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DIY Water Usage Meter
Posted on Tuesday, March 15, 2011   •   Category: Miscellaneous


Working with the interaction design team, a bunch of us at Teague have been tinkering with measuring water, analyzing usage data in realtime to affect behaviors, and storing it to see patterns over time. At the heart of the exploration was a need to cheaply measure water from the tap. Water meters vary quite drastically in price (from $250+ for industrial grade sensors to $6 for garden hose attachments that limit total usage based on rough estimates). We settled on a $20 water meter used for PC cooling systems (the INS-FM17N by Koolance) due to its accuracy, low price, small size, and electronic sensing method that could be easily measured by a microcontroller (such as an Arduino).


Motion Activated Camera
Posted on Tuesday, March 15, 2011   •   Category: Miscellaneous


I made a relatively simple attachment to my Canon SLR to create a motion activated camera using Arduino. A lot of this was based on and inspired by the intervalometer project at The Honey Jar. I made some changes to his circuit to use a 4N35 optocoupler instead of reed relays.


Sine Wave Synthesizer
Posted on Tuesday, March 15, 2011   •   Category: Miscellaneous


Every group wants their final project to be something that will be remembered long after they're gone. Some do highly sophisticated and complex projects that entail upwards of a hundred hours to complete. Yet others go out of their way to develop something 'cool' and 'fun'. Luke and I decided that we wanted to be in this second category, because developing something that's 'cool' would also be fun to do. So in deciding what to design we tried to think of something that would catch the attention of the people in the lab. The easiest way of doing this is to create something that would make noise or play music so everyone in the lab could enjoy it. Realizing this would be the best way to go, we decided to create a synthesizer that could record and playback notes, 'teach' the user how to play a simple melody, and also play some prerecorded tunes. After all, don't you think being remembered as the group that played back the Imperial March theme from Star Wars is cooler than a paper tape reader? (no offense to those groups doing paper tape readers)


Microchip's Li-ion battery charger MCP73831 IC
Posted on Friday, March 11, 2011   •   Category: Battery Chargers


Microchip announced the expansion of its analog power-management family with the MCP73831 battery charger, a fully-integrated, single-cell, Li-ion/Li-Polymer charge-management controller. Tiny 500mA linear charge management controller can be powered directly from the USB port. Includes integrated pass transistor, current sense and reverse-discharge protection, the MCP73831 charger reduces the number of components needed for battery-charger designs. Its highly accurate, pre-set voltage regulation (maximum accuracy 0.5 per cent to 0.75 per cent) results in more fully charged batteries and extended battery life. Since the MCP73831 charge-management controller includes a pass transistor, current sense and reverse-discharge protection on a single chip, it reduces the number of system components needed for battery-charger designs, which, added Microchip, lowers overall system costs.


20 Watt Stereo Amplifier with TDA2005
Posted on Friday, March 11, 2011   •   Category: Amplifiers


20W TDA2005 stereo amplifier for all suitable applications like amplifying medium power speakers. It is suitable for car use but before, the power supply must be choked with at least 150mH and it must give up to approximately 6 to 7 amps during the upstream performance.


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