Influx of Tutorials

Three new tutorials and a handful of new items.

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We've completed two new, wait, three new tutorials that we thought you'd like to checkout.
The first tutorial is a breakdown of how a unregulated linear wall power supply works. A user plugs in a wall-wart labeled '5V', attach it to their project, and things vaporize. Applying a multimeter, the wall-wart shows close to 10V on the output! Why is this? Because it's a linear power supply, that's why! This tutorial will break down the basics.

Note that we carry switch-mode wall power supplies for the most part. Switchers have a short-circuit protected regulated output, they are much lighter for shipping, handle way more current, and they don't suck up nearly as much phantom current as linear supplies.
The next tutorial is a really interesting one. We've started to use the LPC2148 quite extensively here at SparkFun for a handful of reasons. This tutorial will show you how you can get started using this powerful ARM7 processor, but it will also show you how to implement a really slick USB bootloader. Attach the LPC2148 to any computer and a flash drive will appear. Compile some code using the free WinARM toolchain, drag-drop the firmware file onto the flash drive, and wammo! Your ARM7 development board will have the new code loaded. Very quick, easy, and cheap way to get started with 32-bit processors.

We love the speed of this development cycle for the LPC2148 and are spinning more boards that utilize it. Did we mention the compiler and IDE was all free?
The third and final new tutorial is a unique one. We often get inquiries and recommendations to carry products developed by our own customers! It is fantastic and amazing to see the complexity and diversity of some of these submissions. If you too would like to submit a product to be sold on the SparkFun website, Selling your widget on SparkFun will breakdown all the pros and cons.

Checkout the latest revision of the GM862 cellular USB eval board. Now in red! And cleaned up significantly.

We now offer the nRF24L01+ (thanks for reminding us Gordon!). This is the latest IC from Nordic VLSI (our favorite wireless vendor in the whole wide world). The nRF24L01+ is exactly like the nRF24L01, plus some added features, better sensitivity, better range, all for the same price. We'll be migrating our breakout modules to this new IC in the coming weeks. If you've ever wanted to play with wireless, this is a fantastic chip to start with. And if you're looking for tutorials, Brennen Ball has created an astounding list of tutorials for the Nordic range of ICs for various platforms including the ARM7, PIC, and AVR.

This is a powerful new addition to the Magneto category. The Calibrated Magnetometer Mouse is a device that contains three axis of accelerometer, three axis of magneto sensors, and a powerful Atmel processor running considerable filters and calibration routines to generate a pointing device. It's not as good as a traditional mouse, but it serves as a development platform for navigation and orientation devices.

We now offer two additional sense memory alloy (SMA) based devices. These rotary actuators allow some really neat applications to take place where traditional actuators cannot be used (explosive environments, space exploration, etc).

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