E-Paper News Feed Illustrates The Headlines With AI-Generated Images

It’s hard to read the headlines today without feeling like the world couldn’t possibly get much worse. And then tomorrow rolls around, and a fresh set of headlines puts the lie to that thought. On a macro level, there’s not much that you can do about that, but on a personal level, illustrating your news feed with mostly wrong, AI-generated images might take the edge off things a little.

Let us explain. [Roy van der Veen] liked the idea of an e-paper display newsfeed, but the crushing weight of the headlines was a little too much to bear. To lighten things up, he decided to employ Stable Diffusion to illustrate his feed, displaying both the headline and a generated image on a 7.3″ Inky 7-color e-paper display. Every five hours, a script running on a Raspberry Pi Zero 2W fetches a headline from a random source — we’re pleased the list includes Hackaday — and composes a prompt for Stable Diffusion based on the headline, adding on a randomly selected prefix and suffix to spice things up. For example, a prompt might look like, “Gothic painting of (Driving a Motor with an Audio Amp Chip). Gloomy, dramatic, stunning, dreamy.” You can imagine the results.

We have to say, from the examples [Roy] shows, the idea pretty much works — sometimes the images are so far off the mark that just figuring out how Stable Diffusion came up with them is enough to soften the blow. We’d have preferred if the news of the floods in Libya had been buffered by a slightly less dismal scene, but finding out that what was thought to be a “ritual mass murder” was really only a yoga class was certainly heartening.

Let Machine Learning Code An Infinite Variety Of Pong Games

In a very real way, Pong started the video game revolution. You wouldn’t have thought so at the time, with its simple gameplay, rudimentary controls, some very low-end sounds, and a cannibalized TV for a display, but the legendarily stuffed coinboxes tell the tale. Fast forward 50 years or so, and Pong has been largely reduced to a programmer’s exercise to see how few lines of code can stand in for what [Ted Dabney] and [Allan Alcorn] accomplished. But now even that’s too much, as OpenAI Codex can generate a playable Pong from just a few prompts, at least most of the time. Continue reading “Let Machine Learning Code An Infinite Variety Of Pong Games”

.NET Micro Framework Used For A Prompt-based Computer

[Tom] is doing a little show and tell with his latest .NET Micro framework based project. He managed to get a prompt-based computer running on a FEZ Cobra board.

A USB keyboard serves as the input device. To give himself a familiar way to navigate and execute programs [Tom] mimicked the functionality of DOS. Above you can see the familiar format of the directory listings as he navigates the data on an SD card. But this goes deeper than changing directories and listing files. He also has access to commands which control peripherals, showing manipulation of the WiFi connection and demonstrating some simple code to show images on the screen. Since the hardware centers around the .NET MF, any compiled binary for that environment can be executed from the prompt as well.

See a complete demonstration of the project embedded after the break.

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PC Side IM-ME Hacks


[Paul Klemstine] is working on some PC-side software hacks for the IM-ME. We’ve seen a lot of hardware hacks for this device, such as controlling the display, firmware flashing, and using it as a spectrum analyzer, but if you don’t want to alter the device right away you can try [Paul’s] collection of hacks. Working with the code developed by [Ben Ryves] there is support for using the IM-ME as a command prompt, to control Win amp, and as a wireless keyboard. Crack out your C# skills and develop the next feature for this inexpensive device.

Take Command Of Your BASH Prompt


[Joshua] has put together a list of BASH prompt customizations. The command prompt is used in a command-line interface to show that the system is ready for the next command. Often times this is nothing more than a user name, host name, and working directory:


[Joshua’s] customization examples can be used to color code the information in your prompt, change what information is displayed, and make the prompt respond differently when an invalid command is typed. A BASH prompt reference is helpful in deciphering what each of these commands do. The easiest simplification is to understand that non-printing characters (such as color codes) are surrounded in escaped square brackets. For example, line 1 is the sequence for Red, line 2 is the sequence for Dark Grey, and line 3 sets a simple prompt to display in Red and all text after that to be in Dark Grey:

PS1="\[\e[0;31m\]\u@\h:\w\$ \[\e[1;30m\]"

Continue reading “Take Command Of Your BASH Prompt”