Dec 06 2007

I Can See You!

Category: PersonalChrisM @ 2:16 am

The first time I saw some night vision equipment, I was working in a TV sales and repairs shop. One of the bosses friends had some hardware he attached to the front of a camcorder, with which he apparently monitored the local car parks, for the stated reason of car security. I always suspected he was on the look out for a different type of activity, but there you go.
There are two main types of night sights that I have encountered, which basically boil down to passive and active. Passive equipment will attempt to magnify the light levels in a picture via circuitry, whereas an active device will use an infra-red light source (thereby avoiding visible lightwaves, which would alert the wildlife/suspicious persons/sleeping neighbours) and then convert that illumination back into an image that our human eyes can make sense of. If you want a really basic example of how that sort of thing works, pick up a digital camera (even your phone’s camera will do), and point a remote control (TV/HiFi/DVD player etc.) at it. Press one of the buttons, and watch the LEDs illuminate on your camera’s display! A good way to check if remote controls are working btw…
Anyway, check the link for a whole host of night sight equipment, as well as a lot of other optical equipment.

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Dec 03 2007

My Main Christmas Present

Category: Personal,WiFi,Windows MobileChrisM @ 3:01 pm

I just wanted to show my readers a demonstration of my next toy 🙂
It is called a HTC TyTn II and will be replacing some of my current equipment…

My current phone (an Orange C550 (a rebadged HTC Hurricane) which crashes and some buttons no longer work all the time.
My current PDA (a HP iPAQ 2210) with a non-functioning directional pad, faulty USB socket, a snapped battery cover and it also crashes.
GPS unit – my current one no longer gets a fix on satellites.
The TyTn II also has a built-in camera, which should be an improvement over my current phone’s. Though without a flash, I don’t think it will be completely replacing our current digital camera.
Anyway, have a play with the demo below, you can spin the model around, slide open the keyboard and tilt the screen.
Continue reading “My Main Christmas Present”

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Jul 23 2007

Camera Usage On This Blog

Category: Personal,PicturesChrisM @ 3:25 am

As you may have noticed from the Pictures category on this blog, I often upload resized images taken on our digital camera. It came from Irina’s mum, much like the current DV camcorder we use. The camera we had previous to this one was OK, especially as it took better quality images than the webcam I had originally. However, it ate AA batteries like there was no tomorrow. Our current camera also manages to chomp through the special battery as well, but lasts a lot longer, plus we have a spare fully charged up in the camera case normally.

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Apr 24 2007

System Specifications

Category: PersonalChrisM @ 4:14 pm

When describing technical issues, I’m often called upon to supply the specifications of my IT equipment.
This post has been put together so I can easily refer people to the pertinent information…

System Specifications – PC

Intel D945 PVS Motherboard with 10/01/07 BIOS
Intel P4 660 3.6 GHz CPU
2 Gb RAM (2 X 1Gb 667MHz DDR2)
Asus 7900GT – PCIe x16 256Mb Grfx card – on Forceware 97.73
BenQ FP91V 19″ , Subini S-6811T 8″ & Sony KDL 40W2000 40″

NoName 550 Watt Twin Fan PSU
APC ES 525 Uninterruptable Power Supply – battery knackered
other UPS must update details here
Innovision EIO AP1680 PCI ATA133 RAID Controller (ITE IT8211 based)
Seagate Barracuda ST3320620AS 320Gb 7200rpm 16Mb Cache SATAII
Seagate Barracuda ST3160023A 160Gb 7200 rpm 8Mb Cache PATA-100
Maxtor DiamondMax Plus8 40 Gb PATA-133
Buffalo External 80Gb PATA/USB
WD External 250Gb PATA/USB
2 x Lite-On SHW-16H5S DVD-RR
EIO USB2 & Firewire PCI card

NetGear router – UPDATE
SafeCom IC+ 56K Ext. Modem (SEMT-5600)
TDK Bluetooth v1.2 Adapter (TRBLU03)

Logitech USB Cordless Trackman Trackball
Genius Keyboard – KKB-2050HS
XFX Executioner Dual Impact USB Gamepad (PSX-like force feedback controller)
Logitech Formula Force GP Force Feedback Steering Wheel & Pedals

Sony Ericssion K700i (used as a Bluetooth Remote Control/Phone for UK SIM card)
PC Line PC-100 TV Card – TV tuner/RCA/S-Video/InfraRed input (Based on Phillips 7134 chipset)
Genius VideoCAM Look WebCam
Canon DC080W (3Mp Digital Camera)
Microsoft Fingerprint Reader (Model 1033)
HP 1513 MFD
Various USB Thumbdrives

Redundant Spares
SafeCom SWAMR-54108 ADSL Modem/Router/AP – Now with Mother-in-law
D-Link 604T ADSL Modem/Router/AP – Now with Mum
Origo ASU-8000 USB ADSL modem
D-Link DWL-G122 USB2 Wi-Fi 802.11g Dongle
D-Link DGE-528T 1GBps PCI LAN Card
SafeCom USB 11Mbps WLAN Dongle – Now with brother
Nisis DV Cam 2 (Rev.1) – Photo, Video & Webcam

Software & Services Used :
Win XP Pro SP2 – All updates applied
No-Ip (Dynamic IP pointing)

System Specifications – PDA/PPC

iPaq 2210
240×320 Display
Intel PXA255 CPU
64Mb RAM
OS – Windows 2003 Mobile Edition (WinCE 4.20)
1Gb SD Card
11Mbps CF Wireless Card
GPS – 16 Sat
Broken D-Pad – 4 hardware buttons re-assigned to navigational duties

System Specifications – SmartPhone

Orange SPV C550 (HTC Hurricane rebadged by Orange UK)
OS – Windows Mobile 2003 for Smartphones (2nd Edition)
GSM & GPRS, triband 900/1800/1900 MHz
2.2 inch screen 240×320 pixels TFT transflective LCD, 64k colours
Camera 1.3 Mp
TI OMAP 750 Processor
64Mb ROM, 32Mb RAM
2 Gb Mini-SD Card
GPS – 16 Satellite
TomTom Mobile5, Battery Monitor, CellTrack, TCPMP, SmartVNC, GPRS Traffic Monitor, Smurf, Doom, GNUBoy, PicoDrive, NES Emulator, Worms World Party

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