Backscatter is the new thing

Interesting blog post. My two cents.

The backscatter is what is most interesting. I have read a lot of stuff about backscatter. What I wonder is will it remain open and not locked away by patents. I also wonder about “prior art”. Because Disney is not the first to “research” this idea.

There is a book by Vernor Vinge describing this so I think Vernor has “prior art”. But probably the technique can be found in nature and that trumps all claims to “prior art”.

The plastic case is not bad but plastic doesn’t dissipate heat well at all and I think it actually traps it.

…and furthermore… The MATLAB video for ADS-B was somewhat short. But it’s okay because it led me to a page of links to frequency allocation tables for some countries around the world. Maybe the biggest surprise was that the link to the fcc website actually worked. (fcc site is notorious for broken links)

One thing mentioned in the video which I need to explore is to how to make a Gnuradio/Pothos filter to calculate the noise floor. My ADS-B Gnuradio flowgraph is using a hardcoded value. I’ll probably stumble into the answer while experimenting.

I don’t have MATLAB and I think it’s commercial software but I hear that it’s very good and it’s used widely throughout many industries.

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Link to the book and materials:

Gnu octave and matplotlib is closest open source setup to Matlab I think. Folks in academia are most current.
I have Matlab with most of the relevant tool boxes under student license, but hardly use it due to time constraints.

My interns tell me that Python will soon be developed beyond Matlab.

One thing seems clear. Closed source software is becoming more and more at a disadvantage. It just cannot compete with a diverse and global, 24 hours a day, programmer army that contribute for all reasons and have diverse skills.

I read something recently about the cost of the linux kernel devel. Very interesting trend.

From an employee recruitment perspective the opensource model is jaw dropping because there’s very little barrier to entry for someone that wants to contribute. Where as a company that hires someone spends a significant amount of money just to get them through the hiring process. That’s not even to mention whether or not that candidate “fits the corporate culture”.

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