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Develop a more efficient energy grid power supply

June 16, 2014 10:55 am | by Xavier Ramus, Texas Instruments | Texas Instruments | Comments

The intent of the smart grid is to allow communication through the power supply to increase the efficiency of the energy grid. This is achieved by ensuring that any equipment connected to the power grid will not only be power efficient for the intended functionality, but will also use the energy in the most efficient manner, minimizing peak power consumption and average overall power usage.

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Friday the 13th. Should You Worry? No.

June 13, 2014 2:27 pm | by Screaming Circuits | Comments

So, here in Oregon, USA, it's Friday the 13th - and, we have a full moon, to boot. In many societies, both of those would portend of doom. Baseball players tend to be a suspicious lot, so if you're a...

3 reasons you’d kill yourself with a lightsaber

June 13, 2014 11:02 am | by JF Stackhouse, Engineerjobs.com | Comments

When I was eight years old, there was only one thing I wanted more than for someone to invent the lightsaber. I wanted one to fall off the back of a truck and land in my front yard.Fortunately, neither occurred; lightsabers are dangerous, poorly designed, and unstable. Here are three of the many reasons they should be preemptively outlawed....

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This is what it looks like when you play soccer in space

June 13, 2014 9:55 am | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Comments

In recognition of the World Cup, the astronauts on the International Space Station got their own game of soccer going. Obviously, the rules and logistics are a little bit different when neither the ball nor the players are subject to the whims of gravity. The video stars U.S. astronauts Reid Wiseman and Steve Swanson and fellow German astronaut Alexander Gerst.

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Panel rails: What are they?

June 12, 2014 5:14 pm | by Screaming Circuits | Comments

I referred to "panel rails" in my blog about V-score panels, but I didn't explain the "whats" and whys" of panel rails. You might find yourself asking "what are panel rails and why would I want to use them?" Well, first of all, for our Full-Proto service, we don't require panels or panel rails....

What board-level technologies will be game changers in the near future?

June 12, 2014 4:09 pm | by Editor | Comments

We have a VERY exciting Brainstorm about Market Disrupters for our July issue. Our own ECN IMPACT Awards have inspired us to look deeper into the world of market disrupters. For our August issue, we're asking you, the experts, to tell us what the next big thing is when it comes to board-level technologies.

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Down with pink: The rise of female STEM toys

June 12, 2014 3:09 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Comments

You may have noticed my habit of blogging occasionally about how gendered toys have the ability to affect children. Whether the topic is limiting the skills sets girls develop while playing or failing to introduce STEM as a career option because those are “boy’s” toys, it’s always been an interesting discussion, to say the least.

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Elon Musk looks to save the world, for a price

June 11, 2014 9:20 am | by Chris Fox, Managing Editor, PD&D | Comments

The buzz that has been floating around Tesla over the last year is not flattering, including but not limited to sales model jealousy, fire recalls, and lemon-law lawsuits. Lately, famed CEO and real-life Tony Stark, Elon Musk, has been teasing that he wants to do something controversial....

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Lightfair 2014 rewind

June 10, 2014 3:53 pm | by Chris Warner, Executive Editor | Osram Opto Semiconductors, Thomas Research Products, Wago Corporation | Comments

Lightfair 2014 was held at the Las Vegas Convention Center, June 1-4. Every year, this show presents a variety of luminaires and fixtures for the industrial, home, buildings, and outdoor markets along with a healthy mix of component vendors showing off their discrete and modular products that enable the amazing new lighting products. In this age of Internet of Things (IoT), exhibitors continued their march toward...

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Haptic device simulates the feel of breasts

June 10, 2014 8:57 am | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Comments

Check those smirks. This doesn’t concern a certain less-than-reputable industry (banking $100 billion+ annually) or Japan’s general proclivity for weirdness. Actually, the ability to simulate the tactile sensation of soft breast tissue could have important medical applications....

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The Past and Future of Electroncis

June 9, 2014 2:46 pm | by Screaming Circuits | Comments

Our parent company, Milwaukee Electronics was founded 60 years ago, in 1954. That's quite a long time in terms of electronics. 60 years back 1954 was a big year for transistor electronics. The first commercially produced transistor radio, the Regency...

This is what the terminator line looks like from the ISS

June 9, 2014 10:27 am | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Comments

NASA has been very into social media lately, and I could not be more excited. It’s a great way to inspire younger generations and remind everyone why the space program—despite its not insignificant costs—is so important. NASA has been capitalizing on the “space is cool again” trend...

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Individual routed boards - not panelized

June 6, 2014 1:05 pm | by Screaming Circuits | Comments

Some people, especially in the manufacturing industry, refer to PC board panels by the term "palette." I can't seem to avoid thinking of the big wooden thing used for shipping stuff, so it's tough for me to call a panel...

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Maximize shelf life with a one-time, push-button switch

June 6, 2014 11:57 am | by Michael Hartshorne, Texas Instruments | Texas Instruments | Comments

Many modern portable devices must be shipped with a battery installed so that a customer can power it up initially without any battery installation or charging. Any excessive current “leakage” from the components connected to the battery may result in a dead device in the hands of a customer.

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Photos of the Day: Porsche 918 Spyder

June 5, 2014 11:37 am | by Porsche | Comments

The Porsche 918 Spyder is a high-end vehicle created in the Porsche tradition of motorsports. It offers a naturally aspirated V8-enginer with the torque of two electric vehicles. It has a top speed of 93-mph running soley on electric and offers a fuel consumption of 3.1 - 3.0 liters per 100km. 

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