highaltitude.log.20090404

[00:16] <shellevil> now look at the price
[00:17] <shellevil> sit down first
[00:18] <edmoore> night all
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[00:19] <Laurenceb> cant even find the price
[00:21] <shellevil> I'd expect 6-8k
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[10:22] <sbasuita> Guys, you won't believe this: we asked Energizer for 24xUltimate Lithium - they sent us 24 packs of 4 = 96 batteries!
[10:44] <gordonjcp> sbasuita: score
[10:45] <gordonjcp> good to see a company that "gets it"
[10:45] <sbasuita> gordonjcp, big-ass pile on the blog soon
[10:45] <sbasuita> gordonjcp, yes - there was a handwritten note inside
[10:45] <gordonjcp> I wish I'd bought Energisers instead of Maplin own-brand HP7s for the MFJ-259 ;-)
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[10:52] <Hiena> Hial!
[10:52] <Hiena> Any python xpert awake?
[10:56] <gordonjcp> wouldn't say "expert"
[10:56] <gordonjcp> wouldn't really say "awake" either
[10:56] <gordonjcp> so you'll just have to ask, and take your chances
[11:02] <Hiena> Ok.
[11:04] <Hiena> The question is: I'm using the atof () call but due the communication hiccups, i have exceptions because the script got a gibberis, instead of numbers.
[11:04] <Hiena> How i could handle this?
[11:06] <SpeedEvil> verify that the input you get matches a regex?
[11:06] <SpeedEvil> ^[0-9]*\.*[0-9]
[11:06] <SpeedEvil> ^[0-9]*\.*[0-9]*$
[11:06] <SpeedEvil> or something
[11:12] <Hiena> Any much easier?
[11:12] <Hiena> I'm not familiar with regexp.
[11:13] <SpeedEvil> Breaking that down
[11:13] <SpeedEvil> ^ beginning of pattern (line, string, ...)
[11:13] <SpeedEvil> [0-9] the characters 0-9 inclusive
[11:14] <SpeedEvil> * zero or more occurrances of the previous expression
[11:14] <SpeedEvil> \. the literal . - . alone matches any char
[11:14] <SpeedEvil> $ - end of pattern
[11:14] <SpeedEvil> So, zero or more numbers, followed by zero or more .'s, followed by zero or more numbers
[11:15] <SpeedEvil> hmm - that won't quite work "." "" both get through
[11:15] <SpeedEvil> works if you prefix the result with a 0 I guess
[11:17] <gordonjcp> Hiena: wrap the atof() call in a try/except block
[11:17] <Hiena> That was the idea.
[11:17] <sbasuita> Big pile of energizer batteries if anybody is interested *shrug* http://alienproject.wordpress.com/
[11:18] <Hiena> But still google around for the excet handling.
[11:20] <gordonjcp> I think you should be using float() or int() instead of atof()
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[11:39] <edmoore> morning
[11:47] <Hiena> gordonjcp, is the float() drops exception?
[11:48] <gordonjcp> Hiena: no, I thought atof was deprecated
[11:48] <gordonjcp> although I could be entirely talking out my hole there
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[12:01] <AlexBreton> hey all
[12:01] <SpeedEvil> ...
[12:01] <AlexBreton> got my temperature sensor samples ;-)
[12:01] <SpeedEvil> :)
[12:01] <SpeedEvil> I bought 50 on ebay.
[12:01] <AlexBreton> lol
[12:01] <AlexBreton> I got 2 for free
[12:02] <AlexBreton> shipped to Alien Distributions
[12:02] <gordonjcp> heh
[12:03] <Hiena> Well, excep working fine.
[12:16] <AlexBreton> oh my ****ing god
[12:16] <AlexBreton> we asked energizer for 24 batteries
[12:17] <AlexBreton> and they sent 24 packs of 4
[12:17] <AlexBreton> 96 batteries!!!!
[12:32] <SpeedEvil> :)
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[13:41] <Hiena> Anybody want to se a realtime testrun for my logging?
[13:42] <Hiena> http://boreger.toons.hu/openair/online_tracking/Realtime%20GPS%20tracking.kml
[13:42] <Hiena> Open it in google earth.
[13:44] <SpeedEvil> Google earth crashes my X.
[13:44] <SpeedEvil> For no reason I have tracked down.
[13:45] <Hiena> Spped OPENGL issue.
[13:46] <Hiena> Ihad severeal times.
[13:46] <Hiena> Reload it and will work
[13:46] <SpeedEvil> No - actually segfaults
[13:46] <SpeedEvil> every time
[14:08] <Hiena> Hmmm...
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[14:30] <jiffe20> wasn't there a competition to orbit the earth 10 times for under a certain amount of money?
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[14:50] <Hiena> jiffe20, it's a tier 2 x-prize.
[15:00] <SpeedEvil> I can't see any open prizes of that form
[15:01] <SpeedEvil> http://space.xprize.org/future-x-prizes haha
[15:20] <Hiena> I dunno. The first was reaching the 100km.
[15:20] <Hiena> The second is doing that 10 times.
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[16:21] <edmoore> evening evereeeee1
[16:21] <edmoore> afternoon even
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[17:15] <rjharrison> Hi all
[17:15] <rjharrison> On a stag w/e in Edingburgh
[17:15] <rjharrison> Edinburgh
[17:16] <rjharrison> edmoore: Are there any pics from the launch?
[17:18] <shellevil> :)
[17:20] <rjharrison> How you doinf shellevil
[17:23] <shellevil> shitty
[17:24] <shellevil> (ashes scattering ceremony for my mum tomorrow)
[17:24] <shellevil> But managing, trying to decompress a bit first.
[17:25] <rjharrison> Ohh sorry I didn't know
[17:26] <shellevil> np. I've been using IRC to just deny it, and forget about it for a while.
[17:26] <shellevil> And all the wonderful paperwork isn't helping.
[17:27] <shellevil> Expected, but not in the last couple of weeks.
[17:27] <shellevil> Trying ATM to get passport to get driving licence to get bank accounts and stuff setup.
[17:28] <shellevil> Much fun. :)
[17:28] Action: shellevil wonders what a passport interview is like.
[17:30] <edmoore> hi rjharrison
[17:30] <edmoore> we're somewhat tight-lipped until this company release them
[17:31] <edmoore> they've asked us not to show anyone, and given their money payes for us to work here over the summer, we're respecting that :)
[17:31] <shellevil> edm: glad it worked. What company?
[17:40] <AlexBreton> going on holiday =)
[17:40] <AlexBreton> I hope Alien project won't cock up in the meantime
[17:40] <AlexBreton> +
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[18:02] <jiffe20> ah, its the n-prize
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[18:22] <edmoore> from a ground telescope http://www.tracking-station.de/images/iss/2008-02/iss2008-02-09.m1v
[18:22] <edmoore> pretty cool
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[18:41] <Hiena> Well, i'll do the last test today.
[18:58] <SpeedEvil> n-prize is fun
[18:58] <SpeedEvil> could do with a less limited one though
[18:59] <SpeedEvil> 1Kg for 25K prize say.
[19:04] <shellevil> And importantly, for the first 20 seperate organisations.
[19:05] <shellevil> or individuals
[19:06] <natrium42> DanielRichman, good work with camera hacking
[19:07] <natrium42> are you planning to make it take videos also?
[19:07] <DanielRichman> natrium42, probably not
[19:08] <DanielRichman> I'm actually trying to solder it now ;)
[19:08] <natrium42> :)
[19:08] <DanielRichman> it's an absolute pain
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[19:09] <natrium42> this circular thing is actually a "matrix keyboard"
[19:09] <natrium42> i think i used a mosfet to switch to video mode
[19:09] <DanielRichman> hmm
[19:10] <DanielRichman> we might just 'hardcode' it to the (AUTO) mode for first flight
[19:10] <shellevil> poke it with a stick!
[19:10] <DanielRichman> but I'll start by solderin the shutter
[19:10] <natrium42> kk
[19:11] <natrium42> shellevil, well, you can look which contacts the knob shorts to go to video mode :P
[19:11] <natrium42> so if your stick is conductive...
[19:11] <DanielRichman> Should I try and remove the push-button that is the shutter, then solder to where it was, or shall I just try to solder to it without removing?
[19:12] <natrium42> you could remove it and it will leave a hole to lead the cable out of
[19:12] <shellevil> and you can even attach the switch on the top too for testing purposes
[19:12] <DanielRichman> natrium42, surface mount =(
[19:12] <natrium42> oh, you mean the actual switch soldered to the pcb?
[19:13] <natrium42> i wouldn't remove it
[19:13] <natrium42> just solder to the pins
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[19:20] <natrium42> hey sYx66
[19:20] <sYx66> hi
[19:20] <natrium42> i crashed the remote laptop somehow
[19:21] <sYx66> k
[19:21] <natrium42> :S
[19:21] <natrium42> it looks like the driver that was in use does not detect rings
[19:21] <natrium42> so i compiled and installed a new one
[19:22] <sYx66> its coming back up
[19:22] <natrium42> ok, cool thanks
[19:24] <sbasuita> DanielRichman, so, we going to order that 1,000 texts for 5 quid sim card?
[19:25] <DanielRichman> sbasuita, when does the offer end?
[19:25] <shellevil> apr 31
[19:25] <shellevil> or 28
[19:25] Action: shellevil forgets
[19:25] <sbasuita> DanielRichman, it says it can take up to 28 days to add the texts to the account
[19:25] <sbasuita> DanielRichman, so we want to do it sooner rather than later
[19:25] <sbasuita> DanielRichman, then you have 60 days to use them
[19:26] <natrium42> sYx66, omg, it works
[19:26] <DanielRichman> mmm
[19:27] <natrium42> sYx66, and it even hangs up properly now
[19:28] <sYx66> nice
[19:29] <shellevil> modeyummy.
[19:29] Action: shellevil hopes he won't be reduced to a modem.
[19:29] Action: shellevil has DSL problems ATM.
[19:30] <natrium42> eww 56k internet
[19:30] <natrium42> sYx66, now i can start soldering together second flight computer
[19:31] <shellevil> Should only be a couple of days - I have other DSL being installed
[19:31] <sYx66> i can come by - back in loo
[19:31] <natrium42> cool
[19:31] <natrium42> maybe in the evening then?
[19:31] <natrium42> going to play around with gps thingy again
[19:34] <Hiena> Is there a way to ask the size of the list?
[19:34] <Hiena> I means python?
[19:34] <Hiena> -?+.
[19:36] <natrium42> len(list)
[19:36] <natrium42> ?
[19:37] <DanielRichman> 76
[19:37] <Hiena> Yup. Already found it.
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[19:59] <RocketBoy> Hey Ed
[20:02] <RocketBoy> I'm planning on testing the HF transmitter for AtlanticHalo tomorrow at EARS - any chance you could listen out for it on 40m
[20:02] <edmoore> I don't actually have anything suitable as an antenna
[20:02] <natrium42> RocketBoy, cool
[20:02] <edmoore> actually, I could go to the uni shack
[20:02] <natrium42> do you think i have a chance receiving it here?
[20:03] <edmoore> RocketBoy: if you have anything lying around with a PL259 that you wanted to drop off on the way, that would work
[20:03] <edmoore> in theory I'm in a revision lock-down atm
[20:03] <RocketBoy> natrium42: yes a chance (HF conditions permitting) it will be about 200m up tethered from a balloon
[20:03] <natrium42> edmoore, you don't want to test your IC-7000? :(
[20:04] <edmoore> RocketBoy: I was/am half looking for an excuse to go to ears aswell. if you want a hand during set-up i will gladly help, then drive back and see what I can hear
[20:04] <edmoore> natrium42: i mean an antenna with a pl259
[20:04] <edmoore> i definitely want the icom!
[20:05] <natrium42> RocketBoy, what time should i be on? and will you be on IRC?
[20:05] <RocketBoy> edmoore: any help would be appreciated - but don't forego revision (unless you want to)
[20:05] <edmoore> (of course)
[20:05] <edmoore> what sort of time?
[20:06] <RocketBoy> I should be on IRC from time to time
[20:06] <RocketBoy> well I was thinking of running up at about 10:00AM
[20:07] <RocketBoy> and leaving it running until about 5PM
[20:08] <natrium42> ah, great
[20:08] <natrium42> i will definitely listen in
[20:08] <edmoore> i'll try and be there at about 10am then
[20:08] <natrium42> are you going to try CW or some other mode?
[20:08] <edmoore> RocketBoy: do you have an antenna i could borrow to listen with?
[20:11] <RocketBoy> humm: possibly my extending pole thingy - but any old bit of wire should do in cambridge
[20:12] <edmoore> I litterally am revising till midnight then from 7am tomorrow
[20:12] <edmoore> I am not near a soldering iron or wire, nor will be in the next while
[20:13] <edmoore> Only on here now for a food break
[20:13] <edmoore> I'll try listening at the shack
[20:13] <RocketBoy> ah ok if I have some time I'll knock up somthing for you
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[21:06] <Laurenceb> hello
[21:06] <natrium42> hi Laurenceb
[21:28] <edmoore> hi Laurenceb
[21:28] <edmoore> I definitely have spent too long on this dinner break
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[21:30] Action: natrium42 brings out the whip
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[21:31] <edmoore> natrium42: antenna or bedroom toy?
[21:31] <natrium42> lol
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[22:25] <Laurenceb> can I haz some batteries?
[22:25] <Laurenceb> :P
[22:26] <sbasuita> Laurenceb, you'll have to move several tonnes of gravel first ;P
[22:26] <Laurenceb> haha
[22:26] <sbasuita> Laurenceb, yeh, course you can
[22:26] <Laurenceb> only joking, your welcome to build a wall of lithium cells or whatever you do with that many
[22:27] <Laurenceb> but good move asking energizer if they'd donate
[22:28] Action: shellevil will pay 4 batteries per ton!
[22:28] Action: Laurenceb is working on alternate landing sites
[22:28] <Laurenceb> thinking something along the line of finding required glide ratio to each site
[22:29] <Laurenceb> then having a probability density function for glide ratio
[22:30] <Laurenceb> so you multiply landing site weighting by integrated probability density function for the glide ratio required to rach that site
[22:30] <Laurenceb> then you pick the highest resultant site weighting
[22:30] <sbasuita> Laurenceb, couldn't you just give it the location of all the fields in england, and have it prefer ones closer to your house?
[22:31] <Laurenceb> guess you need some hysteresis in there somewhere... in the site choosing stage so you dont flip back and forth
[22:31] <Laurenceb> nah its mre useful to have just a few sites
[22:38] <Laurenceb> hmm something like if(highest_site_weighting>1.1*present_weighting){present_site=highest_site;}
[22:39] <shellevil> Laurenceb: You're doing this _all_wrong_
[22:39] <Laurenceb> why?
[22:39] <shellevil> Laurenceb: You clearly need the hardware capable of flying into a normal postbox.
[22:39] <Laurenceb> haha
[22:40] <Laurenceb> and some stamps on the wing
[22:43] <sbasuita> Laurenceb, have you thought of implementing a close range remote control interface for the rogallo?
[22:43] <sbasuita> Laurenceb, so you can drive out to the landing site it has picked and safely land it?
[22:43] <Laurenceb> already done that
[22:43] <sbasuita> ooh nice ; )
[22:44] <Laurenceb> yeah, I want to add an optical mouse sensor so it can turn into the wind for landing
[22:44] <Laurenceb> probably ott, but useful
[22:45] <Laurenceb> say the wind is 4m/s and you fly at 8m/s, turning into the wind as opposed to downwind flight can reduce impact energy by an order of magnitude
[22:46] <sbasuita> mmm
[22:46] <edmoore> Laurenceb: is it impossible to find out any other way?
[22:46] <Laurenceb> also tail wind increases the risk of stalls, if the data from the last flight is anything to go by
[22:46] <Laurenceb> I thought about it for ages, looked like the best way
[22:46] <edmoore> surely with a mag sensor you can easily work out the wind vector
[22:47] <Laurenceb> yeah, but you want altitude
[22:47] <Laurenceb> to turn into the wind in the final 20m of flight
[22:47] <edmoore> oh I see, for the last 10m or so
[22:47] <edmoore> ok
[22:47] <Laurenceb> yeah
[22:47] <edmoore> maybe one of those yummy polaroid thingies?
[22:47] <Laurenceb> same problem the russians has on soyuz
[22:47] <Laurenceb> hmm yeah I'll take a look
[22:47] <edmoore> the 7000 or 9000 series ultrasonics
[22:48] <edmoore> they're good for those kinds of ranges
[22:48] <edmoore> and the 9000 claims to be somewhat environment prof
[22:48] <Laurenceb> do you get a good reflection off grass?
[22:48] <edmoore> probably good enough
[22:48] <edmoore> they send a heck of a pulse
[22:49] <Laurenceb> yeah quite a lot of current
[22:49] <Laurenceb> optical mouse sensors are a few ma
[22:50] <edmoore> this is of the order of amps
[22:50] <Laurenceb> I want to try it for the unconvensionalness
[22:50] <Laurenceb> ooh god
[22:50] <edmoore> for a short duration
[22:50] <Laurenceb> yeah
[22:51] <edmoore> it's a hefty transducer that gets whipped back and forth at 40Khz
[22:51] <Laurenceb> you could use the output movement + gps ground track in NED frame to find the altitude
[22:51] <Laurenceb> but it seems to be a completely new idea :D
[22:52] <edmoore> make a 10mW radar
[22:52] <edmoore> that would be a 'kin awesome thing to do
[22:53] <edmoore> range and velocity
[22:54] <Laurenceb> hehe
[22:54] <Laurenceb> the cool thing about mouse sensors in they should detect thigs like undergrowth with a low radar cross section
[22:55] <Laurenceb> but yeah a GHz radar would be a cool project
[22:55] <Laurenceb> hmm where do you buy the polaroid sensors?
[22:55] <edmoore> oh god knows
[22:55] <edmoore> not tried for about 6 or 7 years
[22:55] <edmoore> acroname robotic rings a bell
[22:57] <edmoore> http://www.acroname.com/robotics/parts/c_Sensors.html
[22:57] <edmoore> how about a laster rnagefinder for $4000 Laurenceb
[22:57] <Laurenceb> hehe
[22:58] <edmoore> http://www.acroname.com/robotics/parts/R13-INST.html
[22:58] <edmoore> oh wow this website is good
[22:58] <edmoore> that's be distracted for the next 20 minutes
[22:58] <edmoore> so much for 3F2
[23:01] <Laurenceb> hmm about 10 to 15m range
[23:01] <Laurenceb> and 2A peak
[23:01] <Laurenceb> a bit nasty
[23:04] <Laurenceb> omg http://www.elektronika.ba/629/cc1101-rf-modem-and-250mw-amplifier/
[23:07] <shellevil> I think I commented on the idea back in 2000 or so
[23:08] <stilldavid> I've been looking at these sonar units based on the polaroid sensors: http://www.senscomp.com/minis.htm
[23:08] <shellevil> 2003 even
[23:08] <edmoore> hi stilldavid
[23:08] <edmoore> were you djstillman yesterday?
[23:08] <stilldavid> edmoore: Indeed I was ;)
[23:08] <edmoore> gotcha
[23:08] <shellevil> http://groups.google.com/group/sci.space.tech/browse_thread/thread/e0062ecbed2f15d8/e114ebde414c66b?q=%22ian+stirling%22+mouse+mars#0e114ebde414c66b
[23:08] <edmoore> those sensors look very nice indeed
[23:08] <stilldavid> did you recover the balloon?
[23:08] <edmoore> I've not seen them before
[23:09] <edmoore> stilldavid: yes, thank you
[23:09] <edmoore> much releief all round
[23:09] <shellevil> i think sparkfun sells those
[23:10] <shellevil> or something similar
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[23:17] <shellevil> Laurenceb: in principle
[23:17] <shellevil> Laurenceb: two mouse sensors canted gives you rotation
[23:27] bfirsh (n=ben@scooby.firshman.co.uk) joined #highaltitude.
[23:51] <Laurenceb> I'm so tempted to make that pcb
[23:51] <Laurenceb> pity its completely illegal
[00:00] --- Sun Apr 5 2009