Not sure any of these are entirely working, but the local area doesn’t appear to use POCSAG but has maybe gone onto FLEX as the frequency bands look a bit busy.
Receiving FM. This is just one of the examples taken from the GnuRadio repository with the RTL source block added, and the flowchart modified to cope with the higher minimum sample rate.
So the hackerspace will imminently have a number of Realtek-based SDRs as demonstrated last meeting. An SDR, or Software-Defined Radio is a very flexible device, that performs the equivalent of a “raw recording” of a portion of the RF spectrum and then the raw samples can be processed in any way you like on your computer.
Monday was a good day for hacking; we had an impromptu Minimus workshop. This was surprisingly successful, attendees were able to get their boards programming in Windows or Linux as to their preference, and then start diving into code.
The devices aren’t as friendly as the Arduino boards, and the example source code will compile but not always run without extensive tweaking, but by the end of the session, in addition to a medley of flashing lights, we also had a one button keyboard and a virtual serial port that reported its button state.
Due to demand we will run another of these in April (2nd or 16th, TBC) and again will have Minimus boards available for use on the day or purchase. There’s no fixed cost for the workshop, but donations are appreciated. If you have a Minimus board or are interested in a step on from Arduinos, why not come past?
As a reminder to Northackton members who are also NSME members, their auction is on the 13th of March.
On Monday we visited Martin’s laser cutter, as once he installed it at his house with a water tank for cooling, it’s not particularly mobile. He showed us some of the many things he’s made for his blog, and his lightbox for photographing them.