Using Google Nik Collection with GIMP under Linux and WINE.

Ideally we should have Free Software that serves our needs, but sometimes we must settle for a temporary solution. Google Nik Collection is now free as in free beer, some of its filters are just amazing and it is pretty straightforward to use. It is not difficult to make it work as a GIMP plugin on Linux, even if it is for Windows, thanks to WINE.
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Blue Light Meter

Blue Light Meter is a remote light meter for photography that can be used, via Bluetooth LE, from an Android/Linux phone. Maybe some day in the future a lightmeter GATT profile could be developed and camera may use it. Miniaturized BTLE enabled light meters could be easily carried around or concealed in clothes while shooting.

You can find the source code and the hardware description on github.

BlueLightMeter prototype BlueLightMeter prototype

 

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Per process routing take 2: using cgroups, iptables and policy routing

In a previous article we saw how it’s possible to do per process routing using namespaces. In this one we will achieve the same by using cgroups, iptables and policy routing. Perhaps the user case is a bit marginal (see the introduction in the mentioned article) but this article is a tribute to the extreme flexibility of cgroups.
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YAACA new release and ASI low level driver

Here you can download the latest version .deb release of yaaca for i386 and amd64. Source code is on github.As far functionality is concerned there are not big news. The biggest enhancement is the fix of debayer for the MC camera. Continue reading

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YAACA for multiple and monochrome cameras.

An update to this article is available!

The version here available better supports monochrome cameras (tested with the AS120MM). It’s also possible to have multiple cameras. Continue reading

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New release of YAACA and pyasicam

An update to this article is available!

A new version of yaaca is available. Source code is now on github. Continue reading

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Open PHD for the ZWO ASI 120MC

An update to this article is available!

Here you can find the driver for the ZWO ASI 120MC astronomical camera for the Open PHD auto guiding software. Please start from the following check-out version from Open PHD Subversion repository: Continue reading

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YAACA-0.1: Yet Another Astro Cam Application

An update to this article is available!

This is the first release of the YAACA Linux application. It’s an application written and tested on the ZWO ASI120MC astronomical color camera. I written this application to be able to test all the features of the camera and, of course, to take some cool astronomical pictures. It was developed and tested on Debian 6.0 Squeeze and depends on GTK2. It’s rather simple and should run on most recent Linux systems. You can download the source code and an executable compiled on 32-bit Debian 6.0 Squeeze. Of course you will need the ZWO SDK for compiling and at least the libASICamera.so somewhere in your library path to run the executable. They can be get from the ZWO user group forum (you have to register to have access to the Linux beta SDK). Continue reading

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Using Linux Network Namespaces for per processes routing

The use case for this article may seem a bit strange in year 2013 but I swear it’s real. I have a (relatively) fast connection but I have a traffic cap on it and a (really) slow one which is flat. I would like to run not interactive task like “aptitude safe-upgrade” on the slow one but the bulk of my connections should go through the fast one. The work is done on a Debian Wheezy system, check that the “ip” command is not too old and lacks network namespace support.
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Linux benchmark on Xilinx Spartan-6 LX45 (SP605 evk)

I was asked to give at least a generic insight of “how fast” would Linux run in a Microblaze soft-CPU running on a Spartan-6 LX45 processor (specifically on the SP605 evaluation kit). Of course it has to be clear that the usage of such a processor/environment cannot focus on pure performance reasons, as you usually choose a FPGA for other reasons. For pure performance there are much better solutions (hardware based CPUs indeed) or if you need also the FPGA advantages processors with both a FPGA part and a hardware CPU, such as the Zynq family processors for example.

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TOR+Privoxy minimal setup for DGN2200v3/MIPS architecture

In a previous article I talked about how to customize the Linux based WLAN+ADSL Netgear DGN2200v3 router and prepared various binary packages ready for the device. In this short article I’m offering a small full setup that can be run on this router (and many other compatible ones and in general on any MIPS+uClinux hardware setup) to be able to use easily the TOR network to browser anonymously. In this way all the users behind the router can easily achieve anonymous surfing.

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Command line PHP deobfuscation

Recently a customer asked me to debug some problems on their Joomla!/PHP site that had interoperability issues after some long time for unknown reasons. The site was using some commercial plugins which producer was long time gone and unreachable and worst of all they were all obfuscated. So even searching for some basic string that was displayed on the screen on error to understand what’s going on was not a straight forward exercise and going through the code was a mess.

Apart from changing the code in a logical way, for example by adding intermediate variables or splitting variable assignations into more operations and so on, the first most annoying part of PHP obfuscators is that they modify most of the characters in the strings values with their respective hexadecimal (format \xXX) or octal (\XXX) values and eliminate any line feeds or code structure. Once you get rid of this the code stays quite very messy but is, at least in the cases I analyzed, quite readable and just needs a little more bookkeeping with automatically named vars to go through.

Getting rid at least of this confusing representation is quite straightforward on the command line with a few tricks.
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