USB category

USB To 12V Boost Converter

This project provides 12V output from any USB power source, like PC USB port, USB adapter or power banks. LM2577ADJ boost converter IC is the heart of the project. The IC can handle load up to 800mA, it’s advisable to use only 200mA load on output to be on the safe side. The LM2577 are monolithic integrated circuits that provide all of the power and control functions for step-up (boost), fly back, and forward converter switching regulators. The device is available in three different output voltage versions: 12V, 15V, and adjustable. Requiring a minimum number of external components, these regulators are cost effective, and simple to use. Listed in this data sheet are a family of standard inductors and fly back transformers designed to work with these switching regulators. Included on the chip is a 3.0A NPN switch and its associated protection circuitry, consisting of current and thermal limiting, and under voltage lockout. Other features include a 52 kHz fixed-frequency oscillator that requires no external components, a soft start mode to reduce in-rush current during start-up, and current mode control for improved rejection of input voltage and output load transients.

USB To 12V Boost Converter – [Link]

Nevma: Gesture Control for the Masses

Nevma is a simple to build, program and utilize device that translates your hand gestures into keyboard and mouse input. Just plug it in your USB port and magically wave through your presentations, documents, pictures, songs and the like. by Dimitris Platis @ instructables.com

Working at Delphi (soon Aptiv) allows me the luxury of being immersed in a high-tech and innovative environment that provides constant inspiration for creating new and exciting gadgets. One day, some colleagues mentioned gesture control being one of the recent trends in automotive. This got me thinking of ways to bring gesture control to the broader audience in an affordable and easy to use package. And thus, Nevma was born.

Nevma: Gesture Control for the Masses – [Link]

4-port NanoHub – tiny USB hub for hacking projects

Muxtronics @ tindie.com sells their 4-port NanoHub board:

The NanoHub 4-port is a natural evolution of the original 2-port NanoHub – a truly tiny USB hub to use in the most cramped of spaces. Nanohub 4-port is bigger and better! Even though it boasts twice as many downstream ports (effectively tripling its usefulness; providing 3 extra USB ports instead of just 1), it is only 4mm wider (1/8″). Also, by popular request, ESD protection diodes are included on the input and output ports, meaning you can safely use the NanoHub 4-port with user-accessible ports, where you might zap the port contacts with static electricity. Lastly, the power traces have gotten a slight boost; you can now draw up to 4A on the output ports (combined, sustained).

4-port NanoHub – tiny USB hub for hacking projects – [Link]

RELATED POSTS

LimeSDR Mini – Software-defined-radio card

An open, full-duplex, USB stick radio for femtocells and more.

The LimeSDR and LimeSDR Mini are members of the same family of software-defined radios. One does not replace the other. Rather, they are complementary.

Simply put, the LimeSDR Mini is a smaller, less expensive version of the original LimeSDR. However, it still packs a punch – at its core, the LimeSDR Mini uses the same LMS7002M radio transceiver as its big sibling. The Mini has two channels instead of four, and, by popular demand, SMA connectors instead of micro U.FL connectors. Check out the comparison table below for more details.

LimeSDR Mini – Software-defined-radio card – [Link]

Turn Your iPad Into A Second Screen with Luna

It is possible now to turn your iPad into a second display using Luna Display! Luna Display is a hardware solution that extends your Mac desktop to your iPad, creating a wireless second monitor maintaining high resolution.

In fact, Luna is one of Astro HQ products, a startup working on delivering tools for designers and animation creators. It is originally  founded by two ex-Apple engineers, a reason to understand the loyalty for Apple products!

With no complicated settings, you can set up Luna in seconds using your already available Wi-Fi. This feature is Powered by Astro HQ LIQUID technology. Anyway if Wi-Fi is not available, USB can be the alternative.

 LIQUID technology provides:

  • Uncompromised image quality
  • Lightning fast speeds
  • Lag-free performance at 60 frames per second
  • GPU acceleration, so your Mac stays fast and optimized
  • Hand optimized ARM assembly to maximize battery life
  • Velocity Control, which analyzes network conditions dozens of times per second

System Requirements

Works with any modern Mac – Luna requires a Mac running macOS 10.10, Yosemite (or later). Recommended configurations: MacBook Air (2012 and later), MacBook Pro (2012 and later), Mac mini (2012 and later), iMac (2012 and later), Mac Pro (Late 2013).

Works with any modern iPad – Luna requires an iPad running iOS 9.1 (or later): iPad 2 (or later), any iPad Mini and any iPad Pro.

 

You can perfectly use Luna Display with the software Astropad, a software that allows you to draw directly into your Mac apps using your iPad and it works over wifi or USB.

“Luna extends both Astropad Standard and Astropad Studio to provide the ultimate drawing experience with the best second screen solution for iPad. If you are a creative professional, Luna has been designed with you in mind.”
Unlike other solutions, Luna uses the raw power of your graphics card, and harnesses it in order to allow you have the full potential of graphics acceleration. Check this video about the technology used in Luna Display, battery use and energy.

To know more about Luna, you can check the Kickstarter campaign they launched earlier.
Fortunately, the 1,450% funded campaign is still running and still has 39 days to go. You can pre-order your Luna Display gadget for 65$, or the Artist bundle for $99, including 1 Luna Display and 1 year Astropad Studio.

For more information and details, you can check the official website of Astropad and Astro HQ. Also, take a look at the campaign video here.

Signet – Open Source Password Manager

Signet is a compact, open hardware, and free and open source software USB device that safely stores your passwords, bookmarks, contacts, and other personal data in encrypted memory. It’s compatible with MacOS, Linux, Windows, and Android so you can use it on any device with a USB port. The device is smaller than the average house key, making it easy to take with you wherever you go. This makes Signet a practical alternative to storing sensitive data in the cloud. Unlike cloud-based or proprietary solutions, Signet is fully auditable with no proprietary software, firmware, or binary blobs to potentially hide security flaws.

Signet – Open Source Password Manager – [Link]

Movidius Deep Learning USB Stick by Intel

Last week, Intel launched the Movidius Neural Compute Stick, which is a deep learning processor on a USB stick.

This USB stick was not an Intel invention. In fact, Intel had acquired Movidius company that had produced last year the world’s first deep learning processor on a USB stick based around their Myriad 2 Vision Processor.

Neural Compute Stick is based around the Movidius MA2150, the entry level chip in the Movidius Myriad 2 family of vision processing units (VPUs). Using this stick will allow you to add some artificial visual intelligence to your applications like drones and security cameras. 

Movidius Neural Compute Stick form factor device enables you prototype and tune your deep neural network. Moreover, the USB form factor connects to existing hosts and other prototyping platforms. At the same time, the VPU provides machine learning on a low-power inference engine.

Actually, the stick role comes after training your algorithm where it is ready to try real data. All you have to do is to translate your trained neural network from the desktop using the Movidius toolkit into an embedded application inside the stick. Later on, the toolkit will optimize this input to run on the Myriad 2 VPU. Note that your trained network should be compatible with Caffe deep learning framework.

It is a simple process

  1. Enter a trained Caffe
  2. Feed-forward Convolutional Neural Network (CNN) into the toolkit
  3. Profile it
  4. Compile a tuned version ready for embedded deployment using the Neural Compute Platform API.

An outstanding feature is that the stick can work without any connection to cloud or network connection, allowing to add smart features to really small devices with lower consumption. This feature may be on of the revolutionary ideas to start combining IoT and machine learning devices.

Neural Compute Stick Features

  • Supports CNN profiling, prototyping, and tuning workflow
  • All data and power provided over a single USB Type A port
  • Real-time, on device inference – cloud connectivity not required
  • Run multiple devices on the same platform to scale performance
  • Quickly deploy existing CNN models or uniquely trained networks
  • Features the Movidius VPU with energy-efficient CNN processing

“The Myriad 2 VPU housed inside the Movidius Neural Compute Stick provides powerful, yet efficient performance — more than 100 gigaflops of performance within a 1W power envelope — to run real-time deep neural networks directly from the device. This enables a wide range of AI applications to be deployed offline.” — Remi El-Ouazzane, VP and General Manager of Movidius.

At the moment, the stick SDK in only availble for x86, and there are some hints to expand platforms support. Meanwhile, developers are hoping to have ARM processor support since many of IoT applications rely on ARM processor. However, this may be not possible since the stick is an Intel product.

This stick is available for sale now, and costs $79. More information about how to get started with the stick is available on the Movidius developer site. Also check this video by Movidius:

 

PD Buddy Sink – USB Power Delivery for everyone

Clayton G. Hobbs @ hackaday.io published some details of his project, a USB power delivery board. He writes:

USB Power Delivery is a cool standard for getting lots of power—up to 100 W—from a USB Type-C port. Being an open standard for supplying enough power to charge phones, laptops, and just about anything else under the sun, USB PD is poised to greatly reduce the amount of e-waste produced worldwide from obsolete proprietary chargers. Unfortunately, like all USB standards, it’s quite complex, putting it out of reach of the average electronics hobbyist.

PD Buddy Sink – USB Power Delivery for everyone – [Link]

Opendime v2 – Genuine Verified Bitcoin Credit Stick

Opendime announced their USB stick that allows you to spend Bitcoin like a dollar bill:

Opendime is a small USB stick that allows you to spend Bitcoin like a dollar bill. Pass it along multiple times. Connect to any USB to check balance. Unseal anytime to spend online.

Hopefully everyone who needed an Opendime for Christmas has got it under the tree already, because we are now out of stock! But the big news is we’ve redesigned the hardware and improved it. Same price, same concept, but some useful improvements.

Opendime v2 – Now Genuine Verified Bitcoin Credit Stick – [Link]

USB 3.0 NanoHub

Muxtronics @ tindie.com designed a USB 3.0 mini hub. Source files here:

Are you familiar with my NanoHubs? Tiny, penny-sized USB hubs you can use to add additional USB ports in incredibly cramped spaces, like hacking projects or mobile devices? Whereas the original NanoHubs were all USB 2.0, limited to 480Mbps, this new NanoHub allows for transfer speeds of up to 5.0Gbps, as well as up to 3.0A of power delivery. The cut-off connector boards allow you to test your application before soldering it into your product, reducing the size of the hub from 27x34mm (about 1.1×1.3″) to 20x20mm (4/5ths of an inch on each side), with an overall thickness of just 1.55mm (1/16″).

USB 3.0 NanoHub – [Link]