Category Archives: Technology

All posts relating to high tech and low tech subjects.

Cropping PDF Files With Briss

A large PDF

Introduction

Good Heavens I have just looked up what Briss means. At long last the name now makes sense. Briss is a tool to cut down PDF page sizes while retaining the formatting. It does this by cutting away at the page, letting you cut away white space around the edges or taking a multi column page and turn it into a single thinner column.

Briss can be found here:

http://briss.sourceforge.net/

Other write ups about Briss can be found here:

http://lifehacker.com/5744899/briss-trims-pdfs-to-make-them-more-readable-on-your-e+reader

http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2010/10/briss-trims-and-repaginates-pdfs-for-better-e-reading/

Here is a very brief guide to Briss and why it might make your life a little better if you like reading things on devices with smaller screens. For the purposes of discussion the screen I am using is the 480×800 pixel screen of my Archos 70, which is a good 7 inches across the diagonal. This could also be handy for my Sony Reader I suppose.

Continue reading

Archos 70 Mini Review – Turns Out Not To Be A Small iPad

From the official Archos site:

Slim and light Android™ internet tablet

At home and on the go. The slim and light design of the ARCHOS 70 internet tablet makes it both portable and generous for sharing your best moments with your family and friends. All the functions of a computer: your apps, the Internet, your photos, music and videos, eBooks and 3D games.

Background.
There are wheens of these things about. Go Google for Android Tablet and see whatr happens. There is the Android Vega (whichy I initially considered), Creative Zii0, Samsung Galaxy Tabs and more coming to an Internet near you by Christmas time. I have played with an iPad for a few days and can safely say the Archos 70 is not really better in any way. Except two.
Aside

came across this here: How to Burn Retro Game Images With All Free Software. The purpose of this tutorial is to show you how to burn game images to CD/DVD. This tutorial will break it down to image format rather than … Continue reading

Brute Force eReader Attack

First of all I totally do not suggest you do a Google Search for the Dark Reverser and ereader2html.

But if you do you might find a program used for decrypting your ereader files to a standard html format. Great I thought. What do I need to do?

python ereader2html.py

Gave me:

eReader2Html v0.03. Copyright (c) 2008 The Dark Reverser
Converts eReader books to HTML
Usage:
  ereader2html infile.pdb outdir "your name" credit_card_number
Note:
  It's enough to enter the last 8 digits of the credit card number

Great I thought. Then I realised I purchased my books over two years ago and had long lost the credit card details. A quick scout on ereader found my books, the last four numbers of the credit card and my full name. Do assign the DRM to a new credit card key I would have to add a new credit card and then buy a new book to let me get access to my old ones. A search round the help section suggested the only way around this was to arrange to have a member of the help desk phone me and tell me my old number.

No thanks I though.

I just need to work out a way to try 1000 different numbers without my fingers falling off.

Here are the fruits of my labour, please remember I do not program.

#!/bin/bash
# batch_check.sh
# Brute Forces eReader Files
COUNTER=0

while [  $COUNTER -lt 9999 ];
    do
    python ereader2html.py /home/douglas/ereader/NameOfBook.pdb  \\
     /home/douglas/ereader "My Full Name"  ${COUNTER}1234

             echo The counter is $COUNTER
             COUNTER=$(( $COUNTER+1 ))
         done

please note there is no actual line break in the line beginning “python ereader” have just shortened it to make life easier.

“My Full Name” In quotes, as from the ereader site.

1234 The last four numbers on my credit card as from ereader.

It took me about 15 minutes to write with a bit of googling and took about three minutes to crack my first book. Luckily it took a few seconds to crack so it was easy to identify which number was magic. After that I just did them each by hand.

If your missing digits are between 0 and 999 you will have to make some slight changes to the above.

Hope this helps someone.

The Gizmondo As A Modern Handheld Console

Right then a slightly bigger write up of the Gizmondo scene as it is today. After a thorough few days of investigation.

Firstly these things still seem to be fairly easy to buy from both Amazon and eBay. Funnily enough Amazon does seem to be slightly cheaper. I got mine for about forty quid as I was aware that at least there used to be a homebrew scene once people learned how to run unsigned code.

Continue reading

Bring Out Your Dead

Just got myself a Gizmondo from Amazon UK a few days ago. Quite a nifty device. Looks like the anti piracy protection was bypassed many moons ago and when the console officially died a small homebrew scene grew up.

Not much action recently but the scene does not seem to be dead. The console for my money is not as bad as many reviews made it out to be at the time. Seems to have a decent amount of power, the GPS and built in cam could not doubt have been used within games in novel and interesting ways. Of course I got it for £40, I may have been a bit less chuffed if I had got a full priced one when they initially came out.

Will do bit more of a write up when I have stopped playing around with it.

Amazingly I was talking about the Gizmondo recently and someone I know own up to getting a full priced one ….

Windows XP On Toughbook CF27

Works well.

If you use a Performance Edition. Drivers needed to be installed manually using the Windows 2000 drivers for everything except the sound drivers.

Just to point out I do have a valid Windows key and am only running the one copy.