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Posts posted by jim940

  1. The college sends me emails of jobs they are asked to help fill, and well this one is probably the best one so far ... :roll:


    ------------------------- is looking for a bright, enthusiastic graduate (or final year student) to join our growing team and who we can train and mentor to eventually become the lead programmer in our CNC department. CNC Programmer must create machine code (programs) and work instructions for operators to setup and run NC controlled machinery. The Programmer must be well versed in metal cutting mechanics and must prove out his programs on the machine tool.




    1. It is the responsibility of the CNC Programmer to establish and maintain programs, setups, documentation and operating procedures for machine tools in the CNC department.

    1.1 Must create geometry, tool paths, and prove out programs on the machine tool.

    2. Must ensure machining activities in the CNC department result in products conforming to all customer specific requirements outlined in drawings, travelers, and any other sub-tier work instructions issued.

    3. Must ensure programs are created to maximize machining efficiency through optimal tool selection, tool path selection, work holding selection, cutting parameters (speed and feed rates), and any other factors affecting the efficiency of the metal removal process.

    4. Must ensure that all CNC programs are accompanied by appropriate work instructions, tool lists, and setup documentation to guide setup and operation of the machines with the primary objective of minimizing machine downtime without affecting product quality and worker safety.

    5. Must ensure all tools and work holding devices are appropriately labeled for identification and must ensure they are stored in a safe and orderly fashion for quick retrieval.

    6. Must ensure all soft data including programs and setup documentation are safely stored in an organized fashion on the Company

  2. The largest FRAM chips I could find were 4-megaBITs in size (by Fujitsu)... and you need ONLY 4,000 times that.


    That is what I noticed too. But I can still dream. After all a USB key that can run faster and indefinitely read/write, would allow one to have a virtual desktop anywhere they go, not just a few choice applications to be used.


    Cause VBox+ReactOS is a little slow on a USB flash drive. :lol:



  3. So since I typically run a VBox of ReactOS out of a USB, using the protable VBox client. And well USB's do not last too long with that kind of use, and its rather slow.


    Anyone know if someone will throw together some FRAM onto a USB key? All I need is around 2GB, mind you I realize most FRAM chips currently produced are measured in KBs not even MB's.


    Or am I outright crazy? :lol:



  4. While that is a 17-20$ LCD .... its premade on a PCB and its a low power model. Price wise if TI was going to change FRAM + LCD it could appear as a 43.00 package. Which would not be too bad all things considered.



  5. Actually, "hot" doesn't have anything to do with phase.


    Yes that is true, sorry thinking of my math classes, teacher kept calling the different stages (relative to the degree position along the x-axis) of the sine wave as a "phase". In AC, your phase is caused by the shift of the sine wave relative to each other.




    But yes, nothing should happen if you touch the neutral, but as you said, and the regulations state, it can be dangerous to think that its "safe" to touch.



  6. techically the distinction is not AC vs. DC but isolated vs. non-isolated.


    Very true, and technically a transformerless AC-DC power supply probably wont cut it safety wise to ground anything as you say. Reading back I over simplified the situation in my post. So thank you for expanding. :D


    While I'm no expert at AC, actually I tend to avoid it (for the most part I still have a toroidal transformer I intend to make a power supply with), but not necessarily about your project in specific, just a general FYI before someone gets hurt. Because I keep hearing things like "hot" and "neutral" which are thought to be "safe" or "grounding" wires and it scares the crap out of me. Since in reality both are "hot" as they change phase 50-60 times a second and both will kill.



  7. Yes, however combining your post about the power supply:


    Thanks. I'll test the circuit. In Norway, where I live, many installations have both wires as live. Something like 135 V compared to ground, but 235v between the two live wires.


    Effectively your "GND" and your 235V (230V here), and your "middle ground" wire are all present in a North American home, we just don't use the 230V leg unless its to power our ovens. The 2 wires I'm talking about being live, are effectively in this diagram as N(neutral) and PE (GND) which are typically wired together, and the L1 line give you a nominal 115V/120V.




    While N/PE is "grounded" using a grounding rod at the home/building, its wrongly assumed to actually be a "ground" in the 3 wire system, or the older 2 wire system, in the similar sense that the ground on a DC power plane has nothing to do with each other.


    Connecting the N or PE line (per the diagram) to the metal case of a device is actually quite illegal if its done to make a "ground", your DC ground plane may be connected to the metal enclosure, however, AC grounding to N/PE is a no-no.


    The electricity to the home is not much different between here and there, we get a 230V line, (so L1 & L2) but we only push L2 to our bigger appliances (stoves), where as we wire L1 to our lights and outlets. But the "safe" N/PE and the "hot" L1 terminology here is a very old practice due to old light fixtures, and its not actually any safer then just realizing that both are hot and can kill you. As well, when designing actual devices that use AC, treating any of the lines shown (PE/N/L1/L2/L3) as your device "ground" by tying into it is dangerous and illegal internationally.


    Which, combined with the fact your not allowed to use a wire to reference your systems "ground potential" at, means that at least when done right a USB powered LP though the AC mains if done right should NOT kill the laptop regardless if the "hot" or "Neutral Ground" wires are mixed and matched between both devices.



  8. As much as I like it, I would strongly discourage from making transformer-less line voltage booster packs. Imagine what would happen if someone connected hot wire to GND and plugged it to USB.?


    The idea that the "hot" and "neutral" wire are only a North American phenomenon. With zero basis in fact.


    Many products come with polarized at the plug connectors but the cable itself can be plugged backwards in the machine (such as laptop power cords to the AC/DC adapter). Or the tons of non-polarized plugs in both North America but the rest of the world that has the "neutral" wire tied into ground none the less, meaning you might never know what is connected to neutral or the "hot" wire as only in North America are polarized plugs defined as some sort of "standard".


    Also international regulatory regulations prohibit the use of the neutral and hot wires in the manors sometimes described by people. A laptop or desktop PSU is NOT allowed to treat the hot wire as the "hot" wire, and the neutral wire cannot be treated as the "grounded" wire. Only in a properly installed 3 wire system can you try to use a wire as a ground throughout a building/home, of which many homes due to age do not actually have this ability to use, which again after the direct AC powered circuit (such as AC to DC conversion in a PSU) is still quite illegal to reference your loads to the AC neutral/ground because the wiring in any building is treated as suspect by the regulations.


    Anyways this is a pretty interesting read, and a good summery from a respectable source (APC):


    http://www.apcdistributors.com/white-pa ... hology.pdf



  9. Many cell phone USB chargers and laptop chargers today can switch from 120V/230V without a issue. Cause its cheaper to make one set of internals for everything then not nowadays. Check the back of your chargers, you might have one waiting and available already. World wide all companies do is change the plastic plate that faces the wall with the appropriate plug configuration during manufacture in their last operation so it costs no where near as much as running dedicated lines producing different adapters for different markets. Or in the case of laptop AC Adapters is provide you with a different 3ft length of cable with the appropriate plug attached to that instead of the expensive part (the AC/DC adapter itself).


    My Nokia cell phone charger is rated for a input of 100V-240V @ 50-60Hz and outputs 5V DC at 1.2A.


    As the examples closest to my desk that will give you your 5V DC and if your really cheap to drop the $5 5V power from the adapter do what oPossum does, use a LED to drop it down to ~3V.




  10. the only question you did not answer, why don't we have an MSP430 with ARDUINO form factor? we need to start somewere... I do not think Arduino was an overnight thing


    Some aspects of it were developed too quickly too soon, such as the blatant over sight of the .160" spacing which supposedly was a "mistake" that got over looked because people, including themselves, rushed the gun, developed shields etc based on Eagle part files that were never checked for spacing, and never produced a PCB for prototype checking before going ahead with the production run.


    Oversights such as the spacing, or in your case, hardware compatibility without the ease of use aspects, are the ones that can make or break a product. Arduino already had a large enough following during the design stages that it didn't matter, they were first and everyone else was willing to follow.


    Its like the early days of the IBM PC, it didn't matter if your PC looked like a IBM PC, all that mattered for most consumers is if it was "IBM PC Compatible" or not. Hardware without software compatibility killed a lot of early PC makers, which is why so many companies went to great lengths to make a "non-infringing" IBM compatible BIOS.


    Since you are the one standing to profit from this effort, you must remember that when your trying to break into a market that already knows what it wants, you must work to suit your product for it.



  11. what i am trying to show to the MSP430 comunity that the vast majority of MCU families have a processor with that form factor why would that be??? what am I missing??!! what do they know that I don't??


    Fixed it for you. If your going to market a product, especially in such a "big" way, you must realize that market research of the demographics your targeting is generally more important then how good or how bad the product really is.


    The purpose of Arduino like uC Development boards is well that they are easy (sometimes near brain dead) to work with. Which you mentioned, but hardware is not the "hard" part of development, writing libraries to make the hardware work is. Which is why just about every Arduino compatible shield designer/seller, offers a library that is plug and play into the Arduino IDE.


    Which isn't anything new in the uC world, the BASIC Stamp family of uC's had a lot of DIP module parts that could be easily installed on a breadboard, and every "extra" piece of hardware that was targeted to BASIC stamp users had a library courtesy of the sellers or manufacturers website's downloadable content.


    Arduino just carries this forward, from being relatively easy to program, to then being easy to do hardware interfacing, as the form factor and connections between the Arduino and the shields are decided by the shield makers leaving no room for the user to misjumper a cable on the bread board like the BASIC Stamp allowed.


    Arduino = Libraries to make programming easy PLUS the hardware you keep talking about.


    Without one or the other, its target demographic for anything "Arduino compatible" is totally left to dry.


    Porting the functions over isn't enough, nor is it really a start, the Arduino compatible uC boards today write wiring libraries (Wiring is a program by the way) that interface with the appropriate GCC version to do low level translation of AVR code inside processing itself (Processing is a program as well) making the individual functions meaningless as it ports over the code in a boarder sense instead of replicating each and every function imaginable.


    Even different versions of "official" Arduino use the same wiring libraries tell the compiler how to handle code for the UNO instead of the Mega or vice versa.



  12. Pinguino


    But what that has, which your product wont:


    Pinguino Language is compatible with Arduino's Language, Libraries and Shields.


    Showing off a bunch of Arduino footprints to try and validate your little project doesn't work when it is still missing the complete picture of the Arduino compatibles.


    A good analogy (assuming WINE didn't already exsist) is like you trying to sell 2 desktop PC's with the tower, keyboard, mouse and monitor, except your telling your customers (that would be us) that your Linux box is compatible with your competitors (Microsoft), except "Oh I'm sure you can come up with the API layer to interface your PC to all of your existing Windows software".


    At best its a half truth, at worst, its well snake oil.



  13. But what I am saying is, we now have a library, that Rob gave us, and the MSGEQ7 chip can be had for as low as $2 so the need to spend 12 times that for a shield is in my opinion a little silly.


    Other boards, such as Ethernet, wireless etc that would involve more "work" to interface, due to SMD could in a sense be a good reason to go with Arduino shields, but without software support, the premium price of anything labelled "Arduino" wouldn't really make it worth getting a shield when cheap break out boards already exist and are generally smaller then the shield.



  14. 4.-The libraries will need to be converted, processing is just another lenguaje working as interpreter/compiler for ARDUINO, the underlaying C/C++ libraries can be ported to any MCU platform, and i do not plan to do that


    Then I really have to ask what is the point?


    If you can not leverage the software libraries that shield producers make for Arduino by using a Arduino IDE that has your cross linking library for your specific board (such as the chipKIT or the Maple), there is not much advantage of using a Arduino shield over a break out board (which for the most part can be had at a fraction of the cost of the comparable Arduino shield). Since the same amount of effort is required to use both of them.



  15. does that make sense?


    Makes sense but Rick said it best ...


    I think what others are unsuccessfully trying to suggest to you is that they might like your

    board better if you added a second row of headers aligned on the standard .1" grid


    Also these points are needed to truely make it work:


    Do the pins on your boards map to pins on the msp430 that have compatible functionality as the atmega pins?

    I mean with regard to I2C, SPI, PWM, ADC, UART, etc.


    This is important, because the shields come as finished PCB's, and if the lines do not match, you cannot run the shield without modifications, then why use a shield in the first place?


    Does the board take care of making the inputs and outputs 5 volts?


    If it doesn't level shift by default, there will be a lot of dead boards floating around. Even the Arduino Pro's in 3.3V have been killed over time due to this over sight.


    Are you going to create an Arduino API for the msp430f5172?


    As Rick said, it needs a Arduino API (Wiring library) to make it work on the Arduino SketchPad otherwise all of the functions built for Arduino will not be compatible with your board. So the fact there will be shields available doesn't change much, since there are many break out boards of the same items already available that can already be used with the MSP430, and your at the same starting point due to lack of software libraries to "borrow" shield capability or not.


    It really depends on your demographic, but Arduino and similar development tools are not targeting programmers, electrical engineers or designers, they target the hobby market that wants to make something work and "now".


    For example, currently in this city, the post-secondary schools using Arduino, are in mainly programs that are not related to computer science, the largest is a Arts school that uses them in a digital arts course to make LED displays, second is architecture students at a local university, and the third is a mechanical design program at a college. The Electrical and Computer programming/science programs are all still using PIC or 8051 microcontrollers from the looks of things.



  16. The problem with the Arduino footprint is its use of a shifted by .06 header system.


    So you cannot use cheap .100x.100 grid Prototype PCBs easily. Which doesn't matter if your only goal is to use shields or you fabricate a PCB for every design, but can be a drag when you look at the cost of Arduino compatible prototype boards.



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