Circuit Cellar Ink 188
March 2006

Table of Contents


Jennifer Huber

HTML Task Manager

Get Ready to Build


John Gorsky

New Product News

  • Versa Mix 8051 family of mixed-signal microcontrollers from Ramtron International Corp.
  • Isolated RoHS-compliant 1-W DC-DC converters from V-Infinity LLC
  • CircuitShell electronics enclosures from CircuitShell, Inc.
  • ION DC Brush Drive motor controller from Performance Motion Devices, Inc.
  • RabbitSys operating system from Rabbit Semiconductor
  • USB-IIRO-16 isolated I/O board from ACCES I/O Products, Inc.
  • AS1910-15 dual-voltage microprocessor supervisory circuits from austriamicrosystems AG


Peter Montgomery

Servo Animation Controller

If you're into robotics and animatronics, this is the perfect project for you. Peter built a programmable 68HC11-based servo animation controller to bring life to some sophisticated Halloween props.



Paul Beckling
Ray Pettit
Todd Quasny
Robert Watson

Outdoor Mobile Robot

Need a rugged yet inexpensive general-purpose outdoor mobile robot? No problem. This foursome of designers explains how to construct one for less than $2,000.


From the Bench


Jeff Bachiochi

Simple Robotics Experimentation

Want to experiment with an easy-to-use programmable robot? The mobile Scribbler Robot is the perfect system. Not only does it connect directly to your PC, it also comes with free software that enables you to write your own programs. Jeff puts it in play.



Ethan Leland
Kipp Bradford
Odest Chadwicke Jenkins

Robot Localization and Control

This team shows you how to use wireless nodes to simultaneously localize and control a WowWee Robosapien humanoid robot.The ZigBee nodes' outputs mimic the control signals. A simple GUI makes controlling the robot a cinch.



Vadym Grygorenko

Digital Compassing

Build a Tilt-Compensated Digital Magnetic Compass

Vadym built a PSoC-based digital compass with a three-axis magneto-resistive sensor featuring tilt compensation.The system stores calibration data in the PSoC's internal EEPROM.



Stuart Brorson

Optical Proximity Sensor for Robots

Part 1: Simple PCB Design with the gEDA Suite

This step-by-step tutorial shows you how to use the Linux-based gEDA suite to create a miniature, PCB-based optical proximity sensor with LED output. It's perfect for mobile robots.


Silicon Update


Tom Cantrell

FIR Factor

If you want to be able to design a complete four-channel signal processing and filtering solution in minutes rather than days, consider the QF4A512 four-channel signal converter. But before you do, check out Tom's review.


Andy Yuen

Concurrent Small-C for PIC18 MCUs

You can write concurrent programs for a PIC MCU with the Concurrent Small-C (CSC) programming language. Andy covers the language's main features and then describes a complete multitasking CSC demonstration program.


Applied PCs


Fred Eady

Remedy for USB-to-MCU Pain

Embedded USB with HIDmaker FS

Take the pain out of USB-to-MCU integration with HIDmaker FS. Fred explains how HIDmaker FS can help you write USB applications and concentrate on data rather than the USB protocol. Developing USB code for PIC microcontrollers has never been easier.


Michael Dvorsky

Low-Cost Serial Servo Controller

When an Illinois-based robot manufacturer mentioned his need for servo controller boards, Michael designed an inexpensive solution. Now you too can generate stable servo pulses for 32 servo channels with this ATmega8-based design.



Crossword Puzzle


Advertiser's Index / April Preview


Steve Ciarcia

HTML Priority Interrupt

Beware the Trolls

FTP Directory for INK 188
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