Member Since: May 20, 2010

Country: United States



Rocket Scientist

Spoken Languages

English, Klingon

Programming Languages

Whatever best gets the job done, usually C. My favorite language was Modula-2 (look it up).


WPI, CU Boulder. Degrees in aerospace engineering and computer science.


Spacecraft systems engineering, embedded systems engineering, low-level firmware, 3D graphics and animation, and troubleshooting (but real trouble shoots back).


Hacking (the good kind), scuba diving, dumpster-diving for obsolete hardware, anything that flies (from bees to the Space Shuttle), birdwatching, sending stuff into orbit and beyond.



A look at what PRS/A+PRS competitors will be facing on September 17

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Sweeping legal changes are afoot that could change the hobbyist airspace for years to come. Your input can make a difference.

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CubeSats will soon be traveling beyond LEO, and are available in a new compact size. We check in with the people pushing the limits.

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On April 5th, teams from around Colorado will try out their miniature Mars rovers in the Great Sand Dunes.

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How to handle the child for whom disassembling their toys is more fun than actually playing with them.

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SparkFun returns to the AIAA Small Satellite Conference with more people, more stuff, and export-controlled sombreros.

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What did you do on your summer vacation? These students are launching experiments on government sounding rockets.

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You've just finished your new project. Before you apply power, here are a few tips to keep the smoke in.

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Mike and Pete take a road trip to an innovative aerospace conference to find out more about the final frontier for amateur spacecraft makers

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Rock-climbing researchers use clever dataloggers to solve a migration mystery and help save a species.

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Your Personal Black Box

Inexpensive sensors and storage are giving us the ability to record our lives, revisit the past, and sometimes solve mysteries.

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Sam Berrada dropped by to show off the sign language to speech system he designed. Did we mention he's in the 8th grade?

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Powering LilyPad LED Projects

December 17, 2016

Learn how to calculate how many LEDs your LilyPad project can power and how long it will last.

Hobby Servo Tutorial

May 26, 2016

Servos are motors that allow you to accurately control the rotation of the output shaft, opening up all kinds of possibilities for robotics and other projects.

RFM69HCW Hookup Guide

April 29, 2016

The RFM69HCW is an inexpensive transceiver that you can use to create all kinds of wireless projects. This tutorial will help you get started.

LilyPad Pixel Board Hookup Guide

September 16, 2015

Add changing colors to your wearable projects using LilyPad Pixel Boards.

Cackling Apple Head Witch

October 30, 2014

Make your own cackling apple head witch to scare all of the trick or treaters this Halloween!

LTC4150 Coulomb Counter Hookup Guide

September 18, 2014

A "Coulomb Counter" is like a gas gauge for your battery. Here's how to use it.

BMP180 Barometric Pressure Sensor Hookup

January 9, 2014

The BMP180 is a barometric pressure sensor, this tutorial tells you how to use it.

TSL2561 Luminosity Sensor Hookup Guide

December 27, 2013

The TSL2561 is an light sensor that's very inexpensive for the accuracy it provides. Here's how to use it.

Getting Started with the LilyPad MP3 Player

May 8, 2013

The LilyPad MP3 Player is an amazing little board that contains almost everything you need to play audio files. You can use it to create all kinds of noisy projects, from MP3 hoodies to talking teddy bears. Your imagination is the only limit! This tutorial will help you get started.

What is a Circuit?

February 6, 2013

Every electrical project starts with a circuit. Don't know what a circuit is? We're here to help.

Serial Peripheral Interface (SPI)

January 14, 2013

SPI is commonly used to connect microcontrollers to peripherals such as sensors, shift registers, and SD cards.
  • Stop it, both of you, or I’ll turn this car around.

  • Credit where credit’s due: this board was a complex one for us, and development took longer than we hoped. This usually means that the last stage, production, unfairly shoulders the burden for getting it out on time. But even short-staffed for the holidays and with numerous high-priority builds on their plate, our production team quickly and flawlessly worked it into their flow. They’re the best in the business.

  • Hey Gabe! Very sorry about that, restring is an annoying feature that I’d prefer we didn’t use, but it’s present on many of our designs. It’s a global override for pad sizes; even though the library may have a small pad, if restring is set to a larger value in your design, the pads will grow.

    You can change it in your design in the board editor, in tools/DRC, in the restring tab. Play with the values for pads, if you make those values smaller (even 0), the pad size in the board editor should shrink as well. Hope you’re well, and hope this helps.

  • The difference is in the adhesives. The conductive adhesive is exactly that; if you lay one piece of tape over another, the conductive adhesive will allow the two strips to conduct to each other. The non-conductive adhesive is insulating; if you lay one piece over another, they will not conduct to each other.

    The conductive adhesive tape is great for paper circuits; it lets you easily make circuits from multiple pieces of tape rather than having to carefully bend a single long piece for each connection.

  • We’re still working out the scoring details, but the no-GPS bonus will apply to both AVC and A+PRSraces. And we’re currently planning on A+PRS being one-lap races; the human-driven PRS races will likely be multi-lap.

  • “Don’t play lawyerball, son.” - Hank Hill

  • We’re currently planning on livestreaming all three AVC events: Traditional AVC, PRS, and Robot Combat.

  • Funny story, I almost bought a surplus Cray 1, but it took up half a railroad boxcar and I didn’t have a place to put it at the time.

  • The correct maximum width is 36 inches. Sorry for our mistake, “32” is a number well-burned into programmer’s brains…

  • Nope, the Sequencer has an on-board regulator, so you can run both the sequencer and your inverter on 12V. Give the Sequencer 12V at the “batt in” connector. If you put a drop of solder on SJ1 to close it, the input 12V will also pass through to the “DC to inverter” connector for your inverter. Have fun!