Blender 4.0 and Pi-powered dongle magic

Amazon has an Android replacement, Blender 4.0 adds support for RDNA3, configuring Linux for productions audio, and Pi-powered dongle magic.


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00:00 Intro
00:48 Attacked by Mastodon
03:26 Amazon Linux OS
09:49 Production audio on Linux
13:40 Blender 4.0
19:15 Pi-powered dongle magic

Amazon Linux OS

    • Amazon already uses a fork of Android called FireOS based on AOSP.
    • It’s the thing you delete when rooting and wiping your Fire tablet. 
    • Amazon’s new operating system is based on a flavor of Linux.
    • Vega is primed for lower-power devices that struggle with the bloat that Android.
    • Something Wayland based would be interesting.
    • It could also begin shipping on Fire TV devices as early as next year, according to Roettgers’ sources.
    • App developers are being told to use React Native as an application framework so that’s going to suck. 
    • I was so happy to hear this, Amazon will be replacing their in-house Android based OS FireOS, with its own Linux based OS, codenamed Vega.
    • This means that all those Amazon devices, such as Fire TVs, smart displays, and other non-tablet devices will use Vega.
    • But, alas, we may have to wait a bit for Vega to be used on their popular Amazon Fire HD tablets.
    • Hundreds of people at Amazon’s Device OS group are tasked with building their new Linux OS.
    • And Amazon is working on this new web-forward operating system for smart home, automotive, and other IoT devices.
    • Lowpass‘ journalist Janko Roettgers and his sources stated:
  • “…they expect Vega to begin shipping on Fire TVs early next year. An SDK is now being readied for release so developers have time to port their apps to Vega ahead of its debut…App developers are being told to use React Native as an application framework, which allows them to build native apps with Javascript-powered interfaces.” 
  • Amazon has been using Linux on their Amazon Kindle E Ink E-reader devices since they were introduced in 2007.


PROduction audio on Linux

  • 11 years in the making.
  • All the things I do to a regular ordinary PC to turn it into a real time audio monster. 
  • And you should avoid doing any of it. 
  • There is however a good reason for that. 
  • This is how you go about setting up a workstation, not a desktop PC. 
  • A dedicated system for audio. 
  • Feel free to argue about my methods but you’re going to have a hard time arguing with the results. 


Blender 4.0

  • Would like to see more resources put into smoothing out the video editor.
  • The minimum required OpenGL version has been increased to 4.3 for Linux and Windows.
  • The 3D view now has a new region called the Asset Shelf. Looks neat. 
  • Blender, our favorite open source 3D/2D computer graphics and animation program just had a huge 4.0 release!
  • Blender 4.0 has support now for AMD RDNA2 and RDNA3 APUs.
  • In fact, It works on the Steam Deck now out of the box!
    • I was running the extracted Blender 4.0 Linux tar.xz on my RDNA2 APU based Steam Deck just yesterday!
  • Another cool new feature in Blender 4.0 is light and shadow linking, which allows you to set lights to affect only specific objects in a scene, and to control which objects act as shadow blockers for a light.
    • This is a feature that has been available in proprietary animation software like Maya and 3ds Max since the 1990’s, and something I have been wanting in Blender for years, and now it is here!
  • Also there is a new easy way to create tools with the geometry nodes called Node Tools.
    • Node Tools is a way to customize and expand Blender without needing to write a single line of Python code.
  • And for better color handling and color management, Filmic is replaced by a new view transform called AgX which improves rendering in overexposed areas, and makes bright colors less saturated and go towards white like professional cameras.

Pi Pocket

  • We all hate smart TVs but good luck getting a dumb one in 2023. 
  • Wouldn’t it be nice if you could give your existing one a brain transplant?
  • That’s what the PiPocket aims to do. 
  • The PiPocket allows you to drop a RasPi compute module into a case with a HDMI connector. 
  • With a microSD card reader for storage and an IR receiver that allows you to use the device with a remote control. 
  • Kickstarter reward levels start at £40 (about $50) for a PiPocket dongle without a Raspberry Pi CM4. 
  • Rewards start at £74 (about $90) for PiPocket + CM4 with 1GB of RAM.
  • Think of it as a homebrew Chromecast stick of fire. 
  • You can run Android, Linux, Windows? 
  • Estimated delivery Feb 2024.