During my day job a call was mistakenly transferred to me. It was a teacher that needed help with a website not loading. Normally I only take calls related to the systems I manage and support. Turns out it was a Java applet that a science teacher was trying to us in the computer lab. Once he emailed me the link and I saw what it was, I got excited. It’s a Java applet that you can learn basic circuits. Check it out below. Click to Run http://phet.colorado.edu/en/simulation/circuit-construction-kit-dc Turns out downloading and updating Java fixed it. The joys of Java!
We buy the bulk of our parts from Digi-Key for the products and projects we make at our home office. Prices are great and you can rest assure that you will not receive any counterfeit parts. When you order something online, I always wonder where its been and what it went through before landing into your excited hands. I recently came across this awesome slideshow from IEEE Spectrum that showcases what it’s like at Digi-Key. IEEE Spectrum
Thanks to aerodynes, for the great review of our new USB Tester and Backpack 2.0. “This is a test and review of the new version of the FriedCircuits USB tester and backpack. If you read my previous articles on the backpack and its extensions, you already know that I am a big fan of this simple and very useful tool. …” Read the complete review here:http://www.aerodynes.fr/2014/02/05/friedcircuits-usb-tester-and-backpack-reloaded/
Check out this great post about how Arduino memory works and how to work with limited memory. This includes tips of ways to trim the fat from your program. http://learn.adafruit.com/memories-of-an-arduino
Working with microcontrollers tends to lead to using coin cell batteries. They are great small batteries and due to their internal resistance, you can usually run an LED directly. Here is a an interesting article from Nordic Semiconductor about high drain pulse impact on coin cells. ABSTRACTUltra low power wireless connectivity is being added to an ever greater number of coin cell battery poweredapplications. Calculating the battery lifetime of such a product is always important, buthow is the capacity ofthe battery affected by the usage pattern?This article shows how the high peak, but short duration pulsed loads typical of ultra low power wirelessapplications affect Energizer® CR2032 coin cell batteries and how your design and operation affects the batterylife time you …
I came across this article about power supply efficiency the other day while researching power supplies. It is quite the informative read, I highly recommend it! In the early 1990s, it was estimated that there were more than 1 billion external power supplies active in the United States alone. The efficiency of these power supplies, mainly utilizing linear technology, could be as low as 50% and still draw power when the application was turned off or not even connected to the power supply (referred to as “no-load” condition). Experts calculated that without efforts to increase efficiencies and reduce “no-load” power consumption, external power supplies would account for around 30% of total energy consumption in less than 20 years. As early …
Just got an email this morning from Newark that you can -order the BeagleBone Black. Great new price and improved hardware. By the time I checked it said 0 available, but it looks like you can still checkout. Hopefully I can get one this summer. Here is the info posted by Engadget: The BeagleBone might be just the piece of hardware for the DIY set itching to boot Linux in 10 seconds, but the freshly unveiled BeagleBone Black packs an even greater punch — and the same speedy start times — at just half the price of its predecessor. The $45 credit card-sized package totes a 1GHz ARM Cortex-A8 processor, 3D graphics accelerator, a pair of PRU 32-bit RISC CPUs, 2GB of built-in storage …
An awesome review of the USB Tester can be found over at Hybernaut’s Tinker Blog http://tinker.hybernaut.com/blog/2013/02/03/friedcircuits-usb-breakout. Thanks goes to Daniel, the software engineer behind the blog, for mentioning and linking up the USB Tester and the USB Tester OLED. Be sure to check out his site – it’s a new one to watch!
After a much needed winter break, I was able to catch-up and read some articles today. I’d like to share this video from SparkFun, of an easy way to learn logic gates using dominoes.
Check out this neat limited edition circuit board tent from FieldCandy. It would be awesomely ironic to use while camping! The holidays are approaching, what’s on your wishlist? Each Thursday, from now until January, we will be featuring list-worthy products to help you decide on gifts for your family/friends or for yourself! Of course, we’re open to accepting gifts too… Stay posted for more ideas!