Running in Nepal

Nepal is such a wonderful place. Steeped in history and culture with some of the most breath-taking sights to be seen, Nepal is the home to Buddhism, the Himalayas, and of course the mighty Mt Everest. Despite all this wealth, the country and the people themselves face a lot of challenges. Economically Nepal is considered a third-world country with many people in utter poverty. To compound this hardship, Nepal has also experienced terrible earthquakes that have left many dead and even more without basic needs such as accommodation, access to food and clean water, and education. [Read More]

Parkrun

I have a confession to make. While I have publicly supported the parkrun initiative for some time and I wholeheartedly believe it is a great idea, I have never actually ran one myself. There have been many excuses from family conflicts at the weekends to blaming the weather but this week I thought I would actually ignore all of this and partake in the spectacle. I chose the closest event, which for me was Southwick Country Park in Trowbridge and arrived before the customary 9am start time. [Read More]

Fujitsu SnapScan 1300i with Ubuntu

I’ve been using the Fujitsu ScanSnap 1300i on Mac OS X for some time now in the pursuit of a paperless life but now that I am using Ubuntu more and more it was apparent that I was going to have to get this little scanner working on Linux. Searching the internet threw up a few interesting articles but nothing worked 100%. In the end the steps I used under Ubuntu 15. [Read More]

Running Ubuntu Snappy Core Virtualised on Mac OSX

Although most of the documentation out there today shows you how to run Ubuntu Snappy Core on an Ubuntu desktop, it is also pretty simple to do this on Mac OSX. In short: Download the Ubuntu Snappy Core image from: http://releases.ubuntu.com/15.04/ You will need the amd64 version of Snappy. Unarchive the file: unxz ubuntu-15.04-snappy-amd64-generic.img.xz Then convert the image into something that VirtualBox can run: qemu-img convert -f raw -O vmdk ubuntu-15. [Read More]

Installing Ubuntu Snappy Core on a Rasberry Pi 2 using a Mac

This is a short guide to installing Ubuntu Snappy Core on a Rasberry Pi 2 using a Mac. It is pretty straight-forward but there are a couple of areas where you can get caught out. First, download the Ubuntu Snappy image from: http://people.canonical.com/%7Eplatform/snappy/raspberrypi2/ As of writing the latest release was: ubuntu-15.04-snappy-armhf-rpi2.img.xz Insert your SD card if you haven’t done so already and use diskutil to find it. [Read More]

Life with Apple's iWatch

I confess, I’m a bit of a gadget hound. I own four different smart watches all with different OSs: Pebble with PebbleOS Samsung Gear with Tizen Motorola 360 with Android Wear and now Apple iWatch with WatchOS When I first got the Pebble (Kickstarter model) I was instantly impressed. It was a device that lasted days, gave me notifications at a glance, and allowed me keep my phone in my pocket unless it was really needed. [Read More]

Humans

As a scholar of software engineering with a particular interest in the field of ubiquitous computing and artificial intelligence, the recent series by AMC, “Humans” really did peak my interest. Is it something based on sensationalism or alternatively something that could be considered grounded in reality? Well, I believe that it is a drama that reflects more on the latter than the former. I really like the concept so far and it raises questions that only academia have explored in detail before movie studios love; concepts such as artificial understanding, consciousness, love, and the projection of human traits upon non-human subjects (anthropomorphism). [Read More]

Creating bootable USB images on the Mac

Creating a bootable image for installing a Linux OS is pretty straight-forward but when you are doing this on the Mac there is a specific way it needs to be done. I alway use USB drives for this purpose so what follows are the steps needed to create a bootable USB stick from a Linux .iso image. I presume you have already downloaded your favourate Linux distribution in .iso format, below I’m using Debian Jessie. [Read More]

Trusted Execution Environments in Android

Continuing on from my post about TrustZone it seems that there is a lot of interest in hardware-backed security for Android and what you can do with it. One of the most interesting things that a hardware-isolated area can do for devices, whether that be a dedicated co-processor or technology such as TrustZone, is to provide a trusted enviroment dedicated to protecting your most valuable assets and the operations that are performed on them. [Read More]

What are you passionate about?

I have recently been reading the book entitled Talk Like TED Carmine Gallo which promises to bestow the virtues of great public speaking upon all who read it. Early on in the book there is a rather salient point that got me thinking, a point that starts with a simple question, “What are you passionate about”. Now there are quite a few things I am passionate about but in the context of Software Engineering, my chosen career path, it is something that underpins all the great projects that over time I have really enjoyed working on. [Read More]