Showing posts from 2017

Recycling: rpi + tv = Video and Photo Billboard

This is going to be a bit wordy so if you like skip to the Implementation

I have an old laptop attached to my piano as a sort of turnkey machine for Synthsia it runs Manjaro Linux, a derivative of Arch. So I was updating this laptop when it kind of occurred to me to try to make the tv attached to it have an AppleTV Aerial like video display, jealous as I was of my mate Simon's setup. Luckily arch had an aur package that downloaded the videos.

Using xscreensaver and a custom command with mplayer, which was really easy to google, thanks random ubuntu forum user marric for the info. I'll reproduce here:

programs: \         "My Movies" mplayer -shuffle -nosound -really-quiet \         -nolirc -nostop-xscreensaver -wid \         $XSCREENSAVER_WINDOW -fs -loop 0 \         $HOME/Path/to/my/movies/* \n\          maze -root \n\

So that worked perfectly.

Fast forward a week, and I was walking through the shed at my share-house, where there …

Beware of Your Surroundings

A bit of a tongue in cheek look at obstacles on the dancefloor. Seemed appropriate considering the facebook video thats been kicking around the last week, see bottom of article. Beware of your surroundings Ever seen two followers heads thunk together as their leaders dip them into each other? Ouch.. it’s such an uncomfortable thought, and unfortunately I’ve seen it happen.
Social dancing is so different to classes, it’s very intimidating for beginners. All those people moving around so dynamically without bumping into or stepping on each other, how does it work? Clearly from the above example, it doesn’t always, and frankly it’s often a mess. There are many obstacles on the dance floor.

Live Streaming 04 - that was almost smooth.

So we're up to four weeks in a row on the streaming front, the real tests are yet to come.
Smiddy and I mixed things up a little this time, where he was doing the coding and I was watching and talking him through it. It was really good IMHO, things progressed without much in the way of pauses or delays. I bit my tongue when it came to code style because there are more important things in life.
Anyway, the bad... Audio continues to be a PITA, this time we forgot to hook up my outputs to the stream, so you can only hear me through smiddy's mic. Next time we're going to use my rodelink lapel mike as a sort of boom and have it hanging in the middle infront of us so we can all be picked up sort of evenly.
The good :). the quality of the video is now great, we can always increase the bandwidth to sharpen up the text a bit more, and maybe code in a lower res than 1920x1080 so that it becomes clearer.. hmm I'll add that to the trello.

The latency from the streaming from my pc …

Livestreaming 03 - Success, mostly

Once again I'm going to write down my thoughts on how things went for Smiddy and I during the live streaming thingo we do on Sundays.

Firstly, I was early by 15 minutes, thats a good start, we gave ourselves an extra hour to figure out the setup, and our online testing and experimentation of using netcat to pipe stream data to each other helped us troubleshoot the simple script errors we encountered early on. we got all the streams we wanted setup with about five minutes to spare before our self appointed timeslot.

Then we started the introduction, and after a few minutes Smiddy noticed we weren't streaming audio, DOH. After a re-start, things tended towards the smooth.

The challenges I felt with having an actual working streaming thingo was that I was actually live as me on the internet... shit shit shit... oh well, keep going and it will become normalised. The internet is a scary place, and I hope not to get noticed by scary types. Only luck will prevail.

After concluding t…

Dance Classes are Learning Opportunities

Ever been in a class and thought ‘yep I know this’ and then just went through the motions hoping that an unknown snippet of information will escape the teacher or for the manifestation of some happy insight? I’m pretty sure that’s how most people operate anyway, either copying or waiting for a eureka moment.

Live Streaming 02 - Fail

Attempt No 2 to be productive was kind of a massive failure.

Using all the tools from the week of testing and research led to a big fat nothing. and troubleshooting at the time went no where.

What went well?
I showed up on time, which was pretty good considering I was a little hung over, tired from one of my good friends 30th birthday celebration the night before.
Smiddy and I agree on the general gist and direction of where we want to go and how we wanted to manage it.

What failed?
Streaming anything from my computer to his. I'm going to explain our difficulties with a lack of available brain power due to external factors.

After last week's attempt at streaming and getting at least 1000ms of latency between my computer and smiddy's on the local network which in my opinion is not really good enough at all, I spent my time researching options and doing some testing. I ended up with some pretty tight scripts that worked on my local pc, high enough quality that I could play …

Live Streaming 01

My mate Matt and I decided that we want to stream our paired programming sessions to youtube. We've only completed one stream so far, and like all things keeping consistency is key so i'm hopeful for the future.
Since we dont get to see the stream live while we are doing it because of audio feedback etc, we have to take some things on faith, like audio quality etc, and hope for the best.. this post mortem is my attempt at reviewing the footage after the fact and making notes on what we did and how we can make it better next time.

I might even make an edit of the footage cutting out the things I think are shit or boring. try to reduce its length.

The Stream itself.
The Streaming Setup Because of the way we wanted to make things work, it took us a couple of hours to get started. and once we were started we quickly found limitations in what we were doing, and worked on solving them during the first streaming session.
The idea was that I would stream a…