NotDuinos - The Arduino Core on Other Devices

In my last post I mentioned that there was an Arduino compatible core available for the ESP8266 - in this post I cover how to install this core as well as cores for other non-Arduino hardware. A Brief History of Arduino The Arduino system started in 2005 as a project…

ESP8266 - The Easiest Way to Automate Your Home

Recently I've been looking at a way to quickly build and deploy some wireless sensors to feed data into my home automation system and took a second look at the ESP8266 modules sitting in my parts drawer - these devices seem to be the quickest, cheapest and easiest way to…

Bread Heads - AVR Breadboard Programmers

I recently found myself needing to reuse some older prototypes for a newer project, as part of the repurposing I needed to flash an Arduino compatible bootloader on the AVR processors in them. The design didn't include an ICSP header so I wanted to find an easier way to flash…

How To Get The Most Out Of a Cheap Laptop

Recently I found myself in need of a small laptop that I could comfortably sit on the couch with but that had enough power to run Visual Studio at a reasonable speed. This post describes how I managed to get what I wanted for less than $AU 350 without going…

The Sensaura Project

The reason things have been quiet on this site for the past few months is because I have been working on putting together a new project called Sensaura - a scalable and extensible platform for building and deploying wireless sensors. This post provides and introduction to the goals of the…

ARM Based Sensor Nodes

One idea I have had in the back of my mind for a long time is a framework for small, low power wireless sensors that are easy to build up and deploy around the house and garden. Some of my first experiments were based around an ATmega CPU and the…

Surface Mount Milling and Soldering

One of the major goals I had when I started working on milling PCBs was to be able to reliably mill boards with surface mount footprints - a number of parts I want to use are only available in that format and I am hoping to reduce the size of…

PCB Milling Updates

My PCB milling work flow is working well for single sided boards with through hole components. I am still working on support for surface mount devices and double side boards but the capability I have now is enough to speed up the progress on my queue of projects. This post…

Seven PCB Milling Tips

After a lot of weekends of trial and error I finally have my PCB milling process working. In this post I share some things I have learned along the way - hopefully it will make it easier for anyone else trying to develop the same process. 1. Be Consistent This…