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I'm happy to announce that I have finished a fourteen page technical report, Cemetech's 4th, detailing the CALCnet 2.2 networking protocol for graphing calculators. It begins with an overview of the motivations and inspirations for CALCnet, then reviews the existing alternatives for two-calculator linking, namely the TI-OS, BELL by Tim "Timendus" Franssen, and TachyonLink by Michael Vincent, and n-calc linking, namely CLAP by Mr. Franssen. It goes on to introduce the electrical systems in the calculator for linking, then proceeds to an in-depth section explaining the bit-level, byte-level, and frame-level protocols for one-to-one and broadcast frames. Although the average CALCnet 2.2 user or even programmer does not need to know any of that, it might help in case a coder wants to write CALCnet 2.2 drivers for another platform (Arduino? libticables?). Next is the meat of the manual for end programmers, how to send and receive data via CALCnet 2.2. I include a full experimental results and benchmarking section, detailing the maximum speeds of CALCnet, the overhead incurred by the protocol, effects of frame size on burst throughput, an effectiveness of collision detection and delivery guarantees. It concludes with information on logos and branding, a survey of possible future work, and a summary of CALCnet2.2's strengths and features.

I hope you'll grab the CALCnet 2.2 whitepaper at the bottom of this article and flip through it. I will be uploading it to ticalc.org as soon as I publish Doors CS 7.1; speaking of that release, I'll be publishing a beta soon. I still need to add safer handling for 15MHz calculators and to tune the randomized backoff. I hope I can interest many of you with at least two calculators to assist in testing; no special hardware is required. Doors CS 7.1 will hopefully be released within about a week.

Cemetech administrator Thomas "Elfprince13" Dickerson, the lead developer on the Freebuild project, informs me that the project is once again under active development after a summer of him working on saving the planet. He has been working hard to overhaul the rendering components of Freebuild with an open-source alternative called OpenSceneGraph (OSG). You can read all about his efforts on the rendering overhaul on the forum.

Finally, some administrative news on Cemetech. As mentioned, September and August were great successes. We foresee a slowdown in October, as is the historical pattern, although depending on how well the strengths of CALCnet 2.2 are marketed outside of the community, we may receive some additional traffic. I discovered last night that the annual fee for hosting Cemetech (a non-trivial sum, I should add) was overdue, but thanks to the heroic techological assistance of Cemetech gmods Alex "comicIDIOT" Glanville and Jon "TheStorm" Sturm, Cemetech is safe for another year. At the behest of members and approval of Elfprince, the Freebuild-related sections of Cemetech now have a custom header image; go check out the Building with Blocks subforum and its Freebuild-related children to see the header in action. Finally, Cemetech's webhost has informed me that the server we use will be down for four to seven hours starting around 11pm EDT tonight, October 8th, 2010, as they move us to a new, faster server. Look for faster page loads and zippier posting!

Download
CALCnet 2.2 Whitepaper / Manual [PDF, 600KB]

Wow 10 calc linking! This is amazing Kerm, congratulations on another great advancement. The whitepaper is 404'ed at the moment, and I'm sure that will be fixed as soon as you can get to it. You should do 10 calc pong, take a video and upload it to youtube!
Good news, I'm downloading Freebuild now.
Also, I can help with beta testing DCS 7.1 on 84+SE's now too.

Edit: pdf is working now, gonna flip through.
xXEpicxXXxFailXx wrote:
Wow 10 calc linking! This is amazing Kerm, congratulations on another great advancement. The whitepaper is 404'ed at the moment, and I'm sure that will be fixed as soon as you can get to it. You should do 10 calc pong, take a video and upload it to youtube!
Good news, I'm downloading Freebuild now.
Also, I can help with beta testing DCS 7.1 on 84+SE's now too.
Sorry about that, thanks for noticing the 404. It should now be fixed here and on the frontpage of the site. I would have taken the video already, except I'm short 12 AAA batteries to power that line of calculators. Razz It'll be epic, and I'll also be testing Merth's chat program.
woow, 10 calcs?
that is amazing

(hehe, whitepaper link looks good!)

say... what is that thing that all the wires are connected to? I remember it had to with signalling...
qazz42 wrote:
woow, 10 calcs?
that is amazing

(hehe, whitepaper link looks good!)

say... what is that thing that all the wires are connected to? I remember it had to with signalling...
Thanks re: the Whitepaper, I worked hard on it. Smile Those are the ten that I have here; I also have an 81, an 82, and 85, and a broken 84+SE on a shelf, plus the 15 or 20 calculators as my parents' house. The thing is a breadboard; the circuit on it controls LEDs that blink with CALCnet network activity, like an Ethernet hub or switch or router. It's not necessary for a basic CALCnet2.2 network though; it's just for looks.
ah, I see...

BTW, tested netpong with my friends

perfection!
GCN is more of my cup of tea, so I can't wait for GCN2.2!

Overall I was very impressed with the whitepaper. And the seemingly obvious way of doing the linking. It's a very ingenious plan my friend.
Go me :#1: ._.

Other words, I see an odd shortage of cables connected to that breadboard.
CDI wrote:
GCN is more of my cup of tea, so I can't wait for GCN2.2!

Overall I was very impressed with the whitepaper. And the seemingly obvious way of doing the linking. It's a very ingenious plan my friend.
Thanks CDI! I'm happy to hear that you approve. Smile Let me know if you can find any problems or logical flaws in it.

@ComicIDIOT: Good eye. Smile My three latest link cables just arrived yesterday, so the four rightmost calculators aren't yet truly connected. I cut apart one of the cables, hence how everything appears to have a link cable plugged in, but I didn't take the time to find the necessary audio cabling in my box o' parts to splice together, plus the headers, plus perform the soldering. I'll try to get to it tonight after market or tomorrow.
With GCN, what hardware will I need?

will it involve cutting my I/O cable up?
qazz42 wrote:
With GCN, what hardware will I need?

will it involve cutting my I/O cable up?
gCn or CALCnet2.2? If you do indeed mean gCn, it may require anything from a simple SilverLink to an Arduino and half an I/O cable. I'll know more once I figure out the capabilities and possibilities of each of the platforms.
I meant gCn

so, just a silverlink for gCn? sounds nice
qazz42 wrote:
I meant gCn

so, just a silverlink for gCn? sounds nice
Possibly. Four years ago Kllrnohj said it was impossible, and a few months ago Alberthro said it was. I have more faith in Kllrnohj's technical knowledge (no offense, Alberthro, I've known him for years longer than I've known you), but Alberthro has played with the code/drivers more recently.
Meh, perhaps USB cables would be better? The USB port is a bit more powerful than the I/O port >.>
qazz42 wrote:
Meh, perhaps USB cables would be better? The USB port is a bit more powerful than the I/O port >.>
Except that (1) we know for a fact that the individual electrical states of the calc's UBS port lines cannot be manipulated PC-side (2) CALCnet 2.2 does not currently use the USB port, whereas I/O-based gCn bridges would simply appear as another calculator on the network for simplicity and ease of use and programming, and (3) the calc's USB port is actually not too much more powerful than the I/O port, if at all.
ah, ffffuuu, I did not know that >.<

ah well, I guess the silver link could work, but thats in the future I guess Smile
qazz42 wrote:
ah, ffffuuu, I did not know that >.<

ah well, I guess the silver link could work, but thats in the future I guess Smile
Yup, first is to release a beta of Doors CS 7.1, get testing, release 7.1, release an improved DCS 7.1 - compatible NetPong, write my FTP program, and help Merth finish his chat program.
I would venture to say that the sliverlink is NOT the best decision. But the old greylinks are. Increasingly rare though.
KermMartian wrote:
qazz42 wrote:
I meant gCn

so, just a silverlink for gCn? sounds nice
Possibly. Four years ago Kllrnohj said it was impossible, and a few months ago Alberthro said it was. I have more faith in Kllrnohj's technical knowledge (no offense, Alberthro, I've known him for years longer than I've known you), but Alberthro has played with the code/drivers more recently.
Afaik the sliverlink only understands the official TI link protocol so I'm pretty sure it is out of the question for this situation.
@Both TheStorm and CDI, I'm sure you're probably right, but I want to make sure I explore all the possible options before I have to resort to being an ardweeny.
  
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