E-ink and TOTP++

E-ink (or E-paper) displays are so cool! I love them! I got one recently, and decided to use it for my TOTP project, instead of the very basic OLED that I’d put. While at it, and since this was a bigger display — I decided to fill-up the rest of the space with something. The post-Covid reopening of my office paved the way for that something!

Since this was my first week (first few days, to be precise) at work, and since they have a new location now — I was apprehensive about the travel time (both to and fro). And, it so happens that TomTom offers pretty useful Traffic APIs — not just for routing, but for real-time traffic updates as well!

E-ink display showing TOTP & Travel times

So, I decided to give it a go, and after a little bit of dabbling to find the geo-coordinates (lat,lon) of my usual route — managed to arrive at the right set of params for the API call!

Once this was in place, I used the rest of the space on the display to show the O2H and H2O travel times.

…and here’s ze video proof!

Video showing E-ink with display updates

Making TOTP fun (ok, less boring!)

So TOTPs are irksome in that one needs to pull out the phone, open the app, and then enter the code at the prompt. Now, the naysayers may say: “ah, well, you could install a command-line utility, or use an online one”, to which I’d say: “Suit yourself!”. For me, it would still require me to have to type or execute or, as I was doing, open something like Google Authenticator on the phone!

Guess what, the humble Pi comes to the rescue here as well!

Continue reading Making TOTP fun (ok, less boring!)

Tying snips.ai, Strava & Google Speech Engine

So, this happened a couple months ago, and I had lots of fun doing it (watch the video):

A detailed post would follow. (And yes, as mentioned in the video description, kindly ignore the choice of LED colours :)).

Alexa + Raspberry Pi = Fun!

So, after a week a of grappling, trying to make Alexa AVS work on a humble Raspberry Pi 2 Model B, I finally had success! Yayyy! Now, thus far, the responses I have received on declaring this little victory of mine have been more or less like “meh!”, but still, I write about it because for me the experience was far more satiating.

So here goes.

I was fascinated by Amazon Echo, and the fact that Amazon has thrown open the doors to the developer community to build its (what is known as) skills. Since Echo is not widely available in this part of the world yet, plus, getting an Echo and getting it to work doesn’t sound like ‘fun’; I decided to look for Alexa (soft-) implementations for other platforms.

Continue reading Alexa + Raspberry Pi = Fun!

Adafruit WebIDE

If you’re looking for the best place to start tinkering with a RaspberryPi (RPi) or BeagleBone (BB), I would highly recommend Adafruit’s WebIDE. As the names suggests — it’s a web-based IDE, and facilitates physical programming (for RPi — manipulating the GPIO) on your device.

Picture of Adafruit webIDE in action
Adafruit’s WebIDE for RPi and BB

The installation steps are clearly laid-out, and mostly smooth (for RPi I remember having to take care of a few easy-to-fix issues). Once it’s up and running — it’s a delight to work with!

Here’s a big shout of “Thanks” to Adafruit!


I’m highly impressed by Kindle. Not just the device — I don’t have one — but the whole idea around it; and what Amazon has done with it. I’m in awe! No, seriously.
While we were busy reading about gadget wars, and tech-websites busy bombarding us with feature comparisons of Kindle, and Nook and what-not — Amazon did something very smart: it created a Kindle plugin for every platform known to mankind…Android, iOS, Windows..you name it (ok maybe not all, but you get the idea!). It was blessing for people like me who might want to read something at their own convenience. All my devices are synched..so that takes care of remembering the page number/bookmarks etc.

At this point however I must confess that the intent of this particular post was not exactly blowing Kindle’s trumpet..but rather to talk about a nifty little extension that they created for Chrome, which allows me to send any webpage to my Kindle library in Kindle format with just a click (aka ‘automagically’)!


I consider it as one of the coolest things I’ve been enlightened with recently — gives me the flexibility of not just bookmarking a webpage — I have thousands of those will-read-it-someday ones, but rather going several steps further and making that webpage/article available on all my Kindle-app devices. This means that I have the convenience of (re-)visiting those articles/bookmarking them/reading them in oddest of places — all at my disposal! That’s übercool and so very thoughtful!