Older blog entries for Dodger (starting at number 20)

8:24am CDT

Well, the AirPort has risen from it's own ashes and appears to be working now. It's been up for 13 hours now without any problems. It's really cool how the bridging "just works" for my network. Now all I have to do is flash the firmware on my wireless network cards(later this morning) and I can use my iPAQ for everything it was meant to be used for. I'm pretty excited. I should be getting the serial cable in a few days so I can try installing Linux on it. I wonder if there's a way to put Linux on a CF card instead of writing to the iPAQs flash... Hmm, that's how I boot Linux on my WorkPad z50. I'll have to look into that.

Not a whole lot going on in the programming front lately. My driver for the TrackIR is at a standstill(waiting for some more hardware from ECT so I can get multiple devices working). The code is very simple, so there haven't been any bugs to fix in a while.

Living on the plains some times really sucks. I haven't been able to ride my bike at all this week because of storms or harsh winds. Oh well, it can't last forever.

2:03pm CDT

Won an iPAQ 3650 from eBay last week at a good price($509) and received it this weekend. Struggled all day Saturday and part of Sunday trying to get my WaveLAN wireless cards to work with it. Emailed WaveLAN and they say I need to upgrade the firmware on the card itself. I've always used these cards in Linux so I never needed to upgrade their firmware. Hopefully that fixes the iPAQ. I also had won an Apple AirPort but it appears to be DOA. :(

Has anybody installed Linux on an iPAQ before? I don't really like CE on the iPAQ and to synchronize most of the things(like the Notes, which I'll probably be using the most) it appears I need to buy Microsoft Office, which I am NOT going to do.

10:09am CDT

Well, it looks like ECT is going to be sending me a presenter's kit and some stuff to do 3D motion capture with their TrackIR devices. This will let me get my driver working with multiple devices without having to shell out $100 for each device. Very nice of them. It's getting really nice and warm here. Tomorrow will probably be the first day I'll be able to ride in to work(about 10 miles). I'm looking forward to getting back in some semblance of shape. Need to get a trainer so I don't get fat over the winter again.

8:54am CDT

Well, I've finally released it. My first ever Linux kernel driver is up at my homepage. It's a driver for the TrackIR device I've been talking about in my previous diary entries. I hate to be a beggar, but maybe some developers will look at the source and maybe give me some certs. :)

10:46am CDT

Well, my TrackIR driver is working and appears to be producing correct data. Now all I have to do is figure out how to write the non-blocking interface(not sure how the data is returned to user-space yet) and write an ioctl for sending control messages to the device. I'm really happy with everything I've learned from this project so far. If you've got a TrackIR or just want to look at the driver(hey, I wouldn't mind, I'd like to know I'm doing things right or wrong), email me at tmilker at radiks dot net. I wish there were a utility to keep up to date on Advogato entries, there's just not enough time in the day to keep up with them from the site. :(

6 Apr 2001 (updated 6 Apr 2001 at 21:14 UTC) »
4:13pm CDT

dyork: Free an IRQ for that ISA slot and then one for each pcmcia slot and it should "just work" I had the same issues when people told me the same thing. Once I freed some IRQs for the card everything was golden.

7:54am CDT

Sheesh, I just realized I've been doing all these CDT/CST times backwards for daylight savings time. Oh well, I'll start doing it correctly from here out.

Well, the TrackIR driver is progressing nicely. I think I've got firmware loading the correct way. The only thing I'm not too happy about is that I had to put a flag in the data structure for the driver to tell if the firmware has been loaded or not. I'm hoping there's a way to query the device to see if the firmware is already loaded like the usb/serial/keyspan.c driver in the kernel. Fixing this is a must, if multiple cameras are to be supported. Can't really play that until I get the device, which comes today.

7:44am CST

Wow, I can't believe it. My first kernel driver for a device and it actually worked! The USB protocol makes it almost fun to write drivers for devices(when you actually have documentation for the device). I don't have my TrackIR yet, but UPS says I'll get it on Friday. The only problem with the driver my tester found so far is that I forgot to make a check to see if the firmware was already loaded, so it would load the firmware over and over until the new device was enumerated. I sent off a fix for that at around 4:45am this morning and now I'm waiting to hear back from him. All I need to add now is the open and read functions and it should be done. I'm going to wait to write those until I have mine.

7:47am CST

Well, it's another Monday. Last night's Eco-Challenge was very interesting. It looks quite fun albeit grueling. It will be interesting to see how it turns out. Didn't do a whole lot this weekend. Got an email saying my TrackIR shipped, so I might see that later this week. I still don't quite understand how to write a character device, so I'll be looking into more of the kernel source later on today. Is it just me or did this year's April Fool's jokes just seem really lame compared to some of the stuff done last year. Slashdot had remarkably poor jokes this time around.

7:44am CDT

Wow am I ever glad it's Friday! I've been hearing a lot about the game Black and White. I hope that Peter Molyneux really does release the source like he had mentioned doing a few months ago. The AI sounds very interesting. At the very least, I hope it's released for Linux, which was also stated. Anyway, procedural textures are awesome, I love this book. The authors start from the ground up, which is nice, compared to some books/papers which assume you already know everything(making the document worthless). There's a heavy influence of RenderMan in the book, but RenderMan shaders look a lot like C snippets, and the authors explain and implent the functions the shader language uses.

29 Mar 2001 (updated 30 Mar 2001 at 02:16 UTC) »
8:07pm CDT

Enjoying the evening reading, Texturing and Modeling: A Procedural Approach.

Bantered back and forth with one of the developers at Eye Control Technology over email earlier(the people who sell the TrackIR). They're going to release some more information on their website tonight about the firmware, general questions that everyone is asking(including me). It looks fairly easy, from the kernel source I've looked at, to write a driver that loads the firmware and reconnects to the real device. I've already got one on order, I hope I get it soon so I can start hacking on a driver. It will be the first kernel driver I've really sunk my teeth into, but I feel confident about being able to do it(unlike working on the 3com HomeConnect, which completely shattered my confidence in that device, not being able to work out the format of the color images). My goal is to get the driver to a point where I can write an app that loads a mesh of a face(or possibly a Quake3 model's head) and map vertices of the mesh to reflector dots on my face.

4:34pm CDT

Pet peeve: People who feel the need to correct everyone's grammar and spelling because they couldn't spell Mississippi until high school.

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