Jacob

Enterprise Service Buses and Middleware

Distributed computing is the new norm.   Multi-service architectures surround us daily. Our computing needs are served from many different independently operated services, and all implemented using different underlying technologies. When these independent units bring only one small service or set of services, it is called a microservice. While there is still some industry discussion about the exact properties of a microservice, one thing can be agreed upon: microservice-based systems enforce modular design by default. This begs the question, if…

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New MIDI protocol extension paves way for “significant expansion”

The Musical Instrument Digital Interface (MIDI) spec has been around since the early 1980s. The introduction and wide adoption of the standard has allowed multitudes of musicians, musical enthusiasts, hackers, programmers, and geeks/nerds of all varieties to create, modify, update, and generally hack this awesomely simple protocol into many instruments and tons of other stuff (see these crazy but cool MIDI interfaces). A New Spec These days the MIDI spec can be be found implemented on tons of hardware, from…

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SpeedCrunch: the better cross-platform calculator

I often find myself using a calculator in my day job to convert large numbers between base-10 and hexadecimal. Windows’ built-in calculator can do it, but painfully. Linux Mint’s calculator is better, but only marginally so. Enter SpeedCrunch. SpeedCrunch is so incredibly feature-packed, and has such an intuitive interface, that I could hardly believe that it’s a free tool! Working with numbers Using the built-in functions hex and bin, numbers are easily converted into various representations. Very useful for programmers.…

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Network bandwidth testing with iperf3

Everyone knows how to use speedtest.net to test your internet connection speed, but how do you test your LAN bandwidth?   When you want to troubleshoot speed issues on your LAN, what can you use? Luckily, some clever software call iperf3 can help us out.  You can find the tool at the main website for iperf and iperf3  here. This tool is available for Windows, Linux, Mac, Android, and iOS, so you’ve got options. There are two parts to testing your network with iperf3. First…

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I’m back!

The server was down for about 24 hours while I performed some hardware and software upgrades. I’ll be bringing all of my blog entries back as soon as I can get the SQL imported! For the nerdy and techies who wonder: Hardware Upgrades 512MB RAM to 1GB Single Core 32bit to single core 64bit Software Upgrades Debian 7 to Debian 9 Installation of security (super secret stuff!) software to mitigate the endless torrent of hacking attempts PHP5.4 to PHP7.x  …

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Build Your Own Router – Part 2

BYOR part deux Hello all! I’m back again with part two of the Build Your Own Router Series! In this post, we’re going to do the following: Talk about our proposed network architecture Set up our interfaces Set up a DHCP server and define our subnets Define some subnet ranges for our devices Set up some DHCP reservations Set up a DNS cache server Set up some basic iptables rules and forwarding What you must have before this point You…

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Build Your Own Router – Part 1

Hi all, Since many folks these days are talking about VPNs and improving their online security, I thought I’d write a series on my approach to this. In this series, I want to cover the following: Why would you build a router to improve your privacy? What are the basic skills needed for building your own router? What hardware is needed? What software is needed? What does all this effort buy me? I’ll address these questions and more as I…

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Presenting…. The MIDI Control Surface (Rev. A)

Hi all! I’ve finally gotten around to posting the pics of the MIDI control service project I was working on. Here are the details on this guy: Total Cost to Build: ~$60 if you count the hot glue gun, $45 ish if you don’t Total Time to Build: ~A month of planning, a weekend of building, a few weeks of tweaking software How’s it made? The guts This project has the following components: 1 wooden cigar box from a hobby…

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I’ve been busy working, but I’ve started a side project

Hi folks! It’s been a long while since my last post. I’ve been working like crazy and preparing for my wedding! I have picked up a side project however. I wanted to learn about how a multitasking kernel does its thing at the basic level. So I grabbed an ATMEGA328P and built a little kernel for myself. You can go explore it at my GitHub repo. Introducing littleKernel As the name implies, it is a little kernel. I’ve built this little…

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