In my previous post, I replaced the electronics of my several-year-old lunar clock design with modern parts. In this post, I’ve replaced the laser cut parts with 3D printed parts, with particular attention to the clip that holds the photo interrupter in place.Continue reading Lunar Clock: Designing a 3D Printed Clip
Category Archives: Tips
How to Replace an ADT Sensor Battery
Because in-home sensor systems and User Experience are interests of mine, I offer this How To after replacing a sensor in my home alarm system.
We use an ADT home alarm system, and we’re happy with it. I know other sensor systems are just as messy to deal with, and hope this narrative can help all developers iron out the wrinkled parts of their users’ experiences.
5 Things Project Runway Taught Me About Creative Work
I started watching Project Runway years ago as a guilty pleasure. My wife had watched it for a while and slowly drew me in because, unlike other reality/survivor shows, it minimized the People Behaving Badly aspect of competition.
As I watched more and more – the show has run more than 17 seasons – I realized that Project Runway is really a show about how to do creative work and live the creative life. It even won a Peabody Award for using the Reality genre to inform and enlighten.Continue reading 5 Things Project Runway Taught Me About Creative Work
My Newbie CSS Mistakes
Whew! I’ve been (re)learning CSS and have discovered a few newbie misconceptions of mine that had really held me back.
The Hidden Mounting Holes in Your Breadboards
I’ve stored my Robotic Glockenspiel on its side since I finished it in April (it’s huge). The other day I opened the lid and found, to my horror, that the breadboard had completely pulled away from its adhesive pad – only the wires are keeping the breadboard from falling off completely!Continue reading The Hidden Mounting Holes in Your Breadboards
How to Soften LED Light with a Ping Pong Ball
Some time ago I read that you can use a ping pong ball to soften the harsh light of an LED, so I thought I’d try it out.
Step 0: pick out a white ping pong ball. I used a standard 40mm ball; I could have used a 35mm Foosball instead.Continue reading How to Soften LED Light with a Ping Pong Ball
Arduino Pro Mini, and How to Solder Male Headers
I recently decided to try out the Sparkfun Arduino Pro Mini 5V board. It has almost all the I/O that an Arduino Uno has, in a much smaller board. It comes without connectors, so you can solder in whatever style connector you need. For my uses, I needed to solder on male headers that allow it to plug into a breadboard.
So I tried out a new way of soldering male header pins onto a board. First I snapped off two 12-long headers from a strip of break-away male headers. Then I plugged those headers into a breadboard and laid the Arduino Pro Mini board over them. To keep the flux and solder spatter from getting into the breadboard holes, I put a piece of paper over the unused parts of the breadboard.Continue reading Arduino Pro Mini, and How to Solder Male Headers
Collaboration is Not Part of Making; It’s the Heart of Making
This post is about what I’ve learned about Making through the Robotic Glockenspiel project.
Even at the beginning of the project, I was “standing on the shoulders of giants“:Continue reading Collaboration is Not Part of Making; It’s the Heart of Making
Design Thinking via the Robotic Glockenspiel Project
Now that the glockenspiel is working and in a case, this post is about what I’ve learned about Design Thinking through my Robotic Glockenspiel project.
Caveat: since I didn’t apply formal Design Thinking to the project, I’m going to be shamelessly revisionistic in order to talk about how the project would have been better via Design Thinking.
The Design Thinking steps we use at work are:Continue reading Design Thinking via the Robotic Glockenspiel Project
A Little Info on Using SSL in Your Web Site
I recently made a rash Tweet saying that if you don’t have SSL (Secure SocketsLayer; what HTTPS uses) your WordPress site will be hacked. That’s an overstatement. I’ve known people who’ve run WP sites without SSL with no problems.
So here’s a little web SSL orientation for people who have better things to do than learn the details of computer security.Continue reading A Little Info on Using SSL in Your Web Site