Igor Kromin |   Consultant. Coder. Blogger. Tinkerer. Gamer.

There's nothing worse than plugging in your favourite game cart into an old console and having that cart fail to load. This is exactly what's been happing with a number of carts on my Atari Lynx so I decided it was time I cleaned them up. This procedure is not limited to the Lynx and will work for any other console's cart, though you may have to disassemble its casing to get access to the connector - with the Lynx that is not necessary.

On the Lynx when a cart is inserted that the console can't read, the following error screen is shown. Big yellow "INSERT GAME".
DSC02696.JPG


The cart I was trying to use was a second copy of Shadow of the Beast. You can see in the photo below are the two carts. The top one works perfectly and doesn't have too much visible oxidation. The second card underneath however has visible oxidation on the connector and failed to load every single time I plugged it in.
DSC02687.JPG


I decided to use DeoxIT to fix the cart. Prior to starting I masked off the label so that only the connector was exposed. This was to protect the artwork on the front.

DSC02686.JPG DSC02688.JPG


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I've been messing around with some Maven POM files recently and started getting this error - MojoExecutionException: The artifact location was not specified. It probably took longer than it should have to resolve it but the solution was very simple in the end.

This is what the full error from Maven looked like...
 Maven Output
[ERROR] Failed to execute goal com.oracle.weblogic:weblogic-maven-plugin:12.2.1-0-0:deploy (default-cli) on project MyProject: org.apache.maven.plugin.MojoExecutionException: The artifact location was not specified.
[ERROR] at weblogic.tools.maven.plugins.BaseMojo.getArtifactFile(BaseMojo.java:112)
[ERROR] at weblogic.tools.maven.plugins.deploy.DeployMojo.populateParameters(DeployMojo.java:387)
[ERROR] at weblogic.tools.maven.plugins.deploy.DeployMojo.getArgs(DeployMojo.java:346)
[ERROR] at weblogic.tools.maven.plugins.deploy.DeployMojo.execute(DeployMojo.java:338)
[ERROR] at org.apache.maven.plugin.DefaultBuildPluginManager.executeMojo(DefaultBuildPluginManager.java:134)
[ERROR] at org.apache.maven.lifecycle.internal.MojoExecutor.execute(MojoExecutor.java:208)
[ERROR] at org.apache.maven.lifecycle.internal.MojoExecutor.execute(MojoExecutor.java:154)
[ERROR] at org.apache.maven.lifecycle.internal.MojoExecutor.execute(MojoExecutor.java:146)
[ERROR] at org.apache.maven.lifecycle.internal.LifecycleModuleBuilder.buildProject(LifecycleModuleBuilder.java:117)
[ERROR] at org.apache.maven.lifecycle.internal.LifecycleModuleBuilder.buildProject(LifecycleModuleBuilder.java:81)
[ERROR] at org.apache.maven.lifecycle.internal.builder.singlethreaded.SingleThreadedBuilder.build(SingleThreadedBuilder.java:51)
[ERROR] at org.apache.maven.lifecycle.internal.LifecycleStarter.execute(LifecycleStarter.java:128)
[ERROR] at org.apache.maven.DefaultMaven.doExecute(DefaultMaven.java:309)
[ERROR] at org.apache.maven.DefaultMaven.doExecute(DefaultMaven.java:194)
[ERROR] at org.apache.maven.DefaultMaven.execute(DefaultMaven.java:107)
[ERROR] at org.apache.maven.cli.MavenCli.execute(MavenCli.java:993)
[ERROR] at org.apache.maven.cli.MavenCli.doMain(MavenCli.java:345)
[ERROR] at org.apache.maven.cli.MavenCli.main(MavenCli.java:191)
[ERROR] at sun.reflect.NativeMethodAccessorImpl.invoke0(Native Method)
[ERROR] at sun.reflect.NativeMethodAccessorImpl.invoke(NativeMethodAccessorImpl.java:62)
[ERROR] at sun.reflect.DelegatingMethodAccessorImpl.invoke(DelegatingMethodAccessorImpl.java:43)
[ERROR] at java.lang.reflect.Method.invoke(Method.java:498)
[ERROR] at org.codehaus.plexus.classworlds.launcher.Launcher.launchEnhanced(Launcher.java:289)
[ERROR] at org.codehaus.plexus.classworlds.launcher.Launcher.launch(Launcher.java:229)
[ERROR] at org.codehaus.plexus.classworlds.launcher.Launcher.mainWithExitCode(Launcher.java:415)
[ERROR] at org.codehaus.plexus.classworlds.launcher.Launcher.main(Launcher.java:356)


The problem was that I was missing the <source> configuration for the Maven Weblogic Plugin execution I was running. Fixing it was as simple as adding the correct path to my target artifact...

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I've been working on a brand new layout engine for jPhotoFrame over the past few weeks and it's finally complete. This engine replaces the old clunky, hard to configure engine with a widget based layout that can be layered and bound to various parts of the run-time data model. What does that mean? Well, now configuration is easy (though more verbose) and you have greater control of how the interface looks and what it displays.

In addition there were other changes like having all image loading, resampling and background fill generation done in a background thread and only drawn to screen when fully completed. This avoids some of the image tearing that was happening in earlier versions on slower hardware. Likewise, weather fetches and even date/time updates are done in their own threads. Each of these threads write new data to the run-time data model and then request for the screen to be updated. This gives a much smoother operation when multiple threads try to update the data model simultaneously. It also allows for the data model to be exposed to the layout engine.

Lets see some screenshots...
v0.4_with_weather.jpg

v0.4_no_weather.jpg


The interface is way more customisable now. Each of the widgets can be anchored to a corner, translated or even rotated.

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I've had a couple of old broken lamps laying around so thought why not combine them and make something cool out of their parts. The lamps I had were an Ikea FILLSTA table lamp that had it's shade removed and then I had this egg shaped LED lamp that wasn't lighting up very well any more.

Combined, these look awesome! The egg shape is very unusual and the FILLSTA base makes it look like some sort of spaceship.
DSC02988.JPG


The LED lamp used to work very well. It had an inductive charging base so it was possible to remove the egg completely and have it running on batteries for a while. After some time however it wasn't as bright any more so wasn't really usable. Its disassembly was easy, just a bunch of screws holding the LED portion together. Unfortunately the LED part of the lamp couldn't be disassembled as it was fused together plastic parts with circuitry inside. I guess they didn't want anyone to be able to fix it!

DSC02982.JPG DSC02984.JPG


The FILLSTA base was just a standard E27 socket lamp base that connected to mains and had an on/off switch. I had an RGB light bulb that fit this socket and as a bonus the light bulb had its own remote control.
DSC02986.JPG


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