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Electronics

This blog described electronic components that can be used to support or interface to nanodevices.

Music Glove

morreale Sunday 26 of May, 2019
This YouTube video describes how to make a music glove based on the BBC Micro:bit. The Micro:bit can be programmed in Blocks, JavaScript, Python, and Scratch. The glove is sown together in real time with Alex Glow and Helen Leigh who designed the glove and teaches music technology. Alex and Helen discuss many topics while building glove and the links to some of these topics are shown below. I’m fascinated with the idea that the glove can be used create music by converting gestures and accelerometer data from the Micro:bit to MIDI commands that can control MIDI instruments.




Topics

The MINI.MU Music Glove

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@HelenLeigh on Twitter

Daphne Oram founded the BBC radiographic workshop and composed electronic music. She developed a technique for created music and it named after her – Oramics.

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Delia Derbyshire was a musician and electronic music composer at the radiographic workshop. She is known for creating the Doctor Who theme. The BBC released a documentary on the Sculptress of Sound: The Lost Works of Delia Derbyshire in 2010 and a short documentary The Delian Mode was released the year before.

Pure Data (or just Pd) is an open source visual programming language for multimedia.

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Matrix Voice is a voice development board used to create IoT voice apps. The board is compatible with the Raspberry Pi and more information about it can be found in The MagPi Matrix Voice Review article.

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SuperCollider is a platform for audio synthesis and algorithmic composition, used by musicians, artists, and researchers working with sound.

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The Sister Moon art project transmits voice and instruments at the moon and records the reflected signal. The project was developed by Marine Nicole Rojina and uses the Dwingeloo Radio Telescope in the Netherlands.

dadamachines Doppler is a new platform for open music hardware. It contains an ARM microprocessor and an Lattice ICE FPGA. Software can be developed using the Arduino IDE. A review of the board can be found at ycombinator.

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Teardown 2019 is a hacking, discovering, and sharing hardware event.

Vulpestruments has a blog that describes how to connect the music glove to a MIDI controller.

The Music Glove on Computerphile.

Drone development kit

morreale Friday 26 of August, 2016
Intel is working on the Aero Platform for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs). It contains a quad core Atom processor, storage, IO, communications, flight controller, AirMap, and Intel's RealSense technology in package of about 2.5 × 3.5 inches (64 × 89 mm). The Aero platform is expected to cost $400, the vision accessory is $150, and the enclosure is $70, approximately. Yumeec is offering the Typhoon H drone for aerial photography incorporating the Aero platform and the RealSense vision system.

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High density 2 kW inverter webinar.

morreale Friday 27 of May, 2016
Professor Robert Pilawa-Podgurski from the University of Illinois gave a very good webinar on Tackling the Little Box Challenge - New circuit architectures to achieve a 216 W/in^3 power density 2 kW inverter.

The Little Box Challenge was a contest sponsored by Google and the IEEE to build an 2 kW 400 VDC to 240 VAC single phase inverter with at least a 50 W per cubic inch power density. The contest had a $1,000,000 prize. Over a hundred teams entered and eighteen teams were selected to submit their design for testing at NREL. Three teams passed the test. The webinar describes his teams efforts to build a inverter for the challenge.

Fundamentals of PCB Design

morreale Tuesday 17 of May, 2016
The Fundamentals of PCB Design webinar is given by Dr. Howard Johnson and is a wonderful overview of PCB design process. Dr. Johnson is the author of the very good book "High-Speed Digital Design: a Handbook of Black Magic".

2015 IEEE Proceedings

morreale Tuesday 09 of February, 2016
The 26th International Symposium on Space Terahertz Technology was held Match 16-18, 2015 in Cambridge MA. The proceeding of the symposium are available online. Session topics included:
  • System for Space Applications
  • Hot Electron Bolometers
  • Receivers
  • Bolometer Spectrometers
  • Sources
  • Instruments for CMB Observations
  • History & Current Developments
  • Detection Theory and Techniques
  • Direct Detectors
  • Posters

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Getting started with AWS IoT webinar

morreale Tuesday 09 of February, 2016
In case you missed it, the Getting started wit AWS IoT webinar is now available as an archive on YouTube as are the sildes. The webinar provide an overview of how to setup up and connect a device to the AWS cloud services. The webinar also demonstrate how to connect a pool pump to the cloud and have the cloud send SNS messages to a phone with the status of the pump.

It was pretty neat. The AWS IoT system uses certificates for authentication and authorization, and creates a shadow of the device in the cloud. All applications interact with the device shadow. When the device is in communications with the cloud via the MQTT had HTTP protocols using encrypted links with TLS 1.2, then it's state is synchronized with the shadow. There are SDK for devices running RTOS, and embedded Linux. The embedded Linux SDK is based on Node JS and supports Raspberry Pi, Adruino Yun, BeagleBone Green, Qualcomm Snapdragon DragonBoard, and other single board computer kits and devices.

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MD&M 2015 Philadelphia

morreale Monday 14 of September, 2015
The MD&M 2015 Philadelphia Conference and Expo is October 7-8, 2015 at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia, PA. I've been to the MD&M Expo at the Jacob Javits convention center in NYC. It was incredible for its size and scope. If the Philly Expo is anything like the NYC expo, then anyone thinking of building a product now or in the near future should attend at least one day. The NYC Expo is so large it took me 3 days of walking and talk to people to cover every isle in 2014. It was highly illuminating. This year it only took 2 days. Also, participating in the speed networking sessions was a lot fun too.

Electricity reliability trends

morreale Monday 14 of September, 2015
Berkeley Labs has released a report on electricity reliability on the United States. This study looked at reliability data collected by electricity distribution companies, and created two metrics.
  • System Average Interruption Duration Index (SAIDI) which indicates the amount of time a customer is without power over the course of a year on average.
  • System Average Interruption Frequency Index (SAIFI) which is the average total number of times a customer experiences a power interruption over the course of a year.
The study looked at power disruptions from storms like Hurricane Sandy, and without major events like this to determine power reliability. When major storms are included then the study finds that hotter days, higher wind speeds, and higher annual precipitation results in an increase in SADI (see the report for all the details).

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Energy Harvesting Power Conversion

morreale Monday 14 of September, 2015
Analog Devices has a new power management chip designed for energy harvesting power applications. It can convert power from a solar cell and store the energy is a super capacitor, and supply power from a supplementary power source like a battery. The chip, ADP5090, has a 320 nA quiescent current, can operate from 80 mV to 3.3 at the input, and supply 2.2 to 5.2 V to a load.

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Open Health Hardware

morreale Friday 26 of June, 2015
Open Hardware Healthcare has posted a nice Review of Open-Source Healthcare Platforms & Sensors. These platforms support quite a few sensors including pulse sensor, oxygen in blood sensor, airflow sensor, body temperature sensor, ECG sensor, galvanic Skin Response (GSR) sensor, glucometer, accelerometer, blood pressure sensor, and EMG sensor, for example.


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Art of Electronics 3rd Edition

morreale Friday 19 of June, 2015
The Art of Electronics 2nd Edition and the Students Manual for the Art of Electronics are both really wonderful references for building practical electronic circuits. Now, Horowitz and Hill have rewritten The Art of Electronics in a 3rd edition. The contents include:
  • ONE: Foundations
  • TWO: Bipolar Transistors
  • THREE: Field-Effect Transistors
  • FOUR: Operational Amplifiers
  • FIVE: Precision Circuits
  • SIX: Filters
  • SEVEN: Oscillators and Timers
  • EIGHT: Low-Noise Techniques
  • NINE: Voltage Regulation and Power Conversion
  • TEN: Digital Logic
  • ELEVEN: Programmable Logic Devices
  • TWELVE: Logic Interfacing
  • THIRTEEN: Digital meets Analog
  • FOURTEEN: Computers, Controllers, and Data Links
  • FIFTEEN: Microcontrollers
  • 16 appendixes
Much of the content is new. A second volume with more advanced material is planned. The students manual has been revised to be more useful for practicing engineers and this version is titled: Learning the Art of Electronics — A Hands-on Approach, and is due out late this year.

element14 has an nice interview with the authors at element14 interviews "The Art of Electronics" authors Paul Horowitz and Winfield Hill. Also, Adafruit has a Youtube interview with Paul Horwitz.

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Interview with Bob Dokin

morreale Saturday 07 of March, 2015
The Computer History Museum interviewed Linear Technology's CTO Bob Dokin. In the interview, Bob describes
  • the unique aspects of analog design compared to digital design,
  • the early days of Linear as a startup
  • product strategy
  • a short mention of Jim Williams
  • the low low turnover rate at the company
  • new engineers work with more experienced engineers for years to develop the analog knack
The first half hour was pretty interesting, but then it dragged a bit for me. The interviewer did not seem to know much about the subject matter.