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Comment Re:A few glitches in the vodka (Score 1) 155

ancient hacker, the chip has a 'always on WDT' and the only place the dog is kicked is a function where we also set the timer & port registers fresh. if a register freaks out, say the one that has the port direction or the PC, then either the dogkicker will be called (and reset the registers) every 2 seconds OR the chip is completely latched in which case the WDT will reset the chip. same with the BOD, which cuts in at 1.8V (the chip can run down to 1.8V) however, there is -always- a possibility for cosmic waves, so our design accomdates a pulldown to the fet gate and a 200mA 0.1 polyfuse after the DC jack. all shipping kits have this (we'll update the schem shortly). experimenting with wreaking havoc on the FET and causing a dead-short, the fuse kicks in and 'stabilizes' below the rated DC current for the inductor and FET. thanks for helping us think about all this again, if you're still reading this send us a note support@adafruit and we'll send you out a kit once we ship the first round of orders out.

Comment Re:A few glitches in the vodka (Score 2, Informative) 155

it is firmware controlled but its set once, its not like an interrupt has to go off at the exact right time. AVRs are pretty good about not freaking out as long as you have BOD set and a WDT (which it does). also, to make the clock display brightness adjustable you cant just use an RC would you set the PWM duty cycle? could it *possibly* screw up? sure. just like logic chips sometimes die or glitch. but its not medical equipment, theres no interlocks, its a DIY desk clock kit in a plastic enclosure.

Comment Re:Low-power RTC (Score 2, Informative) 155

Yup! If you look at the schematics or design document you will see how this works - its described in detail there but basically: If power is unplugged, the microcontroller kills the display and runs at 50uA off of a coin cell for a couple of weeks until power is restored. the low power RTC is used when theres a blackout or the clock is moved, etc. Its a big pet peeve, all clocks should do this!

Comment Re:It has software? (Score 2, Informative) 155

if you read the design document, schematic and source you'll see theres a lot more in there than just a counter. theres day calculator, date, alarm, low power mode, RTC, HV boost, menu system with configuration, etc etc. a $2.50 microprocessor isnt overkill when you consider its doing -everything- except drive the HV VFD.

Comment Re:Yes 'fun'... (Score 1) 122

Hi Anon. I designed the wave bubble project in mid 2004 as part of my research work. While the Bubl Space project is named somewhat similarly, the wave bubble is not based on it or stolen from it or derived from it. The BublSpace project is, in fact, conceptual and never functionally existed: Whereas the wave bubble is a fully functional design, completely documented, and open source.

Virgin Galactic Shows the Finished WhiteKnight Two 212

Klaus Schmidt writes "Virgin Galactic today unveiled their WhiteKnight Two mothership, called 'EVE.' It is designed to carry the smaller SpaceShip Two into space. The rollout represents another major milestone in Virgin Galactic's quest to launch the world's first private, environmentally benign, space access system for people, payload and science. Christened 'EVE' in honor of Richard Branson's mother — Sir Richard performed the official naming ceremony — WK2 is both visually remarkable and represents ground-breaking aerospace technology. It is the world's largest all carbon composite aircraft and many of its component parts have been built using composite materials for the very first time. At 140 ft, the wing span is the longest single carbon composite aviation component ever manufactured."
Hardware Hacking

Submission + - Hardcore hardware hacking video - Citizen Engineer (

Solderingfool writes: MAKE Magazine's Phil Torrone and open source hardware hacker Ladyada from Adafruit Industries have a new video series called "Citizen Engineer". In the first video they show how a SIM card works, then build a SIM card reader which could be used to clone a SIM card. Then they show how to use an old payphone as a regular home phone, later with coins and for their final hack — how to "Redbox" it. They released all the projects as open source, the video is well produced and has some catchy music during the soldering!

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