just another web log

31 Jul 2019:
more multimedia mplayer keys
No sharks, but we were in a heatwave :)

Quick note about multimedia keyboards. I did not realise mine was one, oops.

A quick mplayer setup from

and then pointing my keys to to those commands via XFCE / Settings / Keyboard / Application Shortcuts / ADD

Job done.

To be fair I did do a lot for Linux and multimedia keyboards back in the day and this CMSTORM keyboard has the keys at the back and very low down. Easy to miss ;)
21 Jul 2019:
quick anagram shark update
Finally got around to putting my test pages up for Anagram Shark Attack JS-E

I feel that I just need to dedicate some time to this to quickly get a working alpha.

Next task is SVG sharks >-^)>
21 Jul 2019:
vr pi surfaces at teen tech
Life is strange. The little side project that was shown to Her Royal Highness back in 2016 was required again last week.

My Raspberry Pi Model B VR game was used at an event called Teen Tech. Encouraging youngster so to look at STEM careers.

(same video)

What was interesting was that each teenager(and one teacher) were very engaged when in VR, but their class mates who were waiting(and most teachers) were completely ambivalent. Some using their phones or chatting. We tried to get some camaraderie going, but it did not work as well as you would think in most cases.

I had printed out some useful information sheets about VR, how it worked, what it could be used for, why we get motion sick, what the future of VR was and a few other bits. Only one teacher tried to get her class to look at them.

We had a range of confidence levels from the participants. From "I have down all the VR games before" to "AGHHHhhh!". The first one was impressed surprised how much more immersive the HTC Vive compared to more basic VR. The second one was terrified of the initial experience, but we got them enjoying it and having fun by the end. We also had to deal with "dancers" and "lungers". With limited space and only myself and one other we had to stop people jumping and striding from one end of the space to other and banging into walls.

FYI, I did not get hit in the face, but my colleague did. :) Too slow.

This was all done as a bit of CSR Corporate Social Responsibility. E.g. Giving back to the community.

If this continues, I think I would like to revisit a number of aspects about the experience.

Two main ones are to do with visibility. I had already added a way to make the Pi go up and down to accommodate shorter users, but it is difficult to use and a better way would be for the operator to make slight changes from the laptop running the the game. Currently interacting with the buttons causes large changes and the Pi ends up on the floor.
Speaking of the floor, the flat grey chips are sometimes hard to see on the floor as they look like odd shadows, especially from a distance.

We were lucky to have a very stable floor and the only time the alignment got out of whack was when a tripod holding one of the HTC lighthouse got nudged ever so slightly. Unfortunately this meant the virtual floor was below the physical floor and thin items could not be picked up.

I could fix this with a larger bounding box. On the subject of bounding boxes, I could make them glow and increase in brightness as the game plays out. One of the items seems to have a hit area of only the edges and people kept trying to pick it up from it's centre of mass, where it is empty and failing.

Finally one last issue to fix, that I had not seen as such as an issue as before in teleport distance. More than once, a participant managed to teleport through a window when they first started and then had difficulty getting back. Previously the walls stopped this, not sure why it was being bypassed so easily. Coding a hard edge would be easy.

One little demo to test how the Unity system worked has lead all this way :)

Here are the posters from the game and show how it all works.
Raspberry Pi VR poster showing game flow
Raspberry Pi VR poster showing component locations
14 Jul 2019:
github project page magic branching
Another very quick how-to setup your own Github project page

Create a new new branch in your existing repo

git checkout -b gh-pages
gh-pages is a special magic branch name for creating github pages

Now create an index.html and commit and push it.

git add index.html; git commit -m "index.html placeholder"
git push origin gh-pages

Note how I explicitly added index.html and not *? That was because I only want that single file on the pages site at the moment.

Wait a few moments and your new page will be ready at

Got all this from a handy guide at Thinkful

Now the one bit that Thinkful did not detail.

How to get back to my Master branch I was previously working on.
git checkout master
and you can use
git status
to check which branch you are currently on at anytime.
14 Jul 2019:
github user page how to magic repo
Very quick how-to setup your own Github user page

Create a new repo and name it

(obviously setting the username bit to be your username)

Also, do not get confused with the GitHub create repo page.
username/ [                    ]
you still need the username e.g.
username/ [username.github.io ]

Clone the new repo to your machine.
git clone https://github.com/username/username.github.io.git
(change both username instances)

Now create an index.html and commit and push it.

git add *; git commit -m "index.html placeholder"
git push -u origin master

Wait a few moments and your new page will be ready at

Got all this from a handy guide at Thinkful
14 Jul 2019:
ramming extra so dimm into hp blocked
Time for a rant;

I have a second hand, reconditioned HP Pavilion DV2000 laptop, that I use for Linux testing and it is slooooow.

Did not want to invest in an SSD, so I looked into upgrading the memory. HP's site reports this model comes as 1GB, upgradable to a maximum of 2GB.

In Ubuntu I run

free -g
and get back 1

Quick Amazon search and I have ordered a new 1GB(very specific model) Dimm(Direct Inline Memory Module) £7.88(INC. P&P and VAT). 24hrs later I have it in my hand.

Open up the laptop(has nice easy access to the Dimm bay) and ...

There are two Dimms ... maybe they are 512MB each?

Nope both are 1GB.

Boot into BIOS, 1024MB ????

Re-seat memory Boot into BIOS, 2048MB, phew!

Back into Ubuntu ...

free -g
and get back 1

uh oh

free -m
and get back 1984

erm, so it would have never shown 2GB?

exactly the same with sudo

Now I need to go on a crusade to find out why Linux is reporting 2GB RAM as 1984MB

is it GB, Gb, gb GiB ?

sudo lswh -c memory
clearly shows two slots each with 1GiB

free -h
shows 1.9G

So, I now have a spare 1G of RAM that may or may not be 1GB or 1GiB
Wikipedia explains GB GiB
02 Jul 2019:
the blood is in the water again
Many years ago I did some Silverlight games, apps and demos.

The Silverlight Eyes (SliBalls) has already been converted into html as HTML5Eyeball

Now I plan on resurrecting Anagram Shark Attack. I am creating everything from scratch, so it may take while.

Has it's own GitHub repo AnagramSharkAttackJS-E. Which is JavaScript-Edition.

"The blood is in the water, again"
02 Jul 2019:
spreading a little mustard on the ketchup pebble watch
My Pebble Time Watch broke. Not bad for four years of constant abuse.

I was worried that a replacement might be hard to come by, but it is a standard size and Amazon had a lot to choose from.

This is what I went for.
Pebble time watch with replacement archer strap, mustard yellow.
Bit mustardy, but I like it.
02 Jul 2019:
blender perspective camera under the microscope
I was interested in finding out how the settings for the Blender perspective camera work. So I created these nine videos looking at
sensor size at 16 varying the focal length
sensor size at 32 varying the focal length
sensor size at 64 varying the focal length
sensor size at 100 varying the focal length
focal length at 1 varying the sensor size
focal length at 35 varying the sensor size
focal length at 64 varying the sensor size
focal length at 150 varying the sensor size
focal length at 250 varying the sensor size

Which produces these interesting and quite varied zooming affects, reminiscent of early film making special effects.

I then had fun with ffmpeg to create the grid
fighting ffmpeg for a grid layout that does not suck
ffmpeg video 3x3 grid with scaling
loading results, please wait loading animateloading animateloading animate
[More tags]
rss feed



flog archives

Disclaimer: This page is by me for me, if you are not me then please be aware of the following
I am not responsible for anything that works or does not work including files and pages made available at www.jumpstation.co.uk I am also not responsible for any information(or what you or others do with it) available at www.jumpstation.co.uk In fact I'm not responsible for anything ever, so there!