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Bench Talk for Design Engineers

Bench Talk

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Bench Talk for Design Engineers | The Official Blog of Mouser Electronics


Battling the Bouncing Button Mike Parks
Mechanical buttons and switches can present unintended input trouble for embedded electronics projects. There’s an undesired effect known as “bounce.” What is bounce? When you press a button it sometimes does not cleanly change states. There is some electrical noise generated as the button rapidly oscillates between states immediately after a button is pressed but before it settles. Think of it like pulling a mass-spring system downward, letting go, and waiting for it to settle at equilibrium. Switches and buttons oscillate similarly, though the time to settle is measured in milliseconds.

Technology Expands Our View of the World and Ourselves Caroline Storm Westenhover
There is a Regina Spektor song called Blue Lips that has a line that goes “blue the color of the planet from far, far away”. Sometimes I think about that line as a representation of an entire category of lines. It is the representative, in my mind, because it was playing in the background while my mom and I were having a discussion about the how the internet as an equalizer affects our opinions on what the average person is like, particularly in terms of intelligence, and I pointed to it as an example.

Tools Bridge The Chasm Between Hardware and Software Arden Henderson
Suppose some hardware folks somewhere invent a machine made of hardware that does something when it carries out a series of instructions. The instructions will be in a language the machine understands. Instructions for the machine are written in the "machine language" of the hardware, sometimes called "machine code." The machine language is the final low-level language in the journey from high level language to low-level language, resulting in correct instructions that do something useful; it is the language the machine understands.

New Bud Light Super Bowl Commercial Brings Pac-Man to Life with Tech! Erik Smith
This Sunday when you're watching the big game, you may be reminded of another retro game. Bud Light has released a preview from their #UpForWhatever campaign that features the largest Pac-Man game ever built! But the classic maze and multicolored ghosts aren't the only thing that's familiar to us, some of the hardware utilized comes from our manufacturer partners!

USB 3.1 Type-C: Making the Connection! Rudy Ramos
It’s not often in electronics that improvements are made to both the hardware and software of an existing technology. In most cases, revisions to the software outpace the evolution of the hardware. Apparently, USB 3.1 is an exception.

A Day at the Beach – on 10 Meters Barry Manz
If you’re a ham and haven’t been active for a while, I have the just the ticket: Get involved with someone who just got the bug (no pun intended), and is ecstatic about making his or her first contacts. I speak from experience here.

Internet of Things: Fad or Future? Mike Parks
A lot of talk in the tech world lately has centered on an idea called “The Internet of Things”. What is “IoT”, as it is commonly abbreviated? Is it just the latest in a laundry list of tech buzzwords? Or is it something that is really going to change our lives?

Timing is Everything Even for Yes and No Questions Caroline Storm Westenhover
One of the things that comes with studying electrical engineering is that people assume you know the answers to all kinds of questions. Some are good questions even if they are incompletely worded, like: “How much work does it take to move a kilogram?” It took some discussion but at the end he understood physics a bit better.

Stupid Questions Lynnette Reese
Every now and then our little group of engineers gets into philosophical arguments that go off into the weeds of extreme detail. A Dilbert comic catches this perfectly when a group of engineers argues about how to share two pizzas in a meeting. In our case, it started when I wanted to know the difference between an Instrumentation Amplifier (in-amp) and a Precision Amplifier. I know that an in-amp is a precision amp, but there must be something more if you have to rename it.

Plug and Play: Not So! Rudy Ramos
Have you ever tried to set up a home wireless network? Was it easy? You’ve probably heard of Plug-and-Play (PnP). Does PnP work for you every time? During the recent holiday I had to vacate my home office to turn it into a temporary guest room. I left my cable modem and wireless router in the room but I had to move my printer (not wireless) and my desktop PC to my bedroom.

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