By Jennifer Pedersen

How YouTube works by Computerphile


Today M.E. (Mysterious Explorer) send to me this.

Raspberry Pi 003: Automatic upload to dropbox a camerashot

I have been with this idea in my mind for a while. Basically I want to have the Raspberry Pi to get a picture every time it starts and try to upload it to Dropbox.



In this way, it is like a security option and we will learn a few tricks on our way.

First of all. Do you remember our other projects with the Pi?

Raspberry Pi 001: Setup and Run first Arduino-Python project.

Raspberry Pi 002: Pi Camera, start up scripts and remote desktop

So, first step, let’s change Raspberry Pi password to have in in the local Wifi network.

1. Change Password. Open a LXTerminal and run

sudo raspi-config

The configuration window will open. From there just select to change the Password.


2. Change Raspberry Pi network name. By default, when in a Wifi network, the Raspberry Pi will try to get the local hostname “raspberrypi” (that is the name you will write when doing remote desktop to look for the Raspberry Pi). This configuration will create conflicts if there is various Raspberry Pi in the same network. So let’s change the name of the Raspberry Pi in the local network (original tutorial here).

Type the next command to open the host file:

sudo nano /etc/hosts

It will show this window, the last one is the actual name of the raspberry pi in the network


Edit that and put the name you want. In my case I’m going to call it Eneas. Just Ctrl+C and Yes and Enter.

Now edit the hostname file:

sudo nano /etc/hostname

Change here the name also


Save and run the file:

sudo /etc/init.d/hostname.sh

Now just reboot the terminal and you will be able to locate it in the network with the new name. Or in my case to do remote access from windows I don’t need any more the IP, I just type the name (remember the tutorial where I explained how to do remote desktop?).

3 More memory. Do you have a 512mB Raspberry Pi model B? Is it using the 512mB? It seems that by default most of the Pi with 512mB need a firmware update before being able to use the whole memory! How to check it?

free -m


This window will appear. Here we can see the amount of memory used by the system. It is not the whole 512mB since part of the memory is reserved for the GPU. Raspberry Pi shares memory between CPU and GPU. So in my case it is not necessary, but still if you need it:

First install Git Core

sudo apt-get install git-core

Now download the required files

sudo wget http://goo.gl/1BOfJ -O /usr/bin/rpi-update && sudo chmod +x /usr/bin/rpi-update

The next command will update the SSL

sudo apt-get install ca-certificates

Install rpi

sudo apt-get install rpi-update

mkdir -p /lib/modules/3.10.25+/build

and finally update

sudo rpi-update

and voilà!

4 Turbo boost. There is a few things that can be done in order to overclock the Pi, like adjusting the CPU voltage, but most of them will break the warranty. Here is one that will not.

sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install raspberrypi* raspi-config

Now launch the config and turn the TURBO mode on

sudo raspi-config

005 006

Reboot and changes will be made.

5 Dropbox. Next step is to connect your Raspberry Pi with Dropbox. We do it through the Dropbox API. First ensure you have Git Core

sudo apt-get install git-core

Next copy the files you need in order to invoke the API

git clone https://github.com/andreafabrizi/Dropbox-Uploader.git

Now you will be able to see the next directory

cd Dropbox-Uploader


And inside the folder…


You should now see three files, one of which is called dropbox_uploader.sh. This is the script we’re going to use. Run it.


You should see something like this:


Now you need to go to Dropbox webpage for developers https://www.dropbox.com/developers/apps, login to DropBox and create an “app” by clicking the “create app” button.

Then choose “Dropbox API app”, “Files and Datastores”, and answer the final question “Can your app be limited to its own, private folder?” – either answer is OK, depending on your needs.

Fill the information from Dropbox into the script and everything should be ready.

Now you can try uploading a file from the main folder (in my case named image.jpg).

Command line

cd home/pi/Dropbox-Uploader
./dropbox_uploader.sh upload /home/pi/name_of_upload_file name_of_upload_file


    from subprocess import call
    photofile = "/home/pi/Dropbox-Uploader/dropbox_uploader.sh upload /home/pi/image.jpg image.jpg"
    call ([photofile], shell=True)

6 Python and saving the start image to Dropbox. This is a nice idea I have that can be implemented as a safety feature. Basically now that we have access to Dropbox API and with the PiCamera installed… (how to setup the PiCamera) it will be a great idea making a script that runs at the start-up takes a picture and uploads it to Dropbox. You can think it as a safety feature. If your Raspberry Pi gets stolen, every time somebody starts it a picture will be taken and send to Dropbox.

First create a Python script that looks like this:

from subprocess import call
try:#We put everything inside a try to avoid running if the camera doesn't work
    import picamera
    import datetime
    camera = picamera.PiCamera()

    photofile = "/home/pi/Dropbox-Uploader/dropbox_uploader.sh upload /home/pi/"+timestamp+".jpg "+timestamp+".jpg "
    call([photofile], shell=True)

This script will try to run the camera, take a picture and upload it to Dropbox. The format of the time is a little bit tricky and will not work for naming files in Dropbox. It should be fine as it is.

Now as we explained in

Raspberry Pi 002: Pi Camera, start up scripts and remote desktop

Put the script into the start up sequence to run after starting the Pi.

and every time you start the Pi it will take a picture and send it to Dropbox!


In this way if your Pi is stolen and they are not aware of this, you will be able to see images and maybe locate it.

Did you like it?

Armageddon 2419 A.D.

Original title: Armageddon 2419 A.D.

Title of this edition: Armageddon 2419 A.D.

Author: Philip Francis Nowlan.

Gender: Fantasy / Science Ficction.

Saga: Buck Rogers.

Editorial: Ace books INC.

Edition year: 1, 1962.

Prizes: …

Synopsis [Warning: Spoiler]: Anthony Rogers goes into a geology expedition in Pennsylvania. He gets trapped inside a cave with high levels of radiation that made him fell asleep and wake up 500 years into the future. In this future the Han (descending from Mongolia) has taken control of the world and the Americans live in the forest or beneath the earth. Immediately after his coming back to life he join the Americans, and his war strategies from XX century help them to fight the Han. Constant developments and new technologies help them to be ahead of the Han who lost battle after battle until finally losing the war. At the end it is discovered that probably the Han where originated from a meteorite fallen in Mongolia which carried a new seed of humans

Personal Review: There is much to say about this book. First of all, it was written in 1928! It was before the second world war and despite of that, it describe lots of weapons and tactics developed even during Vietnan or our days. Here are the advances predicted by the book that became true (according to wikipedia):

  • Remote piloted surveillance and attack drones. The book describes flying balls controlled by cameras that allows a remote user to see everything and command the ball. If the ball is destroyed a new one will take its place allowing the same soldier to continue his tasks.
  • Immersive Telepresence. The Hans are described as lazy and not very intelligent people that live all the time at home. An inmersive telepresence room allows them to communicate, shop and work from home. The room walls become TV screens! This was even before TV broadcasts!!
  • Consumer E-purchasing. Amazon? eBay? The Hans need to buy stuff without being forced to go into the outside world.
  • Paratroopers. Compared with the previous one this is a little bit dull, but take into account that in 1928 no paratroopers were used in any war!
  • The shortcomings of an air supremacy war without concomitant ground forces (proven in the Vietnam War)
  • Night vision devices
  • Bazookas
  • Optical devices for Small arms such as the Reflector sight and Red dot sight.
  • Wireless phones
  • Atomic weapons
  • Rockets

The only thing not accomplish from the novel is the main element, the ultron and inertron elementes and the ultronic waves able to generate/destroy atoms.

I must say that the book is very long and boring on describing battles and quite short in “catching attention”. Basically, there is only Rogers and his description of war.

Apart from boring descriptions and amazing prediction powers, there is something more important about this book. Its the beguining of one of the most famous series: “Buck Rogers”. That is probably the reason why instead of being one of the classics it has become a kind of pop culture. The book was adapted into comic and the character renamed. Then it went on the Radio for 10 years, then TV series, then movie serials… The complete list is the wikipedia. It’s influence goes from technology,  to expressions “look at that Buck Rogers-gun”,  to toys



to adaptations in cartoons (Duck Dodgers).

It’s impact is huge and at the same time it has been diluted because of the many adaptations and relaunches. For instance in the NBC series ate the beginning of the 80’s shows a Buck Rogers that is an astronaut that goes into an earth which is in conflict with other galactic civilization.

In my opinion it is a great book because of the things it predicts, but the literature in it is very poor and that makes it suffer. On the other hand, the idea is interesting, it’s a kind of time travel where instead of using the XX century knowledge with medieval people you use with future people. The leson… XX century rules!

Hey, just one interesting idea…. isn’t Futurama with Fry being freeze into the future a kind of adaptation of this novel? Here is an interesting post that show the analogies between both.

The last thing, did you remember the post about the project Gutenberg?

Free ebooks – Project Gutenberg

This book is freely available there in this link (nothing illegal here, just part of the Gutenberg collection of free books).

And also it’s sequel “The airlords of Han“.

Where is Wall-E?

Artist Richard Sargent has made this 2 nice posters. Can you identify all the robots?


Sure? Try with these also.




By Mark Rodrigues

Developer Rig

For the last couple of weeks I have been reading “Show us your rig” articles. I don’t consider my rig interesting enough for you, but I think it will be nice linking the articles published by PCGAMER.

pcgamerSo, who they have up to now?

Minecraft creator Markus “Notch” Persson

This is his rig.


and he is known for….


Elder Scrolls Online designer Nick Konkle

This is his rig.


and he is known for…


Killing Floor 2 developer David Hensley

This is his rig.


and he is known for…


Kerbal Space Program’s Felipe Falanghe

This is his rig.


and he is known for…


Rust creator Garry Newman

This is his rig.


and he is known for…


FTL composer Ben Prunty

This is his rig.


and he is known for…


Original Sin designer Farhang Namdar

This is his rig.


and he is known for…


Civ V designer Jon Shafer

This is his rig.


and he is known for…


Spaceships, which one is bigger? V2

We like comparing different sci-fi sagas between then:


Hero Hideouts sizes

INFAMOUS Villain Hideout Sizes


Sci-Fi Ships Size. Which is the bigger?

EVE Online Ship Sizes.

Spaceships Speeds…

Spaceships which one is the fastest?

Real spaceships…

Spaceships (real spaceships) compared by size.

So here is a new one by artist Dirk Loechel who expanded the comparative size poster to include the most recent updates. Will STW VII bring new surprises?

(click image to go to devianart to explore the poster)



Today M.E. (Mysterious Explorer) send to me this.


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