Basic Stamp tokenizing and flashing from the Linux CLI

For those of you who aren’t familiar with the Basic Stamp, its a small microcontroller available from Parallax. It runs at a whopping 20Mhz and has a full 2K of storage on board for instructions. Although it may not sound like much, its more than enough to program the stamp to do some interesting things. … Continue reading “Basic Stamp tokenizing and flashing from the Linux CLI”

Drawing Lissajous Curves on a Oscilloscope

Lissajous curves ( are two dimensional figures where the points (x,y) are defined by sine functions with different coefficients: x = sin(t) y = sin(at+b) By modifying a and b over the period t, a wide variety of fascinating curves can be drawn, some of which look almost 3D! For example, if y is a … Continue reading “Drawing Lissajous Curves on a Oscilloscope”


Previously I tested a El84 using series of 9 volt batteries to generate the high B+ voltages. While it was very simple by nature, it still fell short of the desired voltages that are required to make a useful audio amplifier. Normally the solution to this problem is to use a step up transformer and … Continue reading “experiments-with-audio-vacuum-tubes”

Home made 555 timer from NPN and PNP transistors

Before the 555 contest was announced I was reading the free online book 50 555 Circuits from talking electronics. I was very amazed with how much could be done with the 555 timer. So I decided the best way to understand the 555 would be to try and build one. First I looked at some … Continue reading “Home made 555 timer from NPN and PNP transistors”

Testing an El84 Vacuum Tube with 9v Batteries

I have always been interested in vacuum tube amplifiers, however the high voltages from the mains has always kept me from experimenting with them. About a year ago I played with an low power tube the 1t4 in a regenerative receiver. The B+ was set to 45V powered from an array of 9v batteries. I … Continue reading “Testing an El84 Vacuum Tube with 9v Batteries”

Laser Modem with an Arduino Microcontroller

After programing the Arduino, I took out the ATMega168 and wried it into a breadboard along with a 16mhz crystal and 5 volt regulator. For the receiver I used the phototransistor wired into two logic gates of a inverting Hex Schmitt trigger. I used the Schmitt trigger to act as a buffer and ensure only … Continue reading “Laser Modem with an Arduino Microcontroller”

Fractal Mountain Generation with Qt and OpenGL

The purpose of this project is to create 3d mountain terrain using a recursive midpoint displacement formula. For this project I decided a GUI would be useful, that way manipulations could be seen in real time. This would require a 3d rendering package. My choices were DirectX, OpenGL and Java3d. Since I prefer to do … Continue reading “Fractal Mountain Generation with Qt and OpenGL”