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RetroPie Revision 2


Not too long ago I built a Retropie based console. It was small and portable, but it still required an HDMI enabled TV or projector. And sometimes you will go places where that is not available - on a 3 week camper van vacation for example ;-).

So during the last weeks I revisited the project to make it even more portable by adding a screen and builtin speaker.

Last updated: 2019/03/31 16:12 · Permalink · Comments

Shower Thought

So, here's a literal shower thought that I have to get out of my head.

Last updated: 2019/03/13 09:25 · Permalink · Comments

3D Printing Q&A

When people hear that I own a 3D printer they have questions. Usually exactly the same few. So why not answer them here?

Pictures at the very end.

Last updated: 2019/01/12 21:25 · Permalink · Comments

One-Mix Yoga 2

I'm a big fan of tiny portable computers and still fondly remember my EeePC. Unfortunately the NetBooks fell out of fashion again and for a long time it was hard to get any really small laptops. But it seems the genre is coming back under the name “Ultra-Mobile PC” or UMPC.

The start made the somewhat under powered GPD Pocket, followed up by an even worse One-Mix Yoga. However both had very successful crowd funding campaigns which proved there is a demand for small computers. Both, GPD and One-Mix are Chinese companies designing, building and selling these machines in seemingly small batches with the initial production funded by crowd founding. This allows them relatively quick iterations.

Last year finally the GPD Pocket 2 was released which improved a lot on the first design and shortcomings and One-Mix followed suit just a few months ago with the Yoga 2.

I decided to get the Yoga 2 because of the slightly more powerful specs (more on that later). I bought it at Geekbuying for 559.30€ including shipping. As a pleasant surprise, the device got shipped from the Netherlands instead of directly from China so had not to pay any additional tolls and taxes.

Below follows a long post (you have been warned) about the hardware in it and how to get it running on Arch Linux with XFCE.

Last updated: 2019/01/03 15:29 · Permalink · Comments

Making the Fire HD 8 Work

The Android tablet market is not what it used to be anymore. There used to be a huge selection of tablets to choose from. But nowadays the selection is slim. When my trusty Asus' battery failed, there wasn't much choice.

Since I also was a bit short on cash3) I decided to explore the cheapest option available: Amazon's Fire series. I picked the Fire HD 8 which was 90 EUR in the recent Cyber Monday sale.

Now, Amazon's Fire tablets aren't running a proper Android OS but instead they use Amazon's derivate dubbed Fire OS. They offer their hardware cheaply because they want you to buy into their eco system. The Fire series is meant to consume Amazon Music, Amazon Prime Video, Kindle Books and of course for shopping at Amazon.

This means their default launcher is like a big shopping catalog. Oh and it does not even has the Google Apps (web search defaults to Bing).

So in the default setup, the Fire HD 8's software is a bit shit.

Luckily there are a few things you can do about it. Unfortunately the boot loader is locked, so simply replacing the system is not an option currently4). Instead workarounds are needed.

Last updated: 2018/11/26 21:26 · Permalink · Comments

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