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June 13 2016: Raspberry Pi Router, Swanky Paint, code compilation and amateur radio

Posted by John ( 4 minute read )

Brian demonstrated in this presentation how he set up a Raspberry Pi 2 as a router essentially by setting up a static IP during configuration and then handing over to a DNS server.

May 9 2016: Claude Shannon, BASH for Windows and USB WiFi dongle

Posted by John ( 6 minute read )

John W asked the best way to link together a number of computers and NFS or Samba were suggested.

John H talked about the background to and the work of Claude Shannon, the centenary of whose birth fell on 30 April 2016.

April 11 2016: BASH for Windows, Linus Torvalds and other matters

Posted by John ( 2 minute read )

David S had hoped to be able to demonstrate BASH for Windows though he had found that he had to sign away all his rights to register on the Windows Insider Program and, when he had done that, found that the relevant option had not being installed on his tablet. So all he could do was point to the BASH on Ubuntu on Windows site.

March 14 2016: dBASE II, Scribus and Raspberry Pi 3 vs Odroid C2

Posted by John ( 9 minute read )

John H picked up on a discussion at the previous meeting to give a presentation on dBASE II. He had never upgraded to dBASE III because it was not backwards compatible with dBASE II (other programs of that era like WordStar and Supercalc had maintained backwards compatibility; so it was possible to use them on both CP/M and DOS machines) and because dBASE II had an operator similar to LIKE "%<substring>%" in SQL which had not been implemented in dBASE III. As he had made extensive use of this operator in his programs, an upgrade to dBASE III would have involved an extensive rewrite of all his programs.

February 8 2016: Parquet, Impala, Internet connections, Linuxone and snooping

Posted by John ( 4 minute read )

Alice started us off with Optimising Impala Queries, or a ‘Distributed Lego Community’, a demonstration of the principles behind Parquet, a columnar storage format, and Impala, an analytic database, for the Hadoop ecosystem. Columnar storage formats overcome the burden of reading every row of a table based database such as SQL.

January 11 2016: Erlang, Ian Murdock, FPGAs and openSPARC

Posted by John ( 2 minute read )

With no presentations prepared, we talked about this and that, from Elixir, a concurrent programming language that runs on Erlang, to openSPARC.

2015 Christmas Quiz Answers

Posted by John ( 2 minute read )
  1. From which operating system did Linus Torvalds draw inspiration for Linux? Minix
  2. Which was the first recognisable Linux Distribution? Softlanding Linux System [the Manchester distribution is an alternative answer]

December 14 2015: Pine64, ARM GPUs, Cassandra, GPIO and GPG

Posted by John ( 6 minute read )

Brian introduced us to the Pine 64, an expandable single board computer starting at $15 for 512MB. Though a 2GB version was advertised, it appeared that only the 512MB and 1GB versions are currently available.

Stephane then recommended the Charbax videos and in particular the interview with Bernhard Rosenkränzer on the Android team at Linaro and Rob Clark of Red Hat who works on the open source GPU driver called Freedreno for Qualcomm’s ARM processors’ Adreno GPU. He noted that ARM GPUs are all bound to specific implementations of the GPU which makes producing common code very difficult.

November 9 2015: openSUSE LEAP, Realtime trains, GPIO, Libreboot and browser fingerprinting

Posted by John ( 1 minute read )

John H began with a presentation on the background to the recent release of openSUSE LEAP 42.1.

Alice then demonstrated using the Realtime Trains API to download and analyse information about train movements on Train workings; the source code is on GitHub.

October 12 2015: Websites, Windows 10, Frutiger and backups

Posted by John ( 5 minute read )

John H described the work he was doing on the Heath Old Boys Association website; this was a 2003 vintage frame based website which did not play well with modern devices; after he had explored various options, he had decided that the best option was to build a new HTML5 website on the lines described by Dave Fisher in his 2010 talk to BradLUG in front of the old website so that people could continue to access the old website while the new one was under construction.