Hackaday Links: October 28, 2018

Steve Jobs was actually a good designer and CEO. This is a statement that would have been met with derision in 2010, with stories of a ‘reality distortion field’. We’re coming up on a decade in the post-Jobs era, and if there’s one thing the last seven or eight years can tell us, it’s that Jobs really, really knew how to make stuff people wanted. Apart from the iPhone, OS X, and the late 90s redesign of their desktops, the most impressive thing Jobs ever did was NeXT. Now there’s book that describes the minutia of all NeXT hardware. Thanks to the Adafruit blog for pointing this one out.

Speaking of Apple, here’s something else that’s probably not worth your time. It’s a highly exclusive leak of upcoming Apple hardware that’s sure to change everything you know about tech. Really, it’s a floating hockey puck branded with the Apple logo. No idea what this is, but somebody is getting some sweet, sweet YouTube ad revenue from this.

A few years ago, [Tom Stanton] built an electric VTOL plane. It looked pretty much like any other foam board airplane you’d find, except there were motors on the wingtips a lá an Osprey. Now, he’s massively improving this VTOL plane. The new build features a 3D printed fuselage and 3D printed wing ribs to give this plane a proper airfoil. Despite being mostly 3D printed, this VTOL plane weighs less than half of the first version. Also, a reminder: VTOL planes (or really anything that generates lift from going forward) are the future of small unmanned aerial craft. Better get hip to this now.

Next weekend is the Hackaday Superconference, and you know we’re going to have an awesome hardware badge. It’s a badge, that’s a computer, and has a keyboard. What more could you want? How about an expansion header? Yeah, we’ve got a way to add a shift register and 8 LEDs to the badge. From there, you can do just about everything. Who’s going to bring an old parallel port printer?

11 thoughts on “Hackaday Links: October 28, 2018

  1. “Apart from the iPhone, OS X, and the late 90s redesign of their desktops, the most impressive thing Jobs ever did was NeXT. Now there’s book that describes the minutia of all NeXT hardware. Thanks to the Adafruit blog for pointing this one out.”

    I didn’t have a problem with it. It was a friendly Unix, when Unix was particular about it’s friends.

      1. I was one of those. I remember going to a NeXT demo at my uni and was extremely impressed; but, IIRC, the cheapest one (B/W NeXTstation?) was $5000 or something. This was when my out-of-state tuition for the year was around that much or not much more than that.

        I did get a chance to use NeXTSTEP/OpenStep in my first job, though, and my first impression a few years before then wasn’t wrong. It was the best desktop env. I’ve ever used.

        1. In college (early 90s) there was a local Philadelphia computer user group event at my school, and a friend who worked for NeXT demoed a NeXTCube and NeXTDimension color board.

          After the demo (in a packed lecture hall) I heard one guy say “well, back to the real world”

          I was lucky enough to get my own Cube a year or two later, when Cornell shut down a lab of NeXT computers and held a deep discount sale of the computers. A kind Cornell student acted as the buyer to help me out. I believe I spent under $2k for a Cube with a dying optical drive, 8MB ram, and the monitor, keyboard, and mouse.

  2. Another one of Brian’s inciteful articles. Another great Monday.

    I see Microsoft’s monopoly as the catalyst to Apple’s 90’s success. If some other OS was better positioned at this time we would be having a different conversation today.

    Apple’s lucky cash-heavy position when technology finally enabled the inevitable smart-phone was the KO combo.

    Job’s marketing convinced people to spend way more than they normally would and often more than they could.

    1. And if you can’t write an OS, then just buy one that is “forked” from the very powerful Oz that those hippies hated in the 60s. It takes a special level of delusion to continue to function as Jobs did. He was not a good or mentally well person from the stories I heard. I turned down two flyouts for that very reason. Never liked the guy and what he did to people. If you make handbags and know nothing about handbags other than the color of the zipper should be pink, did you really create a handbag? Nope. Neither did Jobs.

      1. “And if you can’t write an OS, then just buy one that is “forked” from the very powerful Oz that those hippies hated in the 60s.”

        You really don’t know what you’re talking about.

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