Cool Projects

When BirdCam Goes Mainstream

If you read my articles on when I originally set up BirdCam a few years ago, you'll remember I did it with compatibility in mind. At the time of this writing, BirdCam is simply an HTML page with the JavaScript language to refresh the images constantly, in order to create a low-fps video stream of sorts. more>>

Build Your Own Raspberry Pi Camera

During the past few years, my BirdCam setup has evolved significantly. As I mention in the UpFront section of this issue, I hope to get the stream transferred to a YouTube Live stream at some point, so I can watch the feathery show on my television. And although watching the birds is the end goal, I'm constantly on a mission to improve the quality and flexibility of my setup. more>>

Mark Geddes' Arduino Project Handbook (No Starch Press)

Lifelong tinkerer and gadget enthusiast Mark Geddes was so frustrated with the lack of practical, visual Arduino guides for teaching his ten-year-old that he wrote his own book on the topic. more>>

Securi-Pi: Using the Raspberry Pi as a Secure Landing Point

Like many LJ readers these days, I've been leading a bit of a techno-nomadic lifestyle as of the past few years—jumping from network to network, access point to access point, as I bounce around the real world while maintaining my connection to the Internet and other networks I use on a daily basis. more>>

Embed Linux in Monitoring and Control Systems

The target vehicle for this project is a vintage intercity transport bus (think Greyhound) whose instrument panel was sparse and mostly nonfunctional. The speedometer cable was twisted off some place back in 40 feet of cable, and the fuel sensor had sunk long ago. What I wanted was an instrument panel more in line with modern practice. more>>

Home Automation with Raspberry Pi

The Raspberry Pi has been very popular among hobbyists and educators ever since its launch in 2011. The Raspberry Pi is a credit-card-sized single-board computer with a Broadcom BCM 2835 SoC, 256MB to 512MB of RAM, USB ports, GPIO pins, Ethernet, HDMI out, camera header and an SD card slot. more>>

May 2015 Issue of Linux Journal: Cool Projects

Robotic Sharks with Laser Eyes

I love the Cool Projects issue. more>>


In June 2013, we had the unfortunate luck of a basement flood, caused by a tripped electrical breaker connected to our sump pump. There are so many things that can go wrong with a sump pump. You always are on guard for power outages, blown breakers, sump pump failures, clogged pipes and all manner of issues that can arise, which ultimately can end with a flooded basement. more>>

Give new life to old phones and tablets with these tips!

If you're like me (and you're a Linux Journal reader, so you may actually be like me), you probably rotate through your cell phones and/or tablets every couple years. These little devices are so convenient and have been consistently dropping in price, while their power continues to go up, so you may have a few older devices sitting in a drawer. more>>

Reglue: Opening Up the World to Deserving Kids, One Linux Computer at a Time

They say you never forget your first computer. For some of us, it was a Commodore 64 or an Apple IIe. For others, it was a Pentium 233 running Windows 95. Regardless of the hardware, the fond memories of wonder and excitement are universal. For me, I'll never forget the night my father brought home our first computer, a Tandy 1000. more>>

It Actually Is Rocket Science

I've never once made a model rocket. I've always wanted to, but apart from "tube with explodey rocket part", I really didn't know where to start with designing. I recently found an open-source application that should help me with my lack of rocket science know-how: OpenRocket. more>>

May 2014 Issue of Linux Journal: Cool Projects

Cooler Than Minnesota in January

By the time this issue goes to press, the snow in my backyard probably will be only knee deep in the shade. more>>

BirdCam, Round Two

In the October 2013 issue, I described the hardware and software I used to create my "BirdTopia Monitoring Station", more commonly called BirdCam. If you've been visiting BirdCam recently, which a surprising number of folks have been doing, you'll notice quite a few changes (Figure 1). In this article, I describe the upgrades, the changes and some of the challenges along the way. more>>

Cribbage: Sorting Your Hand

We've been working on writing code for the game Cribbage, and last time, I created the code needed to pick a random subset of six cards out of a "deck" and display them in an attractive format—like this: $ sh Card 0: 7C Card 1: 5H Card 2: 9H Card 3: 10S Card 4: 5D Car more>>

Counting Cards: Cribbage

I've spent the past few months reviewing shell scripting basics, so I think it's time to get back into an interesting project. more>>

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