Learn to code Java #2 – variables, inputs and interest rates

Working with electronics and microcontrollers isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get involved and go deeper into your tech. There’s been much said of late about learning to code and I just want to throw my hat into that ring as well.
Learning to code will end up being one of the smartest things you’ll ever do – not just because you learn more about computing, but you learn how to think (yep, Steve Jobs… Read more

Learning Arduino Basics #2 – weather measurements

One of the great things about microcontrollers is that they allow you straddle the divide of pure electronics hardware and computing software.
Now there’s no substitute for seriously learning the two, but Arduino is a great way to strike out gently in both directions – you can learn the basics of coding and combine it with some simple electronics. The more you learn, the more you can branch out into the ‘internet of things’ and start building your own smart… Read more

How to be tech-safe this Christmas

It’s Christmas, which means there’ll be mountains of tech from all corners of the globe soon to be unwrapped. But while you’re enjoying your new swag, make sure you give a thought to safety – particularly when it comes to AC mains power adapters.
Many tech devices now get their power through a USB socket from tiny lightweight AC plug-in adapters. They’re convenient and you can buy these USB power adapters almost anywhere.
But you need to be careful –… Read more

Quad-core Pendo Pad 7 for $30 @ Coles

Coles Supermarkets are selling the Pendo Pad 7 PNDPP44Q7GPBLK quad-core Android KitKat/4.4 tablet for $30 – but you’ll need to be quick.
I managed to pick up one from my local Coles, but it was the last one.
The Pendo Pad 7 is no Google Nexus 7, for sure – but hey, it’s a $30 tablet. Having played with it for the last couple of hours, I’m not going to complain too much at that price.
Here’s a basic run-down… Read more

Following my Java Masterclass series in APC

For the last few months, I’ve been doing a ‘Learn to Code Java’ masterclass series in APC magazine – and it looks like a few new readers have been joining of late, given the emails.
The series will eventually hit the APC website, but you’ll be a few issues behind – so grab the latest issue of APC to get the latest!
If you want to get started, all you need is a computer and some free software – the… Read more

Source code for my Arduino Digital Audio Recorder

One of the most popular (and one of the trickiest) Arduino projects I’ve designed so far is the Arduino Digital Audio Recorder. It appeared in APC magazine issues #403 and #404. It turned an ordinary Arduino Uno R3 microcontroller board into a WAV format audio recorder that can capture 8-bit audio at up to 48kHz and store it on a FAT-formatted microSD card.
I’ve made use of and want to thank the authors of the sdfatlib library, which makes the FAT filesystem possible on an… Read more