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Web / web design turning ...
Last post by DJ Omnimaga - July 15, 2019, 04:50:40 pm
Did you know that the current webpage design dates all the way back to August 12th 1999?

While some new sections were added and others removed over the last two decades, the layout has essentially remained the same. Here is a cached front page from 2000:
I have produced another build, available from as usual. The main change from the previous build is the initial support for CBL / CBR / CBR2 / CBL2 / LabPro (/ TI-Presenter, hopefully) probing; also, I have greatly expanded the functionality and scriptability of the test_ticalcs_2 CLI tool, which is helping me a lot making tests, and packaged it in the TILP installer.
Not that in itself, the lab equipment support will be useful to many people, especially in this state, but it would be great if other people could help check that the support for other models has not regressed :)

The implementation of even this reduced support for older lab equipment was much more complex and time-consuming than I originally imagined. The newest of those lab equipments implement the version DBUS command, so it's easy to detect them, but the CBL, CBR and CBR2 don't. For those, and for meaningfully communicating with the CBL2 and LabPro as well anyway, an equivalent of the Send and Get TI-Basic commands is required. On the wire, those use an area of the DBUS protocol which was basically undocumented in the linkguide (which I've read for the first time in years, and I don't maintain), and unimplemented in libticalcs, so I'm not sure it was reverse-engineered before. TIEmu and TilEm's support for communicating with real calculators through cables, thanks to the libti* stack, were invaluable in gathering traces of the emulated calc <-> lab equipment communication :)

The commit adding lab equipment communication and expanding test_ticalcs_2 currently makes the code base grow by over 3K raw lines of code + test scripts (see for those) + build definitions. Yet, I only implemented support for the computer faking a TI-68k calculator; depending on the calculator model, the TI-Z80 series probably uses at least two variants of another protocol, as I saw two different formats for floating-point numbers. Also, I only implemented support for exchanging lists, wheras scalar expressions, indexed access in lists and matrices, sometimes strings and even pictures are supported for Get in most or some conditions... and even the list parser is simplistic: no support for spaces around '{', ',' and '}', no support for '.' (effectively restricting lists to integer values).
The fact that there's no portable, thread-safe way to parse strings containing floating-point numbers with a decimal point hard-coded to '.' - that's what the lab equipment sends to TI-68k calculators - is very annoying. At work, for that same purpose, I used a non-portable and probably thread-safe solution based on creating a new instance of the C locale and using strtod_l(), because it's in a code base which only targets Linux... but I can't do that here. The function names are different on Windows, which can be worked around, but then there are all of the other *nix that libti* support...
Other / Re: Insider blows the whistle ...
Last post by Caleb Hansberry - July 01, 2019, 04:45:18 pm
Wow, very interesting. I'll have to rethink using Google services. They're so incredibly convenient, though.
Other / Re: Insider blows the whistle ...
Last post by gameblabla - June 29, 2019, 03:48:47 pm
Quote from: DJ Omnimaga on June 29, 2019, 02:31:33 pmSeems like the video was deleted on Vimeo too.
Yup, a few days after it was posted, Vimeo deleted it for "incitement of hate speech"... which is laughable considering it was talking about Google possible meddling in 2020 elections, that's it.

The video is still on bitchute :

There were a few more reactions since the video got released, including Donald Trump himself.
Quote from: undefinedTRUMP: You saw what happened yesterday with Google. Google was totally biased, like you know they talk about Russia, because they have some bloggers. And by the way some of those bloggers were going both ways they were for Clinton and for Trump.

MARIA: Well somebody at Google said they what happened in 2016 to happen in 2020. They don't want it to happen again.

TRUMP: Let me tell you, they're trying to rig the election. That's what we should be looking at, not the phony witch hunt. This is the greatest political disgrace in history......

TRUMP: They should be sued. What's happening with the bias, and now you see it with that executive yesterday from Google the hatred for Republicans. It's not even like let's lean democrat. The hatred. And actually I heard that all during my election. They were swamping us with negative stuff.

Here's what happened next related to the incident :

QuoteJune 25 : Leaked emails claims that Google flagged Ben Shapiro, Jordan Peterson and PragerU as "dog whistle nazis" and recommending to disable some features.

June 26 : Project Veritas claims that Google intervened in the Irish abortion debate by censoring key words.
They have posted a few screenshots of said blacklist including the URLs.

I think the 8th amendment would have been repealed anyway regardless of Google's meddling but still...
It's also unknown how said blacklist was put in practice, if it was applied.
I recall saying Google defending it (when breibart released such allegations in 2018) by claiming they were cracking down on bots taking advantage of the debate.

June 26 : Vimeo deletes Project Veritas's video on incitement to hate grounds. (Which i can confirm is a lot of bulls)

June 27 : Youtube responded to deleting Project Veritas video by claiming they got a privacy complaint over it.
Project veritas responded by saying that Gennai was a public figure for Google and spoke at a number of conferences, thus it did not hold weight.

June 27 : Senator Ted cruz posted the interview with the Google executive on his channel. Not deleted so far.

Today : Project Veritas sent cease & desist letters to a bunch of journos including bloomberg, vox, the Verge among others demanding they retract their claim that they were selectively editing words from Gennai. All of them complied.

That being said, considering the laws he himself had passed, i can't help but feel like they were reaping what they sow.
Mississippi had passed a law in 2016 that would allow business to discriminate on religious grounds, Donald trump himself made sure to sign into law the Stop Enabling Sex Traffickers which led to the mass censorship of adult creators on Patreon & others (and certainly didn't help prostitutes) among others...

With that said though, it still doesn't excuse Google's actions, on top of their other accusations they are facing in congress :
This includes abusing the smartphone market by shutting out 3rd party stores and some apps like adblockers off the Google play store, compelling manufacturers to pay the 5$ per device fee for adding Google services, their overreach of personal data and so on...)

I doubt it helped the community as they were more interested in censoring key words than to oppose the laws.
Indeed, Google did not hesitate to look into the files of a prostitute in her Google drive folder...
Youtube is quick to demonetize videos that simply swear (which is the reason why AVGN videos are now being sponsored, among other things) or report on catastrophic events.

The result of this is that it leads Young americans to be less trusting of LGBT people because of incidents like these are being blamed on them, when in reality
it's Google strong-arming creators and others...

Anyway, i'm pissed at Google and i wanted to let my steam off. I'm sorry but this needed to be talked about.
Other / Re: Insider blows the whistle ...
Last post by DJ Omnimaga - June 29, 2019, 02:31:33 pm
Seems like the video was deleted on Vimeo too.
Thanks for the answers. I knew that the 82/85 lacked silent linking, but I am glad that those who don't have a computer old enough to feature a serial port nor can afford that $70 serial to USB adapter I saw at Staples once can send files on those old calc models.

I think I checked the DLL box but maybe I could be wrong.
Uh, looks like I missed your reply here... sorry. I need to check whether I'm subscribed to the topic.
* yup, TILP can communicate with the TI-85 through SilverLink and transfer variables in a non-silent way. Not much else, the 82/85 protocol is the oldest and most limited implementation of DBUS;
* in the GTK+ runtime installer, did you check the "install compatibility DLLs" (or somesuch message) checkbox ? I always do, as IIRC, it's required.

I've just produced a new version of the Windows installer, . I haven't tested it on a real Windows install. The aforementioned changes, and more, are available :)
Consoles / Re: My CFW for the Retrostone
Last post by gameblabla - June 26, 2019, 05:22:02 pm
Quote from: DJ Omnimaga on June 26, 2019, 05:10:38 pmInteresting. Does CFW stand for Custom Firmware, by the way?

Yup, what is stand it. That's maybe not entirely accurate btw because the Retrostone by default comes with no custom firmware but it's not (still) officially supported or recommended by the creators themselves yet.
Maybe he will change his mind though because my CFW allows commercial usage unlike RetrOrangePi.
Consoles / Re: My CFW for the Retrostone
Last post by DJ Omnimaga - June 26, 2019, 05:10:38 pm
Interesting. Does CFW stand for Custom Firmware, by the way?
Consoles / My CFW for the Retrostone
Last post by gameblabla - June 26, 2019, 02:09:35 am
Thought i would share to you this since i've been working on this for a while.

What is the Retrostone ? It's a 150$ handled device that aims at being basically a portable emulation machine.
It competes with the likes of the LDK/RS-97 on the lower end as well as home made projects like Raspberry pis etc...

However, the Retrostone 1 has one major flaw : the screen is composite only due to a Soc hardware limitation.
Another issue i had with the device was the firmware itself RetrOrangePi : it's bad.
It's overly complicated to use, its bulky & bloated, and it's very slow to use too.

This is the reason why after 2 months of working, i've released my Opendingux-like CFW for the Retrostone.
It tries to minimize the scaling when shown on the composite screen (although it still looks crap) and i've made sure to tweak the emulators and port them individually.

You can check out my CFW here :

I also managed to improve the boot times from 1 minute and 30 seconds from RetrOrange Pi to 13 seconds (0.1 was 30 seconds) :
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