Tech Explorations Blog

News and articles about education technology

What happens if (purposely or by mistake) you give a negative PWM value to analogWrite()?

In order to understand what happens when you give a negative PWM value to analogWrite, you need to know how the Arduino deals with negative numbers, and how those are used in the PWM function. The following contains some binary logic terms that you may not be familiar with, so I apologize if I...
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Kicad 5 recipe: How to create a new component (symbol)

This is a recipe from my new book "Kicad Like a Pro", 2nd edition. This book should be available in late 2018 in print and ebook editions. A video course is also in the works. In this recipe, you will learn how to create a custom component (or symbol, as it is also known). You will use symbols...
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Why I think that the Blockchain can help save the world

In a post I made recently on LinkedIn, I wrote that "#Blockchain perhaps will help save the world." Two respondents asked for clarification. How can the Blockchain save the world? Save from whom? I thought that the statement "#Blockchain perhaps will help save" would raise a few...
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What is microstepping?

A stepper motor is designed to move at one step at a time by energizing its coils at the exact right times. When the motor moves like this (1 step at a time) it also moves within its torque specs.Drivers like the EasyDriver can do microstepping. This is a way to get the motor to make each step...
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Stemiverse 0044 - Celinda Corsini on designing Project-based Learning

Welcome to Stemiverse Podcast episode 44. In this episode, Dr Peter Dalmaris talks with Celinda Corsini. Sorry, your browser does not seem to support the audio player. Please consider upgrading to the latest Firefox, Chrome or Safari browser. Celinda is a passionate and innovative...
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Kicad 5 - How to use the freeRouting autorouter

In Kicad 5, the autorouter that was included in Kicad 4 has been removed. It is likely that a new autorouter will be added in the future. Until then, you can use an external autorouter. In this recipe you will learn how to use Freerouting, and open source autorouter. The online...
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Kicad Like a Pro new book - Testing the dimensions and fitting of a prototype board

BreadboardPowerSupplyFitting.mp4 Hi everyone. As you may know I'm working on a new Kicad book, and Kicad 5 came out recently. And in this quick video I wanted to show you one of the PCBs that come out of one of the projects in this book and this PCB is a simple breadboard power supply....
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Kicad 5 preview and my first impressions

QuickPreviewKicad5.mp4 Hi. I've been playing around with KiCad 5, the version that I've got here is the release candidate I believe and after reading a few articles I think that KiCad 5 will be released later this month or at least its features will be frozen and then the actual release...
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Kicad - a small beginners project preview

I am dedicating a significant part of my work-in-progress Kicad book to projects. I have planned for a total of six projects, although I may need to reduce that to four or five for practical considerations. The project I am currently working on involves a simple power supply that fits on a...
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Using bypass/decoupling capacitors

In the circuit above, the two capacitors highlighted with the red background perform decoupling and noise-reduction functions. In DC electronics, capacitors can be used as a source of energy, and as a filter. In the first instance, a capacitor can be used as a reservoir of energy that can...
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