Creating Electronic Circuit Diagrams

I need a quick and easy way to create the diagrams for electrical and electronic circuits. So I’ve done a quick web-search. I’ve decided to go with Partsim as a way to create the circuits, instead of another java app. a library of Electronic Symbols, or a word document with the Symbols in it. The last was the atlence resistor-viewer, but it’s a 30 day trial (instructions).


3D printed housing

Italian firm WASP (World Advanced Saving Project) has produced a 3D printer that creates houses out of mud. The details can be seen from the following two articles 3D printed mud houses will soon be an option in impoverished countries, and Delta 3D printer from WASP prints sustainable houses made from mud. The ideas behind the technology are great, however, my concern here has to do with the social effects of the technology. If the effect of using this technology is to replace humans in the construction of a home or shelter, then is that not likely to lead to a deskilling of the local workforce, which is likely to lead to more social problems. Is it the best solution to go into an impoverished community and offer an external solution like this? What are the repercussion from doing so?

Another similar story is, Giant Chinese 3D printer builds 10 houses in just 1 day.  Using mine tailings, a cheap material, it’s able to quickly extrude the structures to create a house. This is great for emergence housing after a natural disaster (bushfires, or floods), or for humanitarian disasters. However, in Engineering there is a diagram that describes the Fast-Cheap-good because it is cheap & quick it suffers. This image from Sunflood Studios shows it clearly;

Fast, Good, Cheap - Pick Two

Fast, Good, Cheap – Pick Two

Cool projects with the Raspberry Pi

The Raspberry Pi has bee around for awhile as a kit which places computing in the palm of your hand, and reportedly Raspberry Pi Microcomputer Still Selling Like Hot Cakes. It gives you a low cost computer which can be loaded with a number of basic OS (See their downloads). This machine can be modified with a growing range of projects, and there are a good collection of teaching resources to go with it. There are two new crowd funded projects that will be worth following, Pi-Top and Durio Sound. Both of these show health development in the micro computing area.

Pi-Top is a Laptop developed from the Raspberry Pi, and although it’s not one of the $100 laptops or part of the one laptop per child thing that was happening a few years back. It is something you can construct yourself and will help develop you understanding of computer hardware.
The second project is Durio Sound, another Raspberry Pi that adds a 24-bit 192kHz ultimate sound quality with the lowest possible distortion to your Raspberry Pi.

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