Back in the 1990s, a 1.44mb floppy disk was a reasonable storage size for most documents. For bigger documents or backing up an internal hard drive, other options were necessary. You might remember the Zip Drive, but that wasn’t the first large portable media.
The Bernoulli Box was the precursor to the Zip Drive. It used custom media that could store 10s to 100mbs on portable disks. Well, portable compared to carrying around an entire hard drive. Operating using the Bernoulli principal, the drive’s head never comes in contact with the “floppy” material inside the protective case.
Clint of Lazy Game Reviews takes a look at this cool forgotten drive technology in this video.
What part is the most important part in building a project? All of them! Okay, bad joke. Selecting the right parts or components for a design is an area where both new hobbyist and veteran engineers struggle. The wide variety of devices make it almost impossible to know if you are selecting the right one.
Looking at a curated List, using component search engines and browsing DIY shops are how I tend to find parts for my projects.
You might want to bookmark these some of these sites so you can use them next time you’re stuck on how to find parts for your project.
Using a learning algorithm known as NEAT, this Super Mario World play through is an example of a machine learning how to beat the level on its own. Using an evolutionary process, a neural network was built–or learned–to complete the level. The name of the program used to control Mario is called… Mar-I/O.
- N: Neuro
- E: Evolution of
- A: Augmenting
- T: Topologies
The initial play through is fascinating as well as the breakdown of what is going on. Well worth the 5 minutes.
There are two methods to making a prototype PCB: 1) Etch Your Own or 2) Send to a Prototyping Service. While there are many prototyping service options, most cause you to wait anywhere between 24 hours and 30 days before you get your boards back.
If you need a PCB done today, etching at home is a great option. Chemical etching involves all kinds of steps with all kinds of weird chemicals. If you don’t want your neighbors to think you’re the next Walter White, then mechanical etching is a better option. Which is why I bought an X-Carve from Inventables. It’s a CNC Milling Kit you build yourself.
Keep reading for my X-Carve CNC Review and first-hand experience on etching my first PCB. Plus, lots of pictures!
Use de-caffeinated Silicon, of course!
AddOhms DVD Volume 1 is now Back In Stock
Want to learn more about electronics and support this blog? Check out Volume 1 of the AddOhms DVD. It’s the first 13 tutorial videos from the AddOhms YouTube channel, plus a second disc of Bonus content.
These DVDs are professionally produced and available from my Tindie Store.
Right now I’ve only got United States shipping setup, so please ask for shipping if you’re outside the US. (Not sure which countries to set up first.)
4 keys to getting electronics help for your project
When describing a person, do you ever use the phrase “their strength is their weakness?” That’s how I feel about Internet forums. The strength of forums is the collective knowledge of like-minded people, some with more experience than others. Sadly, that is also the weakness of Internet forums… Whether it is a topic-specific site like the EEVBlog Forum or an almost anything site like Reddit the strength/weakness holds true.
Lucky for us, most engineering-focus forums are a positive place to ask question and get electronics help.
If you ask better questions, you can get better answers. So, here are 4 proven tips to help ask better questions, when looking for electronics help.
Tutorial on schematics basics
The funny thing about schematics is that they are much easier to draw than they are to read. There are many common circuits. When an experienced engineer looks at them, it’s like a second language. When someone less experienced looks at them, it looks like random lines and symbols thrown together at the last-minute. (Or maybe that’s just the schematics *I* draw.)
Other than reading Schematic Symbols themselves, one of the basic skill necessary to read a schematic is recognizing series and parallel circuits.
In short if the same current flows through all the parts, they are in series. While if current has different paths, they are in parallel. Keep reading to dive into this tutorial on how ohm’s law applies to series and parallel circuits.