I hate throwing things away — especially if they still work. There are ways to dispose of old technology in an environmentally friendly way, but giving it a new lease on life is more fun.
Chances are that you have at least one old laptop or PC lying around, unused, in a cupboard or drawer. Maybe they used to run Windows Vista or even XP, and they don’t have the oomph for a modern operating system like Windows 10 or Unbuntu. They probably even struggle with running the original software they came packaged with.
So why don’t we fix them…
Since the introduction of the Raspberry Pi 4, a lot more people have been trying to use this microcomputer as their desktop PC. More recently, the Raspberry Pi 400 Personal Computer has been released, the name of which directly indicates its “main” purpose. I have long been interested in the possibility of using a portable and silent PC for simple tasks like creating this text, where the full-size desktop is redundant and the tablet is inconvenient. Finally, I bought a top-of-the-line Raspberry Pi 4 with 8GB of memory. It’s time to see how it works.
In December 2018, Bryan Boyer published “Creating a Very Slow Movie Player.” It’s a wonderful essay about light and Brasília and architecture. Boyer describes building an e-paper display that shows films at 24 frames per hour, rather than 24 frames per second. So it would take about a year to play the 142 minutes of 2001: A Space Odyssey.
It’s a pandemic outside, many of us are working from home, and I found myself buying a webcam for the first time since the last century. I was not the only one.
The webcams out there today, they do the job. You just plug them in and get a pretty nice video feed. But they’re not exactly design icons. I thought that, maybe, we can do a little better.
Allow me to take you back to the year 2003. The iPod is still a thing. It’s playing “Hey Ya!” by OutKast. You can get an iBook in white plastic. Life…