Hackaday Links: January 29, 2017

A 3D printer and laser cutter were cited as cause in two deaths. A couple (and two cats) were found dead in their apartment this week. The cause of death was carbon monoxide poisoning. Police and the gas company investigated the residence and found no other source of carbon monoxide besides a 3D printer and a laser cutter. Be sure to check out the people who know more about these deaths than the people who actually investigated these deaths in the comments below. In the mean time, get a CO detector. It’s nasty stuff.

At CES last this month, Lulzbot unleashed the MOARstruder. It’s an extruder with a massive, massive, 1.2mm nozzle. [James] from xrobots dot co dot uk just got his hands on the MOARstruder and the initial results are pretty cool. With a 1.2mm nozzle, you can print big parts fast (helpful for [James]’ massive builds), and the parts are stronger. Check out the video for a great hammer vs. printed part test.

We knew this would happen eventually. Pi Blades. Element14 is now offering ‘breakout boards but not quite’ for the full-size Raspberry Pis and Pi HATs. The idea of this product is to package clusters of Pis into an easy-to-use form factor. The Bitscope Blade Quattro, for example, provides power to four Pis. In other news, I own 20% of the world’s supply of vertical SODIMM sockets.

Arbitrary Code Execution On The Nintendo 64. A bit of background is required before going into this. Pokemon Stadium is a game for the N64. It used a Transfer Pak to read the save game data on Pokemon Game Boy cartridges to battle, trade, and organize Pokemon. Additionally, the Pokemon Tower in Pokemon Stadium allows players to play first-gen Game Boy Pokemon games from within an N64 – sort of like the SNES Super Game Boy. By using two Game Boy Pokemon games and two Transfer Paks, arbitrary code can be executed on the N64. Video demo right here. This is really cool, and the next obvious step is a ‘bootloader’ of sorts to allow arbitrary code downloading from controller button presses.

The Travelling Hacker Box is on the move! The original plan for the Travelling Hacker Box was to visit home base for the 2016 Hackaday SuperConference, then depart to foreign lands beginning with Canada, Greenland, Europe, Africa, Asia, Oceana, and the other America. After the SuperCon, the box was shipped out to its first recipient in Canada. The box came back. Something with customs. Now, the Travelling Hacker Box is on the move again. The plan is still the same, it’s just delayed a month or two. If you want to check out the future travels of the Travelling Hacker Box, here you go.

27 thoughts on “Hackaday Links: January 29, 2017

  1. I know some folks (http://steamytech.com/) who own a quite large laser cutter. The thing they are always concerned about is cutting the wrong kinds of plastic, some of which apparently generate not carbon monoxide, but hydrogen cyanide. When using new material (that isn’t wood), they always want to see the MSDS (or whatever) to be sure.

      1. Depends on your climate. Here in Australia we simply don’t need the sort of heating systems that have CO emissions concerns. At worst there’s a fireplace that’s directly vented to the outside, and our houses invariably are very poorly sealed, so there’s a lot of ventilation.

        (one downside is our homes are a *lot* colder in winter than yours are, even though you’ve got snow outside and we don’t…)

        1. The irony is, good insulation would also keep the heat out during the summer and lower the cost of running the AC.

          But people think magically and believe that insulation makes things hotter and drafts make things colder, so they build leaky thin-walled houses that are little better than sitting in a tin roof shed.

          1. A well-insulated home with plenty of heat mass inside will remain closer to the daily average temperature even without active AC.

            A leaky tin shed will cycle between ~19 at night 27-28 during the day, whereas a well insulated home will remain at an average 23 degrees, or lower if you use the cool night air for extra ventilation.

  2. Thanks for the link – looks like another case of not letting the facts get in the way of a good story.

    Hey there’s a 3D printer AND a laser cutter in the house – that must have killed them don’t worry that they were both turned off at the time.

      1. Agreed. I find it very hard to believe that either machine could generate enough CO. Think about laser cutting a large sheet of plywood for example – laser cutting couldn’t generate more CO than just merely burning the wood and you would have to burn a lot of wood to deplete the O2 levels enough to generate CO. It just doesn’t add up.
        The gas company investigated (themselves) and found they were not to blame…

  3. Dear friends and fans of the Hackaday retro site; would it be possible to surf online using an N64? Cuz I have one and am willing to solder a modem to something… *hint* *hint* linkz plz, I’m a noob. ;)

  4. ” The idea of this product is to package clusters of Pis into an easy-to-use form factor.”

    I would like this idea to carry across more SBCs, but I imagine there needs to be some more standards first.

  5. I’m reading three totally different stories regarding the deaths. Hackaday reports the cause as CO poisoning due to “a 3D printer and a laser cutter” but the source article reports it as a “laser 3D printer” (aka SLS 3D printer…) but the source for that article says “firefighters, a Pacific Gas & Electric crew and members of a hazardous-materials team ruled out hazardous causes, including carbon monoxide poisoning.”. This feels like a game of “telephone” (aka “Chinese Whispers”)…

    1. Yep, that’s what I’m getting too. The article mentions “laser 3D printer”, whereas some comments and other articles I’ve seen mention both a laser cutter and a 3D printer.

  6. So I’ve recently built a four-pi3 cluster using the BitScope Blade Quattro – the version that I was shipped is new enough that I had to ask their sales department for a draft manual, though in the few days I’ve had it since then, it appears Farness/Element14/MCM have updated their product listings accordingly.

    Do I owe you all a writeup/review?

  7. I see a lot of activity reviving old computers, Commodore 64, TI99, etc. Do you ever hear of someone working with a Radio Shack Color Computer? The old 6809 is a powerful chip. I was running mine with the OS9 operating system (multiprogram, multiuser) and a C compiler. It was slow, but it worked.

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