World Malaria Day, April 25th 2008

Send a net, save a life. It’s easy, right? So, how exactly do you get involved? What if you want to do more than make a donation? We need your help to spread the word that a $10 donation can save a life. We want to make it easy to get your friends, family, and community involved in Nothing But Nets. This organization is powered by the United Nations Foundation. Here’s how to get started:

Click this link to check out the rest of


Robots, SDKs and Basketball

May the best team win the NBA 2008 Basketball Finals!!! May San Antonio Spurs win it!!

Amazing three-legged robots with great application in rescue operations, surgery etc – check out Technion “Spider Robots”

Apple had now released its Software development kit (SDK) for the popular iPhone – heres a link to the development center

As usual, Google has made new exciting changes with Youtube, they now offer API’s for more integration of your video creations into just about everything – including game creation. See their Broadcasting Ourselves web page. I’m currently reading Greg Iles “Third Degree”. Heres a lnk to an interesting Shaq, LeBron James and Dwight Howard NBA All Star dance video! And just when you thought your heart was immune from hacking, computer security experts release a report on the possibility of hacking via wireless and possibly electrically shocking someone to death – see Bruce Schneier’s Report on this security issue.


Smartphone – Windows Media 6

Just recently upgraded my Samsung Blackjack aka i607 operating system to Windows Mobile 6. The install, following the bit confusing instructions found here did work with some added intuition. Very pleased l didnt have to buy the Blackjack II aka i760 just to get WM6. Will post pictures soon. I’m impressed with the new OS, it does come with better default ringtones, windows vista like interface, office applications reader and l found a very useful tool Note2day which you can download from here, the Microsoft Windows mobile homepage. This free application allows you to quickly write notes, append to an existing note and review notes without much effort, something l always wanted in a Smartphone. You can also download the latest SDK for Visual Studio .Net smartphone software development from here. Note, forusers of Vista operating system, you need to install Windows Mobile Device Center 6.1 – and not just the latest version of Microsoft Active sync, in order to get your blackjack sync with your OS. Previously with Windows XP, 2000 etc , you only needed Microsoft Activesync to work with syncing between outlook and your smartphone.

Currently reading Greg Iles – 24 Hours. Good and engaging so far as expected. Reserved **all** his other titles at the Multnomah public library here in Portland, Oregon.


HPC, Books, Misc.

Interesting Google Videos on Cluster Computing, click here.

The 2nd lecture video on Google Cluster Computing and MapReduce – link here.

Most Interesting Recent Books I’ve Read: (Click on links for more details)

  • Spyware – By R. J. Pineiro – Think implants in almost everyone, controlled by some super computer…
  • The Footprints of God – Greg Iles – Hard to drop this book about an AI nano-based supercomputer taking control of all computers, internet and governments, including the United States 12/12/07
  • Below are VERY >>Strong / Intense <<
  • Read also 24 Hours – now reading True Evil by G. Iles 2-28-08
  • Read Also Sleep No More
  • Turning Angel – Greg Iles
  • The Innocent Man – Based on a true story from Ada, Oklahoma – John Grisham – Couldnt finish this book because l was so upset on the injustice described in this book.

Interesting News/Links:

How to remove the annoying Grove Folder Synchronization found in the new Microsoft Office

Googles Android Open Cellphone development SDK released. Click here for more details.

Microprocessors – Intel Corp.’s new 45 nanometer chip – Click to view their factory.

Google Inc. releases programming tools for its Android mobile-phone alliance for download. Plugins for Eclipse development, GSM support and an interesting adroid emulator (click here) is also available.


Deal or No Deal

I watch several TV shows, including 24, Prison Break etc. – but this show Deal or No Deal always hooks me. I even bought a mini arcade TV video game version of this popular TV show. Heres my take on the game – its NOT about winning a million, its about winning the most you can based on your odds!!! Its so crazy to see someone walk out with below $300 when they reached a crucial point where they could have walked away with at least $130,000 (half after taxes!). The crowd cheering “go one more time” or one’s supporters screaming that, or something in you, should not make you keep “hoping” your case has $1,000,000.00 ( $500k approximately after taxes).
For example, a contestant got to a 50-50 point with 2 low numbers and 2 large – 300,000 and 500,000, she was offered over $100,000. Her next large number on the board was $75,000. Think! If you knock out the 300k and 500k, you never will get offered anything close to 75k. She went ahead and subsequently knocked off in sequence 300k and 500k. Finally she settled for $23k which is about 1/2 after taxes. The smartest contestant to me while this new season (with $1million added each time up to $8million) kicked off was the lady who won about $306,000. Even though she and someone else where the only 2 contestants whose cases actually held $1million, she cashed in when the odds were best in her favour. You dont need a college statistics class to hopefully figure out this game show, but it sure helps to understand the basics of probability.



Classic Peanuts:

Going back the memory lane, l recall been so interested in microprocessors as a kid after having read a book on the z80 microprocessor borrowed from the British Council Library in Kano State. I kept reading all l could about programming a z80, writing small instruction code programs in my head and on paper without having any PC, z80 or microprocessor development lab. I got a z80 via mail order from Maplin Electronics – London by mail order, using all my savings converted to pound sterling. l was so into figuring out how to program an 1k EPROM to run a very simple led flashing test program. I wrote the instruction code, converted each hex code into binary in a sequential list almost like a memory array all on paper. I had no access to a eprom uv eraser, but l read somewhere that sufficient exposure to the sun will erase an eprom. Well, l climbed up our home’s zinc roof and placed the device for about 1 week enclosed in a glass covered box to protect this precious device from weather. The only way l check it the rom contents were erased as well as program the device was by painfully setting up each logical address using a breadboard with wires connected to +5v for logic high or 0v for logic low, and viewing 8 leds wired to the data input as well as a 8 bit switch, which were flipped to the 8bit value l wanted to program before sending +12v to the program pin and enabling the program pin using a push to make switch held at logic low.

First video game machines: Atari 2600, commodore 64, nintendo

First computers l tried Basic programming on: Sinclair Spectrum, commodore 64

First non-ibm pc: Original Apple II & First ibm-compatible machine: Amstrad PC , both at FUTO, Owerri.
Now we have cheap and discarded flash memories, SD and miniSD cards etc with much more memory capacity and microcontrollers with in-built flash memory controllers….

Interesting projects l found on the web:

The Reflow Soldering Oven with LCD Display

RFID-based proximity security system of ID Cards

Innovative use of Virtex-II Pro chips from a board off eBay!


Linux From Scratch

Working on this now. If you want to learn/master how linux is built completely, you may want to try this challenging but interesting project. Heres the website link for linux from scratch

Another similar link using slax to rebuild/customize your own distro can be found at SLAX is fast. compact and beautiful Linux operating system based on Slackware linux distro. If you wish to create a custom Ubuntu distro, try this link.

Below is my .bashrc and .bash_profile and the first command format that worked for me, despite a slightly different command format in the documentation online. Little tips and stuff l noticed will be posted here which might help you when trying out building Linux from scratch.

Source from which l get most of my open source software (good bandwidth esp. if you’re in the NorthWest) – Oregon State University FTP site

[root@localhost lfs]# cat .bashrc
set +h
umask 022
[root@localhost lfs]#
[root@localhost lfs]# cat .bash_profile
exec env -i HOME=$HOME TERM=$TERM PS1=’u:w$ ‘ /bin/bash
[root@localhost lfs]#

lfs:/mnt/lfs/binutils-build$ time { CC=”gcc -B/usr/bin/” /mnt/lfs/sources/binutils-2.17/configure –prefix=/tools –disable-nls –disable-werror && make && make install; }
…………….creating cache ./config.cache

real 2m19.900s
user 1m36.257s
sys 0m30.604s

the times below was achieved on an Intel 6300 dual core machine with 1Gb RAM and a 300Gb SATA drive for Windows XP Pro, 42Gb second drive for Fedora 7

The second drive was split into 37Gb for / and 5Gb for /lfs and l always use 756Mb for a swap space as a matter of habit though l think 256Mb or 512Mb is okay.

When you get to this section: 5.5.1. Installation of Linux API Headers, you need to be in this folder not mentioned in the documentation:




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