January News


Walks with the secretary — talking the dog for a walk along Moana beach. Other than the sand in the car, a most pleasant task for all involved.

Foot prints on beach

Software Development

A friend considering a new venture in Android development on tablets pointed out that there do not appear to be any application distribution restrictions. Although our development tools are still current for our original Apple iPad, it struggles to get through a web session without a reset — infuriating non-computer people. We wrote some applications with the idea of using the iPad for an industrial terminal or as the HMI for an embedded target. The Apple distribution since our first iPad adventures still remains firmly via iTunes with an approval process that challenges two week industrial projects, or an iTunes download. We have abandoned Swift and iPad development. Java and Android are not our strong points, but the array of development platforms and low-cost tablets might change that. Altera, Qualcomm, and others have attractive offerings for deeply embedded platforms with development boards and tools.

ARM 64-bit?

Companies have announced more than has been delivered, so do not expect Intel shares to go down anytime soon. Our guess is that decent 64-bit ARM systems at prices less than an Intel or AMD motherboard are another year off.



How did 2014 end?

We spent most of the time with the Freescale K64 Freedom board, followed by the K40 Kwikstix and the NXP LPC11C24. We have completed our development on those platforms and the boards that were still functional might be resurrected for other projects, however, projects for 2015 on microcontrollers will involve Atmel devices.

Card deck of evaluation boards

Tales from the Woods

Cyclists on Tour Down Under

Santos Tour Down Under 2015, McLaren Vale. The event was from 17th to 25th January, with Stage 5 including McLaren Vale.

These were taken one street parallel to the office. The stage had a few passes through McLaren Vale, for a total of 151km (twice up Willunga Hill). The first three photos were along Caffrey Street, then the last the turn into Main Road.

New Year celebrations

France sees fall in New Year's Eve car-burnings dated 1st Jan, 2015. 12% fewer cars were set alight — what a collection of clowns who have latched onto the generous French social welfare system, or perhaps an insurance scam to get a new car?

Beer report

Last November and December we mentioned the possibility of process control on a small scale for beer brewing. About 22 litres per batch filled plenty of bottles. The Adelaide summer weather over December and January was pretty hot. The beers tasted “wheaty”, which is what we wanted, however, the kids (young adults now) preferred the commercially bottled beer. It did not stop them swatting the home batch! The results were convincing enough to make another batch.

Glass of beer