Monthly Archive for November, 2007

USB magnetic stripe reader instructions

I have released instructions and code for connecting a magnetic stripe reader to a computer using USB. These are an answer to a common problem that people wanting to get into the magstripe reading scene face: a gameport or parallel port is required for interfacing with a magstripe reader and many computers these days don’t have either.

The project that got me interested in reading magstripes is Stripe Snoop. I highly recommend it if you’re interesting in finding out what information is encoded on magnetic stripes, such as those on credit cards, debit cards, hotel access cards, etc.

I couldn’t have done the project without Dean Camera’s help. He created the MyUSB library that the project uses to do the USB communication. The library is GPLed, which is why I used it instead of the Atmel-provided library, which has a much more restrictive license.

Open content awareness event

This past Monday I was involved in an event to promote awareness of open content. I have setup a web page that documents a bit of what went on, which includes links to all of the music and videos used for the event. If you are interested in getting some free music (all Creative Commons-licensed) or would like some ideas for an open content awareness event of your own, I would highly recommend checking it out.