Ayuda Splash Digital Signage Player Becomes Open Source

Ayuda Media Systems announced OpenSplash – a free, open source digital signage player at ISE 2011. Press Release Excerpt: Ayuda Media Systems (“Ayuda”) announced today at ISE 2011 that it will be open sourcing its Splash Digital Player. Dubbed “OpenSplash”, it is a free, multi-platform open source player that can be driven by any content management and scheduling system. “Offering a free, open source media player will enable a new wave of innovation in the signage industry” said Andreas Soupliotis, President & CEO of Ayuda. “There are a multitude of software vendors in the space that basically all do the same thing – push content from a content management system (CMS) to a network of players. Some do it a little better than others but the differentiation of identity is just not there. If there were a standard open software player that the industry rallied behind then everyone could focus […]

Picture Size Optimization for Embedded Systems

If you are developing an embedded system that requires a graphical user interface, you’ll likely have quite a few icons and/or images to store in the flash/rom. If your hardware has limited space, you may have to optimize the size of picture so that they can fit into your flash with no or minimal loss of quality. Reducing  image size may also be of interest for mobile websites that can be accessed by devices with lower hardware specs and relatively low network throughput (EDGE/3G). I’ll use GIMP 2.6 – The GNU Image Manipulation Program to work on pictures in order to optimize their size. Selecting the picture format The most common picture file formats are bmp, jpg, png and gif. BMP File Format (aka Bitmap Image File or Device Independent Bitmap) can not compress images except for 8-bit color depth, so it is not suitable for embedded systems. JPG File […]

Near Field Communication (NFC) in Public Transport

The NFC Forum, a non-profit industry association that advances the use of Near Field Communication (NFC) technology, has recently published a White Paper entitled “NFC in Public Transport” and show how you can leverage NFC technology in such environment. The whitepaper mainly focuses on mobile phones, readers and smart posters. If you need an introduction about NFC, including starting points for developing hardware and software, please read our previous blog entry first. What can NFC do in public transport ? After a short NFC introduction, the whitepaper deals with the possible applications related to public transport including: Transport timetables Link to an up-to-date weather report website Special discounted travel offers Location relevant maps Next bus arrival time Taxi services Emergency calls Phone-to-phone transfer of destination addresses and maps to taxi driver and how NFC can be used before the journey (e.g. paying for parking, using smart poster for products/services promotions […]

Support for HTML5 Youtube Videos (iFrame) in WordPress

WordPress 3.x will automatically remove iFrame tags when you switch between HTML and Visual mode. In order to prevent that issue, simply install TSL iframe unfilter plugin.This will fix the issue of Youtube iframe embedded code disappearing or any other iframe code you’ve got. To automatically center Youtube videos using the iframe embedded code (supporting for flash and HTML5), edit style.css in Appearance->Editor, and add the lines /* Align iFrame Youtube Videos */ .youtube-player { display: block; margin: 0 auto; } Jean-Luc Aufranc (CNXSoft)Jean-Luc started CNX Software in 2010 as a part-time endeavor, before quitting his job as a software engineering manager, and starting to write daily news, and reviews full time later in 2011. www.cnx-software.com

Android 3.0 SDK Preview and Platform Highlights

Google has just released Android 3.0 (Honeycomb) preview SDK and platform highlights. Android 3.0 Highlights Summary New User Features: New UI designed from the ground up for tablets (larger screens) System Bar, for global status and notifications Action Bar, for application control: access to contextual options, navigation, widgets, or other types of content in the Action Bar, displayed at the top of the screen. Five Customizable Home screens with widgets, app shortcuts, and wallpapers using a dedicated visual layout mode. Recent Apps, for easy visual multitasking Redesigned keyboard to improve typing speed/accuracy on tablets. Improved text selection, copy and paste New connectivity options such as Media/Photo Transfer Protocol, USB / Bluetooth keyboards Updated set of standard apps for larger screens. Browser Improvements: Multi-tabs support,  “incognito” mode, better browsing experience at non-mobile sites through an improved zoom and viewport model, overflow scrolling, support for fixed positioning, and more. Camera and Gallery: […]

How-to Make WordPress iNove Theme Adsense Friendly

When I initially selected my WordPress theme,  I did not really plan on using Adsense, so I just chose one which looked nice to me and fulfilled some other requirements. I finally went with iNove theme. However, after 3 or 4 months, I decided to give a go at Google Adsense and installed Advertising Manager plugin. I created a new Ad unit with a 300×250 resolution to put in the side bar, it was slightly cut on the right but was still looking OK. Later, I wanted to add a leaderboard ad (728×90) on top of the page to hopefully increase the CTR. However, that one was cut even more, although it looked OK in Chrome OS and Firefox, it looked awful in Internet Explorer. So I decided to adjust the size of the main section and the sidebar for iNove theme. Here are the steps to follow to resize […]

OLPC XO 1.75 Hardware, Firmware and Software

OLPC demo’ed their 3rd generation laptop – OLCP XO 1.75 – based on Marvell Armada 610 at CES 2011. The good thing about this platform is that they opened most of it including the hardware, the software and for the first time the firmware. However, I found out it’s not so easy to find the hardware / software development information and source on the OLPC site, so I’ve decided to make a summary and provide links to the hardware, firmware and software for OLPC XO 1.75. OLPC XO 1.75 Hardware The XO-1.75 is powered by Marvell Armada 610 CPU (88AP610) with an ARM core clocked at 1Ghz. It has 1GB DDR3 SDRAM, 4GiB NAND Flash, a TFT display, an SD Card slot, Wi-Fi,  a few USB ports and a camera. I believe the touchscreen is not part of the current hardware, but the block diagram below should be close to […]

Android Honeycomb Toshiba Tablet based on NVidia Tegra 2

Toshiba setup a website for its upcoming “The Toshiba Tablet,” running Android 3.0 on an Nvidia Tegra 2 processor.  It boasts a 10.1″ multi-touch screen with a resolution of 1280×800. It also offers dual cameras (5MP Rear Camera with Auto-focus / 2MP Front Camera), a replaceable battery, a USB, a mini-USB port, Wi-fi, Bluetooth, SD Card, a docking port, HDMI output and a head phone jack. Toshiba Tablet supports up to 720p HD resolution and a 16:10 aspect ratio. The screen also boasts an ambient light sensor in order to provide consistency between indoor and outdoor viewing. The Toshiba tablet won’t be available until Q2 2011 according to Toshiba. While we’re all waiting, here’s “The Toshiba Tablet” teaser video. Jean-Luc Aufranc (CNXSoft)Jean-Luc started CNX Software in 2010 as a part-time endeavor, before quitting his job as a software engineering manager, and starting to write daily news, and reviews full time […]