Did you know each Arduino has a unique serial number in its USB interface that you can use to distinguish one Arduino from another? If you deal with multiple Arduinos, knowing exactly which one is plugged into your computer can be a real time-saver. But actually getting at this serial number and mapping it to COM ports can be challenging. For Windows computers, here’s “listComPorts”, implemented both in GCC C code and in VBScript, both available from my usbSearch github repository.
listComPorts – Windows command-line tool for USB-to-serial - [Link]
Make parts in Cadsoft Eagle @ Dangerous Prototypes – [via]
Eagle’s popularity is partly due to the sheer number of parts and footprint libraries available for it. Sometimes you can’t find the part you need in an existing library though, and it’s time to make your own. Making a new part in Cadsoft Eagle can be intimidating for new users, but the guide below shows how we make our own Eagle parts step by step.
Make parts in Cadsoft Eagle - [Link]
…starting today, I open source the complete code base of Pleasant3D:
(The slicer plugins of Pleasant3D were open source from the beginning. I’ll mark the old open source BitBucket repository as obsolete.) I’d be very happy, if some of you 3D-printing (or CNC-milling) Mac developers out there would help with the further development of Pleasant3D!
Pleasant3D is now open source - [Link]
Carl found out a way you could use TI’s Code Composer Studio IDE for free. Normally it only has a 30day evaluation period after which you have to pay $495 for the license. But by activating the Free limited license you are able to fully use it as long as you have a XDS100 based JTAG debugger, which almost all development boards for LM3s have. [via]
A quick look at the product page shows you can get a 30 day evaluation version but otherwise you will need to spend $495 per seat. Well that is unless you have a XDS100 based jtag which almost all TI’s LM3S dev kits come with! You simply activate the “Free Limited License” it’s only limit is that it will only work with XDS100 jtags, so no code or time limit.
Using Ti’s Code Composer Studio IDE for free - [Link]
Visual Analyser is a complete professional real time software, transform your PC in a complete set of measurement instruments; no new hardware necessary (you can use the Sound Card of your PC) or you can use a specific external hardware (see Hardware section for an example). Visual Analyser runs on Windows 9x,ME,2k,XP,NT,Server,Vista,7. VA 2011 version now available, no longer compatible with Windows 9x. The 2011 version runs on Linux by means of wine utility.
- Oscilloscope (dual channel, xy, time division, trigger);
- Spectrum Analyzer with amplitude and phase display (linear, log, lines, bar, octaves band analysis 1/3, 1/6, 1/9, 1/12, 1/24);
- Wave-form generator with “custom functions”, triangular, square, sinus, white noise and pulse generation (NO ALIASING);
- Frequency meter (in time and frequency domain) and counter; in time domain by means of a real time zero crossing algorithm;
- Volt meter with DC, true RMS, peak to peak and mean display;
- Filtering (low pass, hi pass, band pass, band reject, notch, “diode”, DC removal);
- Memo windows (data log) for analysis and storage of time series, spectrum and phase with “triggering” events; possibility to save in various formats and display them with a viewer;
- A TRUE software digital analog conversion (for complete signal reconstruction using Nyquist theorem) ;
- Frequency compensation: one can create/edit a custom frequency response and add it to the spectrum analyzer spectrum ; added standard weighting curves A,B,C in parallel with custom frequency response;
- Support for 8/16/24 bit soundcard by means of API calls;
- Unlimited frequency sampling (depend from the capabilities of your soundcard);
- Cepstrum analysis;
- Cross Correlation;
- Extended THD measurements, with automatic sweep and compensation.
- ZRLC-meter with Vector scope, automatic sweep in time and frequency for automatic measurement.
Visual Analyser for Windows - [Link]
If you need to know the exact length of a trace in Eagle — for differential signals, for example, or if you have a high-speed data bus like on SDRAM and you’re not using a buffer so you need to make sure all the traces are the same length, and make sure they’re no too long for the strict timing constraints, etc. — Eagle has a nice little ULP script that will display some basic information on every trace on your PCB, including the maximum theoretical current you can draw through the traces, etc. Just type “run length-freq-ri” in the command window of the PCB view and you should get the displayed info above! (Note that by default this ULP assumes 1oz/0.035mm copper, though this is the most common anyway.)
Eagle QuickTip: Measure Trace Length (and more) - [Link]
Adafruit has launched their Circuit Playground app for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. It provides a collection of reference formulas at the touch of a button, simplifying calculations to make your project more fun – [via]
Decipher resistor & capacitor codes with ease. Calculate power, resistance, current, and voltage with the Ohm’s Law & Power Calc modules. Quickly convert between decimal, hexadecimal, binary or even ASCII characters. Calculate values for multiple resistors or capacitors in series & parallel configurations. Store, search, and view PDF datasheets. Access exclusive sneak peaks, deals & discounts at Adafruit Industries. All that, plus updates with additional features & enhancements – MANY NEW CALCULATORS AND TOOLS being added!
Adafruit launches Circuit Playground app - [Link]
Cameron tipped us to a circuit simulator for Android devices. It looks a lot like the java based circuit simulator we wrote about a few weeks ago. Everycircuit seems like a useful tool if you want to play around with electronics anywhere you find yourself. Unfortunately it seems to only support abstract level simulation models, not actual real components.
Circuit simulator for Android devices - [Link]
Component Organizer is a small and easy to use program that lets you search for components, datasheets and application notes in a very easy and practical way.
Ideal to use in a PEN drive, so you could always have all the important data with you. Get Component Organizer and take it for a spin to see what it can actually do for you!
Component organizer program - [Link]
EagleUp is a new way to render Eagle PCBs in 3D. It integrates with Google Sketchup so it’s possible to design cases around the PCB model:
version 4 has been released. Most of the import and export procedures have been automatized to simplify the process, so that you can focus in design, and not in the conversion 2D/3D.
With the version 4, you export from Eagle in 2 clicks, and import into sketchup in 3 clicks. No more tiring image creation and manual import necessary. Give it a try !
EagleUP brings PCBs to Google Sketchup - [Link]