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Observer II

Time for a rethink ?

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4 hours ago, Bill said:

End of subject? nah to heck with forum etiquette, I'm fed up with Corona virus so I'm officially hijacking this thread. :)

You don't come across many people with assembler skills these days, you must be older than I thought. Actually, my project as I call it, started off as a simple interface to detect the state of the taximeter and panic switch, then transfer that via Bluetooth to the PDA. But there was so much capability going unused in the processor I thought I’d have a look at making some use of it.

One of down sides to using a mobile device is that it’s perceived as a phone and we’ve had issues with the police and customers not understanding this. We’ve done everything humanly possible to try and make things as safe as possible, but a driver still takes eyes off the road while touching the screen. Given the PDA is web connected, the simplest way would be to use Google’s voice services to interpret voice commands and I’ve seen several devices that use this method.

Two big drawbacks however are speed and cost. We need the response to be instant, but experience has shown us that latency and invisible disconnects would make this far from ideal. Then Mrs Alexa sends a whole raft of possible meaning that would need parsing. On the cost side of things, the increased data throughput required for doing this would be prohibitive as currently, each vehicle only has a data allocation of 50mb per month. Then there's Google services that are free to most people but to use it commercially as we do with their mapping, the monthly fees would really rack up.

Anyhow, that’s what I’m trying to address and produce a product that works well at a price that the taxi trade won’t balk at. The first prototypes seemed to be faster and more accurate than any similar device that I’ve seen online but it was maxed out on both memory and processing time. I believe with this new device, I can improve it even more, almost to the point of detecting the words before they’ve been spoken.

Are you / were you a radio ham at some point?

Enough. I feel the need for halcohol 😉

 

Bill 😊

Wish I was clever!!!!

I am looking for an electronic voice that sounds human, I know they are out there, but I can't find one, any pointers?

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On 3/25/2020 at 11:49 AM, Bill said:

Well it’s ok, but sitting on your bum in front of a PC all day doesn’t keep you very fit and the lack of social interaction makes for short conversations that tend to dry up pretty quickly unless they want to talk about interrupt latency or Fourier analysis.  But social isolation is the way that much of life is going these days even before all this virus thing.

 

 

Bill 😊

As this thread has been hijacked :)  ..

Social isolation has its advantages 

Ever wondered what it be like being stuck at sea with a small crew on a ship for weeks, same people day in day out, nightmare!!!! Seriously anyone with such experiences on here :)

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I'm in that boat with you Sid.🤐

During my life, I’ve worked with a lot of programmers and always had a saying that “all programmers are made in the same mould” because they’re all arrogant and think that everyone should be beholding to them for what they create. They tend to work in self isolation and as a result can lack social skills to the point of being quite rude. Years back, I had a partnership with a company in Milton Keynes run by a such a programmer. His staff regarded him as a total ar** hole, and this was confirmed one day when I discovered secret accounts and large sums of money going missing. When confronted he said, “You’re just an engineer but I’m an Entrepreneur”.  Pretty much says it all doesn’t it.

I do write some software, but I’ve never really classed myself as a programmer because I’m not that good at it. It’s a bit like my house building skills, I can get good results but if it was my job, I’d have been sacked ten times over for being too slow. I see many things as a personal challenge, especially when all around you tell you it’s impossible or can’t be done. At the end of the day it’s just problem solving but rather than seeing things as one huge obstacle, I try to break things down into smaller junks and work on ways of solving those. Whether it’s nano second timing issues with my code or how to get a sixteen-foot 6x4 joist up on the roof single handed they’re all just little problems with a solution waiting to be found.

I’m waffling again aren’t I.

Time to get back on my head.

 

Bill 😊

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8 hours ago, Milky said:

As this thread has been hijacked :)  ..

Social isolation has its advantages 

Ever wondered what it be like being stuck at sea with a small crew on a ship for weeks, same people day in day out, nightmare!!!! Seriously anyone with such experiences on here :)

I was in the Merchant Navy for 49 years, so being sat at home in isolation isn't a new experience for me 🤣

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6 hours ago, asperity said:

I was in the Merchant Navy for 49 years, so being sat at home in isolation isn't a new experience for me 🤣

I know, what is it like? I am guessing larger ships are fine but small cargo ships can be tough.

I dream of owning a small sailing yacht one day

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I spent the last 35 years of my sea-going career on ships with less than 12 crew, mostly with less than 9 crew. A lot of days you wouldn't interact with more than 3 or 4 other people as most of the time when you're awake and working half the crew are either asleep or resting behind closed doors and the other half are working in another part of the ship. Even the largest ships, not counting passenger ships, these days carry less than 30 crew members, so not a lot of social life there.

The last ship I was on I was paired with another Master and we did 6 weeks on/6 weeks off. He is now a pilot in Shoreham and has owned a yacht for many years, which he uses to travel from his home in Margate to Shoreham and he lives on board it during his two weeks stint as pilot, before sailing home again. Mad 🤣.

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Asp

A few years back I had to modify the taxi dispatching software for a company where a large part of their business was picking up and dropping off pilots in the Thames estuary. Many of these points were extremely difficult for drivers to locate because as far as Google Maps was concerned, most appeared to be in the sea. As you know, failing to get the pilot to his connection point on time and missing the tide could result in a ship not being able to sail and that’d be a lot of dosh up the swanee (or Thames) so it was vital we got it working for them.

 

Bill :)

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14 hours ago, Milky said:

dream of owning a small sailing yacht one day

There was one on bargain hunt the other day went at auction for about fifteen quid. Of course you would have to find a suitable pond to sail it in but at least you could say you owned a yacht..🧐

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On 3/28/2020 at 7:09 AM, Evil Sid said:

There was one on bargain hunt the other day went at auction for about fifteen quid. Of course you would have to find a suitable pond to sail it in but at least you could say you owned a yacht..🧐

Yes, I never thought of buying one of them.

I nearly bought a real one a few years ago, (about 15 now(  32ft, but I was working 60 hours per week and not knowing how to sail I thought it be a waste of money having it just sat so I promised myself to learn.

I signed up to a navigation class in Warrington collage, cost was £75 but again work got in the way. A three years later I was working less, went back to collage to sign up again and the fee was £400!

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