Noise, Sensors, and Microcontrollers

Noise, Sensors, and Microcontrollers: Working with nasty reality and units conversions


This is about complexity and beauty in embedded engineering... or about units conversion maths and improving sensor accuracy with filtering and noise... or about building a digital thermometer using a temperature sensor connected to a microcontroller. As you wish.

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  • John

    Integer math is the bomb.

    1 · August 27, 2014

    • Christoph M.

      Until you hand code floating point math :-P

      August 27, 2014

    • Gary S.

      Hah, I wrote a Base 10 floating point package for Wang Basic three decades ago. So there. ;-) They specifically wanted Base 10 and not Base 2 so that the accounting software, etc. that ran on it didn't have rounding errors.

      2 · August 27, 2014

  • Olivier C.

    It falls at the same time as Chris Anderson's talk of 3D Robotics, CommNexus Event

    August 14, 2014

  • Christoph M.

    Thanks James for the overview what is considered state-of-the art among makers.
    I would be VERY interested in more information what is considered an easy way to program simple smart phones.

    2 · August 26, 2014

    • James N.

      Now, to make a web page that looks like a SmartPhone app, you use some nice CSS, and you implement the appcache so that the page stays in the phones memory (no internet connection needed)
      http://techref.massmi...­

      Here are a couple of simple web apps that I've made and use on my cell phone:
      Tap and Die calculator (a bit better than a dead table, because this one will show you ALL the drill sizes that are "close enough" and what % thread engagement each will get you)
      http://techref.massmi...­

      Resistor color codes. Not what value is that resistor, but what does that resistor value look like (which is much more often what you need) AND How do I make X ohm resistor out of 2 resistors in parallel
      http://techref.massmi...­

      Note that all of this can be hand coded in a text editor, even with nothing more than the phone (no compiler).

      August 27, 2014

    • James N.

      And honestly, the performance may not be /quite/ as good as a native app, but it's darn close.
      http://venturebeat.co...­

      The only thing missing is a good way to communicate with the outside world.

      August 27, 2014

  • Christoph M.

    This was a flashback to writing floating point arithmetic for TMS320C5502 signal processors in assembly and low level C ... if anyone has any use for it, I could try to understand my own code 7 years after I wrote it ... lots of special shift instructions and all that were necessary to do stuff like square root and logarithm by hand, without even a divide instruction.

    August 26, 2014

    • James N.

      I'm always interested in stuff like that.

      August 27, 2014

  • Richard V.

    Thanks for the presentation James, the information was insightful and helpful.

    1 · August 26, 2014

  • Gary S.

    Sorry I couldn't make it tonight, but I did read your presentation and THANKS for the simple scheme for averaging over several samples. I had been thinking about this for awhile and using arrays of sample data seemed too complicated. This is much simpler.

    August 26, 2014

    • Christoph M.

      Here's a tidbit I found how to compute mean and variance online. From there, it's probably not far to a Kalman filter (where you weight the update according to the relative variances of the averaged value and of the new measurement):
      https://bitbucket.org/...­

      August 26, 2014

  • Cherelynn

    Looks fun!

    August 20, 2014

  • James N.

    For those interested, the presentation is available here:
    http://techref.massmind.org/techref/io/sensor/interface.htm
    And I will be answering questions and attempting to explain any confusing parts at the meetup. It's really a pretty cool set of ideas that applies to just about any sensor system.

    August 8, 2014

  • James N.

    Ah, Hansol, thank you so much for changing the date on this and for being so patient with me.

    August 8, 2014

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