Programming in a ZIF! @ The Custom Geek. Jeremy writes – [via]
This is just a quick post about a board I made to program a whole bunch of ATmega 328′s for some kits I’m making. I am ordering the 328′s in bulk, so they are brand new and do not have an Arduino bootloader on them. One of the ways you can get an Arduino bootloader on a factory fresh 328 is use an Arduino Uno and a USBTiny. Sure, I could pop about 100 of these into an Uno, but that would be a lot of work as well as wear and tear on the 28 DIP socket on my Uno.
The answer? A ZIF socket! These are fantastic! Anyone who has installed/upgraded a CPU in a computer knows what these are. ZIF stands for Zero Instillation Force. That means you drop the chip in the socket very easy, then pull a lever down to secure the contacts and prevent the chip from bouncing out of there. Making swapping out a bunch of chips to program them a lot easier, faster, and less prone to damage to the pins or chips!
Programming in a ZIF! – [Link]