Designing a 3D Printed Jig to Flash Firmware to ESP8266 based Light Bulbs

Karl here. I have to say that my favorite part of 3D printing is designing things from scratch. Recently a reader was asking about a way to flash a lot of Ai Lights on a project he was working on. I suggested 3D printing a jig that pressure fits pins. He didn’t have a printer, and we exchanged contact information and he sent me one of the lights and some pogo pins from Amazon. Design in Fusion 360 I started by taking a picture of the light to get my pin placement. I set a scale by measuring a known distance then printed and tested. It took about 3 iterations to get them to line up in real life. Keep in mind camera lenses distort reality and knew It would take a couple times. I would just let a few layers print then stop and line everything up. I had a mostly working prototype in a couple hours. I did …

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Getting Started with Espruino & JavaScript on ESP32 with ESPino32 Board

Venus Supply Co., Ltd, better known as ThaiEasyElec, is a company based in Thailand, selling embedded systems and development board, as well as providing development services based in Thailand. The company sent me their latest board called ESPino32 powered by Espressif ESP-WROOM-32 WiFi and Bluetooth module for evaluation. While the board is supported in Arduino-esp32, I’ve already tested Arduino with ESP32-Bit module & ESP32-T board, so after checking out the hardware, I’ll load it with something different: Espruino, a firmware allowing for JavaScript programming over the serial console, or a Web based IDE. ESPino32 Unboxing and Soldering The board shipped with four female headers, and I/O stickers. The board includes ESP-WROOM-32, exposes I/Os through four 10-pin headers, features CP2104 chip for serial to USB debugging via micro USB port, two buttons (reset and program), a user LED connected to IO16, and a jumper to select between regulated power supply (micro USB or Vin), or battery power (Vbat). If you’re going …

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Save Power, Hibernate Your Embedded Linux System

This is a guest post by Tharma Rajan G, Project Lead, e-con Sytems. What is the best way to save power consumption of your embedded Linux system? Is there any way to save max power and resume operation ? Yes. It is ‘hibernate’ mode, one of the Power Modes in Linux. This article talks about how we utilized this ‘hibernate mode’ in our Reference Platform Kit Meissa-I with eSOMiMX6-micro SOM. Meissa-I is a dual board solution that features eSOMiMX6-micro Computer on Module & carrier board. Meissa-I development board runs Linux and Android Marshmallow (under development). eSOMiMX6-micro is based on Dual/Quad core ARM CortexTM-A9 based CPU @ 800MHz/Core. It has 1GB LPDDR2 and 4GB eMMC FLASH (expandable upto 32GB). The eSOMiMX6-micro module also has the Wireless LAN and Bluetooth module. Linux Power Modes Power Management is a key feature in embedded Linux system and there are two types for implementing the power management on x86 platforms: Advanced Power Management (APM) Advanced …

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Installing Let’s Encrypt Free SSL/TLS Certificate in 2 Minutes with Certbot, Spending Hours Making it Work with Cloudflare

I’ve been using an SSL certificate to the download subdomain of this blog running ownCloud for about 2 years, but recently my free StartSSL certificate expired, and I had troubles to renew it, and I also received an email from Google telling me that “Starting October 2017, Chrome (version 62) will show a “NOT SECURE” warning when users enter text in a form on an HTTP page, and for all HTTP pages in Incognito mode”.  So I decide to use free LetsEncrypt SSL/TLS certificates to replace the one in the download subdomain, as well as this main blog. Such SSL/TLS certificates are also very useful for the IoT gateways many of use have started using, and I found it’s even simpler than install a self-signed certificate, so there’s no reason to use those anymore. The easiest way to install Let’s Encrypt certificate is by using Certbot with instructions for various web server or hosting platforms (nginx, apache, pleask, haproxy…) and …

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How to Setup an Orange Pi Zero DIY Smart Speaker with Google Assistant SDK

A preview release of Google Assistant SDK working with Raspberry Pi 3 and other ARMv7 boards was released in May, and soon after, AIY Projects Voice Kit was offered for free with Raspberry Pi Magazine in order to a complete smart speaker kit working with RPi 3. I wanted to try it on one of FriendlyELEC or Shenzhen Xunlong Allwinner board, since all we need is audio input and output, and an Internet connection. Earlier this month, I came across Orange Pi Zero Set 6 Kit that had all I needed: Orange Pi Zero ARM Linux board, an expansion board with built-in microphone and audio output jack, and a cute and small case to neatly put everything together. Orange Pi Zero Set 6 Kit Unboxing and Assembly Shenzhen Xunlong sent me the kit so that I can try it out. The package includes two Orange Pi packages, the plastic case, some a bag with screws and rubber pads. One of …

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Getting Started with MediaTek X20 Android Development Board

Thanks to CNX for helping me get a hand on the 96Boards compliant Mediatek X20 board that was generously donated by Seeed Studio. In this article, I will walk through the steps to get the board up and running and also compile Android from the source code. The current Android is version 6. Unboxing the Beast First Boot Up The board boots up from the eMMC, and the first time you boot up you will get Android screen as shown in Figure-9. This is the default Android image from the factory, which surprisingly looks like it was setup for a phone screen mode, which is not sufficient for a HDMI monitor. It would be better to install the images that are made available at Linaro website or build your own. See the other section to flash the board with different images. Switching to Fastboot Mode Flashing image files are done using fastboot tool in bootloader mode. There are 2 ways …

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How to Use Octoprint on Orange Pi Lite Board, Amlogic S905X and S912 TV Boxes

Karl here. This was article originally going to be how to setup Octoprint 3D printer server on an Orange Pi Lite. But after looking and running through the instructions it seemed like it would be too much so I created an img to simplify things. I also explored running Octoprint on an Amlogic S905x or S912 device and it turned out to be an even better solution. You get a case, power supply, and eMMC flash storage. What is Octoprint? I use Octoprint mainly for its ability to start and stop prints without having to use an sd card. Time lapse is also a nice feature. And one last thing is that I setup a pushbullet notification when it is complete. For a full list of features check out http://octoprint.org/. What is needed? Orange Pi Lite board provided by GearBest for the article, or an Amlogic S905X or S912 Android box. At least a 4GB micro SD card or good …

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Raiscube R2 3D Printer Review – Part 3: How to Install E3D Hotend Clone For Faster Prints

Karl here with the final article on Raiscube R2 3D printer for now. Going to talk about the challenges of this upgrade, and how to do it yourself. This has been one of the most frustrating projects that I have worked on. I set 3 goals for this upgrade: Simple as possible Least amount of modification to the printer ability to revert back I don’t feel like I met my goals but I feel like I made it 90%. Trying to meet the simple as possible with least amount of modifications is what caused me so much grief. What is needed E3D Hotend for $9.56 on GearBest Kapton Tape for $1.87 Thermal paste Rotary cutting tool (maybe hacksaw good luck with that) Shrink tube or electrical tape Wire 3 printed parts on Thingiverse Zip Ties & Velcro E3D Installation Steps Print 3 parts from Thingiverse above with 50% infill and .2 mm layer height Remove all the spiral wrap around all …

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