Cheap logic analyzer (ELSA100)

I recently purchased this logic analyzer.  It’s a clone of the Saleae logic analyzer.  Available for 50$ here with 10 mini grabbers.  It appears to perform exactly like the Saleae except its noticeably larger.  It even uses Saleae’s software.  It does ship from over seas, and might take a little while but it did arrive, and had free shipping.

The cable that ships with it doesn’t have wires broken out for the power supply pins, but it appears there are 2 extra pins, 3.3v and 5v power sources.  I’ll have to see about adding 2 more pins to the connector to utilize them.  The factory cable has 8 logic wires, and 2 grounds, but the connector has lots of extra spots for wires, extra grounds and those power supply pins.

Anyway, you can’t beat the price.  Oh it’s also supported by Sigrok, an open source logic analyzer that is multi platform.

IKEA weekend light fixture hack

In my sons nursery, we have the changing table against the wall.  The problem is the only light in the room is in the middle of the room from a ceiling fan.  So basically while your changing him you are blocking the light with your body.

So me and the wife went looking for a light to add to his changing table, we found one at IKEA that we like but it’s a ceiling mount light with 3 individual 35 watt flood bulbs, with cartoonish fish as the housings.  I’m not about to drill a hole in the ceiling and install a wall switch (as the instructions state it’s supposed to be installed), so we looked around for something else but nothing caught our eye.

I decided to just get this fixture, and hack it.

In the lighting section of IKEA they have some DIY lamp kit, I just needed a cord since I’m going to be plugging this in the wall, and they’re pretty cheap.  So I grabbed the neon green one since it looks cool.

First thing I did was open everything up to see what we are dealing with…

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Netduino Unboxing and Tutorial

You can purchase the Netduino from our Amazon Store for $34.95!

Hmm… What is a Netduino? Check out the next video from our Netduino Debut Tutorial for a demonstration!

The Netduino looks like an Arduino and it’s even compatible with the existing Arduino protoshields. However, it’s a completely different beast which can be programmed using Microsoft Visual Studio C#. Oh… It’s also Open Source. Pretty cool eh!

Netduino Début with Color Sensor


Over the last few weeks Harford Hackerspace has had the pleasure of beta testing the Netduino. The Netduino is a development board with a form factor similar to the Arduino. Care was taken when designing the Netduino to ensure compatibility with most of the existing Arduino shields. That’s about where the similarities of the two devices ends.

The Netduino uses Microsoft’s Open Source .net Micro Framework SDK along with Visual Studio C# (or VS C# Express) as the primary development environment. C# application developers will be able to quickly adapt to the .net Micro Framework and start programming microcontrollers in a matter of minutes. However, this does not let them off the hook for learning the basics of electronics.
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Harford Hackerspace at Betascape 2010

Betascape was this previous weekend and Harford Hackerspace was on hand with robots, lightning bug jars, and general awesomeness. We setup early Saturday morning between Baltimore Node and the First Lego League representatives. The day was spent forging various cardboard blades with crayons and stickers with various children blacksmiths quietly honing their craft. All in all we gave away approximately 50 swords to young lads and lasses who,  no doubt, brought these mighty cardboard weapons to bear against a variety of fiends.

The previously mentioned Baltimore Node was there demonstrating various projects such as air powered rockets and some sort of power tool drag racing. Set up across from us was The Digital Media Center from Johns Hopkins  demonstrating cloth circuitry and teaching others about cloth circuits. The National Electronics Museum was setup in the back with some kind of robot (which I did not see). Various other people included a company demonstrating a 3D picture taking technology, Bryan Dolge with a makerbot, as well of a bunch of gamemakers in the game making section.