[islandlabs] Tuesday: LILUG.org; Wednesday: Island Labs; Thursday: Nassau ARES

Burns, William burns at cshl.edu
Mon Jan 11 17:07:16 EST 2016

Tuesday: Those who are interested In LINUX will attend the http://LILUG.org meeting at 8:00pm on CSHL's Woodbury Campus.
Wednesday: Island Labs will meet at 8:00pm in Mineola.
Thursday: Nassau ARES will meet at 8:00pm in Mineola.
Sunday: Tech-Net meets on-the-air at 8:00pm on LIMARC repeaters.

At the next meeting, we'll recap what we saw at HRU and talk about some other RC (radio control) projects.

I believe we discussed the practice of using our meetup to publicize + promote other meetups + meetings.
AFAIK: We're all OK w/ continuing to do this.

At the last meeting, James was looking for the "best" (and smallest) 3D printer controller.
He was also working on an Arduino board that would fit into a pololu socket,  taking feedback from a 2-wire shaft-encoder and driving a DC motor, essentially turning it into a stepper motor.
Apparently, he's had success since the last meeting, finding an Arduino project here: https://www.youmagine.com/designs/dc-motor-closed-loop-control-software that meets most of his requirements, namely turning the common step+direction step-motor-controller inputs into DC motor PWM output.

Mark brought a lapdock designed to work with Motorola phones, a Raspberry Pi Zero and the cables required to turn it into a Pi Laptop.

Someone (I'm guessing Jesse) mentioned a $58 GoPro clone (NoPro camera?) called the Eken H9.

I just saw the email from Jeff, asking who might be interested in buying an RC paper airplane.
It's an iPhone controlled motor and rudder for your paper airplane.
(actual paper airplane not included)
A Brooklyn Aerodrome style RC plane might be even cheaper and shares parts in common w/ some of our quadcopters.

We also reviewed the schedule of HRU and what we could expect out of each of the sessions.

On Sunday, Ham Radio University (HRU) happened.
I arrived late (bad idea) then attended the antenna modeling session and then spoke at the Mesh WiFi session.

Jesse brought his self-made clover leaf antennas (The "IBCrazy" design that's common for first-person-video systems) and was searching for a radio expert who could give him some information on "how they work". Maybe he'll be able to use the eznec software package (http://www.brooklynaerodrome.com/kit) to find the antenna pattern of a clover-leaf antenna.
I'm not sure if/what that software would say about the polarization of the signal from that antenna.

At HRU, I totally failed at getting Jesse to make use of his Ham Radio license.
That was especially sad, since I was trying to get him to use a LIMARC repeater and we were standing a few feet away from a LIMARC table.
(could have walked over and asked them for permission in person)

Later (that Sunday) LIMARC Tech-Net happened. (as it does every Sunday)
Jesse was listening in but I couldn't get him to ask any of his questions.
After it was over I got Dick Knadle on the air and asked him a question for next week.
"Is a Clover Leaf Antenna an instance of a short helical antenna or is it an instance of 3 parallel loop antennas"?
I wasn't able to give Jesse's call sign to Dick but Dick might call out to Jesse next Sunday for Questions/Answers.

Ariella bought her first Baofeng radio recently at Microcenter. (was it pink?)
She didn't take her exam at HRU because she didn't want to miss being overwhelmed by information from the HRU sessions.

We had a new member attend last week.
Ephraim had only a few days between the last meeting and HRU but I believe that at HRU, he passed his Technician's exam on the first try.

Hey Ephraim: Join our mailing list so I don't have to keep CC'ing you on our email.

I didn't manage to meet Rich at HRU but he came up with  his own antenna question.
(maybe also a good question for Tech-Net)
Could the "Watney" character in the "Martian" movie have made an antenna to talk to earth from the parts he had available on Mars?

The answer is almost certainly "yes" (when it comes to materials) but there are a lot of "but"s.
But: What radio would he have connected it to?
But: If he had a radio, would he have known what frequency it operated on?
But: It's much easier to send a signal to earth than to get someone on earth to listen for it.
(he would had to have known of a frequency where someone on earth was listening to Mars w/ a very high-gain antenna)
But: If his antenna had directionality, he'd need to know where earth was in relation to mars and keep re-pointing his antenna at Earth.
But: It's much easier to send a signal from an RF quiet Mars than for him to receive a signal from an RF noisy Earth.
(so he might have unidirectional communication)
But: unless he was going to continually man a radio, he would have had to record a message and automate a transmission.
But: He was a botanist, not an RF engineer.
But: There's no Google on Mars.
While it would be relatively easy for us to look up an antenna design for a particular RF frequency, Watney would only have the information that was in his head and whatever information he could find on Mars.
I'm guessing that information did not include a how-to on building antennas for use w/ arbitrary frequencies.

That's all I can remember since the last meeting.
If I left anything out, please let me know.

See you at the meetings.


-----Original Message-----
From: list-bounces+burns=cshl.edu at lists.islandlabs.org [mailto:list-bounces+burns=cshl.edu at lists.islandlabs.org] On Behalf Of Burns, William <burns at cshl.edu> via List
Sent: Monday, January 04, 2016 12:00 PM
To: Island Labs mailing list
Subject: [islandlabs] Monday: LIDMUG; Wednesday: Island Labs; Thursday: Windows Admin

The meetings are back on and it's a busy week, starting w/ Today.

Monday LIDMUG.org will meet on CSHL's main campus at 8:00pm.
Tuesday: ARCECS will meet in Mineola at 8:00pm.
Wednesday: Island Labs will meet in Mineola at 8:00pm.
Thursday: the Windows Admin group will meet at 8:00pm on CSHL's main campus.
Friday + Saturday: nothing...

Sunday: Ham Radio University will meet at Briarcliffe College in Bethpage.
(Admission is $3)
This will be a good opportunity to hand out Island Labs business cards...

Next week: LILUG.org will meet on Tuesday.

This week's Island Labs meeting will be the last one before HRU this Sunday.
I'm hoping to review the equation for predicting RF power at a given range from a transmitter and maybe go over the slides we used at the last HRU.
We're not the ones presenting the Mesh talk this year but I've been invited to provide backup for John Wilson's talk.

See you at the meetings.

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