Date Time Clock Widgets

I wanted to realize usability of controls within a small footprint. This lead to some innovations.
These are JavaScript and CSS Clock Widgets originally made for my webpage later improved and decorated for iGoogle. Now available as web widgets.

Date Time Clock Widgets

Date Time Clock Widgets

When i found the Remote controls and the early mobile phones difficult to use. I felt i have to try to design user interface within a small footprint. This helped me innovate a Active or Dynamic GUI concept; as shown in the Ability to change the skins of the Audio Music player and Digital Alarm Clock. The metronome too see the other project in this profile. These were done around 2005-6-7. Both for elements on my site and gadgets.

Digital and Analog Clocks

I also made a Virtual Web Gadget Alarm Clock Simulation that will demonstrate a Dynamic GUI in a Limited Facia Area.

Conclusions –

Reduce the number of operations a user would do at achieve a purpose. Auto, Intuitive, Context Gui. When a Customer comes to buy Trousers, Take him to the Trouser Corner. Do not show Tuxedo option. The colors have good contrast and the text clearly visible.

A Highlighted reaction to user action. Tactile. Dynamic GUI, see in Gadgets above. GUI Elements appear only for that sequence of actions. No clutter. Menus if used, should not get stuck. Should not be fidgety, should not be menus at all if possible.

Engineering, Interaction Design, UI/UX

Bot as SMD Soldering Aid

I need a Bot to help me with soldering. Years of looking at Monitors and Double Clicking Mouse, have taken their toll .

Please develop a Camera/Monitor assisted Soldering/Desoldering Workstation. The Miniature Soldering iron manipulated by a Joystick into position and then press the fire button, a tiny blob of solder paste lands on the Junction on Focus. Now press the fire again, a Perfect Shiny Soldered Joint.

2016  – There is a solution from Martin that is close to what i had in mind.

The Expert 10.6 rework stations facilitates the reliable and precise rework of BGA-, CSP-, and QFN-components, connectors and sockets. Innovative technologies.

The Expert 10.6 rework stations

What we need is a Desktop Aid for SMD prototype fabrication and SMD Card Repairs. Not for manufacturing. To be used by Design Centers and Service Centers.

The card to be populated or repaired can be moved in X-Y-Z axis using  a PC. The Soldering Tool and the adhesive and paste dispensing tool should sync with the PCB Position. Then Soldering and Desoldering should be automated by the machine with camera, after Package type is keyed in. It is a Hands Free Soldering machine with the PC Monitor and HD Camera helping the visualization of the Job

delabs 2004

Programming Breakpoints and Testpoints

Breakpoints may not serve the purpose fully, it may be easier to use Testpoints and incremental coding.
When we build Electronic Circuits with many Interacting Blocks or Modules, We put a small 5mm Tall Copper Pin in the PCB or a PAD without masking. This is a Test or Troubleshooting Point. This is where you can probe with a scope, dmm or logic analyzer.

Programming Breakpoints and Testpoints

In embedded program development, i tried a similar way, a Testpoint in software, but only that the card would light a led in a certain pattern or send a “all ok” and progress status to the serial port connected to PC.
In Script programming we can use a GUI element, just a Textbox as a Scope monitoring the Testpoint. When the program goes beyond the Testpoint, The GUI Text window will hold the Status. Just like you move the probes of the same DMM, you can keep shifting the Testpoints or Multiplex the same Scope, as the program becomes bigger.

So, before you build the Next big Program, Build the Test Equipment and the First Testpoint. The first few lines of code is written around the First Test point. Like it is done in PCBs, incremental Building-Testing.
Lastly Break Big Jobs to Small Pieces. Like the Plugin Modules in a Oscilloscope, The Components or Modules should be built and tested independently and then Combined to Form one Big System. Then they can be maintained and reused easily.

Dec-07 from 2003 delabs notes

USB or Ethernet Processing Boost

A software and External Hardware, Interfacing on LAN or USB or even WiGig when it comes. The hardware contains HDD/Flash, RAM and RAW Processing power. This is not like Hyper Threading or multi-core cpu, but addresses same issue.

USB or Ethernet Processing Boost

The Software sees resources load on PC and when it feels RAM, CPU or HDD is getting stressed; it moves some work to the external box which is on standby consuming low power. Like playing music is lesser priority then say checking email. The Software Resource manager moves the Music Player and dependencies open in RAM to the Resource outside via USB and makes a Glitch-less switch. This can be remembered as a setting and used whenever the external resource is plugged in. Like RAID but for Home/Small Office users to use redundant capacities. Hardware scales up/down with needs and does not hog electrical power.

A lot of Processing Power and other resources go waste, consuming valuable energy in the present desktops. How faster things can be if all peripherals were on TCP/IP and Wireless (optical). This way an external resource box can directly play the speakers or print too without taking Main CPU time.

delabs – 2009

The Future Landline Phones

Early Innovations on Landline Phones were Answering Machine, Music-on-Hold and Fax Machines. Later landmines were used for BBS and then DUN (Dial up Networking) Internet. Then came the Big Freeze.

My first data experience before the internet was Delrina WinFax. It helped one of my friends get a job in Europe too. A fax machine was expensive, a Gateway 2000 modem was not. (this modem took me first online at home)

The Future Landline Phones

Cable Internet, Broadband Internet and 3G etc. have pushed the Landline phone in a corner.

I am using Internet on my Landline and it is pretty good. This may not be affordable by all, as a PC or Laptop is needed and the extra Broadband charges. This is just using the same line. My LandLine phone still is UnEvolved.

What i am trying to say is …..Add SMS at least for all Landlines with no extra monthly cost other than the SMS cost. If Possible add a means of slow File Transfer like FAX. A USB port on this device below will do.

This will help many use Data on the Telephone lines without buying a PC or Fax machine. The SMS will be a Super Hit. Voice Mail can alo be done. No Internet required. Let a affordable Android phone replace the Landline.

The most financially stressed families in the most remote locations can SMS and if possible send their JPG photo or resume over the Normal Phone Connection at only the extra cost of data transfer.

I got my a Landline a few days back, The phone was one with a LCD, It is a very nice phone with a large LCD, but i had trouble using the phone book, as i kept forgetting the sequence.

These Landline phones occupy a prominent position on the desktops of all offices. The CEO, Marketing Manager and Purchasing Officer; or even at the Canteen, we see these phones. The potential for marketing and advertising is good in these, as they are still popular in the office environment. A firm can show its flash presentation or a product catalog, when a customer waits for the despatch details of a product he ordered.

A Landline Phone also may be interesting with a touch screen and built in web browser. This phone can also have the option of WiMax, in areas where it is available.

This was posted around 2007-8 in a Blog Nomadic Computing and later in delabs Design Devices.

PCB Prototype by Cu Deposition and Sn Plating

Take a Blank Epoxy Card. No Copper, just the glass epoxy card. It will not be copper clad. I am trying to explain the concept. The Glass Epoxy card as you know is Epoxy (Like Ciba Araldite) with glass fiber as filler. Maybe new technologies have come now. The fiber is for Reinforcement and Epoxy you know is a Marvel of an Engineering Material.

EE Design Library – Electronic Product Design Resource.

PCB Prototype by Cu Deposition and Sn Plating

PCB belongs to AVR JTAG adapter –

In those days some people told me that these epoxy with glass fiber and iron flakes as powder are used to repair aircraft/spacecraft. It could be cast into a shape and even turned on lathe for making custom replacement components.

This nudged an idea, If we Screenprint a Mixture of Epoxy + Fine Iron Dust + ? over the blank Glass Epoxy card. The positive is used not the negative. That means Pads and Tracks on Positive create an Image of Pads and Tracks of this Epoxy/Iron paste on Glass Epoxy surface. Now Screenprinting done, let it dry. We can also be print a thin layer of epoxy pcb pattern and blow iron dust on it.

Dip this Printed Epoxy card with this iron/epoxy pattern; into a Copper Sulfate CuSO4 + ? + ? Solution. The ? has to figured by chemical engineers. I used to be good at Organic and Inorganic Chemistry, when i was young. The copper replaces/plates the iron powder and with some electrostatic and electrochemical methods the copper layer grows over the entire tracks and pads quickly. Now the card is Tin Sn plated to complete.

A single Prototype PCB is ready and no extra copper wasted. Copper and Tin was deposited.

2004 – delabs Notes

Costing of EE Products

This is a Crude Costing Formulae based on my Ideas which is called “Gut-Feel Thumb-Rule Methodology.” Even Though i am probably the only follower of this popular System, I am sure it is worth a casual Look.

Costing of EE Products

RM – Raw Material Cost         SP – Selling Price to Distributor

Reserves are for Dry days, Employee Fund is to reduce Attrition and Layoff. I was costing the products as a Proprietor, Managing Director and as an R&D Engineer too.

This post is just to enlighten you of the intricacies involved. It is merely the Tip of the IceBerg. You will need a Spreadsheet and lot of foresight and hindsight to make a practical costing.

Management Methodology 

This rule is for products made in good numbers. Large scale production costs may go down. Custom designed products made in small numbers the price may double. The cost of Engineering and IP has not been taken to consideration. It has been covered by a 10% Research Cost.

All this assuming we make products of reasonable quality and reliability. Build a reputation by good customer service when the product fails. So this will add into the cost depending upon the organization.

The grey areas in this costing are “Sourcing quality Raw Materials and Parts”. Designing and Engineering “Reliable and Robust Products” . Customer Support at site or field may be expensive and warranty too.

Better to be Honest, Transparent and build a Brand Reputation for a Long Term company Success.