More thoughts on adding NFC to the Framework Laptop

I've got a fancy new Framework laptop. It comes with little expansion sockets - which allow you to plug in USB devices, HDMI ports, Ethernet cables, and all sorts. I want to add an NFC reader to it. So, step one was to find an NFC circuit board which worked with the hardware and was […]

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Review: ACS ACR1251T-E2 USB Token NFC Reader II

USB thumb drive plugged into a computer.

Recap - I want to build an NFC reader expansion card for the FrameWork laptop. So I've bought a couple of components. This is the ACR1251T-E2 - it's a USB pen-drive sized NFC reader with a side-out USB-A plug. Costs about £40. There's a recessed green LED which flashes to let you know that it […]

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Review: ACM1252U-Z2 NFC Reader Board

View of a circuit board with a lit green LED.

Recap - I want to build an NFC reader expansion card for the FrameWork laptop. So I've bought a couple of components. This is the ACM1252U-Z2 and Oh! It is a dinky little component! The only sign that it is working is a flashing green LED. There's no buzzer on the board. It really is […]

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Thoughts on building an NFC reader for the Framework laptop

Small circuit board.

The Framework laptop has several little slots which can be used be used to expand the functionality of the laptop. They convert the internal USB-C ports into a different sort of port. For example, Framework sells an official HDMI card and Ethernet card: But the community have built their own SD card expansion pack as […]

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Review: An NFC reader/writer with USB-C - ACR1252U-MF

Box with a drawing of the NFC reader.

I needed to read and write NFC cards on Linux. I only buy USB-C peripherals now, so I found the brilliantly named "ACR1252U-MF" which appears to be the only USB-C reader on the market. Total cost was about £35 on eBay. It's a cheap and light plastic box with a short USB cord. When you […]

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Giving the finger to MFA - a review of the Z1 Encrypter Ring from Cybernetic

A plain black ring. What secrets does it contain within?

I have mixed feelings about Multi-Factor Authentication. I get why it is necessary to rely on something which isn't a password but - let's be honest here - it is a pain juggling between SMS, TOTP apps, proprietary apps, and magic links. I'm also not a fan of PassKeys1. It feels weird to me that […]

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Where are the U2F Rings?

Photo of an NFC ring, taken by Rain Ashford.

The FIDO specification defines a form of Universal 2nd Factor (U2F) when users log in to a system. Rather than relying on one-time codes sent via SMS, or displayed on a phone screen, these are physical hardware tokens which are used to supplement passwords. When used with websites, this technology is also known as WebAuthn. […]

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How can I launch a Spotify album from an NFC tag?

Spotify screen showing options.

This is annoying me. So I'm posting in the hope someone can tell me what obvious thing I am missing. I want to tap my phone against an NFC tag hidden in LP sleeve. Then I want my phone to automatically launch the Spotify app and for the app to display that album. This should […]

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This Artwork is an amiibo

A circular chip behind glass.

A few weeks ago, I picked up 20 NFC tags. But what to do with them? I know, let's make something impractical! I had this gorgeous Barret Biggers - Link Blot poster which had lain in a drawer for far too long. So I turned it into an Amiibo. Nestled in the corner, sandwiched between […]

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Gadget Review - YSSHUI NTAG215 NFC Tags

A bunch of white plastic circles in a bag.

I've spent most of the last decade ranting against NFC. QR Codes are almost always superior to NFC. QR codes hold more data, are extremely cheap, and easy to spot. NFC tags are limited in size, expensive, and have no universally recognised icon. Oh, and NFC doesn't work if it's stuck on a metal surface! […]

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