Omar Abou Mrad

Learning electronics

After a semi-long career of software, I found myself intrigued by electronics. It's quite facinating to be build something that you can actually touch!

I figured I'd follow a bottom-up approach in learning so I started trying to build some fundamental circuit components.

Though that quickly became quite boring partly due to not understand too much of what I was trying to do. Then I figured I'd start experimenting with some components like transistors, relays and so on. That quickly gave me my first every idea for a tiny project! The water level meter!

This was so fulfilling! It truly felt like I've achieved a milestone, inspite of what some would consider a simple circuit. Nevertheless, this track's excitement grew so I started eyeballing microcontrollers. A couple of friends suggested following the Arduino track and purchase a kit. I got a hold of a pretty cheap one from a site online which had a good bundle of components as well as an arduino board and shields. The total price paid was around $50.

The very first tests revolved around a few sensors and other components acquired in local shops.

These were quite fun, but it never came close to the water level meter probably because the other was somewhat complete? Still, the thirst for more kept pushing me to do something slightly more complex. I got familiar with the L293D motor driver which for the lack of better words would allow me to control motors. There were many failures (all of which were recorded) but in the end not only was I able to get an automated robot running, the real success was extracing the entire circuit out of the arduino board and onto a custom circuit!

Here's to hoping I can find the time to get back into playing with electronics, it is quite fun and everyone should try it!

You can find all of the electronics related recordings here.


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