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5 Apr 2014


Microchip Technology Inc today announced from EE Live! and the Embedded Systems Conference in San Jose the PIC16(L)F170X and PIC16(L)F171X family of 8-bit microcontrollers (MCUs), which combine a rich set of intelligent analog and core independent peripherals, along with cost-effective pricing and eXtreme Low Power (XLP) technology. Available in 14-, 20-, 28-, and 40/44-pin packages, the 11-member PIC16F170X/171X family of MCUs integrates two Op Amps to drive analog control loops, sensor amplification and basic signal conditioning, while reducing system cost and board space. These new devices also offer built-in Zero Cross Detect (ZCD) to simplify TRIAC control and minimize the EMI caused by switching transients. Additionally, these are the first PIC16 MCUs with Peripheral Pin Select, a pin-mapping feature that gives designers the flexibility to designate the pinout of many peripheral functions. The PIC16F170X/171X are general-purpose MCUs that are ideal for a broad range of applications, such as consumer (home appliances, power tools, electric razors), portable medical (blood-pressure meters, blood-glucose meters, pedometers), LED lighting, battery charging, power supplies and motor control.

Microchip Releases 8-bit PIC Micros with Intelligent Analog and Core Independent Peripherals - [Link]

1 Apr 2014


Raj Bhatt from Embedded-Lab has posted a detail review of mikroElektronika’s EasyPIC v7 development board (http://www.newark.com/mikroelektronika/mikroe-798/development-system-easypic-v7/dp/63W4082) on his website. EasyPIC v7 supports over 350 PIC microcontrollers including PIC10F, 12F, 16F, and 18F, and contains an onboard fast USB programmer and real-time debugger. The board also features two mikroBUS sockets for tons of other add-on boards, thus expanding its capabilities.

[via the contact form]

Review of EasyPIC v7 - [Link]

26 Mar 2014


A purely software based USB peripheral for ARM Cortex M0+ devices. This software enables Cortex M0+ devices to act as Low speed USB device. It includes a lightweight USB & HID Stack and easily be optimized to consume only 4KB of flash.

LemcUSB: software USB for EFM32ZG (ARM Cortex M0+) - [Link]

19 Mar 2014


If you have always wanted to know what is it to do CPLD developement but you have never found your way to begin, this page is a step by step guide for beginners. [via Embedsys Weekly]

Getting started with CPLDs - [Link]

17 Mar 2014


A XC6SLX9 based design with a soft CPU and USB device interface implemented in Verilog.

This features my AltOR32 OpenRISC compatible CPU running at 48MHz which hosts a cutdown USB 1.1 (Full Speed) device, SPI master and GPIO interfaces.

The nice thing about this implementation is the low chip count (only required components are the FPGA, LDOs, SPI Flash & USB PHY).

Also, as the USB 1.1 device is implemented in the FPGA rather than an external USB to serial bridge, I’m free to implement other USB class devices (such as Audio, MSD, etc).

Currently comes with USB CDC device stack (virtual COM port). RTL, SW & schematics provided.

FPGA Based ‘Bus Pirate’ clone - [Link]

28 Feb 2014


scasagrande shared his project antiAFK in the dangerousprototypes project log forum:

The antiAFK is essentially a stripped down Arduino Leonardo with the intention of sending occasional keyboard commands to the attached PC with the intention of preventing the user from being logged out of online games due to inactivity. This can help on high population servers where being kicked back to the login queue can mean that you miss a group event. It randomizes the time between presses (with a min and max), the key from a set of valid keys, and the duration of the key press event. The period, variance, and valid key set are configurable by the user through the CDC serial port.


antiAFK – Sending random keyboard commands - [Link]

25 Feb 2014

svkatz80 @ fritzing.org build a nice LED clock. He writes:

This clock is based on ATmega328p microcontroller, with combination of DS1307 – Real Time Clock, MAX7219 – 64 LEDs drivers, 74HC595 – shift registers, DS18B20 – temperature sensor, GL5528 – photoresistor, LEDs and other electronic components.

  • Clock with RGB seconds — Four 74HC595 control 10 RGB leds. But TLC5940 is a better choice.
  • Ellipse clock — Three MAX7219 control all LEDs. No shift registers needed.

Each MAX7219 can control 64 LEDs. For ellipse clock I used tree of them. The first one controls 2 hour’s digits (2x7x4=56 green leds + 6 blue leds + 2 dots between hours and minutes ). The second one controls 2 minute’s digits (2x7x4=56 green leds + 6 blue leds). The third MAX7219 controls second’s 60 red leds .

For making a 7 segment digits, I used 5×7 cm prototype PCB circuit board. Before solder the LEDs, I wired the board for 4 digits and 7 segments each of four boards with copper wire. See circuit.

As a main board I used a coroplast (polygal) sheet. Just print the sketch and make on polygal holes with a needle for LEDs.

ATmega328p based LED wall clock - [Link]

24 Feb 2014


Alexander Czajor from ST writes:

ST has just released the STM32 Nucleo. This is a series of development tools that allow to quickly evaluate any STM32. These boards are extensible with Arduino, and they are supported by mbed. This makes them a good basis for any embedded commu

The main idea:

- A lean board
- Contains and STLink debugger/programmer (as all ST MCU evaluation tools do)
- Contains an STM32 in 64pin package
- Carries Arduino UNO v3 connectors
- Carries another connector called “Morpho” (and ST development)
- Has 2 Vreg and a couple of buttons and LEDs

Starting from there, every STM32 Nucleo board has the same layout making the each I/O pin of the contained micro available on the same physical location of the Arduino and “Morpho” connector. Many functions are common to all STM32 on the same pin location.

Arduino compatibility:
- The boards have the Arduino UNO R3 connector. This connector carries a so called IOREF pin. This pin allows the Arduino shields to adjust the IO voltage to the 3V3 for the STM32 if these shields follow the specification. The official Arduino shields are said to do so


STM32 Nucleo development series - [Link]

14 Feb 2014

Here is a very nice build of a LED heart that creates incredible animations. Check it out.

Today we present the perfect Valentine gadget: just shake it and it will turn on and crate incredible light animations. That will be cool for sure!

We know that, as it’s Valentine’s Day, looking at the device described in this post you’ll be inclined to think that this is the usual heart-shaped Valentine gadget: in reality this is something much cooler as it’s capable to create beautiful and complex light games. Is based on the smallest microcontroller manufactured by Atmel: the ATtiny85.

Hack your Valentine with HeartThrob - [Link]

13 Feb 2014


Kevin Rye writes about his Mini 7-Segment clock V2 project:

Now for the moment of truth. I crossed my fingers and connected a battery pack. Woo hoo! It works! I love that feeling you get when you spend weeks working on a project, it all comes together in the end and it just works. With the electronics working, it was time to put it in the enclosure. I cut the end off a SparkFun 5V DC power supply and soldered on a 2-pin Dupont connector. I then secured everything with a little heat shrink tubing. I then took the acrylic panels that I designed and had laser-cut from Ponoko and secured them to the clock via some screws and standoffs.
It looks amazing! I’m really happy with the way that it came out. I also really like the “kelly” green segments on this display.


Mini 7-Segment clock V2 - [Link]





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