Member #260321

Member Since: October 20, 2011

Country: United States

  • The SAMD51 Thing Plus is an interesting new product but there's not much guidance on where SparkFun plans to go with it. Some exmples would be useful and some better information from SparkFun about how to program it -- Atmel Studio, Arduino, or some style of Python?

  • This sudden change is bad and might get even worse. Possibly companies such as SparkFun will find second sources for many products and reprice others to reduce losses. But the reduced demand (and it goes both ways in a trade war) is not good for business and some companies will be weakened or forced out of business. We could be starting a great worldwide recession.

  • Around 1960 there were some "war surplus" stores in California. Vacuum tube gear, racks and test equipment picked up at government auction for pennies on the dollar. Some of this equipment was repurposed into Amateur Radio service. There still has to be warehouses full of more recent "surplus" in some of the low rent areas. Probably ebay has made it easier to sell the stuff.

  • Small issue - in the SparkFun product pages for the "Helium Atom Prototyping Module", WRL-14549, "Schematic (Atom)" link brings up the same page as the "Datasheet (Atom)" link. By and by I was able to wind through the links to a schematic on but the information is kind of sparse.

    The question in my mind is whether the "Helium" might be a good alternative to the Arduino MKR1000, ideally a breakout board for the Helium chip with a smaller form factor than the MKR.

  • Guess where Shawn dropped his soldering iron!

  • Digi-key lists this board at $84 in stock quantity 1. Price for just the chip will of course be lower than this with quantity sales. This looks like an improved version of the SAMx21 (x=D) used in the Arduino Zero family and Adafruit has announced the are working on Arduino library support for the SAMD51 and a board supporting it.

    The SAMx5y (solve for the 2 unknowns) family seems to be the natural successor to the SAMD21, featuring greater clock speeds, hardware floating-point, and improved peripheral support. We have yet to decide whether Python, Arduino, or Atmel Studio/Start is the best vehicle for our purposes.

    I'd like to ask if SparkFun will offer this year products based on one of these chips. What say?

  • Security, not just privacy, is a huge potential issue in the "Internet of Things". IPV6 has better solutions but we are still at IPV4 with no available IPV6 IoT products. I'm using the Arduino MKR1000, which does come with a software implementation of SSL using TLS but I find that certificates (and the need for frequent renewals) are a huge kludge, and there's no support for anything better. Does anyone else care about this?

  • In HAM radio I find the Anderson power pole connectors as something of a standard for 12 volt applications. They are sturdy and the specialized crimp tool can't be beat. They have the useful property of being hermaphroditic. The common usage is red/black but other colors are available.

  • Welcome Back Pete, we miss your upbeat witty presentations.

    My concern, even with 0.10 parts is seeing what I am doing and steadying my hands. First step is of course to clean my glasses. Maybe I should get a new prescription but they are what I've got. I use desk lamps left and right to illuminate. The magnifier on my Helping Hands works but I have to close one eye to see it clearly through the dinky lens. I use my trusty 60/40, it smells better than some of the ROHS, and sometimes a little bit of flux works.Afterwards I carefully inspect with my big magnifying glass.

  • Resistance is pretty easy. Things get more fun when the mix includes capacitance and/or inductance. Are there some easy ways to analyze some of these cases or does it take Higher Mathematics?

No public wish lists :(