Learning About Tools and Personal Limit Habits

A project log for Control Or Sense

Supply Frame Residency project to make a no-code custom controller infrastructure for mobile devices.

Metalnat 03/06/2017 at 06:220 Comments

So begins my journey into this project and first chance I signed up for training on some machines so access during my limited time on site I can have active progress onsite, and research offsite. This is an ideal use of time. Being on site itself yields a nice environment with others eagerly awaiting training and actively diving into their own project pursuits and that is amazing. Plus we are all hopping in and out of our projects to help the other residents. It's what being a maker should always have been. In my opinion at least.

Now that I've been trained on the othermill, I'm diving back into KiCad as well as looking up components and calling up friends that already work on their own boards. This is the bulk of what I've been squeezing time in for while still working on the VR suspension rig, and running a Makerspace. These little moments are harsh reminders of all that i don't know. Like one key component to my build is using a slotted "cartridge like" system for the main boards and the breakout docks. While talking with my friend Paul I was educated on the ways to properly dive into Digikey and given the keywords "card edge connector." This alone was a giant leap into the right direction because my searches were more along the lines of "SMD female cartridge connector" or "female nintendo slot" so on and so forth. There is a significant language barrier in the physical world for components. But not impossible at all. Hell I've only started actively diving into the electronics part of things 3 years ago, and only 1.5 years ago did i finally get ohms law. The equation by itself processes as one thing, but the active execution of the equation is a completely different part of processing. It's why i tell my students, active pursuits filled with failures yield far more than a lifetime of observation with none.

As someone new to ordering components, this is damn intimidating. And due to my personal limiting habits, twice as hard. (will get into that later)

A fun link for "Card Edge Connectors"

Now that I've got a point on connectors I'm looking into spec sheets when i can find them. And still trying to narrow down form/function needs. But those are much later.

Now to Bluetooth initial studies. I've learned that the human body is great at getting in the way of frequencies used by bluetooth and should be taken into consideration when designing any interface as well as the antenna shape matters greatly in coverage area. Plus a lot of other great other bits of info regarding circuit embedded antennas.

A snapshot from this doc:

Now all of the bluetooth research is a bit early but I feel it's important to let my brain process while i continue studies on other fronts. It's just how I work.

And now for the confronting of personal limiters. Most of which are due to budget constraints and this is something I have always known, and have seen many of my friends and students deal with on their adventures. So this is not anything new. My solutions for RnD is to buy in pairs because at somepoint, something will fail. Just accept that. But on this project, with a fixed budget, flying solo I find myself looking over every component with more energy then i can physically budget but mostly because of how I don't know what i don't know. As demonstrated earlier I am so thankful for the friends i have through these maker communities for continued mentor-ship and family for their support. Without either I would surely have burned out already. Nobody can do all of this alone and I am no different.

Hope all of this made sense. I'm a bit on the tired side and the night is still young for supporting makerspace members, and personal studies.