138: Quit Yer Whining

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

137: Pausing to Think

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:

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.

136: Let's Try out Some Broccoli

Inventor and Youtub-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:

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.

135: No More Yoda Heads

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:

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). 

133: Plenty of Room in Your Ear

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


132: Destruction Is Easy

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 feedback@theamphour.com. Please include your  name, location, Skype name and what you hope to discuss on air.

131: Carve Me a Duck


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:

For e-textiles and wearables, they recommend:

130: Criminal Training Camp

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 her Coastermelt 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

Getting a picture of the moon in stereo requires some planning especially in 1949 when Alvaro's great-grandfather took these.

Getting a picture of the moon in stereo requires some planning especially in 1949 when Alvaro's great-grandfather took these.

On the slide are two images of the moon that combine to create a nicely stereo image.

128: The American Pi

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).




127: Chicken Equals Duck Plus One

🐔=🦃+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.) from Scientific American (with real science) or in easy-to-follow picture form on genome.gov.


126: Live from SuperCon

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):

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


Peter Doktor, Elecia White, Ben Krasnow, Windell Osklay, and Sophi Kravtiz get ready to announce the Hackaday Prize 2015 winner

Peter Doktor, Elecia White, Ben Krasnow, Windell Osklay, and Sophi Kravtiz get ready to announce the Hackaday Prize 2015 winner

125: I Like Cheat Codes

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.


124: Please Don't Light Yourself on Fire

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:

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!

123: Banished from Running Unix

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)

121: The Idea of Mojo

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.

119: Do Your Neighbors Have Any Idea?

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:

Other people's videos and projects:

Amscope microscope and low cost hot air rework soldering station