- Well currently UK inflation is at just over 3% meaning that in terms of real world spending power, the deficit caused by your student loan is decreasing at 1.5% a year.
- This is well below virtually any other loan you could get your hands on - usually in the region of 7-11% currently
- Most importantly - The repayment interest rates for student loans currently and historically have been lower than even a modest savings account.
Wednesday, 10 November 2010
Saturday, 6 November 2010
To try it out download the code from:
Parses Robots.txt and Sitemaps to correctly determine what to crawl through
Uses multithreaded searching (via the ThreadPool) and Async Web Requests for lower CPU load.
Tuesday, 2 November 2010
Sunday, 19 September 2010
In order to create a planet, a sphere composed of multiple triangles must first be formed. To create a uniform distribution and surface area of each triangle forming the whole, a geodesic sphere design was chosen.
The creation of the geodesic sphere involved generating two pentagons; one at each pole. The pentagons themselves, which are formed of five triangles, are each extended out from these points till it wraps around the centre of the sphere with more triangles being added per layer.
The number of layers forming the sphere is a compromise between performance and appearance. The larger number of layers allows for more triangles and thus a more complex visualization, however is far more GPU and CPU intense and causes problems on older PC’s.
Though it didn't always look as good as the first video, below is another video showing how it progressed.
Wednesday, 11 August 2010
Thursday, 22 July 2010
Hopefully if you were following the Imagine Cup on twitter (using the ImagineCup tag) you may have heard about the UK's one man army ...which was me!
I was a rather strange entry to say the least for the embedded competition. Firstly in a category designed for teams of 3 or 4, I was on my own, making things interesting when I had to design, build, test and present the entry all by my self. A tall challenge but I pulled it off.
So my entry; as you can see above is an augmented reality system for blind and partially sighted individuals to help them with everyday tasks to give them back their independence. For more info on how it was built have a look at my other blog entries about it.
Well did it make me famous? Well I got to present on one of Europe's largest stages to around 1,000 people and you might find me on quite a few blogs about the competition.
So what am I up to now? Well I have a job, writing code for various embedded platforms but I hope to continue giving advice and mentoring with the Imagine Cup and I have quite a few ideas for new projects to take up my spare time.
If you want to find out more, here are some other peoples blog posts:
Monday, 12 July 2010
Sunday, 6 June 2010
Friday, 4 June 2010
Friday, 28 May 2010
Our department created through several student projects a digital circuit simulator in Java.
It allows users to add a variety of different components, wire them up and then simulate them. Great for electronics hobbyists or students.
What I did was extend this so Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGA's) could be simulated using the tool.
An FPGA is made up of a combination of Logic Blocks, IO Blocks and interconnections wiring everything up.
Each logic block is made up of a variety of different primitive components interconnected, usually this consists of a Look Up Table, Multiplexer and some combinational logic. Below is a very simple CLB from an early Xilinx FPGA.
Now the important thing for me are the primitive components, which I have to model individually. Which in the case of the Xilinx XC2000, a very early FPGA is over 400 different components! Below is the same CLB but with the primitives highlighted.
Using an Event-Driven Discrete Modelling Simulation, these primitives were modelled and their interconnections simulated. Thus creating a working model.
And whats more, it only took around 35,000 lines of code!