Amazon Echo Button Teardown

Amazon recently released the Echo Button, a Bluetooth Low Energy device designed for use with Echo devices (which I don’t own). Although it uses Bluetooth instead of Wi-Fi, I thought it might be a better device to repurpose than the Dash Button, due to its larger size and easily replaceable battery. Thus, I bought one to take apart.

Echo Button outside Continue reading

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Light Bulb PCB

As part of a Halloween costume (I was a “bright idea”), I designed a light bulb PCB, which was mostly just an excuse to try out PCBmodE. It consists of seven addressable RGB LEDs, an ATtiny85 microcontroller, an ambient light sensor, and a rechargeable battery. The battery and an old hard drive magnet, for mounting the PCB, are attached to the back via double-sided tape. As one might expect, PCBmodeE worked well for this artistic circuit board design, given that it was designed to be used for something like this, but KiCad is much easier to use for just about everything else.

Light Bulb PCB: Front Continue reading

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Reserva Nacional Los Flamencos

While recently in San Pedro de Atacama, Chile, I drove out towards Argentina to look at the national flamingo reserve, which consists of a number of salt lakes (with flamingos). There are also other interesting geologic formations including rocks sticking out of the desert, the “Monjes de la Pacana.” Here are some photos of the reserve.Laguna Aguas Calientes Continue reading

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Great Smoky Mountains National Park

After viewing the total solar eclipse last month, I visited Great Smoky Mountains National Park on the way back from Tennessee, as well as the Cherohala Skyway, parts of the Blue Ridge Parkway, and Mount Mitchell. Here are some photos of the park.

Great Smoky Mountains National Park Continue reading

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Solar Eclipse

Last week, I watched the total solar eclipse from eastern Tennessee, across the Tennessee River from the Watts Bar Nuclear Plant. I was originally planning on watching it from the mountains on the border between Tennessee and North Carolina, but the cloud cover forecast the day of predicted much better weather farther west.

Partial Eclipse Continue reading

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