Teardrops is a really nice feature present in Altium, where it analyzes all the traces and try to smoothen the edges of the connections. Most users don’t know that this feature exists, and even if doesn’t add a major change on the design it can certainly improve the quality of your project, especially if you are working on high-speed or high-power electronics.
To access the menu, while editing your PCB, go to Tools >> Teardrops… (or simply press t + e).
Bellow you can check a random PCB design with and without Teardrops:
This week I had to interface two accelerometers (adafruit MMA8451 breakout boards) into one Arduino board.
On Adafruits website, they write that you can address the sensors with 0x1C by adding a pull-down resistor on the “A” pin, or 0x1D by connecting the “3Vo” to a 3V3 source. What they don’t tell is how to use them both at the same time, which gets clear once you take a look at the Adafruit_MMA8451 class within the library file Adafruit_MMA8451.h.
Do you remember IRC? Yes, it’s still alive and strong. Just connect to the Freenode network and you will find many very interesting channels where you can talk electronics, exchange information and ask questions! If you are there, drop a line to spillere (me!).
During my first semester of Electrical Engineering back in 2007, I had an introduction to electronics class where by the end of the semester we had to develop an open project. At first I tried to build a AM radio using only passive components, I remember that after hours placing components on the breadboard I managed to make it work, but it was really inconsistent and super noisy. The project was working, but it wasn’t as good as I wanted, so I decided to build something else, something that could be actually useful, that when the metronome idea came alive. Using a few components and a 555 IC I could make the circuit “tick” in a frequency that can be used your music studies.
What if you could manufacture a very simple development board that is arduino compatible and have a final price of only ONE DOLLAR!? That’s what some crazy guys from my home country (Brazil) are trying to accomplish.
The main idea of the project is to enable every kid around the globe to leave school knowing how to program, the basic of electronics, and how to apply their knowledge by building cool things. Think like this, with only $25 you can buy 25 boards, which will enable pretty much an entire classroom to own these boards and create amazing things with it. It’s crazy to think the impact that the project can make in poorer areas of the world, enabling those engineering minds to flourish and change the world for better (why not?!).
Check their indiegogo video below and remember that for every dollar invested is one entire new board built!