Wednesday, November 24, 2004

twins research

check out this article that talks about somone doing research on twins to prove infedility. now when are kev and I gonna be asked to join a cool study!


The makers of kazaa sold kazaa and then moved to making some form of P2P VOIP software called SKYPE. I'm not sure how well it works, but theres even hardware for it to allow you to interface a traditional VOIP phone, check out the Gigaset M34 USB . I wonder how hard it will be to interface to the network and build an adapter for my normal LandLine phone so I can make the computer Line#2 and make calls for free [with the use of a computer/interent] with my normal cordless phone.

Monday, November 22, 2004

Golden Eye

The vending machines in our building are equipted with the GOLDEN EYE and the machine looks like this:

The golden eye gurantees that you get the product you purchased and if you don't get it (the eye doesn't see it fall) it will continue two more tries to deliver the product and then refund the money or let you make a new selection. This is an ingenious idea. what better way to keep morons from encouraging a 400+ pound machine to fall on them because it won't give them what they payed for.

I have heard rumors that some have tried to 'blind the eye' with a laser in hopes it would continue to dispence product (much like some slot machine hacks I've heard of) but alas, it is rumored to have not worked. If I were to design this I would pulse data on the golden eye so they eye could not be faked. how would you build it?

Since it will keep trying to dispence product until it sees something fall it often results in multiple items being dispenced from a single purchase.
method1: item falls and nocks something loose below it
method2: an item gets hung up, so the machine keeps turning the screw, then two products fall from a single purchase.
This gambling addition was a very good side effect. I have personally witnessed people buy more than they normally would because they want to take the risk to see if they can 'cheat the system with a two-for'. in the end, they sell more product and I'm sure it offsets the minor loss they incur for the doubles payed out. either someone was really thinking when they designed this or they got lucky.

Thursday, November 18, 2004

cool place

I wonder where This Place is. they sure got some interesting pictures. I wish I could read it
Update: judging from the pictures and comments HERE, it must be in iceland. AWESOME.

Wednesday, November 17, 2004


it seems there is some kinda 2k program that can read, write, and program the uC through the serial line. its talked about in AP2548. seems interesting. according to the aplication note there is no way to destroy the program without a real BDM ... famous last words I'm sure. so, all I gotta do is attach the serial port of my PC at 115kbaud and see if I get a prompt!

sci is BDM?

check out this article on the HCS12. maybe the SCI line is BDM line!

french translation

I used babelfish to translate part of yesterdays french email, heres a snippet:
Dear Sir, Can you please do what is necessary with the service of guarding to let return on the site with its vehicle Kiné which will ensure the gestural formation of the back

Tuesday, November 16, 2004

Received NE64 Demo

after going around the block with fedex, I got the NE64 Demo kit from Freescale. Everything seems to be there, including some plugs for the 'universal power adapter' to fit power from the north pole. I've never seen one of the connectors before. I'm thinking it may make a good hood ornament.

The kit includes a cross over cable that has a sticker on it that says 'corss over'. I got a good laugh outa that.

The finish on the Demo is VERY good. a nice little plastic box that is silkscreened. from my cursory inspection and going through the first demo the box has 3 push buttons, one toggle switch, one pot, 2 red LEDS, and a green LED that comes on with power. the one thing you can't tell from the pictures is that the PCB is double sided. I haven't taken the box apart to admire the board yet, but it looks quite nice through the semi transparent case. The ethernet plug is the type that has the LEDs embedded in it. there is a DB9 connector for serial in, and a 2x20? header for GPIO expansion.

I haven't fired up the programming software yet but I was able to ping the box. you have to set your computer to some IP and then you can ping it. that kind of confused me but it must be that your IP has to be close to the one in the box so the subnet mask works.. thats all I can come up with after thinking about it for 20-30 seconds.

Yup... it seems witht he serial (goes through SCI line?) you are a little limited on the programming abilities. there is a warning that if the unit gets corrupted then you will need a BDM, back ground mode debugger (not supplied) to reprogram it. I think there is a programming mode that is supported through the serial connection but if you destroy the serial loader program then I assume you need lower level access. arg.. now I gotta make sure I can recover if, I mean When, I screw it up, or build a BDM.

HC12 Resources
AN1230 has a BDM schematic!
GDB with BDM


Graphs in excel are fun... thats what I keep telling my self. check out the latest rendition...

translate this

one of the 'perks' of working for a larger company is that when someone mis-types a name in the email system you get screw ups from all over the world. this time it was from someone in france. now I got nothing against the french, especially if they are a fellow coworker, so I did my best to respond in french and tell the guy he got the wrong person (unless i'm being transferred to france, who knows)

I used one of those free translator thinggies on the net, just did a quick google search for 'free translator' and turned up i'm not so sure its a decent translator because when I used it to translate the message I got it made very little sense.. but oh well.. so I used it to translate

I think you sent this to the wrong person.
Je pense que vous avez envoyé ceci à la mauvaise personne.

any french people wanna tell me how bad the translator screwed up?

Monday, November 15, 2004

That aint chicken

the That aint chicken picture that kev dug up continues to be a HUGE time waster on my cube wall. everyone that passes by is STILL reading it and commenting about it. I think that me posting it on the wall is starting to cut into corporate profits!

a venerable cornucopia!

remember how I told you guys that I found a decent spice simulator for windows and shared it with one of my co-workers? welp... in no time flat he told one of his professors about it who promptly posted it on UIdaho VLSI Class information next to it the professor actually put a venerable cornucopia! how cool is that! I'm sure the rest of you already ran across the LTspice but it seems there are still a bunch of people that don't know about it. I think i'm going to send it to my VLSI instructor I had in college and see if he knows about it.


Future-Electronics was/is running some kind of promotion. all over their site there are buttons that say CLICK here and register, and see if you are eligible to receive [insert product name here], so thinking I might qualify (i'm a professional electrical engineer in a field pretty close to a real application for this) I filled out my registration info. I think its been about 4 days now, and I finally heard back. [rejected] so I wonder who does qualify?

Melissa McNally to me
More options 10:44am (3 minutes ago)

Thank you for your interest in the MC9S12NE*.

Unfortunately you do not qualify. If you are still interested in this design solution you may make a purchase by:

* Calling Future Electronics at 1-800-655-0006 and referencing part # DEMO9S12NE64
* Visiting our on-line catalogue at
Thank you

embedded ethernet links

Justin's Links has a good links section on embedded ethernet. check it out

Ham repeater location

Circuit Cellar had a nice writeup on an project that located repeaters based off of your current GPS location. very good read.

Friday, November 12, 2004

freescale goes down now reads:

The system is currently unavailable. Please try back on Friday, Nov. 12th, at 10 PM MST. Please accept our apologies for any inconvenience this may cause.

hmm... thats like calling a company and getting "were sorry, that number has been disconnected".. it just doenst instill confidence in a company.


I was looking at lizzys life and noticed she had some way to show the most recent comments on the main page.. only a few weeks ago she was asking for help on editing her template and she finds and implements the coolest thing! so thanks for the idea lizzy.

I hopped on over to bloggerhacks and took a looksee at the javascript. its been about 4 years now, but I actually wrote some in javascript when I did my intership at qwest in downtown denver. to bad it all looks like giberish to me now.

it seems to work great on this page, but over on nerdytails it seems to have some issues. maybe one of the crew over there can fix it up. I'm sick of dinkin' with it. you guys are on your own! =)

I have replaced the recent post links with recent comments as I'm not sure why we need recent links if they just link to same page your reading. recent comments is much more interesting.

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Re: Gunzz

check out this comment from Gunzz in regards to the Freescale MC9S12NE64 post:

gunzz said...
What mailing address do you want the demo board sent to? I know the Marketing mgr for the product and have inquired about a free demo for you.

HOW COOL IS THAT! I've read all the literature I can find on this bad boy (actually, I've read most of it twice) and its the BLOG that helps me find more info! thanks for the offer gunzz, I will most definatly take you up on it. you can email me at I'm in the process of trying to stay some what anonymous so I'll give you the address through email.

now I wonder which one they'll ship?
DEMO9S12NE64 is the demo board, 75$
EVB9S12NE64 is the evaluation board, 250$

The Demo Board:

The Eval Board

The Eval board has lots more goodies like IRDA, LCD driver, keyboard port (ps2?), 512kb of sram, dual com ports, and a prototype area. The interesting thing about the Evaluation board as compared to the Demo board is that I think it was built by someone else (Axiom Manufacting).

yup.. sure enough. if you look HERE it talks about Axiom Manufacturing is among the top of Motorola's Third Party Tool vendors for PowerPC development and evaluation systems. Axiom specializes in single board computers, embedded controllers, custom design, and manufacturing solutions.

Interestingly enough they list their freescale application experience as:
Automotive Controller Area Network (CAN) Applications
Consumer Electronics
Internet Appliances
Industrial Control
Motor Control
Motor Control
Motor Control

yeah.. they actually list Motor Control 3 times. they must be pretty proud of that. I read in another article that said Freescale has product in 41% of cars in the US. so I'd think they should list Automotive Controller for CAN 3 times instead of motor control!

Because the Eval board is about 3x as expensive as the demo board, I suspect if freescale samples me a board it will most likely be the demo board which is fine. The demo board should do enough to prove the embedded ethernet concept that is the main thrust of the chip. BUT, who knows, if those upper ups want to really impress me they may choose to send the Eval. I haven't found alot of third party info about the NE64 chip so maybe this blog will serve as a good intro into using their tools.

I look forward to it!

if y'all get the chance, hop on over to Gunzz's Gripester


it seems everyone has moved to linux for modeling circuits. I guess all of the windows modelers have serious limitations unless you want to spend a TON of money.. so I was looking for a live CD distro of linux that had Spice (graphical version) for one of my co-workers and ran across LTSPICE from Linear technologies. it seems this is a full blown windows modeler! so for all you students (and silicon based designers) out there check out LTSPICE.

freescale NE64

ok.. thanks to an anonymous post from an article I did a few days ago I am relooking at the freescale processor. it turns out there is a demo board available for 75$, and I think it comes with a TCP/IP stack.. so that sounds really reasonable. I already contacted the manufacture to see if they will sample the demo board (most likely not) and upon rejection I will probably order it.

This article talks about how CMX has a small free stack. that may be worth looking into!

I'm thinking of contacting one of my professors from school (bryce) to see if he ever got someone to make him a datalogger for stream temperature. that my be a fun first project.

Tuesday, November 09, 2004

lizzys life

part 2 of lizzy's life horror date is on tap. Excellent!

One of the suits

One of the suits from across the hall (in finance, human relations, etc) was heating his food up for lunch at the same time that I was in the break room.

suit: what did we ever do without microwaves?
me: wait until summer so we can put it out at noon.
suit: Yeah.. it really is a modern convenience.
me: Actually, I think way back then the women actually stayed home!
suit: hahah........ actually I've done some calculations and the wife has to take home more than 14k just to break even! by the time you factor in daycare, nice cloths for work, another car, more insurance... its just not worth it!

ahh.. yep.. I got a good laugh.

Try 'n Call

OK, I"v been thinking up a project. I've really got to get a hobby project so I Have something fun to work on. the projects at work are just plain BORING.

heres my latest brainstorm, feel free to critique: I call it Try 'n Call. Build a device that merges VoIP (voice over IP) and wardriving (using free open wireless network access points) and possibly a GPS to help that searching out a bit.

ideal solution:
some embedded device that has 2+ wifi adapters, a GPS, and a line-in/out -> telephone adapter. This thing would sit in my car adn while i'm driving look for open access points. Upon connecting to one it sends my ID to a server (or group, or something) to let them know I am within a calling region. now that one antenna has a good lock, the other antenna searches for the next network so I can attempt to seamlessly transfer within my personal wifi cells. The line-in/out -> telephone adaber is useful because i can plug ANY standard land-line phone in it, including 900mhz wireless ones (so I don't screw up my 2.4 ghz wifi signal) and actually take the phone in to work, or a store, etc. Some kind of lights [blinking LEDs for us geek people] would tell me that I have a cell lock, and other lights would tell me who in my buddy list is online.

yup.. I might just get 5 minutes of talk time on my way home!

Monday, November 08, 2004

touch & die

I am currently working on yet another 'project'. I had to have a quick meeting with one of the auditors of the project to close it out and so he showed up at my desk to get the final info. I explained it all. He was stuck on the fact that in order to convert production quantities from year to date quantities you multiply the numbers from jan1-oct31 by 1.2 to scale it up for estimated yearly. for you pseudo geeks, that means we have only 10 months worth of data and we want to predict what a linearly scaled 12 month data will be. simple enuf? no. and this guy even had 'master' in his name (no really, he does, master blackbelt)

to top it all off, when i'm showing him excel he finds the need to touch my monitor all over. now this reminds me of college when dan would let the dust build up evenly. I have also used this method and rather enjoy it. well, the dust is more than destroyed and we actually have the culprits FINGERPRINTs all over my view area. arg...... now I gotta find a way to clean it without scratching the preciouse coating.

embedded ethernet

OK.. I started out my blogging experience talking about embedded ethernet, now I think it is time to revisit this interest of mine. there is an add on the inside cover of this months Nuts and Volts magazine that has a web server (hardware) for $29. for the LIFE OF ME, I can not figure out who sells it and I'm just to impatiant to wait to get home see what the URL is. so, in my google quest, I run across Freescale Semiconductor. I read about them over the weekend, and just ignored one of their new release notes, that said they have an entire network enabled processor in a single package that does EVERYTHING for $8 (in bulk). now that sounds pretty interesting. I Just wish I"d heard of this freescale before so I could have more faith in the product.

so.. I'm going to read more about MC9S12NE64CPV and the datasheet can be found HERE. for a few hundred dollars the evaluation/development kit may actually be realy fun to play with. if so I know what my christmas present will be.

The freescale chip is a tad complicated. its a full blown uP which is cool, but I think i'd have to write my own protocol implementation which would suck.

I FINALLY found the $29 device I was thinking of.. this implementation is a tad on the senior project side, but interesting none the less. check out or a review on

time wasters.

so if you have been following along on nerdy tales, dan thinks I'm a slacker, so I'm going to give him a little more ammo.

Jen got me a dilbert daily calander for christmas last year. at times I read it once a week, sometimes once a month.. at anyrate, whenever I read it I keep all the good ones to post on the outside of my cube wall. The time wastedness is awesome. When I first update my post (on my cube wall) I can waste hours of potential productivity for others. I havne't kept track of how many people stop by, or for how long, but I've even caught the boss stopping for a read.

the potential cost to the company is amazing!

The incredibles

We went and saw the incredibles this weekend and really enjoyed it. we went at 7:45 and since its a kids movie it was too late for the kids so we basically ahd the theater to ourselves. A must see movie! anamiation was very good and the story line was very well done. turns out most of the heros were modeled after the writers family or something. elasti-girl was modeled after his wife? (streched in all kinds of directions), the sub humore was awesome.

to top it all off I found out how much of a movie going-under-informed individual I am. jen had to point out that every other row either has reclining seets or foldup drink holder arm. I never noticed that!

Friday, November 05, 2004

"°º¤ø,¸¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø,¸ [FKS] °º¤ø,¸¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø,¸

I ran into this really cool page on abandonware. ahh.. the old games I loved

I was also reading about GTA san andreas at

self review

I just submitted my self review here at work. I blog it for you for your reading pleasure.

Other Training
*GE 102: Success in GE (2004)
*GE Time Management (2004)
*GE Change Management (2004)
*CKC Labs EMI Training (2004)
*Intrinsic Safety Pepperl+Fuchs (2004)
*Halt/Hass Methods/Procedure (2003)
*Fex Methods (2002)
*ORCAD Training (2001)
*Test Methods Course (2001)

Other Qualifications
*Peer Award for design flaw found on 3500/60
*Peer Award for assitance on barrier certifications
*Night on the Town for 6CH redesign resulting in major time savings and multi-up testing capability

*Professional Engineer 2004
*Six Sigma Green Belt Certification 2002
*Amateur Radio 2001
*A+ CompTIA Certification 1999

*Lead the board test redesign for the 6CH / Temp Monitor project and was able to improve the technology in Test Engineering. As a result the new board level test can test 4 boards at a time. The test runs 6.32 minutes faster per board and with HASS we can test 48 at a time. The test time reduction alone accounts for $19,600 of our first year savings.

Project Leader on 5 Productivity Deck Projects:
*QPTS: B96756.22 Orcad Expert
*QPTS: B96756.23 ICT Preventive Maintenance
*6CH Redesign Time Savings
*Neuron Savings / Scrap Reduction
*ICT Logon Time Reduction

Team Member on 5 QPTS / AWO Projects:
*AWO QPTS: B85237.24 ICT/Burn-HASS
*AWO QPTS: B98362.12 Okuma Lean Setup Time Reduction
*QPTS: B96756.28 ICT Software Enabling
*QPTS: B91422.1 ICT DR project
*QPTS: N100211.1 4CH Flash ROM/RAM Combo Chip Failure

*Board Test resource on the 1900/65 project.
*Generated ICT test for qualifying barrier modules from an outside vendor.
*Designed Flying Probe logon script to enable proper machine operation.
*Removed ICT routing on 104723 to save time.
*Authored Failure Analysis method using TheDR for the test department.
*ICT Expert on the 3500 power supply outsource to china project.
*Transferred ICT maintenance to Machinery Maintenance.
*Department resource for computers. Assisted in recovery of Ron’s Laptop.
*Reviewed more than 60 test and design changes, directly affecting the quality delivered by the test department.

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

Election Results

The election results are fun to look at. check out

you can pick your state and it will break down the strengh of voter support by county so you can see if you have the same mindset as your neighbors or not.

I'm still trying to figure out the trend for KERRY support. all of the west coast, and north east. strange. all I can think of is he got huge support from people in metropolis, maybe everyone else already knew that. I don't read the news, so it was fun for me to find out on my own..

Tuesday, November 02, 2004


so we hit the early bird election. we were there at 7am. and it still took us 1:45 minutes to make it through the line (that 1 hour and 45 minutes). it was a pain because 2 precints were using teh same location. we were in the long one (350) and the people kept coming out and yelling that 338 was free so any 338 people could go to the front of the line. as it turns out 350 is the largest precinct in northern nevada.. go figure our luck

but we got it done. and out of the 10 or so voting machines only 2 were broken. I wonder how many will be broken by 5pm?

Monday, November 01, 2004

organic solvents

We have an HP laserjet 4000 (network enabled) printer. It really is an awesome piece of machinery and I hope that the compaq/HP merger won't ruin this line. well.. its been having a little trouble picking paper. so we have been using the manual feed tray and that seems to do the trick.

so today I see a guy from computerland working on it. a few people are standing around and the boss was there as well.

Boss: does your simple green have a posted MSDS sheet?
tech: ummm... no, its organic.
me: so is gasoline.

it was beutiful. totally on the fly.