February 8, 2010
News - A Pair of Awesome Project…
about 5 years ago
Let’s just call this my anonymous nudging account;)
Perhaps an attitude adjustment is in order. I think SparkFun rocks as well, so I am trying to point out areas that need some attention to help SparkFun rock even harder.
Sure, I see 16 new products, but only three that look like they were actually designed by SparkFun: the candle kit, IDS1932 breakout and the serial motor driver.
Let’s break them down:
Candle Kit - Derivative, poorly commented code and the code directory wasn’t even clean.
IDS1932 Breakout - Pretty cool, I will give them that.
Serial Motor Driver - I2C is broken out (unlabeled), but could we get SPI next to it without having to disconnect the programmer? 90 degree headers make it difficult to breadboard. Also, why are there no large caps to keep the MCU running in the event of a voltage dip caused by a power-hungry load?
Is this increase in work as a result of Freeday enough to account for the apparent lack of inspiration or innovation we are seeing from the engineering department?
Dumbledorff, a 50% increase of what? I am guessing that you are referring to the increase of work as a result of Freeday.
I would like to see more tutorials that demonstrate applications for SparkFun products. Especially applications which are not commonly thought of or off-the-wall. The formula aught to be pretty simple for a SparkFun employee: take what you have lying around, be it from SparkFun, not from SparkFun, or just a need, combine it with what you can get from SparkFun and make a tutorial and possibly a product (and generate interest for sales). Doesn’t SparkFun have someone that continues to keep people wanting more just by showing them what they can do with SparkFun products (Application Engineer)?
As for Freeday, it should hardly be to blame at the lack of new stuff as I doubt that the SparkFun engineers would have been assigned duties in preparing for Freeday. Figure that no company is going to put up more than about ten percent of their monthly revenue to a giveaway like Freeday. Thus, SparkFun just has to deal with about ten percent more work for the month of January. Ten percent more work is not that much and the work is only in production, inventory, IT, and shipping. So your argument that Freeday had something to do with this stagnation is invalid.
The stagnation I refer to can be seen in the tutorials section. Look at the dates for the tutorials. There is a much higher frequency of tutorials in 2008 and early 2009 than compared to the second half of 2009.
Wow, things have really stagnated lately. When do we see more cool stuff? How about another tutorial highlighting one or more of your products? You have candle kit that was covered in Nut and Volts years ago. Its code lacks licensing information or even who created it. Even its blog post has this gem: “it’s only requires through-hole soldering.” Even the motor controller boards have to be hacked right away if you want to use more than one of them on the same bus. When will you go back to being cool and stop making posters of your boss like his is some kind of dictator in need of appeasement?
No public wish lists :(
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