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NerdKits Newsletter Archives » NerdKits Newsletter #5 - printf/scanf Video, IEEE Award, and Customer Projects

September 01, 2009
by mrobbins
(NerdKits Staff)

mrobbins's Avatar

This newsletter was released on September 1st, 2009.

Hi! This is the fifth edition of the NerdKits newsletter, which we use to keep you updated about things going on at NerdKits.

In this issue:

  1. New Projects from You: Laser/iPhone, Hamometer, Tractor Sled Puller
  2. New Video: printf and scanf in C Programming
  3. NerdKits Wins IEEE "Engineering Your World" Contest
  4. More Parts Available in the NerdKits Store


We'd like to call attention to a few cool customer projects that are emerging on our forums:

First, pedroh96 made a video called "HOW-TO: Control a Laser with your Computer and your iPhone!":

This video demonstrates how to connect a laser pointer to the microcontroller, and how to control it from a computer.

Next, hijohng made a "NerdKit Hamometer" for tracking how far his hamster ran at night:

This discusses connecting a magnetic Hall-effect sensor to the NerdKit, and reading the data to a PC. (We were really surprised to see how far the little guy got!)

And finally, JKITSON has two NerdKits communicating wirelessly for his "Tractor Sled Monitor":

Jim, let us know how it's going!


We've released a new video tutorial that talks about how to use the printf and scanf functions, as well as their program-space counterparts printf_P and scanf_P. These are incredibly useful functions for writing to the LCD, or for reading and writing to the serial port. This is one of our first tutorials that is centered around a programming concept rather than a project, so let us know what you think -- should we make more like this one?


In the last newsletter, we told you that NerdKits had been selected as one of the finalists in an IEEE video contest. The IEEE is the leading professional society for electrical engineering, and it held a competition requesting videos that demonstrate how people can use engineering to make their lives better.

We're happy to announce that with all of your votes, we won the contest "for the planet's most fun and innovative use of science, engineering and technology to enhance the world around us"!

We will be using the prize money to help us bring you more innovative, educational videos about programming and electronics. Thanks again for your support and your votes!


We're not in the business of being a major electronics parts distributor -- Digi-Key, Mouser, and Newark can hold that throne. But we do like to take care of our customers, so we've provided extra parts on our online store, only for existing NerdKits customers. For your convenience, we've recently expanded the list of available parts, now to include individual ATmega168 microcontrollers, MOSFETs, temperature sensors, USB-Serial adapters, switches, and more:

As always, orders generally ship the same or next business day, so you'll have your parts fast! And you can still e-mail us to request other parts that we may have available.


Thank you for taking the time to read this, and for being such great customers. Make sure you tell your friends and neighbors about NerdKits so we can keep the world's DIY spirit alive (now with NerdKits in 39 countries)!

Best wishes,

Humberto & Mike
NerdKits, L.L.C.

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