Is there an unsecured wireless network near you?
ESP8266 or MKR1000?
Saturday, 30 April 2016 19:00

If you are a regular Hackaday reader, you’ve probably seen plenty of ESP8266 projects. After all, the inexpensive device is a workhorse for putting a project on WiFi, and it works well. There is a processor onboard, but, most often, the onboard CPU runs a stock firmware that exposes an AT command set or Lua or even BASIC. That means most projects have a separate CPU and that CPU is often–surprise–an Arduino.

It isn’t a big leap of logic to imagine an Arduino with an integrated WiFi subsystem. That’s the idea behind the MKR1000. But the real question you have …read more

Make Your Own ESP8266 Breadboard Adapter
Thursday, 21 April 2016 22:00

Want to play around with the ESP8266? You’ll need a breadboard adapter, which allows you to connect the ESP8266 to a breadboard as you refine your design. Sure, you could just buy one, but where’s the fun in that?

[Markus Ulsass] designed a simple breadboard adapter for his ESP8266 that can be easily etched and built at home, but which has most of the features of the commercial versions. His adapter features a voltage regulator that can handle anything up to 7 volts and which has reverse polarity protection and a reset switch that puts the ESP8266 into flash mode, …read more

Vaizey: Legal right to internet access, sure. But I'm NOT gonna die on the 10Mbps hill
Thursday, 14 April 2016 18:38

UK digital minister Ed Vaizey has shied away from guaranteeing a legal right to a universal service obligation of 10Mbps by 2020.

Speaking in front of a Parliamentary select committee on “Establishing World-Class Connectivity Throughout the UK”, Vaizey said the government will include a legal right to a universal service obligation (USO) in its upcoming Digital Economy Bill.

However, he said that exactly what that right entails will have to be consulted on.

David Cameron promised last year to give everybody the legal right to request a broadband connection capable of delivering a minimum speed of 10Mbps by 2020. But

Hackaday Dictionary: Ultrasonic Communications
Saturday, 16 April 2016 13:01

Say you’ve got a neat gadget you are building. You need to send data to it, but you want to keep it simple. You could add a WiFi interface, but that sucks up power. Bluetooth Low Energy uses less power, but it can get complicated, and it’s overkill if you are just looking to send a small amount of data. If your device has a microphone, there is another way that you might not have considered: ultrasonic communications.

The idea of using sound frequencies above the limit of human hearing has a number of advantages. Most devices already have speakers …read more

Verizon peeps gobbled by Frontier enter week two of crap internet
Friday, 08 April 2016 04:16

The problems that have plagued the handover of broadband subscribers from Verizon to Frontier Communications are entering their second week – and Frontier says that some internet services will not be restored until mid-April.

The issues began on April 1, when people reported widespread outages and service disruptions in Florida, Texas and California.

Now, with the one-week mark approaching, users say that they are still unable to get reliable service from their former Verizon internet connections.

Reg reader Josh Cain says that he is still seeing problems with his Verizon connection that began almost the moment Frontier took control of

Waleed Aly's NBN intervention is profoundly unhelpful
Thursday, 07 April 2016 09:22

Australian political commentator Waleed Aly has made a spectacularly non-useful intervention into the debate about the technologies used to build Australia's national broadband network (NBN), setting the ridiculous expectation that streaming video must always load in under a second and must never pause.

Aly's piece on The Project covered familiar territory: the NBN should just be built with fibre because it is more scalable, will require less maintenance and just is the future. The multi-technology mix being used to build the NBN, by contrast, is just not future proof, will bring with it higher costs and an uncomfortably low place

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