March Monthly Meeting Picaxe and Ham Radio

Small Chip, Big Performance

Our guest speaker this evening was Daryl Davis. Daryl is the ARRL West Central Florida Section Manager.
The evening’s presentation centered around micro-controllers; in particular, those in the Picaxe family.
Micro-controllers come in many sizes, mainly in a dual in-line configuration with the number of legs proportional to the power and capability of the chip. While this is a complicated subject we can simplify things a bit by making a few observations about all micro-controllers:
  • They are powered by either a 3.3 or 5-volt power source.   
  • These devices are programmable, in the sense that individual pins can be configured as either digital inputs, analog inputs, digital outputs, or pulse with modulated PWM outputs. 
Translating this a bit further,

  • digital input is the equivalent of a switch. Apply a high voltage to turn the switch on, low, or ground, to turn it off. 
  • Digital output is equivalent to turning a light on or off, perhaps in response to the voltage on a digital in pin. Pulse width modulation is a way of simulating an analog out. It behaves much the same as a light dimmer. 
The last way pins can be configured is as analog to digital converters, or A to D converters. Using an A to D converter, a continuously changing voltage can be converted to a series of discreetly changing numbers, which can then be manipulated further in the software.

Congratulations Are In Order

From left to right, Richard, Peggy, Glen, Andrew WX4AMS a new General, Kevin KM4IKJ a new Tech, and Matthew.

Field Day Is Just Around The Corner

It is that time of year again, and Fred is looking for volunteers to man the various stations on Field Day.

Some Images From The March 2015 Meeting

Thursday Night Net

Breakfast At The BrunchBox 

Though  not an official club function, some members have been meeting for breakfast on Tuesday mornings for many years, and in a variety of locations. The numbers attending have grown from around seven when I first started to attend, to as high as thirty plus. Good and reasonably priced good food and priceless comradary make this a very special occasion.