MAX7219 LED Matrix Shape Maker Update Soon

I’ve been working on a large update for MAX7219 LED Matrix Shape Maker that will make it much better than before. It includes remembering your settings, an advanced and 100% configurable code generation system, multiple LED matrix shapes and set saving.

WIP version…

Update: Now you can change the colors of both the cheap and fancy rendering modes as well as the background color. I’ve seen some other LED matrices that have blue for instance. So this is pretty neat. It supports both hex format (#89ABCDEF) and ARGB format (100,100,0,200).



7/21/2017 –
Issues have been fully resolved 9 hours later.
7/21/2017 – Having issues right now with SSL. It may take time to resolve, please be patient.

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Planned site redesign…

I’ve gotten really lazy in the last so many years. I didn’t even bother to design my own site, even though I was designing other people’s sites. So I’ve decided that it’s probably time for a makeover with modern HTML and CSS techniques. I’m not leaving WP for now, as I’m too lazy to write my own site management system anymore, but I will redesign at least.

Things I will and won’t do…
– Design desktop and mobile friendly site
– Improve layout and flow
– Use CSS edge rounding and box shadows for no reason
– Take that sidebar thing and cronjob an update every 12 hours, so that way I don’t have to keep grabbing and injecting into the page as it’s loading.

– Make desktop and mobile sites look the same
– Specifically cater site to mobile users (screw you Google)

I have no intention of making this site like so many I’ve seen in more recent years (and have had to do myself). I will not merge desktop and mobile look. I will use a way of designing that allows me to independently design both for the same HTML layout. So fear not anyone who’s been coming here for some amount of time, as I have no plans to ruin the desktop usability.

– Peace
P.S. Don’t expect this change for at least a month or two. I am currently being privately tutored in Japanese and am tutoring my friend in Japanese. I know that sounds strange, but I’m not a beginner, so I can do that. I’m also writing software to study with, so that’s taking up some of my time as well.


Google Translate Speech Files Grabber Release (2017/06/17)

I release, and with much delight, my Firefox MediaCacheGrabber (FFMediaCacheGrabber or FFMCG) today. I posted about how to use it nearly 3 weeks ago. Since then I’ve improved it quite a bit and went through quite a few unpleasant cycles, which I’ve documented below. This is NOT compatible with portable Firefox. You must have Firefox installed on Windows and have used it at least once for this software to work.

How to use:
Requirements: Microsoft .NET 4.5.2
Source Code:

So, how it went: As you saw on the video in the “How to use” link, originally I had to write the text in and it just grabbed files bluntly. Well, I got fancy. It now grabs the input text that you put in for a given file. Second thing was Google’s metadata. Initially I was going to use third party software to support stripping the text. However, everything I used couldn’t do it right. GoldWave removed the metadata, but reencoded the file in the process. FFMPEG, despite having explicit stripping features, all 5 of them didn’t work to strip this metadata. Then I straight up tried LAME, it also failed. So I ended up writing my own MPEG frame detection and it seems to work flawlessly. So now I can support getting the input text and stripping their metadata. This is a pretty good release for me.

Future Improvements
Future improvements will explain why I called it “FF Media Cache Grabber” instead of “FF MP3 Grabber” or something like it. I have plans to detect flv, other mp3 files, mp4, and other media files.

Firefox is a trademark of the Mozilla Foundation. I do not have any relationship to Firefox or Mozilla. Google is a trademark of Alphabet Inc. I do not have any relationship to Google or Alphabet.



I win!

On a serious note. I haven’t cracked software since I was 17. I just decided to just go for it. I plan to pay for the software shown being debugged here. This cracked version is not being released. I just wanted to see if I still retained my skills from childhood. Some things have changed. This was a 64-bit executable so I had to use a debugger I’ve never used, x64dbg. I also had to lookup some of the instructions for x86-64: – of which none were relevant to cracking this since I simply modified two “jne” to “je” – one was a jump short if not equal 0 and the other was jump near if not equal 0. 85->84 and 75-74. Point is, I won. I’m just proud that I randomly chose software and succeeded. Now I’ll go buy it because the author deserves it.

P.S. The images are censored except for their text. I’m sure you could find out what software this is if you looked hard enough.


How to be unprofessional

This is a relatively short story, about a company called Blitz Research Ltd. It contains nothing but facts and thus cannot be considered as libel. It is in my opinion after you read this that you will reconsider doing any business with this company or the people related.

Blitz Research Ltd is a, New Zealand operated, business by a man named Mark Sibly. He also has some relationship, whether professional or not, to another person named Simon. Simon was given significant enough power with Mr. Sibly’s operations, that I assume he is directly related professionally. I will discuss Simon’s behaviors further down in the article. Mr. Sibly is a programmer who makes programming languages. His business ran off the idea of simplified game development, but seems to be directed elsewhere now. He’s probably best known for his “Blitz” series of game development products for the Amiga (not under Blitz Research Ltd) and later the PC.
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Google Translate Listen Sound Files

I’m gauging interest in obtaining Google Translate’s generated speech files. What I mean is, if you type in “hello” then you could obtain an mp3 that says “hello.”

I already have a fully functioning prototype. The problem I had was directly downloading from a given word or sentence. I would have setup my software to do that if I could, but I had issues and was being returned ReCaptcha and not sound files. So I went with the next best option, Mozilla Firefox. I used Mozilla Firefox’s caching system to look around and detect media files being added to the cache. This software is basically an assist tool and not really a full on tool to directly get sound files.

This is demonstration of the software. I only realized after I finished recording this that I forgot to record the sound. Trust me though, there was sound.

Update: I can now grab the input text thanks to the metadata Google inserted in the generated mp3 files. This is a major improvement that I didn’t think I’d get. Right now I’m working on making the Download button execute another piece of software for striping the metadata Google stuffed into the mp3 files to not only remove their ownership crap (so you can redistribute the files), but to further shrink the file size. GoldWave is high on my list of compatible software that can accomplish this task. I’ll also be looking into Audacity if it has command line options.

So if you watched that all the way through, here’s the steps to successfully get a file…

1) Open up Firefox and go to Google Translate (do not have any other media-type websites open like Youtube, Soundcloud, and Pandora)
2) Start up software (currently dubbed FFMediaCacheGrabber)
3) Go back to Google Translate and put in your text.
4) Click on the “Listen” button. This will generate the mp3 file which will be cached immediately.
5) The top file to be added to the list in the software is the sound file you just generated in Google Translate. Click on the empty space in the newest row in the column for “New File Name”
6) Enter a new file name for this mp3, typically whatever word or sentence you wrote
7) Click download. The file will be put into the directory “media” in the folder that FFMediaCacheGrabber is run in. It will automatically have the file type appended. In the case of these files, “xyz.mp3”
8) Repeat steps 3-8 as many times as needed.

Now, knowing that you have to do all of those steps to just get a single sound speech file, how many people are still interested in this? I will refine it to attempt to make it easier for regular users if there is enough interest.



So I haven’t been doing any programming work for a few months. It started with helping a friend move, and then helping my friend’s mom and sister move, and they were hoarders (not my friend). So after finishing 4 weeks later (yes, it took that long even with a team of 3+ people daily), I then became annoyed with my own house because after seeing a hoarder’s house, I didn’t want my house to ever look like that. So I did a cleanup and started keeping it up daily. Then it transformed into me painting the now white baseboards and walls which were white when the house was originally made, yellow now, and apparently no one had painted them over the years. It’s been about 6 weeks of doing that. So hopefully I will be able to do some stuff in maybe 2 weeks. I have to redo incompetently installed drywall in my bedroom (they used nails and Spackle to cover up their shame!) and clear up some mold issues before painting in the master bathroom.


Speedrun: Adventure Time: Secret of the Nameless Kingdom (1:17/1:18)

So, I’ve been taking a vacation because I haven’t been feeling very well since Winter started. I’ve had a miserable cough and less than thrilling amounts of energy. However, a few days ago I bought Adventure Time: Secret of the Nameless Kingdom for $0.99 off the Playstation Network for my Vita and discovered a treasure trove of glitches that were previously undiscovered. I now hold the world record run for this game until someone uses my run as their own while fixing my mistakes and fixing that last “save and quit” bit which isn’t actually necessary since you can go up the stairs and exit the wall via the bridge underpass.

Anyways, here’s my run. Ignore the uh…bit at the 26 second mark. It came from two runs back when I got hurt 4 times when starting the game, so I quit out, deleted the save, and typed that name in, which I proceeded to get hurt twice, so I quit out and deleted that save as well. Then I took a break for a few hours…and it led to this. So I’m happy.


MAX7219 LED Matrix Shape Maker Release V3 (11/11/16)

The version 3 release brings graphical fixes from my rushed v2. It also introduces fancy drawing which makes the lights look more how they look on the actual devices.


Edit: Expect more releases. I feel like there’s a bit more I could do to improve this like adding rotations, but we’ll see.
Update: Updated to v4. I added an appropriate icon and changed the “fancy draw” colors a little bit.


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