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EMBEDDED DESIGN LINKS

Introduction

This page contains links to sites around the web where embedded design information reigns supreme.

Links are presented alphabetically, not with a particular sequence of reading in mind, although I must admit that number one, Adafruit Industries is indeed one of my personal favorites.

Enjoy!

1. Adafruit Industries

— This site has an interesting backstory behind it. A brilliant, passionate, and enterprising young woman named Limor Fried (also known as 'Lady Ada'), began 'tinkering' while still in college. For instance, in 2003 she 'tinkered out' a Nixie Clock and a Spoke POV.

In 2004 she 'tinkered out' a Minty MP3, and Low Power Cell/RF Jammer, as well as Media Sensitive Sunglasses.

In 2005 she 'tinkered out' a Sonic Fabric Reader, Mini Minty MP3, a MiniPOV 2, a Gamegrrl, and a x0xb0x—an 'otaku' clone of the famous Roland TB-303 synthesizer.

In 2006 she 'tinkered out' out a self-tuning wide-bandwidth portable RF jammer, Adafruit Laser Services, a Dual Nature—an electronic lighting subsystem design and manufacture at a low cost—a MiniPOV 3, a MintyBoost, and a MIDIsense. I expect one can still see remnants of brain energy spiraling outward from that year's endeavors!

In 2007 she 'tinkered out' a Digg Button, a very simple beginner electronics project that teaches how to solder and program a microcontroller, and a USBtinyISP, a simple open-source USB AVR programmer and SPI interface that works great with avrdude, is AVRStudio-compatible and tested under Windows and MacOS X.

Many of these items she sold on ebay or had on Instructables. I found her online in 2009.

In 2009, Ladyada founded the company Adafruit Industries. Five years later, in 2014, this company did around 33 million dollars in business! A profound advance for the DIY world and Maker community.

In fact, Ladyada has made innumerable contributions to the "DIY" and "Make" worlds! She has inspired thousands of people of all ages to either jump back into electronics hobbying or to begin a study of embedded design.

Ladyada's site offers a Shop, a Blog, Forums, Videos, and a Learn center. Ladyada and Phillip Torrone also do a live 'Ustream' every Wednesday evening at 8:00 PM ET called "Ask an engineer chat"; they present new projects and answer questions. Each of these is stimulating unto itself; collectively, they form the 'otaku' world known as Adafruit Industries.

Finally, I believe Ladyada, Phillip Torrone, and all staff and employees of Adafruit Industries are an amazing representation of innovation, passion, genius, and entrepreneurship. They have contributed an indescribable amount of inspiration to the world of DIY and the Make community.

This site and company are indeed well worth a visit!

2. CRN

— A site offering White Papers on embedded design research; they also provide news, analysis, and perspective on embedded design.

A site for the serious minded embedded design student.

2. Design with Microcontrollers

— This is a Blog discussing circuit designs and ideas using microcontrollers.

Basic, yet useful!

3. DIY Community

— "DIY-Community.com is an authoritative source for news, projects, and product information in the DIY electronics world."

Stay on top of things in the DIY electronics world though this site.

4. Electronic Design

— An article published on June 23, 2014 entitled Make More Electronics: The DIY Business is Booming

This site offers information on electronic design; it includes a page on Ideas for Design.

5. Embedded Computing Design

— This site offers numerous articles about embedded computing design.

Many excellent articles wothy of a read.

6. Evil Mad Scientist

— A site offering Products, a Blog, and Forums. They write of themselves, "Evil Mad Scientist Laboratories is the blog and R&D arm of Evil Mad Science LLC, a family owned small business in California, designing and producing 'DIY and open source hardware for art, education, and world domination'."

A fun site offering embedded design ideas and projects.

7. Hackaday

— A site offering a fresh hack every day "from around the Internet." Their target audienc is entertainment for engineers and engineering enthusiasts.

Hackaday claims they are "taking back the term 'Hacking' which has been soured in the public mind. Hacking is an art form that uses something in a way in which it was not originally intended. This highly creative activity can be highly technical, simply clever, or both. Hackers bask in the glory of building it instead of buying it, repairing it rather than trashing it, and raiding their junk bins for new projects every time they can steal a few moments away."

Hackaday offers a Blog, a Community Page that includes a link to Projects, a Video Page, and a Store.

A great site from which to learn.

8. Instructables

— A site that supports the Make community. Included are numerous projects that DIY'ers posted on embedded design.

Another site offering embedded design ideas and projects.

9. Jeremy Blum

— Jeremy Blum is a "recent graduate of Cornell University's College of Engineering, with both a Master's and Bachelor's degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering."

Jeremy is also author of Exploring Arduino: Tools and Techniques for Engineering Wizardy. "Exploring Arduino uses the popular Arduino microcontroller platform as an instrument to teach topics in electrical engineering, programming, and human-computer interaction. The book shares best practices in programming and design that you can apply to any project, and code snippets and schematics that will serve as a useful references for future projects even after you've mastered all the topics in the book."

Jeremy's site offers a Blog complete with numerous video tutorials. Jeremy is a bright young man appealing to both the younger and older embedded design DIY'ers.

Exploring Arduino is available at Amazon.com.

Jeremy's site is well worth a visit and his book well worth a read.

10. Kevin Darrah

— Kevin Darrah says of himself, "I 'work' as an an Electrical Engineer [at USA Firmware], I 'live' as an Electronics Enthusiast."

Kevin is the author of numerous embedded design project videos/tutorials (135 as of December 2014).

Kevin was named one of the "Top 4 of 40" in an Embedded Computing Design article in November 2014.

Kevin's site offers Videos, Circuit and Project Photos, and Code for Projects.

Interesting ideas and well worth a look-see at an electronics enthusiast's thought process.

11. littleBits Electronics

— This site offers a unique 'snap' approach to DIY electronics. They wrote, "littleBits is the easiest way to prototype and learn with electronics. It's an ever-growing library of electronic modules that snap together with magnets so you can invent anything." They also wrote, "littleBits has one mission: to put the power of electronics in the hands of everyone."

This is a fascinating way for people to learn about embedded design.

12. NerdKits

— This site also has an interesting backstory. Two young men, graduates from MIT, started this company around the same time that Adafruit Industries came into being. In fact, I believe that these two young men and Ladyada were peers in college.

This company did well shortly after opening; however, after awhile the owners seemed to disappear. The site remains up and its Forum remains open. A number of prior customers strive to maintain the forum.

While the site is effectively 'on its own', the Forum continues to offer insight and suport into embedded design projects. Perhaps one day the story of what happened to this unique and successful site will be told.

13. Newark Element14

— This site offers Products, Applications, Applications, Services, Design Resources, and a Community Page.

Lots of useful information on this site!

14. Simon Monk

— Dr. Simon Monk has written well more than a dozen books, many on embedded design. Simon wrote of his books, "Hacking electronics is fun. Whether you are into Arduino, Raspberry Pi, .Net Gadgeteer, IOIO or are just looking to learn more about electronics, then these books are intended to give you the information you need to make the most of your hobby."

Simon has a Blog where he discusses "Open Source hardware, Arduino, Raspberry Pi, BeagleBone, DIY electronic construction, reviews, projects, how-tos and recipes."

Simon's books are great for electronics enthusiasts of all levels of expertise.

15. SoftwareGeek

SoftwareGeek offers more than 100,000 software ideas for the DIY'er. They calim to update their site daily.

They have a Do It Yourself Project page presenting about 120 software ideas. Woth a look-see.

16. SparkFun Electronics

— Another site offering strong support to the Make community. They offer Products, a Blog, Turorials, Classes, and Workshops.

A very good site for all embedded design hobbiests, beginners, or old-timers.

17. All About Circuits

— Thanks much to Kent from EETech Media for suggesting this dynamite All About Circuits site! They offer the Make community Articles, a Forum, Educational Resources, IoT Specific Resources, an Embedded Code Library, and much more.

In Kent's words, the All About Circuits team offers an "extremely active electrical engineering online community that provides both interesting content and useful resources for Electrical Engineers, including various engineering calculators, a free electrical engineering textbook, and a whole section dedicated to Arduino."

I am an avid user of All About Circuits; sadly, I've been quite lax in maintaining this embedded design links page. Thanks again, Kent, for the reminder of this site!

This page last updated April 17, 2017.


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