The Corrupted Trial of Derek Chauvin — Behind the Yellow Tape

There is no such thing as the police being completely faultless, after all being human keeps us from being perfect. So when it comes to police being on trial, there should not be any particular viewpoint, each case a measure of a singular set of circumstances.    However, the Derek Chauvin trial has badly shaken […]

The Corrupted Trial of Derek Chauvin — Behind the Yellow Tape

The Dow Hurst Average – The Tutorial for Advanced SSH techniques and Screen command usage — SwitchDoc Labs Blog

Advanced SSH techniques and Screen command usage – The Dow Hurst Average Editors Note:   More advanced SSH usage and the elusive “screen” command!  SwitchDoc Labs is pleased to welcome our new columnist Dow Hurst to the SDL family.   Dow has a great background and really likes showing people of all abilities to master…

The Dow Hurst Average – The Tutorial for Advanced SSH techniques and Screen command usage — SwitchDoc Labs Blog

A Difficult Story

The “discovery” of the children’s bodies found on the property of the Tk’emlups te Secwopmc First Nation in Kamloops, B.C  has captured the attention and the hearts of Canada. This residential school operated from the 1890’s to the 1960’s and now in 2021 pronouncements are circling the globe claiming a “discovered” “mass grave”, where the […]

A Difficult Story

The Corrupted Trial of Derek Chauvin

There is no such thing as the police being completely faultless, after all being human keeps us from being perfect. So when it comes to police being on trial, there should not be any particular viewpoint, each case a measure of a singular set of circumstances.    However, the Derek Chauvin trial has badly shaken […]

The Corrupted Trial of Derek Chauvin

Wanscam K55 Up Date

Well it has been a couple of weeks since I mount this camera outside to put the device to the test. I purchased 4 – 18650 3000 mHa lithium batteries to run in the camera. I charged them up with the charger that came with the batteries so they were fully charged. When they were placed into the camera, the App advised they were 100% at the time of the mounting. Now setting the App up, I had the camera send updates to the phone on movement that was detected by the PIR in the camera. Well this was a bit of a mistake as there is a bus that travels past the house a couple of times per hour, never mid the rest of the traffic throughout the day. I changed that so that the PIR did not trigger all the time. The second and third days of use the camera did not bring the batteries back up to the 100% mark.

The camera is mounted so that the solar top is facing the southern sky for the large majority of the day. After the third the battery was down low, less than 20%. The following day was very cloudy and I wonder how well the batteries would recover. Well, then did not make it back to 50%. Then for the next few days, the sun was not always visible. Then two days of rain came.

After the rain, I attempted to connect to the camera, but it would not. A couple of days of no connecting I decided to take the camera down as I felt the batteries were probably not charged and I was correct. Dead! So, since the design of these solar cameras have the charge port/power port inside the battery compartment, the camera has to be removed from its mount and then all of the screws removed from the belly of the camera to get at these ports and batteries. I get it, they want it waterproof, but it is a pain to have to run out to the camera every time it stops working or the batteries are dead. Especially in climates that are sure to dip below freezing and then some.

The SAP HD App needs a lot of refining. The WiFi would not respond once the camera stopped working. I could not delete the camera from the App either as I thought I might try to re-install the camera in the App. But for some reason, you need to have a connection with the camera in order to delete the camera.

In the end, I ended up pushing the reset button on the camera and starting all over. I’m not sure this camera will survive the winter at the rate these batteries are going. Short days now will not allow the batteries to fully recharge using the sunlight. I would not recommend buying this camera for a shady area of your yard.

While the camera was up and running, I tried my darnedest to get the camera to connect to my Synology system to no avail. From the research I could figure out, the K55 has no protocols that will allow it to connect to the NAS. Some cameras that were looked, their specs showed 6 or 7 protocols such as http, https, etc.

I’m totally sold on the solar aspect for surveillance around the yard, but this camera I don’t think will cut it. I guess more research will need to be done before the next purchase. Perhaps a separate solar panel.

Until the next time, stay safe and keep the technology coming.

March 8, 2020

So, the winter has almost past and the camera has been outside all winter. I was worried the batteries would not maintain their charge. The lowest percentage of battery I noticed when spot checking was low 80’s. Today the batteries shows 100%.

I’m still trying to figure which recording mode is best and where to actually store the clips. There is a cloud function on the app and of course the micro SD card. I think the card is my best choice for now. The recorded video is clear, but I can’t seem to get the 1080 resolution to stick, VGA only.

The recording of the video doesn’t seem to be working. I set the camera to record continually and yet nothing seems to be on the storage card. I removed the motion alerts as there were continuous alerts as the bus passed by and the Co-Vid19 walkers. More tinkering needs to be done.

The quality of the images of the live view is fantastic. Let’s get the recording to work and the 1080 resolution to stick.

Wanscam K55 Solar IP Camera

I’ve been looking a for a camera that I could install outside, not have to worry about running Cat5 cables a long way or not having to try and find a plug in. My first thoughts were to find an IP camera. That way, no need for any Cat5 cables and I could just run it off the WiFi. That takes care of the cables, now for the plug in. Solar seems to be a never ending topic in this day and age of the “save the planet”. I’m all for solar energy, so the search for an IP camera with solar powering.

I follow a gentleman’s online posts and it happened he was posting about solar IP cameras a few months back. This started me thinking that one could purchase a camera for not all that much. He was getting his product from Banggood. I have purchased from the site before and have had good success with the items I’ve purchased. I ventured to the site and started to peruse the Solar IP Cameras.

I found the Wanscam K55 which I thought would be a decent camera for its price. Here are the specs on the camera:

Specification :

OS & Processor Huawei LietOS system, Hi3518EV200+GC2238
Resolution 1080P Full-HD (1920×1080); Sub Stream: 720P(1080×720)
Mobile App Support QR code scanning to view on iOS iPhone, Android Smartphone. App: SAP HD
TF Card Record Support max 128G TF SD card. Support scheduled record, snapshot, video playback
Lens Type Lens: 3.6mm, 4x digital zoom
Video 2.0 Megapixels 1/4″ CMOS sensor. Image Compression: H.264
Audio Two-way Audio, Built-in Microphone & Speaker. Support echo cancellation and sound adjustment
Night Vision 8Φ850mm IR LED Lamps, Night vision distance 10 meters.
Wake Up Mode Support PIR detection wake up and APP wake up
Alarm Support m otion detection & PIR detection, Rapid push notification, Snapshot to save TF card
Push Support equipment push and PIR push
Onvif Support standard Onvif 2.1 protocol
Online Visitor Support max 6 visitors at the same time (First Stream:3 visitors; Second Stream:3 visitors)
Power consumption Stand-by Current 250uA
Working current 170mA
Micro USB adapter charging & solar power charging
Power Supply DC5V/2A. Support 4*18650 battery(Not included). Solar Panel: 5V
Wireless WiFi, 2.4GHz 802.11b/g/n. Smart one key WiFi configuration
OSD Support camera name ,date and time information show on image
Working Humidity 95% RH; working temperature: -10~70°C
Size Item: 18x8x7cm (LxHxW); Packaging:22x20x8cm (LxWxH)
Weight N.W.: 500G  G.W.:800G (Note: Actual Weight Final)
Package Include IP Camera, Manual, Screws

The camera is powered by 4 18650 batteries which I learned another lesson on those looking for the right battery to purchase. The internet has numerous places selling the 18650 battery with 4000 mAh all the way up to 9800 mAh. By researching which would be the best to purchase I found out the 18650 battery can only hold a MAXIMUM of 3500 mAh. I mean it is obvious that anyone would want to purchase the maximum mAh in a battery. Right? So I settled with 3000 mAh batteries.

The camera can run on either battery power or via micro USB cable. The only problem with the latter is the battery jar cover has to be removed to get at the port of the micro USB. This will pose a problem exposing the micro SD card slot, power and rest buttons as well as the micro USB port. So, I think the only proper way to run the camera is with the batteries. I think that is the whole point of the system, solar, batteries, IP, etc.!!

Package includes :

1 x Wanscam K55 IP Camera
1 x User Manual
1 x Screws

You’ll have to purchase the batteries separate. Again read above about the batteries. Be careful what you purchase.

The camera is basically activated by installing an App on your phone. The is available for both Android and iOS. The manual has a QR code which you scan to install the App. The App is called SAP HD. I found the App not all that user friendly. Connecting to the network was easy, but the rest of the look and feel of the App was not good. I was trying to locate a sub menu to turn off the blue light on the from of the camera and I could not locate. It goes to sleep and it turns off then, perhaps that’s all there is. There is a place to change the recording from VGA to 1080p. The video is still very clear, either way. I can toggle it back and forth, but it always seem to stick on VGA no matter how many times I think I have changed it. The App needs a lot of polishing.

I want to be able to connect the camera to my NAS, but at this point, I’m at a loss on how to get it to connect. The NAS security software does not recognize the camera and does not find it on the network. This part of the experiment is not over yet. For the time being I have installed a 128 GB micro SD card. The recording of the camera loops over the oldest recording video once the card is full.

Tevo Upgrades – Dual Z Axis

Well, I’ve had the Tevo Tarantula for about 3 months and by rights, I’m behind most owners in doing upgrades to the “Spider”. According the Facebook page, most owners are printing and purchasing upgrades for the printer right from the start. I have printed some items out to house the power unit and the circuit board. Not really upgrades, more ascetics.

If you search the Internet for upgrades for the printer, you will find a list of many things to do. The first thing I’ve chosen is get the Dual Z Axis.  This kit will keep the movement of the “Z” axis moving completely level and parallel to the heat bed, thus, the print is smoother looking. Having two -Z- axis motors with the threaded rods can help ensure stability of the -X- axis during print and can, overall, reduce wear on the mechanical components.

I purchased this Banggood Dual Z Axis. At the time of this writing, the kit sells for $52.13 CAD. I was lucky enough to get the kit for about $10.00 less.

As you can seen by the images above the kit doesn’t have much to it. (Large image is missing the stepper motor). The other images show the kit installed and the installation follows the same lines as the first z-axis motor and screw assembly.  There is an excellent video by ruiraptor titled TEVO Tarantula 3D printer – HOW TO improve your printer – Part 13 (DUAL Z MOTOR). This video walk the installer step by step thru the installation and the fine tuning so it will work correctly with the original z-axis motor and screw.

There are three ways to connect the  motor to the circuit board. The motor wire that comes with the kit allows the motor to be connected in parallel, serial or extra driver. The video shows the Pros and Cons of each type of connection. I chose to connect the motors by way of parallel. It seemed to be the most straight forward method.

Every little tweak and add-on to this printer seems to make it better and better. The next upgrade to the printer will probably be the replacement of the Y-axis rubber wheels to the metal ball bearing rail. With that, an upgrade to the heat bed frame.  Stay tuned.