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Published on: September 15, 2013 / Comments: None

Lazy Sunday Links – 9/15/2013

Sunday is a good lazy day. Time to learn stuff and bang out some easy hacks.


Chirp is a Javascript toolkit for creating chiptunes.  Only works in Google Chrome but sounds retro-tastic and actually sounds pretty good.

Voltage dividers are an essential skill to learn when building circuits. Go learn some voltage diviers.

Transmit data serially without a Microcontroller.  Uses a specialized IC by Holtek to transmit and receive, but really quite useful if you have some data you want to move and don’t feel like adding a Microcontroller to your project!

The gMax is a pretty large 3D Printer on kickstarter.  It boasts a 16″ x 16″ x 9″ print volume.  Wow that’s some large prints!

Don’t understand how hobbyist FDM 3D Printers work ?  Here’s a writeup on how they work.

The illustrated guide to crypto hashes.  Informative

Tuning an RTOS can be daunting to pick the right scheduling algorithm. How to select the right algorithm using system modeling.

If you’re not a VIM guru, you’re probably using the nano text editor.  Here’s some tips to make your nano experience a little more pleasurable.  Works on the Raspberry Pi too.


Published on: September 12, 2013 / Comments: None

Simple logic analzyer using an ATTiny2313

All too many times we end up creating a tool out of necessity.  Joonas was looking for a simple way to decode PS/2 keyboard data for another project.  So he decided to build a simple logic analyzer that would let him inspect the signals.

The build uses a ATTiny2313 microcontroller, connected to a FTDI USB-to-UART adapter.  On the software side it’s real simple, open up a serial port and capture the serial data.  The data can then be plotted in OpenSniffer and visualized graphically.  One of the downsides to this project is the data rate is pretty low which is estimated at sub 100khz.

Source code is available up at Joonas site.

Published on: September 8, 2013 / Comments: None

Lazy Sunday Links – 9/8/2013

It’s sunday, time for a barrage of quick links.

First up, muxberrypi.  Control your Raspberry Pi via node.js and websockets.  Similar to the heimcontrol.js project.  Source repo here.  Video below.


A quick acetone vapor bath rig made from goodwill parts.  Image tutorial here.  The end results didn’t turn out that good, but I have faith in the process.  Tutorial is brief but you can get the idea.



Build a mini USB powered soldering fume extractor.  Steps here.  Can also be used as a personal cooling agent when you get really hot.  Good to have with that USB soldering iron.

OpenWRT support has been added for the Raspberry Pi.  Source repo here.  Might end up being a quality distro for turning your Pi into a router.  OpenWRT is pretty well established, I appreciate they already made the decision not to include XBMC in it.

Looking to make battery powered devices ?  Then you should probably learn more about batteries.  Calculating Amp Hours, Capacity testing, etc.

And finally, a quick crash course to programming the serial port in windows and linux.

Published on: August 26, 2013 / Comments: None

Data into smart phones and tablets via audio

You have probably seen those little dongles that let people swipe their credit card on their smart phone or tablet.  These little dongles transmit data to the device via the microphone jack.  The audio recorded is then examined and the data is either a one or a zero.

In the example described by the article, they are using a PIC and the data is encoded via manchester encoding.  A resistor and a pot are used to tweak the output level.  This is a great way to send data to a smart phone or tablet without making any crazy custom dongles but you are limited in capabilities.

Schematic and example source code is included in the post.

Published on: July 30, 2013 / Comments: 3

Dead easy way to talk to yer PI with yer ‘Duino

Need an easy way to have your Arduino talk to your Raspberry PI?  Oscar has you covered.  The naturally obvious solution is just to run the USB serial from the Arduino to the Raspberry PI’s USB host.  Add a quick arduino sketch, some python using pyserial and you’re in business.

If you’ve modded your Raspberry PI’s power supply and have a decent power output on your ports, you can just run the Arduino from the PI.

Should only take you a few minutes to get this up and running.  Check it out.