TuxCon 2019 soldering workshop kits are now on our web for sale

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The soldering workshop this year was for Open Source Hardware Universal Remote Control board using SMT components.

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All files for this kit are at GitHub including hardware, software sources and Assembly instructions. For these who didn’t manage to participate, now the kit is on our web for sale: URC

This year we had massive participation of kids from 4 to 12 years old.

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As the SMT components are bit odd to solder we prepared for them FOSDEM-85 kits with PTH components.

We were a bit concerned if they will not get burned by the soldering irons, but they surprised us as they were so precise and careful that all boards they soldered worked 100% from the very first time.

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Just for comparison when we do soldering workshops with adults from 20 up to 70 years old about 10% of the soldered boards do not start due to problems with misplaced components or bad soldering and we have to help them to fix. So it appears kids do solder better than adults 🙂

The Minibot kits from TuxCon 2018 soldering workshop are also on the web now.

It was wonderful weekend with lot of fun.

ESP32-DevKit-Lipo, ESP32-POE and ESP32-POE-ISO boards now have option with external antenna and all our ESP32 boards can be build in extended temperature range -40+105C for demanding applications

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Our popular ESP32-DevKit-Lipo, ESP32-POE and ESP32-POE-ISO now has option with external antenna, so you can use them even with metal boxes. The external antenna extends their range by 20-30%.

We stock now ESP32 modules with 16MB of Flash, so if you run out of memory you can order any of our ESP32 boards with 16MB Flash module too.

Also we have ESP32 modules in extended temperature range -HT (high temperature) which works from -40C up to 105C for demanding applications.

TuxCon 2019 is this weekend in Plovdiv

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This weekend we are looking forward to welcome you at TuxCon 2019, the Open Source Hardware and Software conference in Plovdiv.

In Saturday we will be in Technical University (ul. Tzanko Dustabanov 25) in Halls “Dennis Ritchie” and “Bjarne Stroustrup”. There will be total 16 talks split in both hall. The event starts 10.30 o’clock, see the program here. At the end of the day there will be Quiz with many prizes, some of them will be Olimex boards.

In Sunday we will be in Olimex trainig building starting 11.00 o’clock. We will have traditional soldering workshop for both total beginners and people with experience who want to polish SMT soldering. It’s good if you have your own soldering iron to bring it with you as we have limited numbers of soldering irons for the workshop.

Olimex.com server maintenance

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We have scheduled maintenance for olimex.com server at 2:00 PM PST on Friday, May 24th, 2019. So our site will be down for couple of hours.

We apologize for the inconvenience.

Long Term OLinuXino supply – How it works?

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We got question from customer of ours: “We are using your A20-OLinuXino in our product and I’ve heard that you are going to stop the production soon, is this true?”

Most of our customers are industrial machine producers and they need long term supply from their vendors. They do certification for their machines which cost a lot and they can’t afford to spend more money every year because the Linux module is not produced or changed. We already wrote several post on our blog that we supply our boards until there is demand for them and that we have long term supply agreement with Allwinner, but some people spread rumors and I have to write it and make it clear again: We will produce OLinuXino boards until there is demand. It’s even included in our GTC.

When back in 2014 I posted that we can supply OLinuXino forever many people were skeptical (well yes it is exaggerated 🙂 ) and wrote back – do not believe Chinese suppliers, they will let you down etc. etc.

Allwinner though is keeping their promise and we can buy all Allwinner SOCs we use without problem. Our volumes allow us to meet their MOQ.

For instance A13 SOC is very old and Allwinner discontinued it several years ago, it’s even not listed on their web as product, but we still keep buying it and producing A13 boards for our customers. We have also many customers which used our boards as template to make their own variants and now we supply them with A13 SOCs so they keep manufacturing them. You will not find A13 for sale anywhere even in China, but we are expecting next lot of 90Kpcs A13 to come from Allwinner in few weeks. Yes we have to order such quantities as Allwinner need 3 month to produce the SOCs from the order to shipment.

Many customers ask can you guarantee 10-15-20 years of supply? I doubt anyone in industry can see so long ahead. Allwinner is young company, founded September 2007, i.e. less 12 years old. Who knows what they will do after 20 years? We see that Western companies with much more history change owners every year and no one knows what the new owner will decide to do, so no one can give you 10-20 years prediction or will simply intentionally or unintentionally mislead you.

For A13 and A20 this agreement works well last 7 years. Both we at Olimex and Allwinner has no reason stop production, which brings money to both of us. We got visit from Allwinner sales manager in March this year and he said that they never though they can sell A13 and A20 for so long time. Most of other SOCs they sell target consumer market where lifetime is 1-2 years top.

Linux and Open Source Hardware works well for them and prolong their sales.

Telegram founder Pavel Durov claims WhatsApp will never be secure

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Probably everyone already read about the security breach with WhatsApp which allow malware to be installed by simple phone ring which you may even not answer. The attack exploiting again well known buffer overflow approach, which makes me sad. How come people didn’t learn that they should check their buffer boundaries and do such stupid mistakes again and again.

Pavel Durov one of Telegram founder made interesting post claiming that no matter what fixes they do now WhatsApp will never be secure.

TuxCon 2019 is coming on 8-9 June in Plovdiv, reserve these dates in your agenda and we are looking forward to see you there!

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This year TuxCon Open Source Hardware and Software conference will be on 8 and 9th of June in Plovdiv.

This year the talks on 8th of June will be record numbers – 16 and will be held in 2 halls, there will be very interesting topics for FPGA, Home Automation, Car tuning, Linux, Robotics.

On June 9th there will be traditional soldering workshop in Olimex’s training building. We will have kits both for starters with just PTH components and for these who want to master SMD technology.

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TuxCon is free to participate event, made by volunteers with aim to popularize the free and open source software and hardware.

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