Embedded is the show for people who love gadgets. Making them, breaking them, and everything in between. Weekly interviews with engineers, educators, and enthusiasts. Find the show, blog, and more at embedded.fm.
Karl Auerbach of InterWorking Labs spoke with us about how the internet works. We talked about domain name services (DNS being the primary one), registries and registrars, domain thieves, and the History of the Internet project. Karl runs his own (non-DNS) domain name service on his site www.cavebear.com. The site also includes notes from his time on the ICANN board (such as this one where they talk about redemption periods).
We spoke with Phillip Johnston (@mbeddedartistry) of Embedded Artistry about embedded consulting, writing about software, and ways to improve development. In the Embedded Artistry welcome page, there is a list of Phillip’s favorite articles as well as his most popular articles. Some of Phillip’s favorites include: Embedded Rules of Thumb Improving SW with 5 LW Processes Learning from the Boeing 737 MAX saga We also talked about code reviews and some best practices. The Embedded Artistry newsletter is a good way to keep up with embedded topics. You can subscribe to it at embeddedartistry.com/newsletter What are condition variables?
Alicia Gibb (@pipix) joined Elecia to talk about open source hardware, the OSHW association (@ohsummit), using trademarks for quality control, and light-up LEGO blocks. Alicia is the editor and author of Building Open Source Hardware: DIY Manufacturing for Hackers and Makers. It is a handy resource for any manufacturing. Alicia is the director of the Blow Things Up Lab, part of the Atlas Institute at the University of Colorado Boulder. Light up LEGO blocks are available at Build Upons. The LilyPad Arduino has many sewable electronics components. You can find more talks and hacks on Alicia’s personal site, aliciagibb.com.
Christopher (@stoneymonster) and Elecia (@logicalelegance) discuss embedded systems education and project documentation. Elecia wrote about her love of notebooks on the https://www.embedded.fm/blog-index. yEd, for when you don’t have Visio. Asciiflow.com, for when you don’t have yEd (or you want to put diagrams in your comments) We talked about many different documents and tried to note design vs implementation, product vs engineering vs user, and why we wanted them. We didn’t mention mechanical things because, ya know, software engineers. Some documentation we mentioned: Product documentation Schematics with block diagrams and comments. Also a GPIO to function spreadsheet. UI flow when the system has a screens (Balsamiq for wireframe testing UIs) SW spec and design doc: what do we plan to build and what are the tricky parts SW configuration and SW developer docs: how to rebuild the computer that can build the code from scratch, also notes on debugging methodology User manual: Usually not written by SW but may need SW’s patient input Code comments: Functions and files get 5Ws: who, what, why, when, where, and how. Who should call this? What will its effect be? (“What will it do” but not in line by line detail!) How does it work? Why does it work this way? When should it be called? Where are its parameters? (“What” works here too but “where” is nice to remind you to check your memory assumptions.) Repository checkin comments Style guide (Such as Google’s or PEP) Manufacturing docs and tests docs Adafruit and Sparkfun both write good documentation, writing to users about how to use their code. Elecia likes Adafruit’s sensor library as a good set of code to review (including how much is in their docs vs their code).
Crossing machine intelligence, robotics, and medicine, Patrick Pilarski (@patrickpilarski) is working on smart prosthetic limbs. Build your own learning robot references: Weka Data Mining Software in Java for getting to know your data, OpenIA Gym for understanding reinforcement learning algorithms, Robotis Servos for the robot (AX is the lower priced line), and five lines of code: Patrick even made us a file (with comments and everything!). Once done, you can enter the Cybathlon. (Or check out a look at Cybathlon 2016 coverage.) Machine Man by Max Barry Snow Country by Bokushi Suzuki Aimee Mullins and her many amazing legs (TED Talk) Patrick is a professor at University of Alberta, though a lot more than that: he is the Canada Research Chair in Machine Intelligence for Rehabilitation at the University of Alberta, and Assistant Professor in the Division of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, and a principal investigator with both the Alberta Machine Intelligence Institute (Amii) and the Reinforcement Learning and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (RLAI). See his TED talk: Intelligent Artificial Limbs.
Kate Compton (@GalaxyKate) spoke with us about casual creators, Twitter bots done cheap and quick, and the creativity that is within each of us. Kate’s website is galaxykate.com. Her Phd dissertation defense is interesting, see it on youtube.com. She is joining UCSC’s CROSS to do more work on casual creators and open source software. (We talked to Carlos Maltzan, the head of CROSS in 285: A Chicken Getting to the Other Side.) Tracery is an open source story generator using a specific grammar. One example is at Kate’s BrightSpiral.com which creates a whole story every time you refresh. You can use Tracery to make Twitter bots via CheapBotsDoneQuick.com. They are often text (@infinite_scream, @str_voyage, @DUNSONnDRAGGAN) or emoji based (@choochoobot, @infinitedeserts). However, Tracery and CBDQ can be used to create SVG images (such as @softlandscapes). Elecia’s text bot is @pajamaswithfeet. It tweets (usually) kind things you can (sometimes) say to other people (or yourself).
Colin O’Flynn (@colinoflynn) spoke with us about security research, power analysis, and hotdogs. Colin’s company is NewAE and you can see his Introduction to Side-Channel Power Analysis video as an intro to his training course. Or you can buy your own ChipWhisperer and go through his extensive tutorials on the wiki pages. ChipWhisperer on Hackaday ColinOFlynn.com Some FPGA resource mentioned: Fpga4fun.com TinyFpga.com MyHdl.org (Python!)
Carlos Maltzahn joined us to talk about graduate studies in open source software, research incubators, and how software development tools can be used to aid the reproduction of scientific results. Carlos is the founder and director of the Center for Research in Open Source Software (CROSS). He is also an adjunct professor of computer science and engineering at UC Santa Cruz. Some projects we spoke about: Jeff LeFevre — Skyhook: using programmable storage in Ceph to make Postgres and other databases more scalable and elastic (skyhookdm.com) Ivo Jimenez — Black Swan: using DevOps techniques and strategies to speed up the systems research delivery life cycle (falsifiable.us) Kate Compton — Tracery2 and Chancery: using open source software to support artists and poets (tracery.io)
Ori Bernstein (@oribernstein) joined us to talk about the dielectric constants of foods, reflective energy steering, and smart microwaves. Elecia got a little silly.
Ori works at Level Hot Pantry for more about the smart microwave, check out his !!ConWest talk. Ori has a github and personal site.
EMSL papadum testing (where our thumbnail came from, with permission)
Hackaday explained recently why grapes explode
Short intro to how a microwave works
Jennifer Wang (@jenbuilds) spoke with us about machine learning, magic wands, and getting into hardware.
For more detail about her magic wand build, you can see Jen’s Hackaday SuperCon talk or her !!ConWest talk. The github repo is well documented with pointers to slides from her SuperCon talk and an HTML version of her Jupyter notebook.
We spoke with Laughlin Barker of OpenROV (@OpenROV) about underwater drones, underwater navigation, underwater exploration of the Antarctic, and extraordinarily large (underwater) jellyfish.
Watch this video of a Trident ROV being eaten by a shark… yes, you get to see the inside of a shark.
S.E.E. Initiative: Science Exploration Education from National Geographic
Laughlin left us with a coupon code for the Trident ROV. Please remember to invite us along on your ROV’ing.
Combining a love of engineering with a love of words, Jenny List (@Jenny_Alto) is a contributing editor at Hackaday (@Hackaday).
Jenny’s writing at Hackaday including Debunking the Drone Versus Plane Hysteria and Ooops, Did We Just Close An Airport Over a UFO Sighting?
Previously Jenny worked for Oxford English Press working on computational linguistics software. While there she wrote post about the word “hacker”.
Chris (@stoneymonster) and Elecia (@logicalelegance) talk about design patterns, conferences, and Molotov cocktails.
PyFlakes is a static Python checker
KiCAD Conference is in Chicago on April 26-27, 2019
BangBangConWest 2019 is over but the videos will be up soon including the one Elecia noted about liking things (which was done by Lynn Cyrin).
Chris (@stoneymonster) and Elecia (@logicalelegance) talk about design patterns, conferences, and Molotov cocktails.
PyFlakes is a static Python checker
KiCAD Conference is in Chicago on April 26-27, 2019
BangBangConWest 2019 is over but the videos will be up soon including the one Elecia noted about liking things (which was done by Lynn Cyrin).
Valve's Alan Yates (@vk2zay) spoke with us about the science and technology of virtual reality.
Elecia looked at the iFixIt Teardown of the HTC Vive system as she was unwilling to take apart Christopher's system.
Alan shared some of his other favorite reverse engineering efforts: Doc OK’s Lighthouse videos, documentation on github by nairol, and a blog by Trammell Hudson.
Patrick Yeon (@patyeon) spoke with us about nonprofit spaceships then asked our opinions about embedded software.
Pat is working for something something nonprofit space something something. To fill in some of the blanks, apply for a job on NonprofitSpaceship.org.
Pat was previously on episode 153: Space Nerf Gun when we talked about cost-optimized satellites.
Jie Qi (@qijie) spoke with us about making paper-based electronics (@Chibitronics) and learning about patent law (via @Patentpandas).
Jie Qi is the founder of Chibitronics, a crafting electronics platform that uses paper and stickers to create (and teach) circuits. Building the company and working on electronics-filled pop-up books led to the realization that patent law does apply to open source maker-type companies. She started PatentPandas.org to share what she’s learned.
Jesse Rutherford (@BentTronics) gave us an in-depth look at the 555 timer IC (wiki).
Jesse runs Bent-tronics.com and wrote The Ultimate Beginner's Guide to the 555 Timer (Amazon).
Some great 555 projects:
555 Decimal Adding Machine
555 found in a drill trigger speed controller as seen on the Ben Heck Show
555 found inside a solar charger controller, video by Julian Ilett
Janelle Shane (@JanelleCShane) shared truly weird responses from AIs. Her website is AIWeirdness.com where you can find machine-learning-generated ideas for paint colors, ice cream, and cocktails (and many other things). We never said they were good ideas.
Ivan Kravets (@ikravets) spoke with us about PlatformIO (@PlatformIO_Org), IDEs, embedded libraries, and RISC-V.
PlatformIO is an editor, an integrated development environment with debugging and unit testing, and/or a library index.
Ivan Kravets is the founder of PlatformIO.org. He recommends seeing the Dnieper River if you are in his area.
Ivan recently attended the RISC-V Summit. RISC-V is an open source processor core (like ARM but open source).
Alex Glow (@glowascii) filled our heads with project ideas.
Alex is the Resident Hardware Nerd at Hackster.io. Her page is glowascii and you might want to see Archimedes the AI robot owl and the Hardware 101 channel. They have many sponsored contests including BadgeLove.
James Grenning (@jwgrenning) joined us to talk about Test Driven Development, dealing with legacy code, and cleaning out very large pipes.
James is the author of Test Driven Development for Embedded C. If you want to take his live online course, check out the remote delivered TDD classes on Wingman Software. His blog has many great articles including TDD How-to: Get Your Legacy C into a Test Harness and TDD Guided by ZOMBIES.
Alan Cohen (@proto2product) wrote a great book about taking an idea and making it into a product. We spoke with him about the development process and the eleven deadly sins of product development. We did not talk about ultra-precise death rays.
Christopher White resurrects an Apple ][+ with his brother Matthew White. This is a show about the software Christopher and Matthew wrote when they were kids and the hardware they wrote it on.
Matthew's favorite fictional robot (we should have asked): Venus Probe from Six Million Dollar Man. We did ask about his favorite fictional computer and there is a video for that too.
After many bouts of lightning round, we finally got our lightning questions answered by Eric Brunning (@deeplycloudy). Eric is a Professor of Atmospheric Sciences at Texas Tech University specializing in storm electrification and lightning .
You can hear some of Eric’s field adventures by listening to his episode of the Don’t Panic Geocast show.
Lindsey Kuper (@lindsey) spoke with us about !!Con West, being a new professor, and reading technical journals.
Lindsey’s blog is Composition.al and it has advice for !!Con proposals, advice for potential grad students, and updates on Lindsay’s work.
The Banana Slug is the UCSC mascot.
Time, Clocks, and the Ordering of Events in a Distributed System by Leslie Lamport, 1978
Anita Pagin gave us an insider’s view of being a recruiter.
Anita recently started at Carbon3D and is recruiting for software and hardware.
Anita also does career coaching on the side. Given the advice she gave us for free, imagine what she could tell you if you paid her.
Finally, Elecia’s favorite list of resume keywords.
Chris Svec (@christophersvec) returns to chat about what he’s been up to. Also, he’s looking for engineers to join him at iRobot.
Want to get into embedded and don’t know how? We did a show about that: 211: 4 Weeks, 3 Days. Also, there is an EdX class that is popular and a Coursera course that may be useful.
You can meet up with Chris at Hackaday Supercon in Pasadena, CA on Nov 2-4.
Fulgurites are cooled lightning.
James Grenning (@jwgrenning) returns to discuss TDD, Agile, and web courses.
James was on Embedded.fm episode 30: Eventually Lighting Strikes.
James' new company is Wingman Software.
His excellent book is TDD for Embedded C.
James suggested Training From the Back of the Room! as resource to people looking to put together a class. He uses and recommends CyberDojo as a coding instruction tool.
Professor Angela Sodemann of @ASU spoke with us about new ways of teaching, robotics, and haptic displays.
Angela’s robotics courses can be found at RoboGrok.com, including the parts kit. Note that they focus on creating usable robotics as well as teaching theory so there is math, code, and hardware.
Helen Leigh (@helenleigh) is an author, education writer and maker. She spoke with us about making learning fun (and subversive).
Her latest book is The Crafty Kid's Guide to DIY Electronics, out in November 2018.
Christopher (@stoneymonster) and Elecia (@logicalelegance) talks about vacations for learning and hobbies then answered listener questions.
Chris’ toys include the Prusa I3 Mk3 and the UAD Arrow.
Elecia likes Camille Fournier’s book, The Manager’s Path. She also got to plug her own book, Making Embedded Systems: Design Patterns for Great Software.
Brandon Wilson (@brandonlwilson) shared his stories about hacking TI calculators (and other things).
TICalc.org has the latest on getting started yourself including Z80 assemblers, or start on Brandon’s website: brandonw.net
We spoke with Axel Poschmann of DarkMatter LLC (@GuardedbyGenius) about embedded security.
For a great in-depth introduction, Axel suggested Christof Paar’s Introduction to Cryptography class, available on YouTube. We also talked about ENISA’s Hardware Threat Landscape and Good Practices Guide.
Derek Fronek spoke with us about FIRST robotics. His TechHOUNDS (@TechHOUNDS868) team is based in Carmel, Indiana. They won the state competition and placed 5th in the high school FRC championship.
Derek mentioned the roboRIO controller board, TalonSRX speed controller, and the Spark motor controller. Many of these offer deep discounts to FIRST robotics participants.
Check out FirstInspires.org to find a team near you. The game comes out in January but many teams start forming in September.
Gabriel Jacobo (@gabrieljacobo) spoke with us about embedded graphics, contributing to the Linux SDL, using MQTT, and working far from his employers.
Gabriel’s blog and resume are available on his site mdqinc.com. His github repo is under gabomdq.
SDL is Simple DirectMedia Layer (wiki). It is not so simple.
For MQTT-based home automation, he uses the Raspberry Pi Home Assistant build and many Node MCUs (ESP8266s running Lua, Micropython, or Arduino Framework).
Micah Elizabeth Scott (@scanlime) came to talk about Fadecandy, a really neat way to control smart LEDs (NeoPixel, AdaFruit's term for the WS2812). The conversation ranged from beautiful LED control algorithms and open source embedded projects to triangle tessellations, art, and identity.
Jen Costillo (@rebelbotjen) joins Elecia White to discuss the secret parts of C, keywords that only embedded software engineers seem to know about.
Jen and Elecia talk about interviewing and why these keywords make good questions for finding folks who use the language to its full potential.
NOTE: This is a repeat episode from before we'd settled on our name. Note that Jen is the co-host of the Unnamed Reverse Engineering Podcast.
We spoke with Kathleen Tuite (@kaflurbaleen) about augmented reality, computer vision, games with a purpose, and meetups.
Kathleen’s personal site (filled with many interesting projects we didn’t talk about) is SuperFireTruck.com.
Katie Malone (@multiarmbandit) works in data science, has podcast about machine learning, and has a Phd in Physics. We mostly talked about machine learning, ways to kill people, mathematics, and impostor syndrome.
Katie is the host of the Linear Digressions podcast (@LinDigressions). She recommended the Linear Digressions interview with Matt Might as something Embedded listeners might enjoy. Katie and Ben also recently did a show about git.
This week, we spoke with Addie (@atdiy) and Whisker (@whixr), the Toymakers (@Tymkrs).
Their latest CypherCon badges included a complete phone system. For more information, check out the user documentation at hackthebadge.com or the related Reddit post.
There is a video of Joe Grand’s 2018 CypherCon talk if you’d like to watch him talk about his juvenile delinquency.
In our last episode with Addie and Whisker (#205), we talked about the CypherCon 2017 badges and their Tindie store.
Finally! An episode with version control! And D&D! Chris Svec (@christophersvec) joins us to discuss why version control is critical to professional software development and what the most important concepts are.
Claire Rowland (@clurr) joined to discuss creating good user experiences for the Internet of Things. Claire is the lead author of Designing Connected Products: UX for the Consumer Internet of Things.
You can find more about her on clairerowland.com, from her talks (including Interusability: UX for Connected Products), her book's website, and her guest appearance on the IoT Podcast (episode 21). Her new report about user experience and the IoT will be on Iotuk.org.uk in June of 2018.
Jason Turner (@lefticus) of the CPPCast (@cppcast) spoke with us about modern C++ in embedded systems.
Jason’s articles can be found on EmptyCrate.com. You can also contact him there and find out more about his training sessions. Jason’s video channel is on C++ Weekly and includes an ARM emulator written in C++, running on Compiler Explorer.
We spoke with Dr. Bennie Lewis (@_benjoe02) about machine learning and robotics. Bennie is a Senior Research Scientist at Lockheed Martin, content creator, and Twitch streamer (benjoe02)
NVIDIA Jetson platform and Cuda for deep learning
SAMS C++ in One Hour a Day by Siddhartha Rao
Stephen Kraig (@Macro_Ninjaneer) and Parker Dillmann (@LnghrnEngineer), of Macrofab (@MacroFab) joined us to chat about getting hardware and software to work together.
Stephen and Parker are also hosts of the Macrofab podcast.
We compared out-the-ordinary podcast guests. For MacroFab episode 112 it was their conversation with a patent lawyer. For Embedded episode 150 it was our conversation with a tax accountant.
Schematics for the Apollo Guidance Computer (and their Kicad replica on github).
Kristina Durivage (@gelicia) described her path getting into making and hardware hacking as a complement to her day job working in front-end software. Kristina’s portfolio.gelicia.com includes write-ups on her projects (TweetSkirt, Kitchen Playset Game) as well as links to her talks. Or you can skip to her github.com/gelicia repository. Kristina has a chapter in the 10 LED Projects for Geeks book coming out from NoStarch Press.
We spoke with Michael Barr (@embeddedbarr) about the Barr Group embedded systems survey.
You can download the 2018 survey at the Barr Group survey page. The Barr Group Embedded C Coding Standardis also free to download (with registration). You can buy a paper copy on Amazon.
Andrei Chichak and Alvaro Prieto (@alvaroprieto) join us to talk about bits and how to manipulate them.
Alvaro is host of the Unnamed Reverse Engineering podcast. His other Embedded appearances are 130, 200, and 215.
Andrei (“Andrei from the Great White North”) works at CBF Systems. His other Embedded appearances are 99, 114, 139, and 200.
Jasmine Brackett (@asiwatch) spoke with us about @Tindie’s electronics marketplace, this year’s Hackaday Prize, and tips for wearable electronics.
If you want to buy on Tindie, check out their homepage tindie.com. If you want to sell, that is straightforward too: tindie.com/about/sell.
What do you do after space debris, hacking dinosaurs, and judging robots? If you are Dr. Lucy Rogers (@DrLucyRogers), you build an organization devoted to promoting the Making industry: Guild of Makers (@GuildOfMakers)
Lucy’s personal site is lucyrogers.com. She wrote the book It’s ONLY Rocket Science: An Introduction in Plain English.
Guild of Maker’s Twitter hack chats are weekly on Tuesdays at 8pm UTC. They use the tag #MakersHour.
Lucy programs in Node-RED, a visual language.
Dan Saks answers many questions about C++ in embedded systems: where it works, where it doesn't, and a path to getting started.
Dan Saks is the founder and president of Saks & Associates. He was a columnist for The C/C++ Users Journal, Embedded Systems Design and several other publications. He also served as secretary of the ANSI and ISO C++ standards committee in its early years.
Jan Jongboom (@janjongboom) of Mbed (@ArmMbed) joined us to talk about compilers, online hardware simulators, and inference on embedded devices.
Find out more about Mbed on mbed.com. The board simulator is at labs.mbed.com(Mbed OS Simulator). The code for the simulator is on Jan’s Github. Mbed Labs also has the uTensor inference framework for using TensorFlow models on devices.
Roger Linn (@roger_linn) gave us new ideas about musical instruments, detailing how wonderful expressive control, 3D buttons, and keyscanning can be.
Roger’s company is Roger Linn Design. We talked extensively about the LinnStrument, some about the AdrenaLinn for guitar, and only a little bit about the analog drum machine Tempest.
We spoke to author Robin Sloan (@robinsloan) about his books and near-future science fiction.
Robin wrote Mr. Penumbra’s 24 Hour Bookstore and Sourdough.
Robin’s website is robinsloan.com. Go there for some short stories, sign up for his newsletter and check out his new ‘zine (also at wizard.limo). Oh! Don’t forget his blog, including a description of his neural net for audio generation and for writing.
Dustin Franklin of NVIDIA (@NVIDIAEmbedded) spoke with us about the Jetson TX2, a board designed to bring AI into embedded systems.
Dusty wrote Two Days to a Demo, both the original supervised learning version and the newer reinforcement learning version. In general, check out Dusty’s github repo to see what’s new. Also, The Redtail project is an autonomous navigation system for drones and land vehicles based on the TX2. You can find Dusty on on the NVIDIA forums.
Chris and Elecia chatted about listener emails, and other stuff and things.
Elecia wrote a book called Making Embedded Systems, if you want to see the chapter about interrupts and timers, hit the contact link on embedded.fm.
We also recommend our blog, Chris Svec wrote about the MSP430 from a microprocessor point of view (ESE101) and Andrei Chichak wrote about an ST processor with a more pragmatic and C focused view (Embedded Wednesdays).
You can support the podcast through Patreon.
Tim O’Reilly (@timoreilly) talks about economics, books, and the future. Check out Tim’s new book, WTF: What’s the Future and Why It’s Up to Us. And yes, this is Tim O’Reilly of O’Reilly books.
Elecia’s Making Embedded Systems has a great-eared nightjar, but she’s finally adjusted to a modern dinosaur on her cover.
Anthony Navarro (@avnavarro42) of Udacity (@udacity) spoke with us about learning.
We talked about the Dreyfus model of skill acquisition (an education-oriented technical readiness level) and a little about on trunk skills vs. leaf skills.
Jay Carlson (@jaydcarlson), author of The Amazing $1 Microcontroller, joined us to talk about comparing microcontrollers and determining our biases. This was an in-depth comparison of different micro features.
Jonathan Beri (@beriberikix) spoke with us about his double life: Particle.io product manager by day, maker by night (and weekends).
Author Jimmy Soni (@jimmyasoni) spoke with us about his biography of Claude Shannon, founder of information theory and digital circuit theory.
A Mind at Play: How Claude Shannon Invented the Information Age by Jimmy Soni and Rob Goodman. For an introduction to the book, read their post 10,000 Hours With Claude Shannon: How A Genius Thinks, Works, and Lives.
Ben Hencke (@im889) spoke with us about OHWS, Tindie, and blinking lights.
Ben sells his Pixelblaze WiFi LED controller on his ElectroMage store on Tindie. It is based on the ESP8266 and uses the DotStar (APA102) lights.
Josh Bleecher Snyder (@offbymany) joined us to talk about PayPal's Beacon, being acquired, the Go programming language, BTLE, computer vision, and working at a large company after founding small ones.
Bluetooth Low Energy: A Developer's Handbook by Robin Heydon
TI CC2540 BTLE module
Learning OpenCV: Computer Vision by Gary Bradski and Adrian Kaehler
Gatt is a Go package for building Bluetooth Low Energy peripherals (video description by Josh from GopherCon 2014)
Kelly Shortridge (@swagitda_) spoke with us about the intersection of security and behavioral economics. Kelly’s writing and talks are linked from her personal site swagitda.com. Kelly is currently a Product Manager at SecurityScorecard.
Dirk Akeman of SEGGER (@SEGGERMicro) joined us to talk about debugger specifics.
Ozone standalone debugger for use with J-Links
SystemView visualization tool for RTOS and system debugging
Turning an ST-Link on a development board into a J-Link
We recently did two other shows on debugging: a general intro with Alvaro Prieto and one with a focus on the development-system’s debugger software interface with Pierre-Marie de Rodat.
Carmen Parisi (@FakeEEQuips) joined us to talk about electronics and podcasts.
Carmen works on switching regulators. If you want to know more, he sent along some very basic application notes: How to Apply DC-DC Step Down Regulators (Analog Devices) and Switching Regulator Fundamentals (TI).
Carmen is a host on The Engineering Commons (@TEC_Podcast). Some episodes you might enjoy are 93: Capacitors with James Lewis of KEMET (aka BaldEngineer) and 77: Remote Host Toast with Elecia White.
Alvaro Prieto (@alvaroprieto) joined us to talk about the basics of debugging, from software to hardware. Some of the programmer devices we talked about: SEGGER JLink and Black Magic Probe. Chris mentioned a visual frontend for gdb called "Vulcan" but which is actually called Voltron. (He's got graphics on the brain). Alvaro Prieto and Jen Costillo's new podcast on reverse engineering! And on Twitter as @unnamed_show. Alvaro's Cheese Cave: making cheese and cheese-lapse photography of Brie aging.
Kristen Dorsey explained MEMS sensors: how do they work, how they are made, and what new ones we expect to see in the future.
Kristen’s website is kristendorsey.com. She is a professor of engineering at Smith College and runs the MicroSmithie.
MEMS stands for microelectromechanical systems (Wiki). Used in some sensors, Galistan is a room-temp liquid with interesting properties (Wiki).
Gretchen Bakke spoke with us about the future of power generation and transmission. Her book is The Grid: The Fraying Wires Between Americans and Our Energy Future.
Gretchen is a professor of anthropology at McGill University.
The book’s Facebook page
Grechen’s first book is Anthropology of the Arts: A Reader
Kwabena Agyeman joined us to talk about making OpenMV (@OpenMVCam), an easy-to-use camera and control module with built-in machine vision functions, all interfaced via MicroPython.
To learn more about computer vision, Kwabena suggested looking at PyImageSearch or reading the April tags code as it is a good introduction to image manipulation and matrix operations.
Dennis Jackson spoke with us about making the career shift from software to embedded.
Dennis buys James Grenning’s Test Driven Development in Embedded C for his new hires and often recommends Elecia’s Making Embedded Systems. His tip that everyone should know was “Learn make!” and he has a reference for that: Why Use Make.
He suggested Joel Spolsky’s reading lists from Joel On Software, even the ones that don’t obviously apply.
Alan Yates (@vk2zay) told us about his entries to the 2017 Flashing Light Prize. Alan's entries involved making a light bulb and dripping charge.
Alan works at Valve. He told us about making virtual reality hardware in Embedded episode 162: I Am a Boomerang Enthusiast.
Hackaday SuperCon is Nov 11-12, 2017 in Pasadena.
Elecia gave a talk about machine learning and robotics at the Hackaday July Meetup at SupplyFrame DesignLab (video!) and LA CrashSpace. She gives it again in the podcast while Chris narrates the demos.
Natalie Silvanovich (@natashenka) discussed reverse engineering hardware, working on security software, and the fantastic world of Tamagotchis. Natalie's site and blog Hardware Excuse Generator Original CCC 2012 talk: Many Tamagotchis Were Harmed in the Making of this Presentation CCC 2013 talk: Even More Tamagotchis Were Harmed in the Making of this Presentation Natalie's upcoming BlackHat talk: Attacking ECMAScript Engines with Redefinition Flash exploit article for Project Zero: One Perfect Bug: Exploiting Type Confusion in Flash Tamagotchis are still available as are the works of Shel Silverstein (Snowball is in Falling Up). Natalie's Tamagotchi board
Chris Svec (@christophersvec) has an idea about adding empathy to software development. It is a good idea. His blog is Said Svec. He works for iRobot and they are hiring. (Chris' email is given toward the end of the show but if you hit the contact link here, we'll pass along info to him.) Obligatory cat video Embedded has an episode devoted to impostor syndrome. O'Reilly's Head First book series is pretty awesome. Elecia is still talking about Thinking, Fast and Slow as a great way to understand brains. Chris Svec also recommends Make It Stick. The Richard Hamming quote came from his address to the Naval Postgraduate School. The whole lecture is available on YouTube.
Professor Ayanna Howard of Georgia Tech joins us to talk about robotics including how androids interact with humans. Some of her favorite robot include the Darwin, the Nao, and, for home-hacking, the Darwin Mini. Ayanna has a profile on EngineerGirl.org, a site that lets young women ask questions of women in the engineering profession. Elecia has been working on a typing robot named Ty, documented on the Embedded.fm blog. It uses a MeArm, on sale in July 2017 at Hackaday.com, with coupon noted in show. (don't use PayPal to check out or you can't apply the coupon). Other robots for trying out robots: Lego Mindstorms (lots of books, project ideas, and incredible online tutorials!), Cozmobot, Dash and Dot. Some robotics competition leagues include Vex, Botball, and FIRST.
This week, we mix things up a bit. This joint show with the Don't Panic Geocast. This episode explores what happens when electrical engineering meets geoscience in cold places. We’re joined by guest Dr. Sridhar Anandakrishnan of Penn State to talk about geopebbles, ice, climate, and more! Asimov Robot Series Anthropornis (giant penguins) Ice crystal structure Ice streams GeoPebble Propeller Programming (Book) Fun Paper Friday: The Boring Company
This week we talked to Addie (@atdiy) and Whisker (@whixr), the Toymakers (@Tymkrs). They make electronics kits, videos, and conference badges. Toymakers site (tymkrs.com) has a link to their IRC channel, videos, and Tindie store(including those amazing heart simulators, the easy to make Amplify Me, and Protosynth Midi). Their reddit community is r/Tymkrs. It has a lot more information about the CypherCon 2017 badges. More about CypherCon at cyphercon.com. Some of their ZombieTech podcast is available on YouTube (along with First Spin and Patch Bay, see the playlists to find grouped series). Note that Rabbithole is the name of their hackspace as well as the video series documenting project creation. Episode 200 has the violin we discussed. We seem to have talked about a lot of other people on the show, especially shared friends and past Embedded.fm guests (some of whom were on ZombieTech). Evil Mad Scientist Laboratories with their online and Sunnyvale store. This is run by Lenore (40: Mwahaha Session) and Wendell (124: Please Don’t Light Yourself On Fire) Joe Grand (58: Use These Powers For Good) John Schuch (74: All Of Us Came In Sixth) Alvaro Prieto (130: Criminal Training Camp and 200: Oops) Some fiction for you: Black Mirror (Netflix) Feed by Mira Grant [Everything by Mira Grant / Seanan McGuire is on my “devour immediately” list! -El] MiTel SX Technician’s Handbook
Phoenix Perry (@phoenixperry) spoke with us about physical games. Phoenix is CTO of DoItKits (@DoItKits) and More about Phoenix: Bot Party Her site: PhoenixPerry.com Goldsmith’s page She enjoyed Obelisk Gate by NK Jemisin Physical games are sometimes called Alt Ctrl such as at the Alt Ctrl Game Jam. Phoenix co-founded Code Liberation with Nina Freeman (http://ninasays.so/) and Jane Friedhoff (http://janefriedhoff.com/). “Code Liberation catalyzes the creation of digital games and creative technologies by women, nonbinary, femme, and girl-identifying people to diversify STEAM fields.” There is an 8-part workshop in London in Summer 2017 (more info). Some other interesting people: Catt Small Lynne Bruning (http://etextilelounge.com/) Helen Steer (http://doitkits.com/) Perla Maiolino Rebecca Febrink How to Get What You Want wearables site Yoga Pants AutoDesk Fusion360 I know you only read the show notes because you wanted this link: Velastat LessEMF has the supplies for ghost hunting!
Charlie Ladd (@csladd) joined us to give an overview of good hardware practices. The oil quality sensor is from VSI Oil. Recent fiction included Ready Player One, John Scalzi, and Matthew Mather. To stay current, Charlie reviews the trade magazines: EEWeb.com, EDN, ECN, and EETimes. A junior engineer's tale of woe.
Professor Alex Dean spoke with us about his ARM embedded systems books and @NCState courses. Alex’s page in North Carolina State University’s department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. His book is Embedded Systems Fundamentals with Arm Cortex M Based Microcontrollers: A Practical Approach (ecopy available from the ARM Media site). It uses the FRDM-KL25Z as the example board throughout the text. Alex also co-authored Embedded Systems, An Introduction Using the Renesas RX62N His favorite RTOS is Keil RTX. We also mentioned about Your Inner Fish: A Journey into the 3.5-Billion-Year History of the Human Body by Neil Shubin and Flush by Carl Hiaasen
Shaun Meehan (@logiclow) joined us to talk about robot arms and stealth rocket companies. Shaun’s rocket startup is hiring; information about the job openings are below. Shaun’s robot arm is an ABB IRB-2000 (video of Fred). Elecia was reading How to Choose the Right Industrial Robot when Shaun emailed. He convinced her that the MeArm Pocket Size Robotic Arm is the likely best choice for her machine learning typer project (which needs a better name). All this led to a discussion of inverse kinematics, robot operating system (ROS), and OpenAI. SparkFun has a nice guide to selecting the right motor if the DC, servo, stepper section went by a bit fast. Elecia mentioned the TI Piccolo line as good motor controllers, assuming you aren't building an FPGA controller from scratch on your own. Repair cafes are a thing. Shaun was on The Amp Hour 220: Doctiloquent Dove Deployer where he talked a lot more about his robot pets. For more about Fred, the robot arm, check out LogicLow.com. Also, see Shaun's github repo, Fun with Flip-Dots (on hackaday.io), his intended page for big servos (Not Your Hobby Servo, also hackaday,io) His personal site detailing new projects, motors, and fire-breathing dodo birds is ShaunAndKelly.com. Shaun recently enjoyed The Professor and the Madman: A Tale of Murder, Insanity, and the Making of the Oxford English Dictionary. Stealth Space Rocket Company Hiring Information We are a small, highly entrepreneurial team of rocket engineers with deep technical expertise who love to build things and relish the idea of a grand challenge. Building on over a decade of technology development in rocket propulsion, structures, and avionics funded by NASA and DARPA, we are applying a fast-paced, hardware-focused, agile approach to space launch. Are you an engineer, hacker, maker, or physicist who has always dreamed of building rockets? Come help us build the hardware and launch the services that will open the frontier of space to the next generation of entrepreneurs. The company is in the San Francisco Bay Area, California. If you want to apply, email Shaun: space at logiclow dot com.
Episode 200! Let’s have a party (and a survey)! Former guests joined us in a panel-style celebration of working in embedded systems: Alvaro Prieto, Andrei Chichak, Elizabeth Brenner, Chris Svec, and Chris Gammell. Alvaro Prieto (@alvaroprieto) was a guest on 130: Criminal Training Camp. Andrei Chichak writes Embedded Wednesdays and was on 99: You Can Say a Boat, 114: Wild While Loops and 139: Easy to Add Blood Splatter. Elizabeth Brenner (@eabrenner) was a guest on 17: Facebook Status: Maybe Not Dead and 54: Oh, The Hugh Manatee, Chris Svec (@christophersvec) writes Embedded Software Engineering 101 was on 78: Happy Cows and 139: Easy to Add Blood Splatter. Chris Gammell (@Chris_Gammell) was a guest on 35: All These Different Reasons Why You Might Want to Do Something as well as a co-host on the holiday Embedded/Amp Hour crossover episode 181: Work on It for Ten Years. Fiction mentioned: Authors Harlan Coben and CJ Cherryh Robopocalype by Daniel Wilson The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness The Three-Body Problem by Cixin Liu and Ken Liu (Translator) Trollhunters HTML5 in Easy Steps by Mike McGrath Episodes cited as favorites: 94: Don't Be Clever 53: Being a Grownup Engineer 111: Potty Train Your Tamagotchi 187: Self-Driving Arm 162: I Am a Boomerang Enthusiast 150: Sad Country Song Tools discussed: Software: Beyond Compare, Edit+, and Crossover Logic analyzers / small oscilloscopes: Saleae, Digilent Analog Discovery and Digital Discovery Other tools: JLink Pro debugger/programmer, HP16C calculator (recommended emulator is Nonpareil for Mac and for Windows and Linux) Notes: T-shirt sales are probably already over unless you hurry. March micro madness and Digilent Digital Discovery contests also end very soon.
Chris and Elecia answer listener questions about contracting (and consulting). Reminders: T-shirts! Hat contest! Digilent contest announced in #197! It all ends around May 18th so get your entries in now! The original discussion was on episode 4: Are We Not Lawyers? Elecia's salary to rate conversion can be found as a Google spreadsheet.
Walter Stockwell spoke with us about the legalization of drones, UAVs, UASs, and UFOs. Walter works at DJI which makes the Phantom. They have some jobs open. Aurora by Kim Stanley Robinson Intel/Pepsi drone show at SuperBowl halftime AOPA Facebook page The amateur model aircraft organization discussed was the Academy of Model Aeronautics(AMA). ASSURE UAS Ground Collision Severity Evaluation Final Report (also: press release) Elecia mentioned the Madgwick Filter. Embedded.fm t-shirts are available for a limited time! There are two distributors: one US based, one Europe based. Choose whichever is closest to you. Elecia’s TV appearance on The Jennylyn Show is on YouTube. Digilent Digital Discovery contest ends May 19.
Chris and Elecia talk with each other about science fiction, advertising, ham radios, debugging tools, and programming languages. You can buy Embedded.fm t-shirts until May 18, 2017. You can always buy Elecia’s book: Making Embedded Systems. And don’t forget we have a Patreon if you’d like to support the show directly. Some science fiction we mentioned: Seveneves by Neal Stephenson, Nightfall and Last Question by Isaac Asimov, and the All This Time video from Jonathan Coulton. Digilent sent us goodies to review: one Analog Discovery 2 and two Digital Discovery units. So we did, though we didn't cover the high speed adapters and other nifty goodies. Check out Alvaro Prieto’s Troubleshooting tools HDDG talk for some additional information on the devices. For the giveaways, rules are in the show, hit the contact link to enter. Contest ends May 19th. Chris has been doing low-power ham radio contacts (WSPR) using an Ultimate 3S kit from QRP Labs. We talked about WSPR some with Ron Sparks in episode 76: Entropy Is For Wimps Make with Ada competition is back! It start May 15, 2017. We talked the 2016 competition with Fabien Chouteau in episode 158: Programming Is Too Difficult For Humans. Elecia is still fighting with Ubuntu before she can build her robot typist with her NVidia Jetson TX2 board. Philip Freidin sent in Stanford CS department’s reply to the lightning round question of “what language should you learn in the first college course?” Even better, he sent a link to a google spreadsheet showing how many schools answer the question. Elecia was on the Jennylyn Show. (I’ll update with a link to the specific episode on YouTube when it is available.) March Madness ended with PyBoard as the champion, more info on getting your winner’s hat soon.
Aditi Hilbert (@HilbertAditi) spoke with us about MyNewt, an Apache-licensed RTOS and bootloader. MyNewt’s Apache page is mynewt.apache.org and the github repository is github.com/apache/incubator-mynewt-core. In the README.md, check out the section marked browsing which points to the file system, ble stack, and assorted other source code goodies you may want to read. The secure bootloader code is also in there but as it is also a cross-RTOS effort (with Linux’s Zephyr), you can find the MCUBoot repository at github.com/runtimeco/mcuboot Aditi works for Runtime.io (@runtime_io), a primary contributor to MyNewt. They work with companies who want to use MyNewt on their products. We talked about OIC (openconnectivity.org) and using UDP endpoints over BLE. Constrained http is actually called constrained application protocol: CoAP (coap.technology). We also mentioned MQTT, an older standard attempting to solve some of the same problems. The Apache license is one of the most permissive of open source licenses: choosealicense.com/licenses Assorted other links discussed in the show: Decoding the Heavens by Jo Marchant List of HTTP status codes (418 is the best) Last year’s tshirts, logo will be the same but the shirts will be slightly different for the tshirt campaign starting April 26, 2017.
We discussed CubeSats with their co-inventor, Professor Jordi Puig-Suari, Professor of Aerospace Engineering at CalPoly SLO and co-founder of Tyvak Nano-Satellite Systems. The 2017 CubeSat conference is in San Luis Obispo, CA on April 26-28. More details at CubeSat.org. Information about CubeSats at CalPoly SLO can be found at PolySat.org. Tyvak is hiring for a number of different positions: tyvak.com/careers. For more satellite goodness, we spoke with Patrick Yeon of Planet about their CubeSat-based platform and deployment mechanism in Embedded episode 153: Space Nerf Gun. Thank you to Embedded Patreon supporters for Jordi’s microphone!
Shulie Tornel (@helixpea) joined us to talk about the 2017 Hackaday Prize (@hackaday and @hackadayio). Hackaday World Create Day is April 22nd, let them know if you want do a meetup so they can add you to the calendar. Elecia gave away all of her potential ideas, trying to figure out which one would work best for entry. It was probably Maxwell except for its lack of novelty (Embedded shows #17 and #54and there is a SparkFun Tutorial). Are you entering? The first phase (until May) is community driven (popularity contest). Post your entry here or tweet to us (@embeddedfm) and we'll like it. Also, it was Shantam Raj's Self-sustained Ultralow-power Node that we discussed in the show. Neon Demons (trailer) Embedded blog contributor Chris Svec was on the CodeNewbie podcast talking about robots and chip design. The following week Saron invited Elecia to record an episode about getting into hardware and embedded software.
Owen Anderson (@OwenResistor) joined us to talk about how compilers are written. We discussed LLVM, intermediate representation, clang, and GPUs. As mentioned at the end of the show, Owen’s current employer is hiring. If you are interested and would like to get the brownie points that come with being a friend of a friend, contact us and we’ll connect you to Owen and he’ll submit your resume. Recent books Owen mentioned: Manager Path, Feminist Fight Club, The Laundry Files seriesby Charles Stross. LLVM Language Reference Teardown of what goes into rasterization What Every C Programmer Should Know About Undefined Behavior
Terry Dunlap, CEO of Tactical Network Solutions (@tacnetsol), spoke with us about security in the Internet of Things. The good: Top 10 Secure Coding Practices (from CERT.org) UL 2900 standard (consumer label for security) The bad and the ugly: FTC complain about TrendNet FDA alert about St Jude’s implantable defibrillator Mirai botnet
Chris (@stoneymonster) and Elecia (@logicalelegance) answer listener emails. Get your entries in for March Micro Madness, the matches start very soon. The short story Elecia finds most memorable is All Summer in a Day by Ray Bradbury. We mentioned Procopio who teaches microcontrollers at the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education ITESM (site, wiki) Hector sent up the IEEE Code of Ethics, a good high-level set of rules.
Kari Love (@ikyotochan) spoke with us about creating soft robotics. You can see her edible soft robots talk from 33c3. Kari works at Super-Releaser. Her personal site (and blog) is Kari Makes. Kari mentioned that the Super-Release intern Aidan had some picks for soft robotics on Instructables. Super-Releaser created the Glaucus soft robot and Adafruit has an in-depth tutorial for how to make it. Some videos of soft actuators and soft robots: Super-Releaser Playing with Heat-Sealed Actuators (including the spiral) Silicone gripper from a cardboard mold Voxel Soft Robotic Simulation Evolution Super Long Mylar Robot MIT Tangible Media Group AeroMorph Soft Exoskeletons http://blogs.wsj.com/japanrealtime/2014/11/12/wearable-power-assist-device-goes-on-sale-in-japan/ http://biodesign.seas.harvard.edu/soft-exosuits http://www.roamrobotics.com/ Rat heart cell robot from Popular Mechanics First Autonomous Entirely Soft Robot (Harvard Octobot) VoxCad Tutorial for simulating soft robotics Also, if you haven’t seen Big Hero 6, you should. Consider it computer science homework. If you just want to see Baymax, here is a short video. Octopus: The Ocean's Intelligent Invertebrate (Elecia’s latest octopus related reading, the previous one was called Kraken)
Scott Hanselman (@shanselman) of the Hanselminutes Podcast talks about technology podcasting and philosophy. You can find Scott's blog on Hanselman.com/blog and his other podcasts on Hanselman.com/podcasts. We talked about Hansleminutes' WebVR episode with Ada Rose Edwards and Alcohol and Tech with Victor Yocco. We also mentioned Scott's blog post from 2014 about what technologies he would learn if he had to start over.
Crossing machine intelligence, robotics, and medicine, Patrick Pilarski (@patrickpilarski) is working on smart prosthetic limbs. Build your own learning robot references: Weka Data Mining Software in Java for getting to know your data, OpenIA Gym for understanding reinforcement learning algorithms, Robotis Servos for the robot (AX is the lower priced line), and five lines of code: pred = numpy.dot(xt,w) delta = r + gamma*numpy.dot(xtp1,w) - pred e = gamma*lamda*e + xt w = w + alpha*delta*e xt = xtp1 Patrick even made us a file (with comments and everything!). Once done, you can enter the Cybathlon. (Or check out a look at Cybathlon 2016 coverage.) Machine Man by Max Barry Snow Country by Bokushi Suzuki Aimee Mullins and her many amazing legs (TED Talk) Patrick is a professor at University of Alberta, though a lot more than that: he is the Canada Research Chair in Machine Intelligence for Rehabilitation at the University of Alberta, and Assistant Professor in the Division of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, and a principal investigator with both the Alberta Machine Intelligence Institute (Amii) and the Reinforcement Learning and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (RLAI). See his TED talk: Intelligent Artificial Limbs.
Indrek Rebane (@RebaneIndrek) spoke with us about the Garage48 Hardware and Arts hackathon, hardware incubators in Estonia, linguistics, hydrology, and startup investments. Garage48 Hardware & Arts hackathon is February 17-19, 2017 at the Institute of Physics, University of Tartu (Tartu, Estonia). The event is organized by Garage48, University of Tartu and the Estonian Academy of Arts. Indrek is CTO of Build It Hardware Accelerator and electronics engineer for Hedgehog Engineering. Recommended book: The Mom Test: How to talk to customers & learn if your business is a good idea when everyone is lying to you Other resources Indrek mentioned after recording: Why to Not Not Start a Startup by Paul Graham (blog) Why not to do a startup by Marc Andreessen (blog) Don’t Follow Your Passion by Ben Horowitz (video) Why Not To Do a Startup by Dave McClure (video)
While we planned to ask Andrei Chichak to podcast when he was in town for the Embedded.fm party, we spent too much time goofing off. So we are replaying Andrei's first appearance on the show where he spoke with us about MISRA-C and ethics. (Note that this is the same Andrei who writes the STM32 Embedded Wednesday posts for the Embedded.fm blog.) Linker post: It's dangerous to go alone! Take MISRA-C Andrei's has personal website (we failed to talk about his kite aerial photography, it is really neat though) and his company is CBF Systems. Plum Hall C Compiler Validation PC Lint JPL Coding Standards for C (and the mentioned video discussing Mars Code) ISO 26262 Automobile software standard Cortex-R for high reliability systems (ARM's description) National Society of Professional Engineers code of ethics and Canadian Engineering Guidelines on the Code of Ethics Offline, Andrei recommended two books and another podcast about MISRA: C Traps and Pitfalls Safer C MISRA with Johan Bezem (podcast)
Debby Meredith (@DebbyMe) stops by to tell us what it is like being a venture partner and interim VP of engineering. Debby is a venture partner at Icon Ventures. Her website is DebbyMeredith.com. She was on a new podcast: Women Who Code Radio. Computer History Museum's new exhibit is Make Software: Change the World. It opens on January 28, 2017. After recording, Debby mentioned a book she likes: Venture Deals: Be Smarter Than Your Lawyer and Venture Capitalist. January 28th Hats and Hacks Party RSVP
Ben Krasnow (@BenKrasnow) spoke with us about prototyping, Patreon, and staying current. And a whole bunch of stuff. January 28th Hats and Hacks Party RSVP Ben’s YouTube channel is Applied Science. His recent videos have been shot with the high speed Chronos camera (whose creator David Kronstein was on The Amp Hour #325). Ben has a Patreon page which funds randomness. (Embedded also has a Patreon page, for randomness and mics.) Ben was previously on the show: 119: Do Your Neighbors Have Any Idea? For BLE prototyping, Ben mentioned the OSH Chip by Philip Freidin (146: The Loyal Opposition) and using Processing for Android to make quick-n-dirty test applications. We mentioned the Wazer desktop waterjet. Chris brought up this video describing impedance with a mechanical model. One of Ben’s favorite videos that he did was the first one with an electron microscope, way back in 2011: DIY Scanning Electron Microscope - Overview. Ben gets a lot of his news from Hacker News: https://news.ycombinator.com/ Ben’s Twitter criteria was that they didn’t post updates often too often for his one-a-day check and that they focus on tech: @bunniestudios @vk2zay @elonmusk (for updates on my car's firmware) @LongHairNasaGuy @szczys @samykamkar @PaulStoffregen @mikelectricstuf @johndmcmaster @michaelossmann @macegr @Chris_Gammell @EMSL @mightyohm And some of his favorite YouTube channels (Ben said it was very difficult to distill as there are many great choices): mikeselectricstuff tesla500 Matthias Wandel NightHawkInLight The Signal Path Techmoan Cody's Lab This Old Tony Clickspring Nick Moore Gross Science Haas Automation Hackaday Reactions I Build It Alex Dainis bigclivedotcom We also mentioned architect Frank Howarth of the urbanTrash channel.
Philip Koopman (@BetterEmbSW) spoke with us about making better embedded software. His Better Embedded Systems Software blog has lots of great information including links to his growing video library. Two posts noted in the show: Recording Peer Reviews Spreadsheet Code Review Checklist His company, Edge Case Research, performs design and code reviews and teaches how to do them. You can find out more about his course and background on his Carnegie Mellon University staff page. That also leads to the pretty amazing Vintage Aero paper airplanes. Phil’s book is Better Embedded Software, available via koopman.us and (more expensively) Amazon. Fagan Inspection Videos of robots being stressed Also: Embedded.fm Jan 28th Party RSVPs on Eventbrite
Chris (@stoneymonster) and Elecia (@logicalelegance) talk with each other about about a party, listener emails, and assorted questions. RSVP for the Embedded.fm party! The Embedded Blog is at embedded.fm/blog. Chris Svec wrote a post about picking a processor platform. Don’t Panic Geocast episode with Elecia Elecia’a book: Making Embedded Systems Compiler explorer is GodBolt.org Imposter Syndrome: episode #24 is all about. And you might find #78 with Chris Svecrelevant. Also: Adam Savage talking about overcoming self-doubt. The RSS feed for all of our shows (not only the most recent 100) is http://makingembeddedsystems.libsyn.com/rss We have a Patreon fund that buys mics for guests (plus the occasional goodie for us and our blogging team). Crunchy Frog RTL-SDR: Software defined radio BaoFeng’s unusable Ham radio ESA investigation on the Schiaparelli landing
Chris Gammell (@Chris_Gammell) of The Amp Hour and Contextual Electronics joined Elecia and Chris for a holiday special Ampbedded (EmbHour?) episode. Embedded will be having a Hats and Hacks party in Aptos, CA. You can come! RSVP on Eventbrite. Idea Factory: Bell Labs and the Great Age of American Innovation Peak: Secrets from the New Science of Expertise Analog Discovery vs Saleae Embedded blog (with Andrei Chichak and Chris Svec) including a post on podcasts we listen to Hemmingway App, useful for making writing clearer and simpler Tweezer sets make excellent gifts The Way Things Work Now is an update on a classic book Flybrix is a LEGO drone platform for learning control systems and flight robotics. The founder was on Embedded #157. Nordic nRF52 makexyz: 3D printing in your neighborhood Fusion 360 Video of Tesla seeing two cars ahead, having an accident The LDC1000 has never been attached to a Bluetooth sensor Free calculus book online: Single Variable Calculus: Early Transcendentals. There are other online textbooks approved by the American Institute of Mathematics. Raptitude’s Maybe You Don’t Have a Problem Isaac Asimov is a great inspiration: Medium Post by Charles Chu
Have you ever wondered how your programming tool works? Piotr Esden-Tempski and Gareth McMullin have built the Black Magic Probe and joined the show to explain how it works. Kickstarter for Black Magic and 1Bitsy ends December 29th. If you missed it (or need a Black Magic v2 instead of waiting for v2.1) go to the 1BitSquared Store. For more in-depth information about Black Magic, look at Gareth's github repo. For more information about the 1Bitsey dev board, look at 1bitsy.org. Contest! Tweet to @1bitsquared. The YouTube channel about electronic teardowns was Mike's Electric Stuff: youtube.com/user/mikeselectricstuff. If you want to say other hellos to Piotr, try his personal account: @esden. Or you can contact Gareth via Black Magic's Gitter channel. Embedded.fm Hats-n-Hacks party will be 2-5pm on Saturday, January 28, 2017 in Aptos, CA. More details soon, including how to RSVP.
Miro Samek (@mirosamek) of Quantum Leaps spoke with us about making better state machines through actor objects and hierarchical state machines. Miro wrote a book: Practical UML Statecharts in C/C++: Event-Driven Programming for Embedded Systems. He has an excellent YouTube channel explaining embedded concepts. We discussed his video that describes how a stack overflow works and the related in-depth post on EmbeddedGurus.com. Elecia enjoyed his object oriented programming in C PDF for both the OO and the UML refresher. Miro mentioned the Software Engineering Radio podcast. We mentioned our favorite podcasts blog post. Also, we talk about Jean Labrosse's recent episode of Embedded.fm.
We spoke with Chris Maury (@CMaury) about using speech recognition to interact with devices. Note: Please turn off your Echo and Dots as we invoke Alexa a lot. Chris is the founder of Conversant Labs. They created TinCan.ai which can help you wireframe or prototype a conversational user interface. They can also help you build Alexa Skills, though if you are so inclined, you might try it for yourself: Alexa Skills Kit. Chris will be speaking at the O'Reilly Design Conference in San Francisco, CA in March 2017, giving a tutorial on building voice based user interfaces. You can read more from Chris on his Medium posts medium.com/@CMaury. CMU PocketSphinx Some of the embedded devices Elecia mentioned: Audeme (as heard on The Amp Hour #258) Grove Speech Recognizer from Seeed EasyVR We haven't gotten embedded.fm (or any podcast) to work with Alexa but we aren't sure why. Have you?
After a few announcements, we replayed the episode where James Grenning told us about Test Driven Development. Note: the contest mentioned in the show is over. However, the SparkFun TinkerKit contest ends December 9th so you still have time to win something! Other announcements include: Elecia was on the Don't Panic GeoCast (#97) You can send us email by hitting the contact link on embedded.fm This does not count for our Patreon because it is a repeat
Chris and Elecia answer listener emails on-air. Patreon Embedded.fm blog SparkFun Tinker Kit BB8 Sphero Jewelbots (from #173) Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction by Philip E. Tetlock and Dan Gardner The Wild Robot by Peter Brown
Toni Klopfenstein (@ToniCorinne) joined us to talk about what it is like working at SparkFun(@SparkFun) and why open source hardware is important. Open Source Hardware Association (OSHWA.org) has a certification program for open source hardware projects and products. Some of the SparkFun products and posts we talked about: Tinker Kit SparkPunk Sound Kit FLiR Dev Kit with its hookup guide and neat video Digital handpan (electronic drum) blog post Inflatable Friends (balloon robot) blog post Open Source Hardware Summit was in Portland, OR in October. Hackaday Superconference was in Pasadena, CA in November. Their site has the 2015 videos available. (There was an Embedded.fm show about it too!)
Jean Labrosse of Micrium (@Micrium) spoke with us about writing a real time operating system (uC/OS), building a business, and caring about code quality. Take a look at the uC/OS operating systems (available for free to makers) and Jean's excellent and free RTOS books (it was the Kinetis one that talks about the medical process). Also, check out the uCProbe which integrates with your debugger to replace some logic analyzer and oscilloscope features. Jean's blog about detecting stack overflows: part 1 and part 2. Brother to Brother by Gino Vanelli
We spoke to Evan Shapiro, CTO and cofounder of Knit Health (@KnitHealth), about baby monitors, IoT security, neural nets, and professional poker. The Knit Health Kickstarter ends November 17, 2016. Evan recommended Google Tensor Flow and Python's Theano for an introduction to machine learning. (If those sound familiar it is because Kat Scott mentioned them as well.) Evan also suggested that if you'd like to know more about the history of neural nets, check out this post by Audrey Korenkov. If you'd like a gentle introduction, check out a Narwhal's Guide to Bayes' Rule. Evan mentioned some videos he did about poker, they are on Card Runners (NOTE: it is a paid site with free tastes). Final quote was from Neil Gaiman's excellent Graveyard Book.
George Stocker (@gortok) spoke with us about software, Jewelbots (@Jewelbots) and learning embedded systems to ship the product. Elecia's book is Making Embedded Systems. George also recommended Getting Started with BLE and Programming Pearls. The processor we talked about was the Nordic nRF51, a BLE system on a chip.
James Cameron of One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) tells us about Forth, science fiction, and laptops. We have some tickets for ARM's mbed Connect conference is Oct 24, 2016 in Santa Clara. Will you be in the area? Want to go? Contact us if you want one of our free tickets! (There are still some tickets remaining.) One Laptop Per Child is one.laptop.org. Some getting started information on Forth: Mitch Bradley's Forth and Open Firmware Lessons James has been writing about putting C Forth on a Teensy (more on the Teensy from the creator's site). He also has a post on using Forth to snoop the Milo Champions Band's BLE. James is Quozl on most sites that require a unique ID (such as Github: https://github.com/quozl). This is from a book called Quozl by Alan Dean Foster. The other older-sci-fi reference was to the Pern books by Anne McCaffery, specifically to the White Dragon.
Saar Drimer of Boldport (@boldport) spoke with us about the crossover of art to electronics and building a business around it. Monthly, the Boldport Club ships aesthetically-pleasing electronics kits. We discussed past projects include The Lady and Touchy on the show. The seahorse board is on the blog. Micah Scott (@scanlime) has entrancing videos of putting together the first club project (Pease) and second one (Superhero). Saar uses PCBMode to create his circuits. He also wrote the tool. It is open source. Cratejoy is used for the sales and shipping logistics.
Elecia tries to get Chris to do her homework in preparation for her "Embedded Software: The Tricky Parts" presentation at IEEE-Computer Society meeting in San Jose, CA on Oct 11, 2016. If you register, you can attend, in person or online! And for free! We have some tickets for ARM's mbed Connect conference is Oct 24, 2016 in Santa Clara. Will you be in the area? Want to go? Contact us if you want one of our free tickets! (There are still some tickets remaining.) Also: their unit test framework is GreenTea (not whatever Elecia said).
After a few new announcements, we replayed the episode where Jack Ganssle shared his wisdom on being a good embedded software engineer (hint: it takes discipline). The new announcements include: Book giveaway contest deadline Oct 1st ARM's mbed Connect conference is Oct 24th IEEE CS talk by Elecia iRobot has internships (and other jobs), check their job site and if you want to apply, email csvec. Jack's website is filled with great essays and new videos. He's also written the Art of Designing Embedded Systems and The Embedded Systems Dictionary (with Michael Barr). We covered a lot of ground, here are some of the highlights: Spark language Capers Jones on high quality software and associated statistics Joel on Software test for good teams LDRA unit test tool James Grenning's Test Driven Development for Embedded C
John Leeman (@geo_leeman) spoke with us about geophysics and associated technology. John is one of the hosts of the Don't Panic GeoCast (@dontpanicgeo, iTunes). Some episodes you may like: What if you calibrated your candles differently? Out of the Country (Brad Jolive on moon rocks) "Rock Drills and Beer" Undersampled Radio John is teaching a course at Penn State called Techniques of Geoscientific Experimentation. The information and textbook is online! It uses the SparkFun Inventor's Kit. John has a website with a blog. He has some Cheerson CX-10 tiny drone posts (my favorite, also Alvaro's repo and my posts). John also has a consulting company: Leeman GeoPhysical. Python! Lots of Python was discussed. Jupyter notebooks (here is a good tutorial) Example of reproducing a figure from a paper John's friction model (repo and talk he gave about it at SciPy2016) Neat SciPy talk about open textbooks SciPy is a Python conference in Austin, TX in July Finally, in lieu of rock puns, here is a neat animation showing many different waves from earthquakes. Contest! Contest ends October 1st and now there are more books! In addition to the ones Bob Apthorpe is sponsoring, John's consulting company will sponsor: Earthquake Storms: An Unauthorized Biography of the San Andreas Fault by John Dvorak and The Soul of A New Machine by Tracy Kidder.
Briana Morey from MC10 (@mc10inc) spoke with us about stretchable electronics, Tesla coils and lasers. She works at MC10, creators of the L'Oreal My UV Patch as well as the BioStampRC. MC10 is hiring! They are in Lexington, MA, US. The embedded software position is filled already but the EE position is still open. Briana mentioned an excellent science fiction book she'd read recently: Too Like Lightning by Ada Palmer.
Chris and Elecia chat about Bayes Rule, aliens, bit-banging, VGA, and unit testing. Elecia is working on A Narwhal's Guide to Bayes' Rule. ACM has a code of software engineering ethics Toads have trackers (NPR story) An introduction to bit-banging SPI (Arduino, WS2812) We talked to James Grenning extensively about testing on 30: Eventually Lightning Strikes (and about his excellent book Test Driven Development for Embedded C). We spoke with James again on 109: Resurrection of Extreme Programming. We also talked about unit testing with Mark Vandervoord on 103: Tentacles of the Kraken. A neat TED Talk involving octo-copters, still four short of dodecahedracopter. Neat Z80 based very minimal computer kit
Bob Apthorpe (@arclight) spoke with us about software, nuclear engineering, and improv. Bob is giving away three books! Send in your guess by October 1, 2016. One entry per person. (More info below.) Hackaday SuperCon is Nov 5-6, in Pasadena, CA. Bob's long languishing blog is overscope.cynistar.net. Peep (The Network Aualizer): Monitoring Your Network with Sound Safety-I and Safety-II: The Past and Future of Safety Management Now! The books you may win! Atomic Accidents by James Mahaffrey, someone who knows the technology and history and does a fantastic job explaining complex failures in an engaging way without resorting to fear-mongering and hyperbole. (Guess Elecia's number for this one.) Safeware by Nancy Leveson, may be 20 years old, it's still full of amazing insights for delivering safe, reliable systems and ways of looking at the organizational contexts in which these systems are built and used. Even if you aren't developing safety-critical systems, it's a fantastic resource and really thought-provoking. (Guess Christopher's number for this one.) Every Anxious Wave by Mo Daviau is a novel about rock & roll, time travel, love, loss, and finding things you didn't know you were looking for. Full disclosure: The author is Bob's ex-wife. (Guess Bob's number for this one.)
Shimona Carvalho (@shimonkey) joins us to talk about user interface design in embedded systems. Then we talk about internationalization and localization. Then photography. Shimona's website is shimonacarvalho.com and her Flicker account is shimonkey. For an introduction to user interface design, Shimona recommended The Design of Everyday Things by Don Norman. Internationalization and localization were delved in far deeper in episode 26: The Tofu Problem. Some of the material from that will be on the embedded.fm/blog this week. We mentioned an auxiliary, secret RSS feed that goes all the way back to episode one. (Some notes haven't been filled in yet). We're also on Youtube now.
Elecia went to Hackaday's SuperCon, got to announce the Hackaday Prize 2015 winners, then talked to the organizers about their conference. The guests this week were (in order of appearance): Amber Cunningham Dan Hienzsch (115: Datasheeps) Adam Fabio Brian Benchoff Aleksandar Bradic Sophi Kravitz (77: Goldfish, Fetch My Slippers! and 91: Save Us from Astronauts) Mike Szczys (69: Look at this Entire Aisle of Standoffs) Tamagotchi Hive Adam promised us a list of contributors to the goodie bag. Here it is! NFCRing.com OSHpark Wicked Device Seeed Studio Pololu Parallax No Starch Press Microchip Nanomagnetics (http://nanodots.com/gyro.html) The Hackaday Store
Nadya Peek (@nadyapeek) joined us to talk about making machines that build things. Nadya's website is infosyncratic.nl, which includes her blog. Nadya's dissertation defense on Making Machines that Make: Object-Oriented Hardware Meets Object-Oriented Software was standing room only. MIT Center For Bits and Atoms, which studies "how to turn data into things, and things into data." Mods.cba.mit.edu Machines that Make: MTM.cba.mit.edu
Valve's Alan Yates (@vk2zay) spoke with us about the science and technology of virtual reality. Elecia looked at the iFixIt Teardown of the HTC Vive system as she was unwilling to take apart Christopher's system. Alan shared some of his other favorite reverse engineering efforts: Doc OK’s Lighthouse videos, documentation on github by nairol, and a blog by Trammell Hudson. Alan's sensor circuit diagrams were on twitter: SparkleTree sensor circuit (think simplified) and the closer-to-production Lighthouse sensor. Make Magazine talked about Valve's R&D Lab. This is important in case you want to work at Valve (they are currently hiring for EE but if that doesn't describe you and you want to work there, apply anyway). Alan also has a website (vk2zay.net) though it doesn't see much updating right now.
Kat Scott (@kscottz) gave us an introduction to computer vision. She co-authored the O'Reilly Python book Practical Computer Vision with SimpleCV: The Simple Way to Make Technology See. The book's website is SimpleCV.org. Kat also suggested looking at the samples in the OpenCV Github repo. To integrate computer vision into a robot or manufacturing system, Kat mentioned ROS (Robot Operating System, ROS.org). Buzzfeed had an article about SnapChat Filters. Kat works at Planet. And they are still hiring.
Daniel Hienzsch (@rheingoldheavy) and Majenta Strongheart (majentastronghe_art) gave us suggestions on setting up a home shop and information on setting up a maker space. Daniel is the resident engineer at SupplyFrame's Pasadena Design Lab. He still the owns and runs RheingoldHeavy.com, a company devoted to educational boards, as we talked about on episode 115: Datasheeps. Majenta's web page is MajentaStrongheart.com. We talked more about School of the Art Institute of Chicago with Sarah Petkus in 142: New and Improved Appendages.
Chris and Elecia talk to each other about compiler optimizations, bit banging I2C, listener emails, and small-town parades. Games to learn/play with assembly languages include The Human Resource Machine by Tomorrow Corporation and TIS-100 by Zachtronics. We've been enjoying the Embedded Thoughts blog. And Chris is reading Practical Electronics for Inventors and liking it. We talked a little about Interview.io's adventure in voice changing. Shirts are gone for awhile. New logo stickers are available at StickerMule if you'd like to support and share the show.
Fabien Chouteau (@DesChips) of AdaCore (@AdaCoreCompany) spoke with us about theMake with Ada Programming Competition. Giveaway boards are GONE. The Ada programming language (wiki) is interesting in that it was designed for safety critical embedded systems (actually designed, requirements doc and everything!). The Ada Information Clearinghouse has a nice list of tutorials and books as does the very helpful Make with Ada Getting Started page. Elecia's favorite was Inspirel's Ada on Cortex. Some neat projects in Ada that we mentioned on the show: Fabien's CNC Controller (with code in github) Tetris on a Smart Watch (with a formal proof via SPARK) Nano drone flight controller (with formal proof via SPARK) The platforms supported in the contest are on the Getting Started page but you can expand that by looking at the SVD files in the AdaCore drivers on github. (Also, SVD files are neat.) One of the platforms already supported is the Crazyflie nanodrone.
Robb Walters of Flybrix (@flybrix) spoke with us about LEGO-based drones. We graciously let him leave with all his hardware. This time. For a limited time, you can get an Embedded.fm tshirt: teespring.com/embedded-fm. Order by the end of June or miss out. (More info about the shirts.) You can order your Flybrix kit and or read their controller code on github (or their controller app code). Robb mentioned a C++ book he liked, it was Effective Modern C++: 42 Specific Ways to Improve Your Use of C++11 and C++14 by Scott Meyers. He also noted LEGO bricks resale sites: Brickowl and Bricklink. LEGO Digital Designer looks like a fun way to design builds. Cascade PID controllers are on Wikipedia (though I found this tutorial a little easier). The congratulations offered at the top of the show were to Meshpoint.me for winning the Best Humanitarian Tech of the Year at the Europas Conference.
Jeri Ellsworth (@jeriellsworth) spoke with us about the latest developments at CastAR, hiring engineers, and her favorite engine. Embedded.fm T-Shirts are available until the end of June on Teespring (more info). CastAR is making an augmented reality system. They are in Palo Alto, CA, USA and they arehiring. They work with Playground. Jeri was last on Embedded.fm episode 23: Go For Everything I Want.
Jonathan Bradshaw spoke with us about working with hardware engineers, schematic reviews, and FPGAs. At the end of the podcast, Jonathan made a pitch for folks to submit proposals for the IEEE Southern Power Electronics Conference in Auckland in December. The FPGA boards Elecia mentioned were the XLR8 board and the Papillio platform (more on the latter in show #66). By the way, The Amp Hour is our “enemy podcast” but we actually like their show quite a lot. It is a joke. But do feel free to tweet their shameless advertising tweet with the link replaced with one to our show. And weta are neat! (Image, wiki)
Jeff Keyzer (@MightyOhm) joined us to talk about consumer manufacturing, how to solder, and having a full time job and a kit company. Jeff's blog is on MightyOhm.com. The Geiger Counter kit is available atMightyOhm.com/geiger. The really, really useful Soldering Is Easy comic book isMightyOhm.com/soldercomic. At Valve, Jeff worked on the Steam Controller (hardware specs at bottom of the Valve page or for sale on Amazon). There is also a neat video showing the manufacturing automation in action. We mentioned Glowforge, Dan Shapiro was on episode 125 (and if you are going to buy one, please consider using our referral link!) Elecia and Chris have a Hakko FX-888 soldering iron. Jeff suggests Kester 186 flux which you can get in smaller-than-giant containers on eBay. No, not the pen on Amazon. Or maybe the MG Chemicals 835 (which is in little bottles on Amazon). Flux seems like a very personal thing.
Patrick Yeon of Planet Labs spoke with us about making satellites. We discussed a method of using orientation to control drag to control speed. While Patrick wasn't sure what he could say about GPS receivers on satellites, another site describes them as part of the flock. Sign up to get access to the huge Open California data set. Planet has many applications and their blog shows off some interesting finds, such as identifying illegal gold mines encroaching on rainforests, quantifying ports with computer vision, counting trees and classifying agriculture crops, fire mapping, and cloud detection. They are still hiring, apply using the email embeddedfm at planet.com will earn us (err, not you) more free tshirts.
Chris and Elecia chat about hobbies and respond to listener feedback and questions. Chris was on an episode of Let's Drone Out, you can listen to it here or search in your favorite podcast platform. It is recorded and broadcast live every Thursday at 8 P.M. (UTC+1) onPowering On. Chris' new quadcopter is a Vortex 285. It runs Clean Flight, an open source flight controller software package. While we had various opinions about RTOSs, we were both interested in the one Alvaro suggested to us: Zephyr Project. As for other embedded podcasts, of course you know about The Amp Hour. And we had Saron of CodeNewbie podcast on, that show is mostly software and people. How aboutMacrofab Engineering? Or O'Reilly's HW podcast?
Paul Sidenblad spoke to us about his engineering career, starting off with GE's work on theGambit spy satellite. Google Protobufs Elecia read Eye in the Sky: The Story of the CORONA Spy Satellites a few years ago and remembers liking it, though this was the first time the information was useful.
Torie Charvez spoke with us about what it takes to start and run your own business in the US. We talked about starting your own consulting company, selling your latest gadget, and all of the bookkeeping, tax issues, and details involved. Torie's company is Tax Goddess. The write-off publication she mentioned is on the IRS site isChapter 8 of Publication 535. Elecia mentioned her Snow White's Guide to Your First Stock Options.
Craig Smith (@OpenGarages) spoke with us about hacking the software in cars. His book is the Car Hackers Handbook. There is a 40% off coupon toward the end of the show. OpenGarages is Craig's site to improve and encourage hacking. Some tools he recommends for getting started are USB2CAN and CANTact. An older (shorter) version of the handbook is on OpenGarages. I Am The Cavalry (iamthecavalry.org) is an excellent site for learning more about security.CERT.org is also good. Theia Labs is Craig's company.
Saron Yitbarek (@saronyitbarek) spoke with us about Code Newbie, a site that help people learn to program and about the Code Newbie podcast. We mentioned Paul Ford's Code Newbie episode discussing his Bloomberg issue code. Saron also has a personal blog which has her post I am not a tinkerer. Saron spoke on Punching Your Feelings in the Face at ELA Conf 2015.
Micah Elizabeth Scott (@scanlime) joined us to talk about her new art and engineering projects. Micah's site is misc.name/ and her YouTube channel is micahjd. She launched a Patreon page. Wiggleport has its own site (wiggleport.org) and github (github.com/wiggleport). Check out the art in the repo! The Bela project on kickstarter has some overlap. Micah will be keynoting the 2016 Open Source Hardware Summit in Portland in early October. Her Eclipse project (video) was at the NEAT exhibition at the Contemporary Jewish Museum in San Francisco, CA. Micah has been on Embedded.fm before: 101: Taking Apart the Toaster (mostly aboutCoastermelt) and 41: Pink Universes Die Really Quickly (mostly about FadeCandy). Micah mentioned Boldport and the kit-of-the-month club. (Video of her building the first one!) Also: the BigClive channel on YouTube. Thank you to Planet.com for sponsoring the contest. Check out Planet.com/careers!
Philip Freidin (@PhilipFreidin) spoke with us about his BLE platform OSHChip, debuggers, and consulting. Planet Labs is sponsoring a contest! Hit the contact link to enter. Also check out their careers page and apply to firstname.lastname@example.org. Both the OSHChip and the CMSIS-DAP SWD programming module are on Philip's Tindie store. While Keil is the suggested compiler for now, you can also use mbed (tutorial). The system is wholly open source, you can find everything at github.com/oshchip. (Philip gave anHDDG talk about OSHChip; we didn't talk about it but I thought it was interesting.) Philip's company is Fliptronics. Under Tips and Tricks, that site has his advice on consulting.
Kelly McEvers (@kellymcevers) joins us to talk about the definition of embedded. Kelly McEvers is one of the hosts of All Things Considered, NPR's award-winning afternoon news magazine. She is also the host of a new podcast called Embedded which takes a story from the news and goes much deeper into it. Her Embedded podcast launches on March 31st. Subscribe now on iTunes, listen onNPR.com or your favorite podcast app. Kelly's Diary of a Bad Year: A War Correspondent's Dilemma is an amazing listen. Kelly mentioned her interview of a drone pilot, Lt. Col. T. Mark McCurley, author of Hunter Killer. She also interviewed Sarah Pennypacker, author of Pax. Elecia does not squee on air. But it was a near thing.
Christopher and Elecia chat about the Hackaday prize, Unity class (and their games), the blog, hams, and IDEs. Embedded.fm blog posts we discussed: Chris wrote about ham radio practice tests and his plane's maiden flight. Elecia is working her way through her book about taking apart toys. Chris Svec is taking a microprocessors approach in Embedded Systems 101. And Andrei's current Embedded Wednesdays posts have been about number format and accelerometer output. Sign up for the Embedded.fm newsletter to get blog content in your email box. Hackaday Prize! Yay! Sign up early and often. Chris and Elecia have been taking a Unity course on Udemy (pricing becomes more sensible after April 1). Elecia's game is live for the next 30 days, you can play it from your computer's browser (but not Chrome). Audio "enhances" the experience. Also: you were warned. Atomic Game Engine is another game engine but open source. Justin has 8 reels of 800 of Atmel AT32UC3A3256S-ALVR. Let us know if you'd like to be connected. Elecia liked the Ed Emberley Make A World drawing book. Bipedal robots at RobotShop.com for software programming or SparkFun's Redbot kit for more hardware oriented fun. If you missed last year's April Fools Embedded.fm: The Elon Musk of Earth. Feel free to listen to it again on April 1 as there will be no such gag this year.
Dan Luu (@danluu) spoke with us about processor features, startups vs large companies, error handling, and computer science research. Dan's blog is danluu.com. Some posts we talked about: CPU features since 1980 Working at Startups vs. Large Companies Recurring Postmorten Lessons Efficacy of Computer Science Research Areas Dan mentioned some conference proceedings he monitors. For computer architecture: ACM/IEEE International Symposium on Computer Architecture (ISCA):http://isca2016.eecs.umich.edu/ IEEE Computer Society Technical Committee on Microprogramming & Microarchitecture (MICRO): http://www.microarch.org/ High Performance Computer Architecture (HPCA): http://www.hpcaconf.org/ For software engineering: International Conference on Software Engineering (ICSE): http://www.icse-conferences.org/ Foundations of Software Engineering (FSE): http://www.cs.ucdavis.edu/fse2016/ He also mentioned Operating System Design and Implementation OSDI: https://www.usenix.org/conferences/byname/179
Sarah Petkus offers to let her robot lick Christopher's leg. Christopher agrees reluctantly once we determine the saliva will be anti-bacterial hand sanitizer. Sarah is a kinetic artist and some of her projects include a robot army (built your own from parts printed out or purchased at robot-army.com), Noodlefeet, and Carl (the flamingo of pendulum inversion). Her Zoness.com site is an umbrella for her drawn and robotic art. Specifically, you may enjoy her webcomic Gravity Roads, her YouTube channel, and/or herRobotic Arts blog. Some other topics we discussed: Sarah got into mechatronics at her time as SAIC. Festo's air jellyfish on youtube Algodoo.com 2d physics simulator Woodgears.ca for 3d printable gears Also, please check out our new embedded.fm/blog or if you prefer email updates, sign up atembedded.fm/subscribe.
Julia Evans (@b0rk) spoke with us about using profile analysis to debug programs. Her PyCon 2015 talk was Systems Programming as a Swiss Army Knife (video). Julia's blog is jvns.ca. Some of the posts we discussed include: Have High Expectations for Computers How I Got Better at Debugging perf top: An Awesome Way to Spy on CPU Usage Julia's favorite conference to speak at is Bang Bang Con in New York City, May 7-8, 2016. Coincidentally, the call for proposals is open. Also, please check out the Embedded.fm/blog!
Andrew "Bunnie" Huang spoke with us about manufacturing in China, writing books, and crowdfunding. Bunnie's new book is The Essential Guide to Electronics in Shenzhen. It is available via crowdsupply and the price goes from $30 to $35 when pre-ordering ends on March 17, 2016. Bunnie's blog is at www.bunniestudios.com, many of his professional projects can be found at www.kosagi.com including more information about the Novena open source laptop. Hacking the XBox is available for free from No Starch Press.
Andrei Chichak and Chris Svec join us to talk about our new blog: Embedded.fm/blog (!!). Andrei was on 114: Wild While Loops, about error handling, as well 99: You Can Say A Boat, about MISRA-C. Andrei has been teaching Embedded Wednesdays, an embedded systems class for the Edmonton New Technology Society. It uses the STM32F401C-Discoveryboard. His course materials are on his site (chichak.ca). Chris was on 78: Happy Cows, about empathy driven development. He's also working on a different embedded systems introduction (Embedded Software Engineering 101). His blog ischrissvec.com. Our new blog will include their coursework, excepts from Elecia's new book on taking apart toys, project notes from Christopher, and various other news.
Chris (@stoneymonster) and Elecia (@logicalelegance) answer listener questions about BASIC and their meet-cute story. (Sadly those are unrelated. That would have been cute.) Dennis Jackson at Airware is looking for a senior EE and an EE technician. Contact us and we'll connect you to Dennis so he knows to look out for you. Dennis' episode was 94: Don't Be Clever about drones, simple code, and learning. As for other interviews, Elecia was on The Amp Hour and The Engineering Commons Podcast. Elecia and Chris were both on The Amp Hour's 256th show.
Dan Saks answers many questions about C++ in embedded systems: where it works, where it doesn't, and a path to getting started. Dan Saks is the founder and president of Saks & Associates. He was a columnist for The C/C++ Users Journal, Embedded Systems Design and several other publications. He also served as secretary of the ANSI and ISO C++ standards committee in its early years. We touched on some of his articles: Poor reasons for rejecting C++ Preventing dynamic allocation Calling constructors with placement new Andrei suggested Sams Teach Yourself C++ in One Hour a Day, Seventh Edition by Siddhartha Rao as a good primer for experienced C programmers reluctantly learning C++. Like robots? Check out the job postings at iRobot. If you like what you see, email Chris Svec. (Yes, the guy who was on 78: Happy Cows.) Contest for Making Embedded Systems will end Feb 5, 2016.
Inventor and Youtube-er, Simone Giertz (@SimoneGiertz) tells us about building robots to "help" her daily life. Simone's YouTube Channel. Some of the videos discussed in the show: Chopping Machine VLOG and its TV commercial (Also: the servo motors used) Listener Feedback with TENS machine Wake up machine Simone's blog, with additional robot build details is at simonegiertz.com. For relaxation, Simone visits the Hello Denizen YouTube channel and watches hamsters eating gourmet meals. She also mentioned her preferred Reddit feed. Like robots? Check out the job postings at iRobot. If you like what you see, email Chris Svec. (Yes, the guy who was on 78: Happy Cows.) Contest for Making Embedded Systems will end Feb 5, 2016.
Anh Bui, Vice President of @Benetech Labs, joined us to discuss using technology for good. Benetech is most widely known for Bookshare, an online library for people with print disabilities. Note that this is only open to people with print disabilities per the Chafee Amendment (copyright exceptions with cause). There are some public domain books you can search through on the site. Martus is another of Benetech's core programs, in their human rights and civil liberties program. It is an open source, secure information collection and management tool. Poet Image Description Tool is a Benetech tool to aid in making visuals more accessible to everyone. Some accessibility guidelines and techniques: W3 Web design accessibility Apple's many accessibility resources POUR (Perceivable, Operable, Understandable, Robust) website design article Enabling The Future is the group that 3D prints prosthetic limbs.The Dean Kamen water filtration system is called Slingshot. Hackaday Prize (2016 announcement is coming!) For more information about the embedded software position at Avid Identification Systems, please email Mark (Engineering Manager) and CC Karen (HR Manager).
Eric Hankinson (@Kumichou) tells us about the new embedded software components ofContextual Electronics. There is a 10% coupon announced in the show, good until June. CE uses the ST-Nucleo-F030R8 board. Eric's blog is www.erichankinson.com and his day job is at LeanDog. The Amp Hour episode with Chris and Elecia is 281: Crossovers and Call-ins Sealand
Christopher (@stoneymonster) and Elecia (@logicalelegance) inflict lightning round on each other, talk about their new favorite toys, and get momentarily serious about performance reviews. Elecia is looking for a datasheet for the SunPlus SPHE8104GW. Not the 8200. This is not something Google-able. It probably requires knowing the right person, but if you do (or if you are the right person), please help. Tickle is the IOS app to program the Sphero BB-8 (and many other robots) in the kids programming language Scratch Laser Stars Indoor Light Show Automatic: BLE car monitoring The Cheerson CX-10 is the base model quadcopter Elecia and Chris have been playing with. They flew a CX-10C with its 0.3MP video camera off a cliff at beach (but it didn't record the video). Elecia's self-evaluation for 2014 year is on her blog Python library for mashing binaries into other forms is IntelHex Elecia couldn't find the .map file scripts she was thinking of though one on stackoverflow was pretty close
FIRST Robotics is way to get students of all ages into robotics. Former participant and dedicated mentor, Michael Hill (@Michael_A_Hill) tells us about FIRST and how we can get involved. Official site: FIRSTInspires.org which also has a list of volunteer roles and qualifications Forums are at ChiefDelphi.com This year's theme is FIRST STRONGHOLD and was designed in collaboration with Disney. There is a trailer on YouTube (expect castles!). One of the NI control units is the RoboRIO (not the nearly-already-a-robot RIO Robot we linked to initially, thank you Alan Anderson!) Micheal's team is Innovators Robotics. Chris and Elecia will be helping out on The Amp Hour call in show, recording January 6,2015. If you'd like to chat, hit our contact link or email email@example.com. Please include your name, location, Skype name and what you hope to discuss on air.
Sarah and Abi Hodsdon speak with us about being a maker family. Sarah's site and blog are Sarahndipitous Designs, her twitter handle is @sarahndipitous. The online K-12 school they use is Connections Academy. Making Makers by AnnMarie Thomas is a book about encouraging kids toward making. Backyard Ballistics by William Gurstelle is an excellent addition to any library. Giwishes is a massive global scavenger hunt. Some learning sites the Hodsdon's recommend include: Code Academy Kahn Academy Instructables For e-textiles and wearables, they recommend: Lynne Bruning's eTextile Lounge Becky Stern Leah Buechley's Sew Electric book
Alvaro Prieto (@alvaroprieto) spoke with us about laser turrets, tearing down quadcopters, flux capacitors, the moon, and culture at work. Alvaro's blog Alvaro's github repositories including Proto-X quadcopter information, Silta bus monitoring, and Skype video message exporter for OSX. One of the inspirations for taking apart the Proto-X was watching Micah talk about herCoastermelt project. We talked to her about it on episode 101: Taking Apart the Toaster. One of his reasons for going to Planet Labs was knowing Shaun Meehan, check out his Amp Hour interview. Daemon by Daniel Suarez Video of Supercon talk on laser shooting robots Podcast Award nominations open in early 2016
We ask Matt Berggren (@technolomaniac) to envision an ideal world of product creation. Matt's Spartan 6 FPGA shield is on the Hackaday Store. Its build process is documented on Hackaday.io. You can see Matt's other projects on Hackaday.io/matt. Matt works for SupplyFrame. Wishbone is the open source bus system that Elecia likened to ARM's AHB/APB.
Simon Monk (@simonmonk2) talks with us about zombies and writing books. Simon has 20+ books out, check out his Amazon author page or his web page for a full listing (simonmonk.org). Some you might want sooner rather than later include: The Maker's Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse: Defend Your Base with Simple Circuits, Arduino, and Raspberry Pi Hacking Electronics 30 Arduino Projects for the Evil Genius Kits for building some of the projects from Simon's books can be found at Monk Makes. (@monkmakes).
🐔=🦃+1 (or Why isn't there a duck emoji?) Christopher and Elecia talk about languages, twitter, listener emails, and Star Wars. Podcast Awards The Amp Hour talked about languages, they also referenced this compiler writing exercise C alternative tokens iso646.h and an up to date C reference (Harbison and Steele) $20 Linux board from vocore.io Real Strawberry DNA extraction technique (Elecia forgot the soap and the salt.) fromScientific American (with real science) or in easy-to-follow picture form on genome.gov.
Dan Shapiro (@danshapiro), CEO of Glowforge (@glowforge), speaks with us about laser cutters and his book, The Hot Seat. If you succumb to the wonder of 3D laser printers, consider using our Glowforge link so you get $100 (and we get $100). Dan's book, the one Elecia gushes about, is The Hot Seat: The Startup CEO Guidebook. Some of that information is also found in Dan's blog. If you are in the Seattle area, Glowforge is hiring! Check out their jobs page. We didn't talk much about Robot Turtles, a game to teach programming principles to preschoolers.(Also on Amazon.) There is another interesting interview with Dan at Tested.com.
Windell Oskay (@Oskay) of Evil Mad Scientist Laboratories (@EMSL) told us about co-authoring a book: The Annotated Build-It-Yourself Science Laboratory. Some great EMSL links: A signed copy of Windell's book Dis-integrated 555 timer kit Candle flicker LEDs Food in specimen jars EMSL blog post Spherical pen plotter (EggBot Pro!) The book Chris brought up was Thinking Physics. Windell is also on Google Plus. Contest to get Windell's signed book ends 11/13, send in your entry!
Bob Coggeshall (@BobCoggeshall) runs a boutique assembly house. And he co-wrote sudo. There are sandwich jokes. Bob's business is Small Batch Assembly (@SmallBatchA). (There might be a discount on your first order near the end of the show. Maybe.) His pick and place machine is a Mancorp MC400. Octopart's Common Parts Library We mentioned OSHPark a few times, Laen has been on Embedded.fm: 92: Everybody Behave, Please Boldport makes nonlinear traces (SEAHORSE!!) Relevant XKCD panel My Date with Drew How did we not know about Astromech.net? Bob's Wifi Nixie driver board (also: how Nixie tubes work)
Chris and Elecia try out their new recording location, give advice for getting a job in embedded software, and respond to listener emails. SparkFun's Pit of Despair is a blog post about how to create products from prototypes. Visual Studio has plug-ins that support microprocessors, see Visual Micro. The Guardian reports that 2016 VW models have a different defeat.
We spoke with Fran Blanche (@contourcorsets) of Frantone about guitar tone. Fran has several articles and posts about space, electronics, and assorted whatnot at her design writings page. Her video blog is on YouTube. There are many different guitar pedals you can build for yourself as a way to get a better handle on analog electronics. Elecia found these at Mammoth Electronics. The song that was the first to have flanging was "The Big Hurt" by Toni Fisher in 1959.
Ben Krasnow of the Applied Science YouTube channel talks with us about scanning electron microscopes, generating liquid nitrogen, and cookies. Hackaday Conference is Nov 14-15, 2015 in SF, CA! Call for proposals. (Ben and Elecia are Hackaday Prize Judges.) Contact Ben through twitter: @BenKrasnow Applied Science YouTube channel (and don't forget the associated Patreon). Some specific videos we talked about: Cookie machine Electron microscope scanning vinyl record Faraday effect (control light with magnets!) LED contact lens (not for the squeamish) Other people's videos and projects: Brady Haran's Periodic Videos Veritassium channel Build your own waterjet Amscope microscope and low cost hot air rework soldering station
Chris and Elecia discuss listener emails and other assorted topics. Preprocessor fun BLE 4.2 writeup from EETimes and the FAQ from Bluetooth.org Drones should follow existing aviation keep out standards (Nick links us to some wiki pages) Automatic dependent surveillance NOTAM Federal Aviation Regulations: Temporary flight restrictions NYT Amazon culture article Cake under a microscope
Glenn Scott (@GlennCScott) spoke with us about API design and techniques for writing good software. Glenn glossed over his bio but it is quite impressive. You can reach him via his PARC page. PARC's Content Centric Networking home: ccnx.org which we talked about in 75: End Up in a Puppy Fight. Literate Programming by Knuth And the more recommended Bob Martin's books While latest source code requires licensing, the binary version of CCN includes the LongBow tools (in user/local/parc/bin). Description of tools and doxygen docs. The LongBow getting started guide should be part of the mid-September binary release. PARC's C Style Guide and C Function Naming Guide
Daniel Hienzsch (@rheingoldheavy) spoke with us about reverse engineering a board, bypass capacitors, and serial protocols. Rheingold Heavy is Dan's company for educational boards. The one he started with was the I2C and SPI education board (its fulfilled kickstarter page). He brought us the theGraphic Equalizer Kit and Bubble Display Experimentation Pack. Dan's Arduino from Scratch blog series looks at the Arduino hardware in great detail. Contextual Electronics course for learning to build boards Chris wrote about his Photon based garage door opener on the Linker blog TinEye for searching schematic snippets
Andrei Chichak rejoins us to discuss error handling. Andrei's website says how to reach him or email embedded 'at' chichak.ca Windows 10 "Something Happened" error Hitchbot Book Elecia mentioned: Kindness of Strangers by Mike McIntyre Elecia's book covers logging module in Creating a System Architecture (pp 21-25) Robots and children
Clive Turvey (Clive1), master of the ST Forums, talks with us about ARM cores and answering difficult technical questions for fun. Some answers: NVIC Interrupts on the same pin number STM32F4 PWM channel 3 ST's Cortex-M7 Books (though we talked more about these being good authors, these are the ones Chris and Elecia have or want): The Definitive Guide to ARM Cortex-M3 and Cortex-M4 Processors, 3rd Edition (Joseph Yiu, 2013) The Definitive Guide to ARM Cortex-M0 and Cortex-M0+ Processors, 2nd Edition (Joseph Yiu, 2015) Z80 Assembly Language Programming Paperback (Lance A Leventhal, 1979) Programming the 6502 (Rodnay Zaks, 1979) A bare metal Scheme interpreter for ARM.
Chris (@stoneymonster) and Elecia (@logicalelegance) chat with each other about drones, listener emails, conferences, fighting robots, and moonlighting. Elecia's Solid talk, an Introduction to Inertial Sensors is on youtube. Washington Post article about Amazon's good drone behavior Apple's IOS security guide (Elecia's security checklist) Photon WiFi Module (Chris' Linker articles part one and part two) DAB+ FM Digital Radio Development Board Sad autonomous fighting robot video and lightning fast autonomous sumo bots video OpenSCAD- CAD tool suggested by a listener Elecia's conference apology Light painting pictures (500px)
Natalie Silvanovich (@natashenka) discussed reverse engineering hardware, working on security software, and the fantastic world of Tamagotchis. Natalie's site and blog Hardware Excuse Generator Original CCC 2012 talk: Many Tamagotchis Were Harmed in the Making of this Presentation CCC 2013 talk: Even More Tamagotchis Were Harmed in the Making of this Presentation Natalie's upcoming BlackHat talk: Attacking ECMAScript Engines with Redefinition Flash exploit article for Project Zero: One Perfect Bug: Exploiting Type Confusion in Flash Tamagotchis are still available as are the works of Shel Silverstein (Snowball is in Falling Up).
BeagleBone's Jason Kridner (@Jadon) returns to tell us about his new book. Jason co-authored a new book: BeagleBone Cookbook: Software and Hardware Problems and Solutions (or at O'Reilly). His older book is Bad to the Bone: Crafting Electronics Systems with Beaglebone and BeagleBone Black. Previous Embedded.fm episode 60: Fun Things You Can Make out of Beagles BeagleBoard.org's Google Summer of Code page (including BeagleSat and underwater drones!) Some information about putting Xenomai on a BeagleBone Black for real time response. Chris mentioned Brillo, an alternative Google supported OS that isn't on the BBB. Project Ara: an open source smartphone Ardupilot: Autonomous drone piloting. Dronecode: Drones in Linux OpenROV: Underwater vehicles Mars lander Beagle 2 (the Apollo 11 Lunar Module was the Eagle despite some comical confusion). [UPDATE: Listener Mark Stevens pointed out that the Apollo 10 Lunar Module was named Snoopy who was a beagle.] TI's E2E Forums BeagleBone Green
James Grenning (@jwgrenning) returns to discuss TDD, Agile, and web courses. James was on Embedded.fm episode 30: Eventually Lighting Strikes. James' new company is Wingman Software. His excellent book is TDD for Embedded C. James suggested Training From the Back of the Room! as resource to people looking to put together a class. He uses and recommends CyberDojo as a coding instruction tool. Before Agile was Agile-for-business, it was Extreme Programming. James recommends Extreme Programming Explained. James will be the keynote speaker at AgileDC in October.
Jen (@RebelbotJen) joined Chris and Elecia to discuss security, privacy, and ethics in wearable computing. Elecia's Linker post is especially relevant this week: Device Security Checklist.. There is already a standard for privacy and security: HIPAA (Title II). While not easy to read, it is a reasonable starting place. Another good (but not quite on-point) resource is the EFF Secure Messaging Scorecard, especially if you consider your device as messaging your user (it's a metaphor, ok?). Also, read all the way to the methodology, not just the pretty checkboxes. Mike Ryan has great explanations for how to easily crack BLE security. Video to watch. His website has more resources, papers, videos, tools. The Embedded Systems Conference (Silicon Valley) will be held at the Santa Clara convention center July 20-22. Wearables and IoT Growing Up: Talking To Your Products About Security And Ethics(Jen, Wed 11am) Teardown: Wearing Security on Your Sleeve (mostly Jen with Elecia telling jokes if/when things go wrong, Tue 1:30pm, on the show floor so free to attend with an Expo pass. We'll be taking apart a Nymi band.) Faker to Maker in 45 Minutes or Less (Elecia, Wed 1:30pm) Casino article: Breaking the House Chris and Elecia were guests on The Amp Hour. Jen is interested in putting together a workshop/conference on the intersection of art, dance, and technology. Contact her on Twitter or email info at rebelbots dot com.
We talked to Craig Cook about learning embedded systems. He recently attended an embedded edX course through University of Texas. The microcontroller and boards used in the course Craig's next course will be Interactive Python through Coursera As we discussed Craig's alarm clock we mentioned many parts including: FM Module ESP8266 WiFi Module Electric Imp (Sparkfun or Digikey, don't forget the April breakout board) Chris has also been looking at Particle.io's Photon board for WiFi + cloud development. This will be mentioned on other shows (as well as on The Amp Hour).
Chris and Elecia talk about satellites, survey results, and entertainment. ESP8266 has an Arduino IDE (thanks, Karl!) Elecia will be speaking at Solid June 25th and ESC July 22nd. To celebrate the first 100 episodes, Elecia made a spreadsheet of all the guests and topics. Chris read and recommended Neal Stephenson's Seveneves. He was ambivalent about the latest incarnation of battlebots.
Manny Wright of Cortus spoke with us about developing processor IP and how it goes from RTL to silicon. Cortus development platform with a Xilinx Spartan and Arduino Due compatibility. Planet Labs satellite contest winners are announced and Elecia has a cold.
Atmel’s Andreas Eieland (@AndreasMCUguy) spoke with us about low power chips and benchmarks, including tips for measuring and achieving the lowest power possible. EEMBC has a low power benchmark: ULPBench. EETimes wrote up a great introduction to the benchmark. Atmel’s SAM-L posted some excellent numbers for ULPBench. Chris wanted to look at processors between Cortex-M4 and phone chips. Andreas suggested the SAM7, SAM E, and Cortex-A5. Programmable logic blocks (Look Up Tables) Coding tips and tricks for AVR micros (most things apply for all embedded development) App Note: Ultra Low Power Techniques App Note: Performance Levels and Power Domains Andreas was also on Episode 15: Robot on the Front, speaking about how the AVR processor line came to life, why there is an AVR in Arduino, and the spirit of making things. The Planet contest ends Friday June 12 (at midnight your time). Check out their jobs and send in your contest entry. Also, check out Elecia’s BLE Intro.
Mark VanderVoord (@mvandervoord) spoke with us about leading open source projects and test driven development. His site is ThrowTheSwitch.org, a good place to get started with test driven development. Get more info (and a coupon) for his course. Mark's book is Embedded Testing with Unity and CMock. Lengthy list of unit testing frameworks for C Why's Guide to Learning Ruby (free! with entertaining comics!) D Lang
Charles Lohr spoke with us about $5 WiFi (ESP8266), hacking as a hobby, arcade games, and music visualization. Updated 06/02/2015: A listener pointed out that the Arduino IDE can program the ESP8266, probably an easier setup than Charles' original article. Also, the Linker post for this show is about getting started with BLE. Follow Charles on YouTube (or say hello on Google+ and Hackaday.io). To get you started, here are Elecia's favorites: High Res Wifi Signal Mapping (ESP8266) ColorChord 2 Wifi Cup (ESP8266) For more about the ESP8266: Charles' Hackaday write up (and github repository) Espressif site Electrodragon, Adafruit, and Sparkfun have modules ST 9 axis inertial measurement unit LSM9DSO
Micah Elizabeth Scott (@scanlime) spoke with us about Coastermelt, art installations, FadeCandy, teaching electronics to artists, and mental health. Her Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) installation is mesmerizing, some videos. In her Coastermelt project, Micah uses the IDA disassembler. FadeCandy is for sale at Adafruit. Zen Photon is online, demonstrating ray tracing. Micah's website shows her current projects. Micah's previous Embedded.fm episode focused on FadeCandy: 41: Pink Universes Die Really Quickly. Robot Odyssey looks awesome. Captain Awkward is a site where you can get advice on how to say things and deal with difficult situations/people. Micah's shop has a TypeA 3D printer (note: Tuco's favorite bolts) as well as an OtherMill.
Star Simpson (@starsandrobots) and Jen Costillo (@RebelbotJen) catch up with Elecia and Chris, discussing how hobby projects have changed over the last two years since the show started. Jen's website: RebelBot Star's website and weekly drone newsletter The Buzzer. Star works at Orion (formerly OnBeep). Novena board and Star's project Balboa ODROID Open Cores Crowd supply and What it took to make the Octopart reference card
Andrei Chichak spoke with us about MISRA-C and ethics. Linker post: It's dangerous to go alone! Take MISRA-C Embedded.fm listener survey (please!) Andrei's has personal website (we failed to talk about his kite aerial photography, it is really neat though) and his company is CBF Systems. Plum Hall C Compiler Validation PC Lint JPL Coding Standards for C (and the mentioned video discussing Mars Code) ISO 26262 Automobile software standard Cortex-R for high reliability systems (ARM's description) National Society of Professional Engineers code of ethics and Canadian EngineeringGuidelines on the Code of Ethics Offline, Andrei recommended two books and another podcast about MISRA: C Traps and Pitfalls Safer C MISRA with Johan Bezem (podcast)
Chris and Elecia talk about memetics, learning, and processors. Elecia was coy about the Pasadena party May 9th and 10th, but Hackaday announced it so you can invite yourself. She will also be speaking at the Solid conference in June in SF (email for a coupon!). She'll also be at ESC-Silicon Valley in July. Star Wars Teaser #2 and SpaceX almost-landing BLE fun: TI's CC2640 and Nordic nRF51822 (Elecia likes the BLE Nano with the free, online mbed compiler for getting started with the nRF5122). Everything seems to be a Cortex-M0 these days (including the aforementioned CC2640 and nRF51822). The new Atmel SAM-L series is Cortex-M0 and even more low power than usual. On the other hand, the MSP432 is low power and is a more powerful Cortex-M4 (and inexpensive dev kits!), Elecia has a book: Making Embedded Systems. It makes a great gift.
Professor Paul Fishwick joined us to talk about CS and STEM education, excellent analogies, and the crossover of art and technology. The Linker post related to this episode managed to be reasonably topical for a change. Paul's work: UT Dallas homepage Creative Automata blog and Modeling For Everyone blog TEDx talk Aesthetic Computing, one of his books on art and CS. Online chapter. Creative Automata course Videos Radiolab Color Episode Forrester System Dynamics Max is a visual programming language for music and multimedia. CS Unplugged is a collection of free learning activities that teach Computer Science through engaging games and puzzles that use cards, string, crayons and lots of running around. There are many bubblesort dance videos (mindboggling) but this is the one Elecia knew about previously. The Computer History Museum is awesome. If you are in the area, you should definitely go. Conference and contact notes: There is a party/hack event in Pasadena May 9th and 10th, email if you want more info (and an invite). Elecia will be speaking at SOLID in SF in June, giving an intro to inertial. She's got a coupon to share if you ask. ESC Minneapolis' call for proposals is open but closing soon. Elecia will be at ESC Silicon Valley in July, speaking on being a Maker (or not).
Carrie Sundra (@AlpenglowYarn) spoke with us about doing a Kickstarter on her own… and nearly failing. The SkeinMinder is an automation tool for small yarn businesses (and enthusiastic amateurs). When the successful Kickstarter nearly fell short, Carrie candidly wrote about it (includes a great description of the economies of scale). Carrie’s yarn company is Alpenglow Yarn. You can use the contact page there to ask for electrical engineering help as well. Carrie is active on Instagram and her blog is a blend of crafts and engineering. Ravelry is the social media site for knitters and crocheters (requires free account to see anything) The insanely popular Potato Salad Kickstarter.
This week we discuss lasers, internet of things, and static electricity. Our extremely opinionated guest has a lot to say, including some scatological humor. The associated Linker post went up early for this one, please check it out. Scary robot litter box
The linker post for this episode is Be Excellent to Each Other. Dennis Jackson spoke with us about drones (and Airware), simple code, and learning. Hobbyist drones and UAVs on Amazon: tiny and cheap, medium (Christopher's gift), andplease-I'm-drooling-right-now. Only the last one may be an Airware platform (Dennis could neither confirm nor deny). Airware's breakdown of proposed FAA rules Simple code: Cyclomatic complexity Chris Svec's episode on empathy driven design (he'll also be at ESC Boston!) Test Driven Development for Embedded C by James Grenning Don't Make Me Think: A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability Dennis has also worked on DEKA's iBOT and at Avinger's OCT system. Dennis had a list of suggested articles and blogs on safety critical software development: 30 Pitfalls for Real Time Systems (part 1 and part 2) Rules for defensive C programming Joel Spolsky's blog (see top 10) Why are you still using C The Power of Ten -- 10 Rules for Writing Safety Critical Code Dennis' other suggested reading (ongoing blogs): Coding Horror Jason Sach's Embedded Systems The Old New Thing Rands in Repose (management and leadership)
The Linker post for this episode is RTOSs and Brownies. Joel Sherrill (@JoelSherrill) spoke with us about real time operating systems, free and open source software, interns, and space. RTEMS home page and wiki Google Summer of Code (the FAQ is the best part!) and ESA Summer of code (awesome tagline: In space no one can hear you code). The LEON is the ESA Sparc core with open source VHDL and extensive use by ESA. Some projects RTEMS is used on include the Magnetosphere Multiscale Mission, theExPRESS Logistics Carrier, Mars Curiosity, and the Dawn spacecraft that is visiting the Ceres asteroid.
The Linker post for this episode: Make Anything James @Laen Neal from OSHPark spoke with us about starting a business, helping open source hardware, and throwing wild parties. OSHPark got its start from DorkbotPDX. If you are in Portland, Oregon, check out their meetup (started out on Mondays, now first Tuesday of the month, look at the CymaSpace meetup calendar for the Maker Meetup). Open Source Hardware Association (OSHA) PCB Design School blog Bay Area Maker Faire 2015 is May 16-17, Bring a Hack dinner is usually Sunday. This time we really did talk about the Maker Pro book.
The Linker post for this episode: Make Anything James @Laen Neal from OSHPark spoke with us about starting a business, helping open source hardware, and throwing wild parties. OSHPark got its start from DorkbotPDX. If you are in Portland, Oregon, check out their meetup (started out on Mondays, now first Tuesday of the month, look at the CymaSpace meetup calendar for the Maker Meetup). Open Source Hardware Association (OSHA) PCB Design School blog Bay Area Maker Faire 2015 is May 16-17, Bring a Hack dinner is usually Sunday. This time we really did talk about the Maker Pro book.
The Linker post for this Episode: Solving a Different Problem ThingM's Tod Kurt (@todbot) joined us to talk about the most important part of every embedded system: blinking lights. ThingM has been making I2C lights (BlinkM, MinM and MaxM) since 2006. The newer, more productized USB light is the Blink(1) (there is a coupon near the end of the show). Blink(1) had two successful kickstarters (second one). The BlinkMs have an ATTiny85 (which is also on the Adafruit Trinket). The Blink(1)s have a PIC processor that is small, cheap, and supports USB quite well (PIC16F1455-I/ML and dev kit). Other smart LEDs include WS28xx (aka NeoPixel) and APA102 (aka DotStar) Seeed Studio was discussed as a way to get boards built, assembled, even housed. Elecia mentioned Tindie's new CM review site. Tod is cofounder of Crash Space (@CrashSpaceLA), a Los Angeles based hackspace. They (including Tod) were on the short-lived Mythbusters-hosted Rube Goldberg devices show called Unchained Reaction. Tod has worked on some neat art projects, including the Crystal Monster and the Cash Machine. Tod's blog. Speaking of blogs, Chris and Elecia are going to start writing after (podcast) action reports forElement 14. More announcements (and actual links) soon. Don't forget the Chris Savage (Parallax) call for assistance!
Chris Savage (@SavageCircuits) talks about building a community and about stopping projects when life intrudes. His site is Savage Circuits. He has a YouTube channel. He has Savage Circuit TV which are the longer, more in depth videos and Short Circuit for the shorter ones. Also see his forums. Chris works for Parallax and had some kit suggestions: BOE-BOT (board of education bot), its successor the ActivityBot, and the ELEV-8 Quadcopter Kit. Chris is also a writer for Nuts and Volts. At the top of the show, we mentioned Chris' wife. Here is Ken Gracey's request for help. Or you can skip that and use the PayPal link on the Savage Circuits thank you page. (No PayPal account required.)
Same day PCBs?!? Danielle Applestone (@dapplestone) chatted with Chris and Elecia about desktop CNC milling using @OtherMachine's OtherMill. OtherMill links: features tools and materials (neat!) store (kits!) instructables (chocolate spaceships!) kickstarter page miniature mocha pot brass, err.. aluminum turbine (also: what Elecia heard) stories of people using OtherMill Synthetos TinyG controller (also see the Make write up about TinyG) BANT (budget, authority, need, timing): more info
Chip Gracey spoke with us about founding @ParallaxInc, chip design, and the Propeller with its many cores. Parallax Some notes on open sourcing the Propeller Propeller One Verilog forum Propeller products Elecia has a very old Propeller Starter kit but is tempted to get the PropStick USB. Many years ago, Chris got a Basic Stamp 2 module (like this one) to control a camera in his RC airplane:
86: MADEUPICAL WORD Erin McKean (@emckean) is a lexicographer, programmer, and start-up founder. We spoke to her about Wordnik (the online uber dictionary), Reverb (smarter recommendations), and her many books. Wordnik: Adopt-a-word Developer Erin's favorite list Reverb Erin has written many books, some about words, one about dresses (The Hundred Dresses), and one fiction novel about The Secret Lives of Dresses. She has also given two TED talks. Watson on Jeopardy Brian Garner talks about skunked words in his book Modern American Usage Five Intriguing Things via Tiny Letter [Feb 2, 2015: This link is broken today but it is the right link, google "Five Intriguing Things" to see if they've fixed it.] Elecia's Wordy project if fully documented over on Hackaday Reaction Housing is hiring!
Scott Miller built a hula hoop with Bluetooth, an inertial measurement unit, a 32-bit processor, an 8-bit processor, and a slew of individually addressable LEDs. It makes wild patterns when you move. Scott's "normal" company, with all of its ham radio equipment, is Argent Data Systems. The hula hoops are Hyperion Hoops. You can buy a hoop. They are also on Facebook or you can watch the mesmerizing lightshow on YouTube (also here and here). Yes, the hula hoop does speak DMX512, doesn't everybody? Reaction Housing is hiring!
The founders of Bluestamp Engineering spoke with us about running a hands-on summer engineering program for high school students (while keeping their day jobs). Bluestamp website, Twitter (@BlueStampEng), YouTube channel full of student projects and Facebook page. Dave Young (@daveyoungEE) is also the principal engineer at Young Circuit Design. Robin Mansukhani is also CEO of Alzeca. Robin also gave a TED talk about learning by doing.
Raman Pi creator Mark Johnson (@flatCat_) spoke with us about spectrometers, 3D printing, and competing in the Hackaday Prize. Raman Pi project on Hackaday.io Hackaday prize semi-finalist video Mike Szczys' Fl@c@ bio on Hackaday.com Open Source Fusor Research Consortium Wikipedia: spectrometer, Raman spectroscopy, fusors, and optical coherence tomography Weird Stuff is a Bay area electronics surplus store Raman Pi also has its own website
Jen, Chris, and Elecia talk about the movies that influenced them to go into engineering. Real Genius (imdb, Amazon) Star Wars (imdb, Amazon) Choose Your Own Adventure books (Amazon, wiki) Wargames (imdb, Amazon) Ghostbusters (imdb, Amazon) Star Trek: The Next Generation (imdb, Amazon) 321 Contact, show and magazine (imdb (tv)) The Muppets Show (imdb, Amazon) Sneakers (imdb, Amazon) Phineas and Ferb (imdb, Amazon) Sisterhood of Spies (Amazon) Crytonomicon (Amazon)
Chris and Elecia babble up a show about gifts, conferences, and makers. Embedded Systems Conference is put on by UBM. The conference is in Boston May 6-7, 2015, Santa Clara July 20-22, and Minneapolis November 4-5. The Santa Clara proposal deadline is January 9th. O'Reilly's Solid Conference is June 22-25 in San Francisco. Proposals are due January 12th. Fitbit Surge (Amazon) Kerbal Space Program and some controllers and telemetry boards from other people CrossyRoad is on iOS and Android (This is bad, do not start. Also unihorse is the best!) Elecia's Wordy project on Hackaday Magnetoception in humans is controversial (wiki) but the magnetometer/motor anklet is neat.
Bill Winterberg (@BillWinterberg) chatted with Elecia about leaving embedded engineering to become a financial planner then to being a technology adviser to other financial planners. Bill's company is FPPad. You can subscribe to his newsletter and watch Bits and Bytes, his video blog (or read it). Bill and Elecia met at LeapFrog. Bill was instrumental in making the original LeapPad Learning System. When Elecia mentioned Domini Social Investments, Bill mentioned Vanguard Total Stock Market. Get a Financial Life: Personal Finance In Your Twenties and Thirties Financial adviser networks: XY Planning Network (by interest) Garrett Planning Network (hourly fees only) NAPFA (fee only advisers) CFP® (by zip code) Robo-advisor (automated investment management) Bill says: "It shouldn't be this hard for smart engineers."
Vicky Tuite (@vixter55) came on the show to chat with Chris and Elecia about EVAOS, a company that upgrades Ford trucks into plug-in hybrids. Feminist Hacker Barbie She’s Geeky Bay piggies (BayPIGgies)
Chris Svec (@christophersvec) has an idea about adding empathy to software development. It is a good idea. His blog is Said Svec. He works for iRobot and they are hiring. (Chris' email is given toward the end of the show but if you hit the contact link here, we'll pass along info to him.) Obligatory cat video Embedded has an episode devoted to impostor syndrome. O'Reilly's Head First book series is pretty awesome. Elecia is still talking about Thinking, Fast and Slow as a great way to understand brains. Chris Svec also recommends Make It Stick. The Richard Hamming quote came from his address to the Naval Postgraduate School. The whole lecture is available on YouTube.
Sophi Kravitz (@SophiKravitz, G+) joined us to talk about working on neat things: Wobble World, Oculus Rift, Unity, goldfish training, and BlueStamp Engineering. Sophi's company is Mix Engineering Leap Motion vs. Microsoft Kinect Goldfish driving (vid) Quit Your Day Job on Element14, previously on Super Green Dot Advertising in SkyMall Thermoelectric Firestarter
Ron Sparks (@txNgineer, AG5RS) spoke with us about the convergence of makers and ham radio enthusiasts. The alternative internet: AMPRNet (wiki) aka 44 net South Texas Balloon Launch Team Pecan Pico AmSAT SatNOGS (their site, their hackaday entry, and the video Elecia liked) Weak Signal Propagation Reporter Network ("whisper"). Also on wiki.
Glenn Scott and Nacho Solis spoke with Elecia about content-centric networking, being research scientists, and working at PARC. [Note: Elecia was the recording engineer and her inexperience showed by not hitting that other little button on the software. Nacho's mic ended up bad but Chris mostly fixed it... the sound gets better after the first five minutes.] Twitter: Nacho (@isolis), CCN (@projectccnx), and PARC (@PARCInc) CCNX website (includes contact link) CCN enabled Riot OS
John Schuch (@JohnS_AZ) talked with us about being a semifinalist in the Hackaday Prize, his project, and entering other contests. John's webpage John's Hackaday Page Winning Entry on Mouser 500 Challenge Honorable Mention on Circuit Cellar's ChipKit2012 Many contests are announced on Circuit Cellar and searching the EEVBlog forums. IRC channel mentioned is TYMKRS
Christopher and Elecia look through listener email, check in on what past guests are up to, and consider the best and worst of science in recent fiction. Hackaday Prize Finalists (and the 50 Semiinalists) Saleae Logic Pro 16 (related: Drive the Boat with a Wii Mote) Darma Kickstarter (related: Resonant Frequency of My Butt) Peep sign up to be notified of their Kickstarter (related: Vision for Simple Minds) EMSL Halloween round up and open house on Nov 13 (related: Mwahahaha Session) Silicon Chef Hackathon results (related: Dancing with Hundreds of Women) Pan-CJK fonts (related: The Tofu Problem) The Martian (Amazon) (There is a tiny spoiler, one Elecia doesn't think merits the warning but Christopher says to skip 55:00 to 01:02:55 if you want to read the book cold.) Don's I Snooze Remote
Emile Petrone (@emilepetrone) talked with Chris and Elecia about Tindie: buying, selling, changing the rate of hardware innovation, having a burgeoning start up, connecting government agencies to craft electronics, etc. We talked about many amazing projects on Tindie but there were so many, it is hard to call them out. Arduboy and AirPi Raspberry Pi weather station are two that stood out.
Intellectual property attorney Judith Szepesi (@Judith_IP) discusses what Elecia (and startups) need to know about patenting. Judith is a founding partner at HIPLegal, LLP. They will soon have a guide to addressing patent trolls (link to be added when available). Ask Patents - a Stack Exchange site to discuss patents (and patent trolls) Judith and Elecia both recommend the Patent It Yourself book from NOLO Press (always get the latest of this). Even if you seek legal counsel, you'll have a better idea of what should happen through the process. [Note: we got to talking after the show and Judith reminded me that if you do research for other people's patents, you should track that because you have an obligation to tell the patent office about whatever you are aware of that is relevant. -El]
Rob Faludi (@Faludi), author of Building Wireless Sensor Networks and chief innovator at Digi International, spoke with us about Zigbee, writing, and experimenting. Rob's blog Books we talked about: Building Wireless Sensor Networks (of course!) Creativity, Inc. Make: Wearable Electronics
Mike Szczys (@Szczys) discusses @Hackaday, the SPACE! prize, being a professional musician, and visiting Silicon Valley. Hackaday.com blog including Mike's post about Why Open Design is the way forward Hackaday.io project site Hackaday Prize All entries 50 semifinalists Science fiction contest winners (previous contest) Mike was on the judging panel to winnow down from 800 entries to 50. Some projects that he thought were particularly awesome that didn't make the semifinalist cut. Intelligent Ski Course Taylor Multifuel Null-rotor Turbine V-Sink -- video in anything out (not discussed) Daisy Kite Airborne Wind Turbine (not discussed) Supply Frame FindChips and (upcoming) Parts.io In response to a listener question, Elecia wrote a blog post about things to do in Silicon Valley. When Mike visited for the first time, he caught many highlights: he went toHSC/Halted, enjoying how organized it is, woke up early for the De Anza electronics flea market, and had a ball at the Computer History Museum. Mike's Science Friday segment
Angie Chang (@thisgirlangie) joined us to talk about the coding bootcamp Hackbright Academy, their upcoming hardware hackathon, Girl Geek Dinners, and the extreme awkwardness of networking. Sign up to be a hackathon mentor (not gender limited) or to be on the waitlist to attend (women only). Get your team together on Hackathon IO. Sign up to be a Hackbright Academy mentor. Oh look! Elecia signed up to speak on Sunday! Grace Hopper Conference The article on Peter Thiel and women founders by Kate Losse that Chris referenced toward the end of the show.
In front of a live audience, Chris and Elecia talk about their experiences with FAA and FDA. This show was recorded live in front of the Silicon Valley Automotive Open Source meetup group at Hacker Dojo. The Wikipedia article on DO-178B is a good place to get an overview of the FAA process (even for other levels of concern). For FDA, their guidance is the best place to start. Also see their 510k information. Finally, note that all class III (3, very high risk) require the more difficult Premarket Approval (PMA) process. Everything we know about car safety certification, we learned by reading Wikipedia's ISO-26262, including Automotive Safety Integrity Level (ASIL). Jack Ganssle's Embedded.fm episode was Being a Grownup Engineer.
Jack Gassett (@gadgetfactory) is the creator of the open source FPGA Papiliodevelopment board. He joins Chris and Elecia to answer the age-old question of how to get started with FPGAs. Jack's company is Gadget Factory. Chris got the Papilio Pro and Arcade MegaWing. Recommended reading: Mike Field's book Introducing the Spartan 3E FPGA and VHDL (FREE! With code!) Mealy and Tappero's Free Range VHDL (FREE!) Sundar Rajan's Essential VHDL : RTL Synthesis Done Right Roger Tokheim Digital Electronics: Principles and Applications Thomas Floyds Digital Logic Fundamentals (also see the latest edition) Chris and Elecia will be recording live at Hacker Dojo in Mountain View, CA on Monday, September 8, 2014 at 7 P.M. RSVP!
Darma (@Darma_inc) is a nascent start-up focusing on optical sensors in a seat cushion to aid in posture, stress reduction, and meditation. Chris and Elecia speak with CEO Dr. Junhao Hu and Sharif Kassatly about building a company, going through the Haxlr8r's accelerator program, and choosing a crowd funding platform. Keep up with Darma on their webpage and on their Facebook page. One of their advisors is NASA's Dr. Joan Vernikos, author of Sitting Kills, Moving Heals.
WHOOPS! We didn't record Elecia's mic this week and are taking a track direct from Chris' computer mic. Sound quality is not up to our normal standards. Sorry! Chris (@stoneymonster) hosted the show, asking Elecia (@logicalelegance) what it was like to write her Making Embedded Systems book. (Thanks to Chris Svec for the request!) Put in your idea to O'Reilly Write a novel this November with NaNoWriMo Come hear Chris and Elecia talk about writing software that can kill you at Hacker Dojo in Mountain View on Monday September 8, 2014, 7pm. Sign up! Also, bonus quotes: "Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing." - Benjamin Franklin "Almost anyone can be an author; the business is to collect money and fame from this state of being." - A. A. Milne
Steve Dalton (@spidie) told us about starting a hackerspace, visiting Silicon Valley with a homebrew incubator group, and tech and fencing Australia. Gold Coast Tech Space started off building the Rep Rap 3D printer Steve's consulting group is Refactor Silicon Lakes incubator just opened a call for applications to the SURF accelerator. The Arduino-like GCDuino, available on Little Bird Rabbits are not indigenous and not appreciated in Australia. They have the rabbit proof fenceand the Easter Billby.
Josh Bleecher Snyder (@offbymany) joined us to talk about PayPal's Beacon, being acquired, the Go programming language, BTLE, computer vision, and working at a large company after founding small ones. Bluetooth Low Energy: A Developer's Handbook by Robin Heydon TI CC2540 BTLE module Learning OpenCV: Computer Vision by Gary Bradski and Adrian Kaehler Gatt is a Go package for building Bluetooth Low Energy peripherals (video description by Josh from GopherCon 2014) Card.io Machine learning's Theano Eigen Library for matrix math
Jen Costillo (@rebelbotJen) brings Fashion Professor Kyle Chan to discuss wearables from a different perspective. California College of the Arts' Summer Series: Design of Wearables. Jen and Kyle's session isFashionably Practical on Wedneday, August 6th, 2014 8:15pm-10pm in San Francisco. Sparkfun conductive ribbon and thermochromatic pigment (blue) Athos athletic body monitoring Cute Circuit's photonic couture Smoke dress (neat!) Necomimi: thought controlled cat ear headband Reebok Checklight for detecting concussions and the Adafruit teardown Hövding scarf airbag for cyclists
Chris and Elecia went on vacation so this week we have music for you: the Ballistic Cats will be releasing a new album soon! If you like it, please check out the Ballistc Cats website. This album will be officially released on August 15, 2014.
Craig Sullender of ChipSight joined Elecia and Christopher to talk about machine, computer, and embedded vision. Craig's $20 Vision System – IoTcam Lighting control demos Slides on embedded CV technology Peep, a camera for your door'd peephole (soon to be on Kickstarter) Lattice Mach X02 O'Reilly's Practical Computer Vision with SimpleCV
Joe Grand (@JoeGrand) spoke with us about his life as Kingpin, hardware hacking, hosting a TV show, and being a Hackaday judge. Joe's company is the Grand Idea Studio. His TV show Prototype This was on the Discovery Channel. He created an Atari game: SCSIcide. Joe will be giving his hardware hacking training at Black Hat USA in August (as well as some of the other security conferences in also Las Vegas at that time). Joe and Elecia are on the Hackaday Prize judging panel. There are some amazing projects if you want to check out your competition (or vote for the ones you like!).
Matt Haines (@beardedinventor) and Tom Byrne (@tlbyrn) spoke to Elecia and Chris about Electric Imp (@electricimp). This discussion goes far beyond our first with Matt (Episode 6!). It is more software and implementation oriented than last week's Amp Hour. In the vein of "what do I do after I've made an LED blink from a webpage?": Tom's Neopixel Weather project (instructable!) Mars Curiosity rover that mirrors what is happening on Mars (provide your own Martian) Elecia's are-you-ok widget Sparkfun tutorial, thanking Matt for his help with cleaning (ahem, re-writing) the code Electric Imp github repository, including the extensive webservices page Hackathon entry Twitch controls a HexBot via Electric Imp led to an excited discussion of Twitch Plays Pokemon Matt's Hackaday Prize (SPACE!) entry that uses an Imp to show when the ISS is overhead MakeDeck is making Electric Imp dev kits for OEM development. Imp page devoted to the question under Next Steps (also, the new Squirrel documents mentioned on the show are up!) Finally, the SparkFun contest winner was announced. There were many great entries, choosing a winner was difficult. Ken M (@Deamiter) won the grand prize. Luckily, Matt and Tom brought two April board + Electric Imp sets to give away so Chris Svec (@christophersvec) and Alex Irvine (@EternalPractice) were runners up. Thank you to all who participated, your ideas were awesome and we loved to hear about them.
Elizabeth Brenner (@eabrenner) returned to the show to talk about the are-you-ok widget that she and Elecia have been working on. (The initial problem-statement show is episode 17.) There is now a SparkFun tutorial so you can build one of the are-you-ok widgets yourself. As announced in the show, there is a contest to get a SparkFun gift card, it ends 6/13/14 so get your answer in by then (maximum of two entries per person, please). Elecia already took the name Sal Right out of the running (reference). In the photo below, are Maxwell, Hugh (Cation pattern!), Haley, and Grimes (from left to right) so those are all taken as well. Noted on the show were two things El saw at the Solid Conference: 3D printed flexible materials from Kinematics and circuit stickers from Chibtronics. Also, we look forward to trying out the Fitbit channel for if-this-then-that (IFTTT) to see if that can monitor our loved ones too.
Elecia attended O'Reilly's Solid Conference, recording a few of the people she met there. Note: this episode is recorded in a noisy location. Erin Mulcahy at littleBits (@littleBits), magnetic electronics modules Jack Mudd at Onewheel (@RideOnewheel), powered sort-of skateboard with only one wheel and auto-balancing Laurie Yoler from Qualcomm, she spoke on Intelligent Connectivity. It’s What’s Next Taylor Stein from AutoDesk, a Fusion 360 evangelist (free for hobbyists!) Ahmed Daoud from Playtabase, makers of Reemo Terrence McKenna of Panoptes ("No drone is safe until it is a Panoptes UAV.") Michael Holdmann at Coversant, on XMPP communications protocol Also, thank you to O'Reilly for giving away copies of my book.
Jack Ganssle shared his wisdom on being a good embedded software engineer (hint: it takes discipline). Jack's website is filled with great essays and new videos. He's also written the Art of Designing Embedded Systems and The Embedded Systems Dictionary (with Michael Barr). We covered a lot of ground, here are some of the highlights: Spark language Capers Jones on high quality software and associated statistics Joel on Software test for good teams LDRA unit test tool James Grenning's Test Driven Development for Embedded C
Elecia spoke with Micheal Worry, CEO of Nuvation, about engaging with and working at a design firm. Disco Fish, the autonomous Burning Man party vehicle Udacity course in autonomous vehicles ROS is Willow Garage's robot operating system Contact Nuvation at their website or on twitter (@Nuvation). Contact Disco Fish and its build buddies on Facebook.
Jen Costillo (@r0b0ts0nf1r3) joins Elecia and Christopher to discuss their experiences interviewing (both as interviewer and interviewee). Elecia did an hour long webinar on how to conduct technical interviews. In this show, she mentions a good post-interview ratings system. Google discovered that their brainteasers are not a very effective way to interview. Despite the news that swearing is good for you, we tried to bleep everything. Also, it is minesweeper, not minefield. What were we thinking? It was obviously all Christopher’s fault. Though we should have stood up to him. Elecia's book has more interview questions but from the perspective of how do you ask a question and what do you look for in a response.
Christopher White (@stoneymonster) and Elecia celebrate a year in podcasting by talking about the show. Then they decide whether or not to change the name of the show to Embedded (yes). Elecia's list of current and soon activities: Hackaday Prize (SPACE!!!!!) and snooping on current entries Element14 blog based on her EELive Internet of Things talk Shopping list for the are-you-ok widget first discussed on Elizabeth's episode Circuit Cellar interview Going to SOLID conference 5/21 in SF (we didn't mention this, thought I'd sneak it in) Sophi Kravitz blog Other things they mentioned include an amazing anti-tremor spoon, using trampolines to go to space, how drinking the blood of youth will keep you young, oil sensing, and our consulting episode.
Tenaya Hurst (@ArduinoWoman) shares her incredible enthusiasm for teaching Arduino and the San Jose's Tech Museum of Innovation (The Tech). Being a geo-anthrop-actress, Tenaya teaches chemistry, geology, Arduino, and beginning wearables for the Tech, for their Galileo summer camp, for Oakland's Workshop Weekend, and on her own recognizance through her website. Tenaya will be at the Linino booth at the Maker Faire in San Mateo, CA on May 17-18, 2014 Tenyana's movie credits Lilypad sewable (washable!) electronics Other places to connect: @TenayaRocks, @LininoWoman, and Google+ Penny Arcade Museum Also noted, Elecia was interviewed in Circuit Cellar magazine, May 2014 (#286). In the first few minutes of this show, she gives a discount code for their store.
Dr. Kevin Shaw, CTO of Sensor Platforms, spoke with Elecia about his career progressing from designing MEMS to building a company that makes sensor fusion algorithms. Wandering from the Internet of Things to Singularity University to power management in Android development, Kevin and Elecia had a wide-ranging conversation. Due in July, check out Sensor Platform's Open Sensor Platform project, an open source framework for developing sensor systems (sample timing is critical!).
Nathan Tuck joined Christopher White (@stoneymonster) and Elecia White to chat about varied topics relating to being an embedded (and graphics) engineer (and manager). Nate works at NVidia on the Tegra K1-64. He mentioned some openings in his team at the end of the podcast, email the show to get a connection. We also noted that Eyefluence is hiring for an EE and/or technician for work somewhere between San Jose, CA and Reno, NV. Direct resumes to Peter Milford using the email you find on their webpage (info @ ...). We asked if managers are sociopaths. If you haven't seen The Expert tragicomedy sketch (7 perpendicular red lines...), you need to as it is becoming engineering vernacular.
Jennelle Crothers (@jkc137) explained to Elecia what a technology evangelist does. Of course, it wasn't an embedded technology but it was still amusing. Plus, Elecia got to play with a Surface Pro. Check out Jennelle's blog Jennelle and Elecia met at She's Geeky in Mountain View, CA.
45: Yanking on a Cat's Tail Is the Only Way to Learn
David Anders (Google+) joined Elecia to chat about open source hardware, what it means, how to do it, and why. Dave will be speaking at the embedded Linux conference in San Jose, CA on April 30th: 9:00am: Panel: IoT and the Role of Embedded Linux and Android 4:20pm: Hardware Debugging Tools 5:20pm: Debugging - Panel Discussion Open Source Hardware Association describes the gradient of open source hardware. Sigrok looks at open source and open source friendly tools Dave works for CircuitCo, manufacturers of the mysteriously elusive BeagleBone Black. While he didn't explain their absence (other than they are super popular for OEM'ing), he did announce the brand new Intel-based MinnowBoard MAX. Some open source tools we discussed included Tin Can Tool's 40 pin DIP Linux processor, Flyswatter, and Flyswatter 2. Also, check out Dave's past eLinux presentations.
Josh Chan and Tarun Pondicherry, founders of Light Up (@Lightup or on Facebook), returned to the show. In episode 7, they were midway through their kickstarter, planning to make a product to teach electronics to elementary and middle school students. They've start shipping, even distributing, their MiniKits (other kits will ship soon!). Elecia asks them if building their business and shipping the product went according to plan.
Tony Rios from MEMSIC spoke with Elecia about inertial systems and tuning algorithms used in sensor fusion (i.e. Kalman). The IMU380 will appear soon, creating a whole line of relatively inexpensive quality inertial measurement and inertial navigation systems. Tony has a few embedded systems and algorithms positions open, for example, embedded software engineer. Email firstname.lastname@example.org (note you heard it in the podcast so Elecia gets brownie points).
Christopher White (@stoneymonster) and Elecia talk about the failed startups (and projects) they've been through, focusing on identifying how to discern the end is nigh. A nice collection of startups introspecting their failure. Wonderful, in-depth Everpix post-mortem. If you liked this episode, try 24: I AM A TOTAL FRAUD.
Micah Elizabeth Scott (@scanlime) came to talk about Fadecandy, a really neat way to control smart LEDs (NeoPixel, AdaFruit's term for the WS2812). The conversation ranged from beautiful LED control algorithms and open source embedded projects to triangle tessellations, art, and identity. AdaFruit has a great intro to Fadecandy. Fadecandy is open source hardware and software, see the repository. Micah's blog is a combo of art and technology. Burning Man's Ardent Mobile Cloud (also a lovely still pic). Elecia also mentioned Deep Darc's hack of the GE Color Effects lights.
Evil Mad Scientist's Lenore Edman (@EMSL) talks about what evil mad scientists do on their path to world domination. Surprisingly, it consists largely of art, education, and soldering. Some EMSL items we talked about: LED Menorah kit (solderless breadboard and soldering version). ATtiny2313 Target Boards Bristlebot: a very cute, easy to build mini robot We also mentioned Maker Faire, a wonderful community, and Dr. Horrible's Sing Along Blog. There is a give away on this show: EMS's Snap-O-Lantern kit. Tweet to Elecia (@logicalelegance) or contact the show. Send in the name of the author of the final quote, first one to do so wins the kit! [Update: Matthew J has won the kit!]
Jen Costillo (@r0b0ts0nf1r3) joined Elecia to talk about Jen's start-up: Bia Sport (@BiaSport). They discuss the difficulties of being in an underfunded start-up as well as the joys of shipping a new product and their upcoming conference talks. Jen discussed the company's focus on safety and privacy at the DesignCon sponsored Geek Girl Dinner. She will be speaking at : Wearables Device Conference. Beyond Activity Trackers: Sport Wearables Thursday, March 6, 2014 3:15pm. (Use the coupon code COSTILLO to save 30%.) EELive's embedded systems conference. Battle Out of Painted Corner, Thursday, April 03, 2014 10:45am. EELive's EE Times Fantastical Theater of Engineering Innovation (in the Expo, free!): Bia Sport Teardown. Time TBD. (With Elecia!) Elecia will also be speaking at EELive, on how the internet of things isn't serving consumers very well on Thursday, April 03, 2014 at 1pm, though the talk title keeps changing.
Producer Chris White (@stoneymonster) and Elecia discuss some insurmountable problems and some strategies for approaching them. Google it (or look on Stack Exchange). Explain the problem to someone else… even if they aren't there (use a stuffed animal or write a really detailed email, anticipating potential questions). Draw a picture (system/subsystem architecture or code block diagram or a doodle). Make sure you are running what you think you are, start over from a blank slate, making no assumptions about how your hardware is programmed. Identify and verify your assumptions about the all the pieces involved. Get scientific: define the problem, create a hypothesis, run an experiment, record the results. Small steps! Also: get methodological and write everything down. Return to first principals: how is this supposed to work? Revert to last known good and diff to find the cause of a new issue. Logging functions: they take time but can lead to a better trace, better picture. Make it reproducible: there is information in the solution if you can find the steps to repro. Step by step, reduce the steps until you can nab it in the act. Remove the voodoo. Avoidance: accept the bug (it's a feature!) and go on. Sleep, go for a walk, or work on something else.
Dr. Karen Shell and Elecia talk about modelling vs. building models, ocean albedo vs. ice, climate vs. weather, and science vs. policy. They gloat about being on vacation only intermittently. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) NASA's climate change home Help run climate models on your home computer at climateprediction.net Karen's class will be looking at data from NOAA's Climate at a Glance
Elecia gushes about her favorite logic (and protocol) analyzer to Saleae co-founder Mark Garrison. They also discuss start-ups, manufacturing, and covering yourself with rum and pretending to be a pirate when harbor patrol arrives. Saleae Logic 8 on Amazon (or from Saleae) Saleae Logic 16 on Amazon (or from Saleae) Space X reusable rocket video Saleae's blog talks about Mark and Joe's boat, start here The mooshimeter multimeter (as seen on Hackaday and Dragon Innovation)
35: All These Different Reasons Why You Might Want to Do Something
Want to learn how to get from idea to schematic, through layout, all the way to physical boards? Elecia spoke with Chris Gammell about his Contextual Electronics course to teach the missing steps between what an EE learns in college and what an design engineer's job entails. Chris is co-host of the excellent electronics podcast The Amp Hour and author of Chris Gammell's Analog Life. On twitter, contact Chris via @Chris_Gammell or ask questions about the course @ContextualElec. We mentioned UT Austin's online embedded systems course which starts soon as well. Contextual Electronics includes some in-depth KiCad instruction. Some intro (and free) KiCad tutorials: Chris' Getting to Blinky Series teho Labs Wayne and Layne Curious Inventor
Elecia describes to Christopher (@stoneymonster) how to design and create a firmware update mechanism. Hilarity ensues. 4k PC emulator Making Embedded Systems, the book, on O'Reilly (coupon in last 2 minutes of the show) or on Amazon.
Alison Chaiken (Google+) and Elecia discuss what you need to know to get into development for the automotive market. Check out Alison's she-devel site for a big list of links and resources or go to a Silicon Valley Automotive Open Source Group meetup to say hello. A small subset: Open source engine management system on DIYEFI Car hacking site MP3 Car Vehicle standards ISO-26262 CORRECTION: In the show, Elecia talks about airplane certification levels as though only the size of the plane matters. As listener Burko points out, the certification level also depends on how critical the subsystem is. Those seatback tray tables don't have to be certified to DO178A, but the artificial horizon does.]
Patrick Kane (@PSoC_Nation) is the director of the Cypress University Alliance, working with colleges to provide development kits and information to college (and high school) students. Happily, Patrick brought Elecia a new dev kit: CY8CKIT-042.
Producer Christopher (@stoneymonster) joins Elecia to look through their mailbag and talk about gift ideas. Podcasts we like: The Amp Hour 99% Invisible Radiolab 5x5 network’s Back to Work Accidental tech Splendid Table (food) Some listener suggestions on where to get small run boards made: http://www.cadsoftusa.com http://www.seeedstudio.com/service/index.php?r=site/pcbService http://www.pcbcart.com/ http://oshpark.com/ Gift ideas (specifics): Dropcam and Dropcam Pro Nest thermostat and smoke alarm Online automatic backup services: Crashplan and Backblaze Books: Thinking Fast and Slow, Quiet, and Kraken The BUS Pirate serial bus logger and injector Sennheiser HD 280 Pro headphones for noisy offices Gift ideas (stores): Shapeways 3D Printing on demand Think Geek Find a kit or component for someone: Sparkfun, Adafruit, or Maker Shed
James Grenning (@jwgrenning) joined Elecia to talk about how to be a good programmer using Test Driven Development (TDD). James' excellent book on how to use TDD: Test Driven Development for Embedded Systems Take a class from Renaissance Software Manual test is not sustainable blog post, from James' blog Legacy code challenge from Github SOLID design principles Iterative and Incremental Development article by Craig Larman Untapped: the beer drinker's twitter To get the signed copy of James' book, email (email@example.com), tweet (@logicalelegance), or hit the contact link on embedded.fm with your number between 0-99. First one with the correct number wins the book (if no one is correct, the closest number will be selected 12/25/13).
Kathleen Vaeth of MicroGen Systems (@MicroGenSystems) spoke with Elecia (@LogicalElegance) about energy harvesting using MEMS devices. Some introductory videos: BOLT™ Micro Power Generator An energy harvester enables TI eZ430 with Linear LTC3588 While we missed it on the show, Kathleen also wanted to mention MicroGen Systems' finite element modeling partners: SoftMEMS and Open Engineering.
Author Laura Lemay (@lemay) spoke with Elecia (@logicalelegance) about writing books, APIs, code, and science fiction. Laura wrote many of the Teach Yourself ... in 21 Days books: her bibliography on Amazon. Laura's blog includes short stories. November is National Novel Writing Month, see the NaNoWriMo site Edward Tufte wrote the amazing Envisioning Information (among many other beautiful and informative books) Neal Stephenson wrote Diamond Age Laura suggests Patrick Ness' The Knife of Never Letting Go
From the MEMS Industry Group Executive Congress: Ivo Stivoric, co-founder of the Body Media which was purchased by Jawbone CEO Sam Guilaume and Dave Rothenberg of Movea Stephen Walsh, ISKN – iSketchnote, one of the pitches in the MEMS Elevator Pitch Session From the 2013 IEEE Global Humanitarian Technology Conference: David Peter works with New Life International. His paper was “A Simple Algorithm for Chlorine Concentration Control”
In this in-depth technical discussion, Dr. Ken Lunde helps Elecia understand how to internationalize her (memory constrained) device. CJVK Information Processing, Ken’s excellent O’Reilly book on internationalization [Note: there is a 40% off print and 50% off ebook coupon in the last few minutes of the show.] Basic Multilingual Plane (BMP) Images of the bone ideograph that is different between Chinese and Japanese (U+9AA8) can be found on Wikipedia. Other sources of information: Ken’s CJK Type Blog at Adobe Unicode specification, surprisingly readable though large An introductory tutorial Elecia found helpful Open source type faces Source Sans Pro OpenType font family (for UIs) Source Code Pro OpenType font family (for programming environments) Adobe’s open source projects and Ken’s contribution to those: Adobe Blank is a special-purpose OpenType font, making webpages wait to load fonts until they have the correct one AGL and AGLFN (Adobe Glyph List) maps glyph names to Unicode values CMap Resources are used to unidirectionally map character codes CSS Orientation Test are lightweight and special-purpose OpenType fonts that map all Unicode code points to glyphs that indicate their orientation based on the writing direction. Kenten Generic OpenType Font provides glyphs suitable for typesetting emphasis marks in Japanese. Mapping Resources for PDF are used to derive content from PDF files that include CJK (Chinese, Japanese, and Korean) information. You can also reach Ken via lunde "at" adobe.com
Jen Costillo surfaced briefly from her startup-induced blackout to share her wisdom about manufacturing consumer products. They discussed new product development and working from (and making modifications to) Hacker Dojo in Mountain View, CA. Jen and Elecia pined for this (probably not really a two pack) microscope.
Listener Jim Gf posed an interesting question about how to tell if you are a good embedded software engineer. Producer Christopher White joins Elecia to fail to give an answer. While they mention the embedded C test, they devolve into "why would you ask that question?", impostor syndrome, and methods for dealing with it. (Normally our podcasts are recorded during the day but this one was after a long, fairly grueling day for the co-hosts. You may hear the clink of glass as we drank a nice Pinot Noir from Hahn Winery.)
Jeri Ellsworth joins Elecia to talk about about co-founding Technical Illusions and their virtual and augmented reality product CastAR. Jeri gives an in-depth introduction to virtual reality, augmented reality and motion sickness. They also talk about hardware engineers working with software engineers, the CastAR's Kickstarter, children's toys, and tagging sharks for science.
Jordan Hart from Digital Media Academy joined Elecia to discuss ways to make science, technology, and engineering fun for kids through Minecraft, Arduino robotics, and music. DMA video: Robotics and Electrical Engineering with Arduino TED talk: The child-driven education which describes the "method of the grandmother" teaching style. Georgia Tech online CS Master's degree Sincere apologies to fans of Gottfried Leibnitz, he had a truly amazing career that went well beyond calculus, read about it on Wikipedia.
Phil King of Weekend Engineering returned to give Elecia advice on how to fabricate a board, both in a professional capacity and for garage projects. EaglePCB is a commercial package which is also available as a free, noncommercial version for small 2-layer boards. Other open source packages mentioned include Kicad and gEDA. Some board fabricators provide free tools that work only with their fab houses (such asExpressPCB). Digikey's SchemeIt provides a way to get a PDF schematic (and a BOM), but falls down by not providing a way to generate a net list, a critical part of board fabrication. PCB West is this week at the Santa Clara convention center. How Printed Circuit Boards are Designed (1960 Edition) Hildy Licht electronic assembly and manufacturing
Karen Field (@karenfield) and Elecia talk about 2014 DesignWest, the embedded systems conference, and how to submit your idea for a session. 2014 DesignWest is March 31 - April 3, 2014. Call for abstracts is open, submit your idea! Speaker benefits include speaker room, speaker party, full conference pass, conversation starting badge for networking, plus resume fodder.
Elecia White and Amy Button discuss Amy's dream of going to Mars, her previous role in training astronauts to handle disasters, and her current work on a magic box of rocks that will keep Orion's air breathable. Mars One Amy’s applicant page (with video) Nixon's moon disaster speech Amy's favorite other applicant
Elecia White spoke with Elizabeth Brenner about devices that can be used to help families worry less about grandparents who live alone (and 87-year-old neighbor friends named Dolores). Life Alert is the big name in senior push-button call systems. Life Call are the "Help, I've fallen and I can't get up" people. (See the commercial!) Life Call and Lileline have accelerometers to detect falls. Twilio allows programs to send and receive phone calls and text messages using its web service APIs. If This Then That (ifttt.com) connects channels to allow an event to trigger other events (i.e. "failed to twitter today" -> text family) . Fibit API for connecting Fitbit data to other applications. We didn't talk about this but it is a similar idea: Goodnight lamp.
Elecia tries to get a handle on whether Agile works with embedded software. Curtis Cole (@citizencurtis) argues in favor of user stories, scrums, and story points. Agile software development on Wikipedia Test Driven Development for Embedded C by James Grenning "Many forms of Government have been tried and will be tried in this world of sin and woe. No one pretends that democracy is perfect or all-wise. Indeed, it has been said that democracy is the worst form of government except all those other forms that have been tried from time to time." Winston Churchill
Andreas Eieland (@AndreasMCUguy) from Atmel joined Elecia to talk about how the AVR processor line came to life, why there is an AVR in Arduino, and the spirit of making things. Arduino AVR Freaks Atmel’s AVR home OpenCores AVR FPGA implementation Elecia’s new dev kit is a SAM D20 Xplained Pro
Artist Kristin Anderson of Idle Creativity spoke with Elecia about the technology of working with slumped glass, getting started on Etsy (Elecia mentioned her craft electronic ideas), and moving from Silicon Valley technology to artistic pursuits. Kristin's Etsy store, blog, and Facebook page Elecia's intial craft electronics idea and some followup Great book for getting started: Contemporary Fused Glass Kristin suggests Marketing Creativity and Handmadeology as blogs to help build a craft business Etsy is a great resource for learning to use Etsy: forums and video tutorials. Bullseye Glass, see classes, especially "Set Your Kiln on Fire" [That does sound fun! -El] Monte Vista embedded Linux Kristin suggests Marketing Creativity and Handmadeology as blogs to help build a craft business Etsy is a great resource for learning to use Etsy: forums and video tutorials.
Christopher White ( @stoneymonster) emerges from his producer responsibilities to chat with Elecia about starting a podcast: the gadgetry, the software, the distribution, and, the big question, why we do it. Links from the show: Libsyn, a dedicated podcast audio hosting service. SquareSpace, fast and easy website building and hosting. 5x5, Dan Benjamin's (@danbenjamin) phenomenal podcast network. Starting a podcast, Dan's guide to podcast equipment.
Dr. Edward White spoke with Elecia about how technology has changed medicine. He described gadgets used in surgery (harmonic scalpel!), how hospitals acquire tools, and why engineers should be focused on patient benefit. iPhone based EKG
Karen Lightman (@khlightman) joins Elecia White to talk about the infinite awesomeness of tiny MEMS devices. Recorded at the (somewhat noisy but lovely and delicious) Blue Brasserie during SEMICON West. Karen is the Executive Director of the MEMS Industry Group, the nonprofit trade association advancing MEMS across global markets. This the group that wrote the standard definitions that make MEMS easier to use, see the Resources section of their website. MEMS Executive Congress in Napa, Nov 7-8. Please bring new MEMS devices to the pitch event (Elecia is a judge!). They mentioned some ignorance of RF MEMS, looks like someone need to read this book. Energy harvesting kits we discussed were from MicroGen. They have a neat youtube video. Redux of the Feynman's There's More Room at the Bottom lecture.
Jen Costillo (@r0b0ts0nf1r3) joins Elecia White to discuss the secret parts of C, keywords that only embedded software engineers seem to know about. They talk about interviewing and why these keywords make good questions for finding folks who use the language to its full potential. On the show they mention a list of embedded interview questions with answers. (Note: Elecia's book has many excellent interview questions and what interviewers look for when they ask them.) Producer Christopher White sends along a more concise introduction to the often unused register keyword.
Randi Eckstein grilled Elecia White (@logicalelegance) on inertial sensors: when to use accelerometers vs. gyroscopes; gyroscopes vs. rate sensors; how to make an inertial measurement unit; the basics of quaternions and Kalman filters; what products need which sensors (and why). Other good resources: Sensor Wiki (excellent visualizations) Guide to using IMU (step by step practical information starting with ADC capture) Sparkfun inertial sensor buying guide (descriptions on what's available and how to differentiate between them)
Josh Chan and Tarun Pondicherry, founders of Light Up, join Elecia White to talk about how to teach electronics to elementary and middle school students. The Light Up Kickstarter ends on June 30, 2013, click on that link to buy your kit or to see the video (including the augmented reality smartphone application). We also talked about going on Kickstarter, being a startup and about HAXLR8R, an accelerator to help hardware startups. El's version of the traffic model of analog electronic components came from There Are No Electrons: Electronics for Earthlings.
Matt Haines (@BeardedInventor) of Electric Imp joins Elecia White to discuss how to connect cats (and other things) to the Internet. Buy an Imp on Adafruit but don't forget the adapter (aka April board). Get started with programming in Squirrel and find hardware details in the developer section of Electric Imp. We also mentioned Lockitron, a commercial product that uses Electric Imp.
Akkana Peck (@akkakk) joins Elecia White to talk about an introduction to Arduino workshop for high school students. Arduino boards are a fantastic way to encourage people into embedded systems. The boards are cheap, the starter kits are great, there are lots of things you can do with them, and the compiler software is free. Akkana's site (Shallow Sky) has the workshop outline, going from morning general activities to afternoon specific ones. The really simple circuit for the photo-theremin we had on the show is linked from there (and the latest code is on github). A separate post describes the the cheap motor boards she's been working on, including the specific chips (including the H-bridge). The summer camp we discussed is GetSET and they eloquently describe themselves as "a program for high school girls of underrepresented ethnic groups to show them that engineering is fun, is creative, improves lives, and is an exciting career option". It is free to the student, funded through the efforts of the Santa Clara Society of Women Engineers (SWE) chapter.
Elecia and Chris (@stoneymonster) discuss why they chose to go into consulting and what they've learned while building Logical Elegance into the company it is. SCORE is a great resource for small business, even consulting firms. Also check your local small business administration (SBA) chapter. Elecia's salary to rate conversion can be found as a Google spreadsheet. Chris suggests Crash plan and Backblaze for backing up your client specific virtual machines (and everything else!). If you have specific requests, drop us a note via the contact link on embedded.fm.
Elecia White and Phil King of Weekend Engineering talk about things a hardware engineer wants software engineers to know. Drifting a bit from topic to topic, they touch on interviewing, oscilloscopes, ways to light hardware on fire, why they work on projects at home and writing novels. Some links from the show: Phil works at Lytro making amazing cameras. Elecia and Phil have worked at Leapfrog and ShotSpotter together. Very different products. Phil's oscilloscope (the one Elecia borrows) is a Tektronix DPO4034. At Phil's instigation, Elecia wrote a space opera novel for NaNoWriNo a few years back. (If you contact us, you can have a PDF for free. But really, she wrote it in a month, what do you expect? Buy her real book to get the good stuff.)
Elecia (@logicalelegance) and Jen (@r0b0ts0nf1r3) compare multimeters then install the Saleae Logic to debug a problem. Elecia pines for a nifty oscilloscope. Some products discussed on the show: Saleae Logic USB Logic Analyzer (and direct Saleae website) (Somewhat expensive) Fluke Digital Multimeter TPI 120 Compact Digital Multimeter (El's desk meter) BK Manual Ranging Tool Kit Digital Multimeter (El's other meter, not Burger King!) Radio Shack 22-801 (Jen's home meter) Excellent article on SPI protocol on WIkipedia
Featuring Elecia "El" White (@logicalelegance), Jen Costillo (@rebelbot @r0b0ts0nf1r3), and Star Simpson (@starsandrobots). This show was recorded at DesignWest, the embedded systems conference. Board and parts vendors: Sparkfun and Adafruit (both have great tutorials) Getting started boards Arduino (and AVRFreaks) and Raspberry Pi Light things up with ThingM Find components (and datasheets) at Digikey. And Mouser, Future (Octopart). Avoid Alibaba.com. Amazon has a wide range of electronics tools at generally ok prices. For sharing: Make Magazine (ideas in writing), Github (software) Open Design Engine (hardware)