Friday, November 4, 2011

October 2011 Competition Results

Hello readers

October has now passed by (too quickly!) and it is time to announce the winners of the October competition. Congratulations to all those who entered – there was some great examples of creativity and enthusiasm. Although less people entered this month, the standard of entries was very high – which made judging very difficult. However with some deliberation we narrowed it down to three entries:

First Prize:

Congratulations to Nick P from New York, USA for his entry:

Droid ‘bot assassin,
Misses elevated mark.
Forgot third axis.

Nick will receive a Freetronics USBDroid and one Terminal Shield:

Designed in Australia and manufactured to the highest quality standards the USBDroid combines the functionality of the Freetronics Eleven along with a USB host-mode controller and a microSD memory card slot all merged together into a single, integrated board that is 100% Arduino compatible. This is the ideal platform for developing peripherals or projects based around Android devices with ADK (Android Developer Kit) functionality, but without requiring a USB host controller shield stacked onto an Arduino. Connect your Android phone for all kinds of controller and networking features, and other USB devices like game controllers, Bluetooth dongles, digital cameras, etc. All the good things about the Eleven are included:

  • Gold-plated PCB.
  • Top and bottom parts overlays.
  • Top-spec ATmega328P MCU.
  • D13 pin isolated with a MOSFET so you can use it as an input.
  • Robust power filtering.
  • Sexy rounded corners.
  • PC communications with the Mini-USB connector: no more shorts against shields!
  • And of course the USB Host connector to go out to your Android phone and other USB devices.

In addition we’ve included a high current onboard power supply so you can charge your Android device directly off the USBDroid. Available now from a Freetronics reseller near you.

The Terminal Shield breaks out all the Arduino headers to handy screw terminals, making it really easy to connect external wires without using a soldering iron. Ideal for quick experiments or for robust connections! The center area of the shield is also a huge prototyping area, allowing you to add your own parts to suit your project. A blue “power” LED shows when your Arduino is powered up, and there are also red, green, and blue general-purpose LEDs with current-limiting resistors. The Terminal Shield comes with all the supporting components already fitted as surface-mount parts so you can start using it right away, and we even provide stackable headers to allow you to mount another shield on top.

Features

  • Gold-plated surface: solders easily and very resistant to finger oil, etc.
  • Large prototyping area with through-plated holes.
  • Clearly marked GND and 5V rails beside prototyping area.
  • Blue surface-mount “power on” LED.
  • 2 × 100nF power supply smoothing capacitors pre-fitted as surface-mount parts.
  • Reset button wired through to the Arduino so you can reset it even with the shield mounted over the top.
  • 3 general-purpose surface-mount LEDs (red, green, blue) with current limiting resistors pre-fitted: driveHIGH to illuminate.
  • Overlay printed on both the top and the bottom of the board so you don’t have to turn it over to see what you’re soldering onto.
  • Sexy rounded corners.
Second Prize:

Congratulations to James from Christchurch, New Zealand for his entry:

Ether Ten, what shall I make?
Why, remote access.
My home is automated.

James will receive a Freetronics EtherTen and the new AM3X 3-Axis Accelerometer Module:

This is the mother of all Arduino-compatible boards. Designed in Australia and manufactured to the highest quality standards the EtherTen replaces three boards – consider having an Arduino Uno SMD, Ethernet shield with PoE, and a microSD shield – all on the one board. From the Freetronics website:

The EtherTen is a 100% Arduino compatible board that can talk to the world. Do Twitter updates automatically, serve web pages, connect to web services, display sensor data online, and control devices using a web browser. The Freetronics EtherTen uses the same ATmega328P as the Duemilanove and the same Wiznet W5100 chip used by the official Arduino Ethernet Shield, so it’s 100% compatible with the Ethernet library and sketches. Any project you would previously have built with an Arduino and an Ethernet shield stacked together, you can now do all in a single, integrated board.

We’ve even added a micro SD card slot so you can store web content on the card, or log data to it.

All the good things about the Eleven and the Ethernet Shield have been combined into this one device so please see those pages for all the specific details, but the highlights include:

  • Gold-plated PCB.
  • Top and bottom parts overlays.
  • Top-spec ATmega328P MCU.
  • Mini-USB connector: no more shorts against shields!
  • D13 pin isolated with a MOSFET so you can use it as an input.
  • Power-over-Ethernet support, both cheapie DIY or full 802.3af standards-compliant.
  • Ethernet activity indicators on the PCB and the jack.
  • 10/100base-T auto-selection.
  • Fully compatible with standard Ethernet library.
  • Reset management chip.
  • Fixed SPI behavior on Ethernet chipset.
  • Robust power filtering.
  • Sexy rounded corners.

Note that just like our Ethernet Shield with PoE support, the EtherTen provides a number of options for different Power over Ethernet. You can use the supplied jumpers and feed 7-12Vdc down the wire for cheap DIY version, or you can fit our PoE Regulator 24V and feed a bit more voltage down the wire, or you can use our PoE Regulator 802.3AF along with a proper commercial PoE injector or switch. It’s up to you.

Which way is up?

This tiny 3-axis accelerometer module can operate in either +/-1.5g or +/-6g ranges, giving your project the ability to tell which way is up. Ideal for robotics projects, tilt sensors, vehicle dataloggers, and whatever else you can dream up. It has independent X, Y, and Z axis outputs ready to connect directly to analog inputs on an Arduino, and we’ve included an onboard 3.3V regulator so that you can run it from either 5V or 3.3V. It even has a “zero g!” output to detect when the device is in free-fall, so you could connect that to an “interrupt” pin on an Arduino to have your project react immediately if it’s dropped!

Very cool.

The module includes mounting holes suitable for M3 or 1/8″ bolts, and a flat rear face so you can easily glue it to any surface. Available here now or at a Freetronics reseller near you.

Third Prize: 

Congratulations to CV Rao from New Delhi, India for their entry:

I waiting to receive the Zoombadger,
To play with my daughter.
A game of detective and murderer,
Along with her lovely mother.

CV will receive three Snootlab Zombadge Kits:

With Trippy RGB sketch uploaded, this is the Snootlab games platform based on the Mitch Altman original design, it can receive original Snootlab collaborative games. This badge can be used for soldering workshop and electronic board programming. Being a badge, it can be worn as a pendant. More details on the dedicated website zombadge.com.

Once again thanks to everyone for their entries. We had a few ineligible entries and two rude ones. Such is the Internet!

And of course thanks to our sponsors Freetronics and Snootlab

Stay tuned for the November competition which will be announced shortly. 

So have fun and keep checking into tronixstuff.com. Why not follow things on twitterGoogle+, subscribe  for email updates or RSS using the links on the right-hand column, or join our Google Group – dedicated to the projects and related items on this website. Sign up – it’s free, helpful to each other –  and we can all learn something.

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