Bobbie Smulders Freelance Software Developer

Turning an old Apple TV into a Spotify player

Picture of the first generation Apple TV

In 2006, Apple unveiled the first-generation Apple TV. It was a set-top box for media consumption with hardware based on the Mac Mini. The small aluminium casing housed an Intel Pentium M, Nvidia Geforce Go, 40 or 160 GB internal HDD, integrated power supply, and a built-in Wi-Fi card. For connectivity, there was USB, Ethernet HDMI, composite, optical out and analog audio out through a high-quality DAC. Because of the tight coupling with iTunes and lack of software support the device isn’t very useful anymore and can be had for as little as €10 instead of the original €299.

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How Driver (1999) was able to store movies in 16 kB

Police chase in the game Driver

In 1999 the game Driver was released. A game that let you drive at high speeds through an open-world game, engage in police pursuits and do daring stunts. The most fascinating feature of the game was the Film Director. After a gaming session, you could not only watch a replay but also position the cameras to direct your very own movie. The resulting movie could be saved on the 1 megabit PlayStation memory card.

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Using search as an attack vector

Close-up of brute force source code

A recent trend in front-end and back-end communication is the shift from traditional pre-defined REST endpoints to query languages such as GraphQL. While this gives more flexibility to front-end developers to request information tailored to the front-end application, it also opens up the back-end for security vulnerabilities. As a demonstration, I would like to go through an example of this on the Meetup website.

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Reverse engineering the Polycom CX300 USB phone

Close-up of the Polycom CX300 display

I’ve recently purchased the Polycom CX300 USB phone which works with Skype for Business out of the box. But with all this technology accessible via USB I was keen to figure out if I could use it for other purposes. How can I interface with this phone outside of Skype?

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