The aRSSduino in action

The aRSSduino in actionThe aRSSduino is a simple project for the Arduino microcontroller, designed to display RSS feed entries on a 16×2 LCD.  It’s still in the early stages, with the following outstanding:

  • To Do: Support for larger LCDs
  • To Improve: Better UTF-8 character handling
  • To Do: Multiple RSS feed support

For now, however, it’s a pretty neat hack – and an alternative back-end allows it to display Twitter @ replies instead, with the person’s username on the top line of the display and the message below.

The aRSSduino relies on a USB connection between the Arduino and the host PC – it’s not a stand-alone project.  Currently, the Python back-end is written to run on a Linux-based host – although it should be relatively simple to port to Windows, I have no plans to do so at present.

You can download the project source code – both for the Arduino sketch and for the Python-based back-end here.  If you improve upon it, let me know!

Fujistu's curved displaysFujitsu’s display division has teamed up with Shinoda Plasma to create impressive curved displays which the companies believe could be used to turn building support pillars into information boards without taking up any extra floorspace.

Demonstrated over on Tech-On, the displays are based around Shinodo’s Plasma Tube Array technology, which allows the display to be created in a smooth curve rather than the more traditional flat plane.

Using the pre-curved display panels, the pair were able to come up with a single display – made from a pair of 1m x 1m panels – which fit around a pillar of 1m diameter, capable of showing full-colour full-motion video.

The companies admit that the the displays are still in the early stages of production – with the demonstration models, showcased at the Fujitsu Forum early last week, being produced merely to gauge market response prior to mass-production – but explain that “we expect that [the displays] will be used at railroad stations and public facilities” to provide advertising and informational displays around pre-existing support pillars.