Bulgarian Government will require in future open source for software they pay for development


via Bozhidar Bozhanov blog

Something positive is happening in Bulgaria! E-Government act was amended on July 1st, you can see full text here.

Art.58a. (New — SG. 50 of 2016, effective 01.07.2016) Upon preparation of technical and functional assignments for public procurement to develop, upgrade or implementation of information systems and e-services, administrative authorities must include the following requirements:

1. when the subject of the contract includes the development of computer programs:

a) computer programs must meet the criteria for open source software;

b) all copyright and related rights on the relevant computer programs, their source code, the design of interfaces and databases which are subject to the order should arise for the principal in full, without limitations in the use, modification and distribution;

c) development should be done in the repository maintained by the Agency in accordance with Art. 7c pt. 18;

What does this mean? For people who know how Bulgarian administration worked so far it hopefully clean the mess which is now.

Every administration was doing their own closed source IS non-maintainable and non compatible with other administrations. Tax administration has his own, customs has their own, etc etc not connected with each other.

Wanna silly examples?

#1 Border police and customs IS were made separately so people who cross the borders went to one desk give their passports, someone there scan them then give them USB Flash drive(!!!) which they carry with themon the next desk where another IS read the files 😀

#2 Electronic customs where you can fill the import and export declarations. When I first hear about this I said – good news we catch on Estonia where everything is online! Then I faced the sad reality with the  implementation. I went to customs web page and I couldn’t enter it … as my browser was not Internet Explorer with obsolete version which was not used for several years, but obviously the IS developers decided that they do not need to test their IS with other browsers so you have to install this version or not using the “electronic” customs. I found Windows computer and installed the obsolete IE browser with massive list of security holes, then made my first export declaration online and happy decided to send it for processing … I was too optimistic, to do this I had to have Acrobat reader 6 as the electronic customs IS couldn’t accept other version signed document !!!

At this point I gave up and send my docs to customs agency who took care for the export as I had no whole day to loose. This was several years ago when the system was introduced, it may be improved now but I’m not in mood to waste more time to check.

Bulgarian government has spent millions on non-senses like this, some IS were made several times by different companies, every time starting from scratch as the code was closed. Sites with broken security were not patched for months as the contract has expired and sources were closed, so it’s good to see that they finally look in the right direction!

You can read the original article here


TuxCon conference about free and open source software and hardware technologies is this weekend!


TuxCon 2016 will be this weekend 9th and 10th of July in Plovdiv. Be prepared it will be hot weather, prognosis are for 30-31C in the weekend!

BNR (Bulgarian National Radio) posted about TuxCon today.

The conference start at 11 o’clock with Reactive Java Robotics, Jitsi Meet, Security updates in GNU/Linux distributions and Open source in Education Welearners  project.

After the lunch we will continue with Retro Computing, Open Source tools for FPGA, How to calculate 3D coordinates with 2D camera, Android customization, Open SCAD, How to use Open Source for corporate needs, MOVI voice recognition with Arduino.

Lighting talks at 18.00 will close the first day and we will move to the traditional beer party in popular Plovdiv pub with Free Beer from TuxCon sponsors (Free as Beer not as Speech 😀 ).

In Sunday three workshops will be held in Olimex training building, starting again at 11 o’clock.

Reactive Java robotics, Open Source Hardware Robotics and First steps in FPGA for absolute beginners.

Open Source Hardware Robotics – we will talk about our attempt to re-invent the popular mechanical robot hand from the past Robko, but with complete new mechanics and controlled via Internet with ESP8266 WiFi and JavaScript API. We will show the problems electronic engineers face when attempt to do mechanical projects.

FPGA for absolute beginners will introduce in popular way what FPGAs are and how they evolved with time, how they are programmed. We will emphasis on the first FOSS tool to work with FPGAs – IceStorm and we will make our first blink LED demo, then will take look at more sophisticated code of video generation and how to make small game like Flappy Bird on iCE40HX1K-EVB.

TuxCon is free to attend, everyone with interests in Open Source Software and Hardware is invited.

iCE40HX1K-EVB open source hardware FPGA board designed with KiCAD and working with ICESTORM FOSS toolchain first prototypes are ready and run!



iCE40HX1K-EVB is our first iCE40 FPGA which works with ICESTORM FOSS toolchain.

It’s 5×5 cm 4 layer board with iCE40HX1K on it, 512KB 10 nS fast SRAM, UEXT as programming connector, so you can program it with OLinuXino (which can run also the tool chain on it) or with Olimexino-328 or any other boards we have with UEXT.

The original ICE40 development board from Lattice has FTDI on it, which we skip as to program it you need just SPI signals to load the bitstream to the on board Serial SPI Flash. Having the sources we easily modified the programming part and now all our Arduino and Olimexino boards can load the code generated by ICESTORM.

All free iCE40HX1K singals are available on right angle bus connector, to this bus connector we designed 4 additional boards:

  • iCE40-ADC fast 100Mhz ADC with BNC input connector so you can make Digital Storage Oscilloscope with p to 512 KB buffer
  • iCE40-DAC fast 100Mhz DAC with BNC output connector will allow you to make DDS generator with odd forms using the on board SRAM
  • iCE40-DIO fast IO with level shifter  with programmable by I2C DAC threshold in range 1.5-5.5V, so you can capture digital signals with different levels making inexpensive Logic Analizer
  • iCE40-IO with VGA and PS2 keyboard connectors board

iCE40-IO will allow you to emulate small retro computers.

All additional modules are stackable and the bus pass through them, so you can stack more than one ADCs or more than one DACs etc if you need more IO.

Next week we will test all modules, make corrections (if necessary) and run production. The price of iCE40HX1K-EVB will be EUR 22.00 and if everything goes smoothly we will have them in stock by June 1st.

These same boards will be used in the Tuxcon workshop “First steps with FPGAs” on July 10th.

TuxCon 2016 – Free Open Source Software and Hardware event in Plovdiv is 9-10 of July


TuxCon 2016 will be on 9th and 10th of July 2016 in Plovdiv 🙂

This year will be the third issue of this conference dedicated to Open Source Hardware and Software.

Many people are confused and think that Olimex is the organizer of TuxCon, which probably caused the mistake in the Hackaday article.

The real credits should be for the people who stand behind TuxCon organization and they are these 10 enthusiasts: Leon Anavi, Vladimir Dzhuvinov, Rangel Ivanov, Atanas Palavrov, Dimitar Gamishev, Stefan Saraev, Stoyan Germanov, Radoslav Kolev, Nikolay Apostolov, Tsvetomir Denchev.

We at Olimex are just helping as we love to support such even in our city.

As always the event will be free to participate, Friday 8th of July evening there will be traditional beer welcome party for the guests and lecturers.

On 10th of July in Olimex training building there will be traditional soldering Hackathon and FPGA basics course for beginners.

If you want to make talk at TuxCon send proposal to the organizers at info@tuxcon.mobi


FOSDEM 2016 is approaching and the schedule is now published – Free and Open Source Software and Hardware event


FOSDEM the biggest and coolest Open Source event in Europe is at the last weekend in January.

If you don’t know what FOSDEM is or you never have been there you missed a lot of beer and fun 🙂

Thousands of people who love Libre Free Open Source technology come together once per year in Bruxelles and share what they did during the pass year.

The schedule is already complete and you can check at https://fosdem.org/2016/schedule/tracks/

We have small talk about A64-OLinuXino in EDA room to share our experience with KiCAD during the PCB development.

We wanted to make free SMT soldering workshop like we did back in 2013 on FOSDEM, but the workshop was declined.

I do remember there were lot of hesitation for the workshop in 2013 as the Libre University of Bruxelles where FOSDEM take place didn’t want to allow soldering to be made in the University without some special permissions due to risk of fire etc.

So guys if you want to participate in our next free soldering workshop you have to come to TuxCon or OpenFest in Bulgaria 🙂

New product soon to be in stock: MOD-WIFI-AR9271-ANT WiFi USB dongle with Open Source Firmware and Linux drivers


AR9271 chipset is the only one with Open Source Firmware and Linux drivers. It has build in Kernel support since Kernel 2.6.35 so if you want to run GNU/Linux clean of non-free binary blobs with unknown content this is the device for you. It will work with your desktop PC, laptop, or SBC like OLinuXino and Raspberry Pi etc.

MOD-WIFI-AR9271-ANT samples are tested and proven to work with all our OLinuXinos and have excellent WiFi reception due to the huge antenna they came with. We have pending order and they will be in stock very soon.

New Project: freoMOST – Free and Open Microcontroller Operating System Tool


freoMOST is free and open Microcontroller Operating System Tool. It is designed to develop embedded system applications for 16 and 32 bit MCUs without MMU and with at least 16 KB RAM and 64 KB FLASH, better more.

Here is detailed video how to install freoMOST.

sent via Olimex.com Project page.

Running FreeBSD on Open Source Hardware RT5350F-OLinuXino MIPS board


via Twitter

Emmanuel Vadot posted nice tutorial how to run FreeBSD on RT5350F-OLinuXino on his blog.

Part2 – GPIOs

Open Source Hardware wooden Laptop


via Twitter

While waiting Novena to be released some people made their own OSHW Laptops based on A20-OLinuXino-MICRO + LCD-OLinuXino-15.6FHD 1980x1080p Full HD LCD display.

First Open Source Projects from Bulgarian government


The Bulgarian Government open source the code of some projects paid by the state for very first time.
The open source code is on https://github.com/governmentbg/
This happens with the support of общество.бг (society.bg).
Why open source is so important for the government projects? Because people will have access to the final code government spends tax money for and all technical knowledge people could have look what exactly is done. Many people could see the source and give feedback improving the security and functionality of the code.

Previous Older Entries Next Newer Entries