hosted services

Submitted by Roland on Sun, 2012-06-03 10:13

Raphael's Raspberry Pi - raphaels-raspberry-pi-20120601-1.jpgThe Raspberry Pi was designed as a cheap low cost computer for education. Could it be also good as a low power server dedicated to one app (as Richard has it, a "thin cloud")? It's so cheap you could run two (one primary and one backup at different locations). No need for a datacenter, no need for a hosted service! Begone "tyranny of the cloud" and "tyranny of the hosted service" ?

My guess is the Raspberry Pi is too slow and my internet connection is too slow but it would work for a family webapp only used by two dozen folks! But in the future I don't see why it wouldn't be viable with a better internet connection and faster raspberry pis!

I am going to try this out when my Raspberry Pi arrves later this summer. I am thinking of running Open Photo (a private instance) for family stuff.

The other thing thing I am thinking of doing is using multiple Raspberry Pis to run cool server web app tech, e.g. 1 for clojure, 1 for node.js, 1 for haskell, 1 for racket, 1 for whatever is the common lisp flavour du jour :-) etc

And heck if i have spare time, I'll use multiple Raspberry Pis like D'Arcy, Dave Winer and Tantek; to reclaim my stuff and put it in my walled garden first :-) before I copy it to other walled gardens like Pinterest, twitter, flickr etc

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