I’ve said [before](http://parallelpoints.com/node/12) that I’m using [Jolicloud](http://www.jolicloud.com/) Linux on my netbook. Recently I installed [Quassel-core](http://quassel-irc.org/) on my server, and needed the Quassel client to connect to it. Jolicloud is based on an older Ubuntu (9.10 IIRC) and that meant an older (0.4) Quassel client, which doesn’t connect to my shiny 0.6 server :( So I’ve upgraded to Ubuntu 10.04 Netbook edition. There’s not much difference in everyday usage. Big setup problem though – it doesn’t have the Broadcom drivers for the Wifi installed by default.
I decided to get a netbook recently, and after much searching and waiting it’s here!
I made life difficult for myself by specifying a tricky combination of 10.1″ screen with HD (something x 768) resolution. That’s pretty tricky as it turns out! I also wanted a big battery, 2GB RAM and a fairly rugged construction. But as it turned out, the only 10.1″ HD device I could find was the [HP mini 5102](http://h10010.www1.hp.com/wwpc/uk/en/sm/WF05a/321957-321957-64295-3955550-3955550-4094022.html).
I had to wait a while, but it’s here now, so how is it…
Last night I was woken up at midnight by the bleeping noise from downstairs. I blearily wandered down in search of it…
Much of an electronic engineer’s life is spent in front of a screen. And much of that time is creating and debugging designs using some textual format or other. Arguably, even humble [Excel](http://office.microsoft.com/en-gb/excel/default.aspx) falls into that category of “tools”. At some point many electronic designers will end up performing schematic capture and maybe PCB layout – but much of the **design** is already done by then.
So, what languages are used?
When building a large FPGA design, there comes a point when you have to decide where to put the dividing lines between modules. Deciding where to draw the boundaries is a bit of an art.
If you’re a professional (or even proficient amateur) musician, you practise your scales, and other exercises daily. This keeps your muscle-memory alive for the basics of how they will move when playing pieces of real music.
What’s the equivalent for engineers?
This site contains my ramblings on a variety of subjects. No doubt much of it will relate to the design of electronics, especially [FPGA](/taxonomy/term/1)s. There’ll likely be some [music](/taxonomy/term/3) related items and some mention of Linux also.
You can read a bit about me and engineering in my [interview with EEWeb].(http://www.eeweb.com/spotlight/interview-with-martin-thompson)
You can [contact me by email](mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org) if you like.
At primary school, I learned to play recorder (along with most of my generation). I learned by descant and treble recorders, which have slightly different fingerings (or rather the same fingering produces a note which is a fifth higher on one than the other). This stood me in good stead for the clarinet, which I picked up at secondary school – this usees treble recorder type fingering in the “lower register” and descant type fingering in the “upper register”. There’s a few weirdo fingerings in between (sometimes called the “middle register”), but they weren’t hard to pick up. After that I got a tenor saxophone, which made great noises, but was way too loud to practice in the house! So now I play a wind controller…
A couple of times recently, I’ve found myself staring at VHDL code that starts thus:
and had to explain to the author that this is wrong. Yes, using an IEEE-library is *wrong*… how can this be?