You are currently browsing the fix tag archives.

Wicca Plus 3.1 Released

Posted 2014.10.16 8.36 in iPhone by Stephanie

Wicca Plus v3.1

 

Wicca Plus version 3.1 has been released!

After iOS 8 was released, a bunch of ugly bugs turned up in Wicca Plus.

I had tested against one of the betas and didn’t find anything wrong, but in retrospect I had not tested thoroughly enough.

The fix is now finally out however. Wicca Plus version 3.1 works with iOS8 and iOS7, and is compatble with the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus.

I apologize for the delay in getting this out to everyone.

If anyone is still seeing problems after upgrading, please join our support forum and let me know.

 

Wicca Plus is available on the App Store.

 

 

Late Night Camera Repair

Posted 2011.09.14 22.41 in Hobbies by Stephanie

This week has really been a huge bust. After the various failures over the weekend, I’ve been suffering at the hands of medical professionals and the various tests to which they’ve been subjecting my leg. I’ve been feeling bummed out with photography and cameras.

Tonight I’m sitting here about ready to go to bed and then I decide, just before turning in, I’m going to at least mess with a camera. I’ve got this little Chaika-II on my shelf, I vaguely remember putting some film through it when I first got it, but then the shutter/winder siezed up. It’s just been gathering dust since then.

So tonight I decided, I’m either going to fix it, or I’m going to reduce it to a pile of parts. And based on this week’s track record, I expected the latter result.

Still, it was a very inexpensive camera, and I’m not a big fan of the half-frame format, so I was ready to make the sacrifice. Worst-case scenario, I’d get to see the insides and maybe learn something.

Chaika II

I removed the four screws I found on the top plate, and the top easily slid off. A few parts and a spring fell out, and right away I could see that only three screws should have been removed – the fourth one should have stayed put as it was holding some parts to the top plate. Fortunately I’m pretty good at figuring that sort of thing out, and it only took a few moments to see how the parts fit back together, so I wasn’t any further behind.

Looking at the winding / cocking mechanism, it’s a lot like a funny little clockwork. The shutter speed is part of that clockwork, and setting the shutter speed just tensions a spring – the more the tension, the faster the shutter. What I realized was that, like a number of other early eastern-bloc mechanical cameras, you are not supposed to set the shutter speed until after winding and cocking the camera.¬†Odds are, I did that out of order at one point and got the thing jammed.

It ended up being a very simple straightforward fix, and once again this little camera is clicking along. Not bad for 10 minutes work before bed – it took longer to do this write-up than it did to fix the camera! I’m even thinking about running some more film through this little camera, just for the heck of it!

Minolta Autopak 700

Posted 2011.09.03 10.34 in Hobbies, Photography by Stephanie

I think one of the reasons I enjoy shooting the 126 format is because I like shooting squares. Rectangular shots are so ubiquitous that the square format on its own is something novel and different. I don’t know if I like it only for its difference, or if it’s truly aesthetically better to my eyes.

Either way, I’m still enjoying the 126 format, and to help enjoy it even more, I recently acquired another camera in this format. Unlike all my other 126 kits, this one allows full manual control of exposure, and even has a perfect focus aid – a coupled rangefinder.

Minolta Autopak 700

Minolta Autopak 700

The Minolta Autopak 700 looks more like Minolta’s Hi-Matic line than it does other 126 cameras. It’s larger and heavier than my other 126 cameras, being made entirely of metal and designed like a ‘real’ camera.

Unfortunately, the camera had some problems when I received it: the front element of the lens was loose and wobbly, the rangefinder was completely non-functional, and the mechanism to wind the film & cock the shutter siezed up after a single crank.

Read more »

Back in Business!

Posted 2011.04.18 21.25 in Computers/Internet/Technology by Stephanie

The parts I needed arrived today, so it was just a matter of asembling a new ‘motherboard’ then wiring it into the thermostat enclosure.

The parts were mainly the circuit board and the ATMega328p chip, along with the sundry support electrics. To be honest, I’m using the SparkFun Serial LCD kit — for $25 it’s almost a complete self-contained mini-Arduino that piggybacks onto the back of a 16×2 LCD display. And it even includes the LCD!

If I knew how to use Eagle and if I had more time, I’d have made my own PCB design. I still might do that as I now have more LCD screens than boards to slap on the back of them. The SparkFun Serial LCD isn’t perfect, but it’s actually quite close.

So my DIY networked Thermostat is back up and running with a shiney new brain, my house is once again comfortable, I’m out of the stone age and back in the World of Tomorrow, and I’m a happy camper.

And just for kicks, I took the old dead board and tossed it in the dishwasher, ran a load on ‘heavy-duty pots-n-pans’ mode, and the darn thing is actually working again. Go figure! I won’t trust it in mission-critical use, but I can certainly use it for prototyping or making stuff that’s not, you know, directly wired into my friggin home.

Yep, once again all is right with the world.

Updated Already

Posted 2011.03.20 22.10 in Computers/Internet/Technology by Stephanie

I couldn’t leave it alone, of course. Had to take it apart again today and make an update.

That thing with the WizNet module hanging sometimes, I had applied a very makeshift fix to yesterday. See, the WizNet doesn’t have its own power-on reset, but it needs it. They suggest you use a digital pin from your uC but I was out of pins. So I used a 10uF capacitor, which was enough to ground the reset line on power-up or manual reboot.

The problem was, I had my WizNet reset tied to my Arduino / ATMega reset, and the capacitor meant I couldn’t update the programming. At least, not without temporarily removing that capacitor.

So it turned out, I did have a spare pin. I had been holding A3 in reserve. Just incase the temperature readings from the Chronodot remained inaccurate due to the heat from the WizNet, I was prepared to add a TMP-36 analog temperature sensor, and dangle that a few inches below the enclosure. Luckily, with the thermostat mounted vertically on the wall, and the Chronodot a good 1″ out with open air around it, the temperature readings are accurate.

So I pulled it open, removed the capacitor, and unhooked the WizNet reset line from the Arduino / ATMega reset line, and tied it instead to A3. A few quick changes to the software, and presto, no more hang-on-powerup and it can be reprogrammed without any soldering. Yay!

Also, I decided to go ahead and show off the guts. Why not? Just be warned, if you’re easily upset by ugly wiring hacks and poorly-planned soldering and random wires and tapes and dead-bug construction… well just don’t look.

And finally, here’s a link to the updated software. The zip file also contains a text file that outlines the pinout & functions for the ATMega chip, the WizNet module, and the function of the HVAC lines — or at least, how they function in my house.

Broken Pen

Posted 2010.09.14 21.13 in Computers/Internet/Technology by Stephanie

Now this time, it’s totally not what you think! I didn’t break it — I took it apart to fix it.

Honest!

See, I have this Wacom Bamboo Tablet for doing drawing on the computer. I’ve only just started playing with it a couple weeks ago. But I don’t have enough desk space to keep it out all the time, so when it’s not in use, I store it in a ‘cubbyhole’ in the hutch on my desk. So far, so good.

The tablet has a pen. The special pen that makes the tablet go. The pen is all full of delicate electronics, but it’s very lightweight, and rolls easily, and is not attached in any way to any thing…

Read more »

Debricked Dingoo

Posted 2010.04.14 21.14 in Computers/Internet/Technology by Stephanie

Well I got it unbricked today at work. Then I bricked it again when I got home. So I went back in to work and unbricked it again. Grumble grumble windows-only tools.

Anyhow, here’s the deal:

The magic tool for unbricking / flashing “HK” type Dingoos, along with instuctions, can be found in this post on Dingoonity. The tool is a ‘normal’ Chinachip flashing tool, that has been patched to bypass the authorization check. Along with the tool, you need the correct lcd driver module, and the a320.hxf firmware file. There are versions included with the tool download, or you can find them online with other flasher / unbricker tools.

Follow the instructions exactly and the process will take less than 10 minutes from start to finish. It requires Win XP, and doesn’t work on 64-bit Windows. I couldn’t get it to work at home because there’s some problem with running the process on a VM. I have WinXP via Parallels on my Macintosh, but the flashing process does something on a very low-level/hardware level and Parallels gets all confused and breaks the connection.

Anyhow, once the thing is unbricked, on to the next challenge: the dreaded “HK” function (or lack thereof). Fortunately, the Dingoo community has once-more come to the rescue. Through diligent work, they have figured out the differences in the “HK” systems, and have recompiled / patched all kinds of stuff (emulators and native apps). They’ve also put the patch into the SDK so that all current / future homebrews should work too.

The fix can be downloaded from this Dingoonity thread. Just unzip the file and follow the directions.

Read more »