Dissecting the new Mark 8 E-Meter updater software

Discussion in 'Projects' started by DeathHamster, Nov 26, 2013.

  1. DeathHamster Member
    I don't think there's been any sign of redesign yet. From everything so far, they just took a RS232 to USB plug and stuck it on the end of the serial cable. I can't imagine that there's more than one PC board, so what's to swap?
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  2. wolfbane Member

    I think we should wait and see what evidence comes forth when someone reports on what it looks like and does straight out of the box. It's possible the promo pictures were the original design, OR not all of the warehouse units were converted.
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  3. DeathHamster Member

    I'll wait and see, but I'm pretty sure that they just stuck a USB booger on the end of the serial cable, and I doubt that there's a separate swappable interface card. Even with the fancy ADC, this isn't going to be a large board as it is.

    If there really are some with serial and some with USB, they've just multiplied their support headaches by a thousand. (Not that that's a bad thing...)
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  4. wolfbane Member

    Heh... TBH, ^^This is what I'm kinda hoping for.

    Meanwhile, there are still TWO big issues that we haven't dissected yet ITT:

    For the love of Xenu, will somebody with the a virtual box PLEASE wireshark the packets the software transmits. If we rip 'er down as low we can, you never know what we might find.

    Also - EULA (License Agreement) info. A software license is treated the same as a contract, and if there is illegal legalsleeze in a contract it is null and void. So at the very least, we need to crack this open just a tad more to see if they took a sledgehammer to copyright reuse/resale restrictions. Surely there is a html or text file in there somewhere with licensing info.
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  5. muldrake Member

    So is this basically just legacy RS-232 communicating at 9600 baud or something lame like that? I've always wondered how they could ship primitive shit like that. Even the indies who have designed their own meters have done a better job, like Ralph Hilton.
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  6. blownforgood Member

    Yeah, my source is not so technically inclined, so maybe the swap out was just an USB adaptor...
    I can't imagine they would leave the the DB9 on there but maybe they did. That would be so lame, so there is a large chance that is exactly what they did. The instructions has a adapter so until someone gets their hands on this thing who knows?
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  7. I saw your post in the Bunker about a 'wireless' e-meter prototype.
    Can you tell more?
    How could a preclear be connected to a meter 'wirelessly'? What was LRH's theory behind that?
    Was it a working prototype?
  8. DeathHamster Member

    That's why contracts always have a clause at the end that says that if any clause is found to be illegal/invalid, it's excluded from the contract.

    As for shrink-wrap licenses, it's a bit murky.
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  9. Wait!Wat? All-knowing BIG beings didn't foresee the USB Type-C 3.1 debuting right when they released their "new" modified model? talk about some stone-age cutting technology (pass the sharp rock, please) ;)
  10. Quentinanon Member

    Could I hook a Mark VIII up to my tomato plants?
    If yes, $5000 for that gadget is so worth it.
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  11. muldrake Member

    Severability clauses are not always valid. Sometimes the illegality of the invalid provision so taints the agreement that the whole thing is invalid.

    The actual connection to the human idiot would be with the cans. The meter would communicate with a connected computer wirelessly.
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  12. Anonymous Member

    The Mark VIII Ultra meter is being touted as the “OT” meter that L. Ron Hubbard always envisioned. But there is an actual prototype of the meter LRH supposedly envisioned in his newly rebuilt mansion at Gilman Hot Springs. It is a non-working “wireless” meter that does not require one hold any cans. This new Mark VIII Ultra meter is not what LRH envisioned. This meter is what David Miscavige envisioned would get a whole lot of cash out of Scientologists.
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  13. Anonymous Member

    DE9. No such thing as a DB9, in the context of obsolete serial connectors. </pedantry>
  14. Anonymous Member

    Hubbard's "theory" behind it was probably that someone else would come up with it somehow and that he'd put his name on another patent he has absolutely no understanding of, like he did for Mathison's quacky e-meter (itself copied from toys from the 1940s). Seems he also "designed" a computer, that other idiots around him wasted time trying to build.

    We're talking about a guy who was too fucking dumb to understand basic calculus and wrote the stupidest book ever published on the subject of radiation.
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  15. Kimbayah Member

    Give LRH a break. He already invented music on the whole track. He'll finish inventing the wireless e-meter when he gets back from vacationing in Target Two.
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  16. blownforgood Member

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  17. muldrake Member

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  18. muldrake Member

    I've called it that for at least 20 years, and apparently I've been wrong. The first letter refers to the class, and the second to the specific shape of the connector. +2 nerd points to whoever posted that correction.


    Incidentally, I haven't seen that 50 pin cable since the early 90s. For good cause. It was horrible and always broke at the end.
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  19. Anonymous Member

    Is it too late to cash in on the difference between baud and bps, and why above 1200 or so, you're always talking about bps unless it's a serious convo that's probably going to invoke Nyquist and Shannon?
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  20. Anonymous Member

    With questions like this, there is high probability of crashing an OSA agent's mind, for a long time.

    Carry on.
  21. Anonymous Member

    Oh. dear...! Whenever that article says "symbol", substitute "state change", otherwise you'll go hideously wrong and be raped by bears for seven long years.
  22. thesneakster Member

    The device is not an "ohmmeter" per se, since it's purpose is not to measure a static resistance value, but rather "measuring and indicating changes of resistance in a living body" (per the original 60's patent). Whether one thinks these changes (aka "reads") are meaningful or not, that is emphasis of the device. Depending upon the sensitivity setting (current multiplication in the analog meters), the microammeter (100 uA full scale) the "reads" displayed might vary over a few ohms, fractions of an ohm, a few milliohms or fractions of a milliohm.

    This particular circuit doesn't directly measure Resistance. The ADC is used to read the voltage from the input circuit ( fig 4 on the patent document) which consists of a unity gain voltage follower op amp tracking the voltage after a series resistance is applied to a reference. The resistance source is digitally selectable between (a) the preclear, (b) approx. 5K ohm calibration resistor, (c) approx. 12.5K ohm calibration resistor or (d) direct connection to the reference voltage. In operation, the instantaneous resistance value is calculated in the MCU from the voltage drop (difference between reference voltage and voltage remaining after passing through the preclears body).

    Michael A. Hobson
    Independent Scientologist
  23. lulzRus Member

    Drop in tension is also how an ohmmeter mesures resistance. And it also outputs a small current to do so, which is why it is unwise to use it on a chip.

    That thing is an ohmmeter coupled to a wheatstone bridge for precision.

    ADC does not need to have huge sampling rate, since the measurement does not contain high frequencies, and therefore there won't be any signal reconstruction problem.

    In fact, a motivated person with minimal electronics skills could make one with a few discrete parts, a vero board, TRS plug and their PC's sound card. And the nifty thing about it is that you probably would not need any amplification since the sound card already does that.

    Edit : There is no difference between measuring "static" tension on a resistor and measuring "changing" tension on, for instance, a potentiometer (or hands holding cans). You get a real time value of resistance on an ohmmeter. It's not like a measurement of RMS AC tension on a multimeter. The only limit in such real time measurement would be in the response time of the circuit. But, since there is no high frequency in this case, there is no need for a specialized circuit.
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  24. Quentinanon Member

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  25. RightOn Member

    It's hard to believe that anyone uses an meter for "auditing" or they think it's a"religious artifact" and thinks what it produces is worth a damn.
    It is nothing more than a lie detector set up by Hubbard (not invented by him) to keep his minions in check and under the thumb of Scientology.
    Anyone who leaves the COS and continues to use it? = :confused: x10

    edited, I should add it is also used as a tool for psychotherapy which NOBODY who is untrained (medically as a psychiatrist) should be doing on each other.
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  26. Well, well, Mr. Indie OSA himself has to come over and try to push ElRon's greatness.

    Your input is not needed here, OSA. Go away!
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  27. wolfbane Member

    Mike Rinder calls up Bridge and drills a rep on the new e-meter:

    Major take-away point for meon the software side of things: You pay for it up front, cash - money on account does you no good. Then you get OK'd to have one. Then they send you the legal agreement via snail mail. And you can't view the legal agreement before you fork over the cash. WTF.

    Also this:
    There is also some info on the electronics side of things but I have no clue if it's significant or just PR spiel.
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  28. Quentinanon Member

    Because "money on account" in the scientology world translates to "the morg already spent that money". Not allowing the dupe scilon to see a contract before signing it - and then not giving the dupe a copy, is typical scientology racketeering. I have seen that many times. All bright red flags warning the dupe to leave now quickly.
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  29. Quentinanon Member

    Volney Matthison actually invented the emeter in the early 1950's. L. Ron plagiarised it because it was a piece of cheap equipment he could sell for huge profits in support of his global scam.
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  30. wolfbane Member

    Indeed, although the way the legal agreement transaction has been described I see nothing that prevents a person from making a copy of it before sending it back.

    But it seems to me this scenario is really pushing it, basic consumer protection should kick in here where they should have to disclose the legal agreement up front, before you fork over the cash. This is no religious service they are selling, it is a product with a usage license.
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  31. hokum Member

    They confirm that the uC is updated remotely. So it's a simple matter of hooking up a logic analyser (I have one), or even a bus pirate, to the 3.3V logic side of the MAX3232 (or whatever it was), during an update - hell, an old-skool serial logger between the USB dongle and the DE-9 port would work. I doubt they even go as far as XORing the firmware image.
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  32. Quentinanon Member

    The contract foisted on dupes after the introductory movie "you could dive off a bridge or blow your brains out" is an example of not giving the dupe a copy of a contract. You have to sign it in the morg. You can't take it home and think about it.
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  33. DeathHamster Member

    So now we know that they do have a countdown and enforcement of the yearly "update".

    I want a dump of the string resources from that update program. I want to see what they display when the mothership checks the naughty/nice list and finds them on the naughty list.

    I also want to see if the update program already has a message for "You have not paid your yearly meter fee yet. Please pay online now or contact your local org." (Who doesn't see that little surprise coming down the road?)
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  34. wolfbane Member

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  35. Kimbayah Member

    It's a religious artifact usage license, for IAS registered and approved parishioners only. Totally protected by First Amendment. Just ask Scilon lawyers.

    / edit

    Now that I think about it, is their any reference in the promo or license that this new e-meter is a religious artifact? Any disclaimer on it, that it does nothing? Older meters had disclaimers:

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  36. hokum Member

    Sorry to bang on about this, but I want the firmware. In my view, the most important priority is the firmware, otherwise we are dealing with a black box. A lot can be learned from the interaction with the black box, but little can realistically be achieved in understanding how it works.

    I've already figured out how to decompile to assembly from Intel HEX format. The assembly instruction set for M16C is well documented in both the datasheet for this part and also elsewhere on the web. There is a cross compiling gcc tool-chain available (and probably simulators). The key to how the scilons control this thing, is in that uC firmware, not (just) the windows software - though that is important in terms of monitoring interaction.

    I do this stuff (mucking around with uCs) professionally, but not on this platform.

    We need that firmware guys. If we had it, we wouldn't even need one of those overpriced pieces of 1990s shit, to figure out a bunch of stuff.
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  37. lulzRus Member


    And electronics-flavored word salad with an artificial sciencey-flavored nut sauce.

    The guy talks about "carrier wave through the PC's body". And then talks about a sampling rate of 240 Hz - dirt cheap ADC. I wonder what's the frequency of their so-called carrier wave.

    These doofuses wouldn't recognize a carrier wave if it kicked them in the balls.
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  38. DeathHamster Member

    In return for that babble, I broke them the news that the meter needle only has 4096 real positions, because the software driving it is talking through a 12 bit DAC7611. (Fig. 7)

    If an e-meter shows thoughts, then Scientologists think in 12 bits.
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  39. Anonymous Member

    According to Mike's Special Field Correspondent:

    First, one must pay for the Mark VIII Ultra E-Meter.

    Secondly, one must then be approved before one is sent the legal documents.

    Third, one must sign the legal agreement before the E-Meter is delivered.

    Fourth, only then is the E-Meter delivered.

    In summary, one must pay for the E-Meter in full before one is submitted to the approval process and then sent the legal documents one is required to sign. One is not allowed to see the legal documents one is required to sign until after one has paid for the E-Meter and been approved.

    Oh, and one must pay cash (or credit card) for the E-Meter even if one has money on one's account. This is because, "The orgs don’t have enough money to buy Mark Ultra VIIIs and keep them in stock, so the parishioner is required to pay the cash up front for their meter, so that Bridge can deliver it."

    And, yes, one must remain in good standing with the Church of Scientology and maintain one's IAS status in order to continue to use the Mark VIII Ultra Meter.

    Finally, the Orgs are requiring immediate use of the Mark VIII Ultra E-Meter with no grace period for use of the Mark VII Quantum.

    The Warehouse VIII “Suitcase Bomb”

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  40. Anonymous Member

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