Monthly Archives: August 2012

Getting started with the STM32F4Discovery 1

If you follow the Hack-A-Day stream, you’ve probably seen the STM32F0Discovery board come up on occasion. I have two of these boards and I like them — they have what I need for basic stuff, but I wanted some more horse-power (and USB Host.) Quickly, to the STM32F4Discovery!

The target here is people who’ve outgrown the world of AVR and need something running faster; you should be capable and comfortable with diving into your PATH, mucking with environment variables and reading some pretty deep C.

STM32F4 Discovery board (From ST)

STM32F4 Discovery (From ST)

I was given one of these for xmas a little while back (read: 8 months ago) and played with it, getting demo code to run on it. ST did something very painful and/or clever in that they produced this board, for hobbyists, but conveniently forgot to point to a clean, unadulterated compiler.


#SaveWardenclyffe 1

Friends, Hackers, Nerds! Lend me your ears … or at least spare me a few moments of reading.

Nikola Tesla was the father of the electric age. Despite having drop-kicked humanity into a second industrial revolution, up until recently he’s been an unsung hero in history books. If you don’t know who Tesla is, go read this (NSFW).

Suffice it to say, Tesla pioneered Alternating Current, Radio communication, RADAR, Transistors, Hydroelectric power, and myirad other crazy, mad-science sorts of projects. Tesla was the Uber-Geek of the turn of the last century and he has been forgotten. A brilliant scientist and a prolific inventor, his legacy died with him after a rather nasty spat with Thomas Edison over Alternating Current tarred his name in this country. (Edison employed Tesla, failed to pay him for his work, and pilfered a number of Tesla’s original Patents… but that is a different subject).

Tesla built a laboratory in Shoreham, New York called Wardenclyffe where we was going to try and perfect the projects he developed in Colorado Springs, Colorado. But due to meddling by Edison and other financial problems, the project fell through. The giant tower was dismantled, but the main buildings still stand, to this day.

The Tesla Science Center of Shoreham, New York has put an offer on the property. If they succeeed in buying it, they will turn the place into a museum dedicated to the works of Nikolai Tesla: The first in the world. It will be placed on the New York register of Historic Places, and it won’t turn into another strip mall. But only if the Tesla Science Center comes up with 1.6 Million Dollars by September.

But you can help. The State of New York has pledged a matching grant if the center can raise $850,000. They started a crowdfunding campaign to raise the funds, and raised half of the required funds in less than a day.

(At the time of publication, the perks were all sold out below the $1000 level, but an email has been sent to backers indicating that more perks are on the way).

Will you help us #SaveWardenclyffe?

Weekday Literati 1

Taking the initiative to being more of an educational group, we’ve decided that Wednesday is now class day here at Quelab. Here on out, we want to have a class every Wednesday night after Co-Working.

So, to start it out I will be hosting a class on glass etching this coming Wednesday, starting at 7PM, and running until about 10PM, or until everyone is done with their project. It’ll be a simple class, with a $15 per-person fee, and I can teach up to ten people how to etch their own pint glass (or glass object brought).

Register Here

And we’re going to keep having classes every Wednesday, all taught by community members about subjects which interest them… and hopefully you too. Here’s a quick schedule:

Date Subject Capacity Register
15 Aug Glass Etching
22 Aug Pre-Empted this week by Ignite NM 13 B
29 Aug Solar Jars 6
5 Sep Spray Painting Space Scenes 5-15
12 Sep Long exposure, Pinhole Camera making/developing 10
19 Sep How to Change your Oil like a Tech 10
26 Sep TBA — Sign up to teach here

And we intend on continuing this through September and October and beyond! If there is any subject you want to teach about, or you know someone who is passionate about what it is they do and they want to teach others, let them know, and we’ll see if we can fit them in. We’ve got tentative classes lined up all the way to December!

EDIT (17 Aug): More registration links for Classes added.

Vote for the IgniteNM Talks that interest you!

Ignite New Mexico is a fast-paced series of enlightening events built entirely on our community’s interests. People from around New Mexico propose a topic they want to enlighten everyone about. The community votes for what sounds interesting. Then the topics are presented at an Ignite New Mexico event.

These talks are 5 minutes long, 20 slides (auto advancing), so you get a nice little datadump of info on a topic, but if per some chance the presenter or topic winds up being boring, you only have to wait 5min and the next cool thing will be up.

At least 3 Quelab connected talks are proposed here, but go over there and vote for the ones you want to see!

Some photos up from last weekends (Almost) Launch of the Space Chiles Balloon project.

Sadly we had one unknown, how much helium was inside the borrowed tank of helium. sadly it was about 1/2 the estimate. which was not enough lift for our project.

Oh well with all science there are setbacks! but we will do it again! and hopefully again… and again.

here are a few photos, we had 2 video recorders running too, we will see about posting those in the future. (Click on photo to see the other photos)
flickr photos