The MintyBoost is an open-source, small form-factor, USB charger which runs on AA batteries – and lets you charge your mobile phone, tablet or other USB device, without the need for mains power or a computer.  It was designed by one of the leading proponents of the open-source hardware movement, LadyAda – aka MIT Engineering […]

Getting started with BeagleBone

I’ve just picked up a BeagleBone… BeagleBone is a small, low(ish) cost, open-source Linux computer on a  board – using an ARM Cortex-A8 processor running at 720 MHz, with 256 MB of RAM.  Unlike an Arduino – this is a fully-fledged computer. This makes it extremely powerful – and makes it a nice device to play with, to […]

555 Astable Oscillator Video

Here’s a video that I made to accompany my previous blog post…

555 Astable Oscillator

In my last few posts I’ve been writing about using an Arduino to generate waveforms. Part 3 of that series is still in the works (I’ve not forgotten, honestly!) – but this time I want to write about an alternative way to make a simple waveform: using good old analogue electronics, without the need for […]

The death of the mouse?

I’ve seen the future, and there are no mice in it. Apple certainly have a history of setting the trends in popular computing. From the mass-market appeal of the Apple II, through to the revolution in mobile computing brought about with the iPhone & iPad; not forgetting, of course, the introduction of the mouse with […]

Arduino Function Generator (Part 2)

Last time, we looked at some Arduino code that we could use to generate some square waves. The problem with the setup we’ve been looking at so far, is that we can only produce signals of one amplitude – equivalent to the HIGH logic level. In order to be able to produce any other waveforms […]

Arduino Function Generator (Part 1)

I was looking around for an interesting Arduino project, and I came up with the idea of making a function generator (also called a signal generator). The reason I picked a function generator is that it gives us the chance of playing with some interesting circuits – and some interesting code… Before we start with […]

Google Chromebook

Google & Samsung have announced the details of the first generation of Chromebooks – thin-client laptops running Google’s Chrome OS & reliant on a web connection for all of their capabilities. But can they succeed in a competitive market-place? The Chromebook is a nice idea. Thin-client (cloud) computing is becoming (if not yet the norm) […]

The end of the paperback?

I’ve just taken delivery of a device, which I believe, will mark the end of the paperback book as we know it: the Amazon Kindle. Electronic books aren’t exactly new.  E-readers of various types have been around for some time now – but never before have they had quite the flexibility & performance of the […]

Electric Cars – tomorrow’s technology…

I’m about to buy a new car; and with a bit of luck it’ll be the last oil-burning vehicle I ever own…  But what it won’t be is an all electric car. Before I go on, a few disclaimers.  Firstly I’m not any kind of tree-hugging hippie – in fact I am what might be […]