DIY Telematics Box

Lately, there has been a rise in dashcams sold worldwide to protect the driver’s insurance claims. Most of the time, these have been sufficient. I recently bought my first car and had to drive about an hour on the motorway to my first job. Being a new driver, I had my car fitted with a black box (telematics box) to monitor my driving. A few years later, I bought my second car, but I didn’t have a telematics box installed. Given the driving styles I have seen from various individuals on my commute to and from work, I felt a dashcam alone would not be sufficient, and I really wanted to have something that could monitor my driving in the event of some idiot thought they were on the set of the next Fast & Furious. So I made my own! (more…)

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The Powertree: Calculating Power Consumption

A tree can be long, tall with vibrant green leaves and mandarins because it has strong roots and a system that can deliver its nutrients effectively without overloading or bottlenecks.

The simple structure is that a stronger entity supports a smaller one and then repeats itself. The energy to make a leaf grow will be less than the one used for growing a branch (or so I think so as I am not a biologist). And as we can assume, a branch is capable of supporting a certain amount of leaves and fruits and of delivering the nutrients and water from the roots. I think I have never seen a healthy tree with a branch with too many leaves and fruits to the point of damaging the rest of the tree because of overweight or the energy demand of the leaves and fruits is too much. (more…)

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Crystal oscillator for your digital ICs

Just as a stable voltage source is necessary for any analogue circuit to work properly, a clock is required for any digital circuit to appropriate shift from one state to the next. In this short article, we will look into the design of an oscillator circuit to give your circuit’s MCU or any other digital IC the necessary clock to perform its functions. (more…)

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Battery types and voltage regulators comparison

A device’s power source and power management are one of the most important parts of any electronic product. After all, without a stable voltage source that can supply enough current for the circuit to work properly, there is no life. In the last decade, there has been an exponential increase of electronic products that have a battery embedded into them. So the need of knowing the different battery types so you can select the correct one for your application is required more than ever.

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Why you really need a WCA (Worst Case Analysis)

What is the worst it can happen? It’s a good question to ask when you are taking a decision. You imagine yourself going through the worst situation caused by the worst decision you can make and decide if you can go through it or not. Or maybe you need more factual data than just a thought experiment? Then you do it and find out that everything is fine and you were over exaggerating the consequences. But, were you?

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What is a Sustainable Electronic Product?
Leaf Circuit Board on Green Background

What is a Sustainable Electronic Product?

Do you know what a sustainable electronic product is? You probably already have an idea but not a well defined concept. But that’s OK, it turns out that it is not either a simple or well established definition in the electronics world. After all, as developers and designers our main focus, as we’ve been taught both at work and at university is to focus on the product specifications and characteristics itself, not how its components, performance, and end of life affects the environment and other people (unless you are actually designing a product with sustainability in mind from the beginning).

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When you start a new journey, don’t forget your Block Diagram!

No, I am not talking about jumping into the wilderness, visiting an old European city or using Google Maps to get to your destination.

Actually, the correct analogy would be more like going to a giant mall and having a map showing where the different shops, staircases and lifts interconnect the different floors.

What I am referring to is a very powerful and simple tool which is normally overlooked by more analytical and less visual people, I am talking about our device map or more commonly known as a circuit block diagram. (more…)

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