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Mar 28, 2020, 01:26 AM
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Just some background FYI...

For those who have asked about my previous day job (and nights, and weekends..), the short answer is Electronics. A slightly longer answer: A little bit of everything. And as to some of the details?:

From age 13 I was tinkering with Electronic Experimenter kits, then put together my first RC Tx and Rx kits at 15.. and other related gizmos thru HS. Joining the Army for 4 years in 1970 (yeah, just shoot me..), I got a year of good electronics school in the ASA at Devens. Theory thru transmitters, receivers, antenna systems, and specifically DF, ECM, and even worked avionics during half of my year in Vietnam. When I got out, I worked as a Field Engineer repairing and installing information systems (1st Electronic Store Information System in Indiana).. then the 1st Automated Teller terminals in Indiana. Got my 2nd class FCC and started a company to do CB repairs, followed by 2-way, and another 2 years of avionics, and some cool High-Energy Physics work at Fermi-Lab. I worked at the 2nd oldest PC store in the US, where we stuffed and soldered the components, and repaired VERY EARLY personal computers. One of mine so advanced to have a 5MB hard drive!! (Yeah, I know, funny huh!) In 1982 I started my consulting business, and designed a full duplex S-100 communication board, to link my customer as the 1st to use direct computer billing to Blue Cross/Blue Shield. Helped another company sell millions in stock, with my 6 prototype battery powered CMOS smart terminals with LCD display, keypad, thermal printer, real time clock, modem and SKU code order storage, for direct grocery order placement. They opted to invest it differently, so no, I'm not a Steven Jobs look alike. Of the two photos below, both were industrial controllers. The first one, a temperature and machine controller, for injection molding industry. The second one was 99% my own work, from design consideration, circuit design, PCB art using CAD, and all necessary test programming.. to have about 150 micro processors talking to one another, to control a NO-Bottleneck intelligent conveyor system. It used parallel ports, serial (RS-232), I^2C (USB), and IR links. Did lots of other fresh designs in industrial controllers, and some Process engineering and machine retro-fits too. Except for the military school, all of this was self taught. Now all I have to do, is figure out the details for brushless motors, without smoking them! LOL
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Mar 31, 2020, 09:57 AM
Retired and Lovin' it!
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My brother took his degree in electronic engineering but spent his entire career as an electrical engineer in a utility company. I asked him once about the difference in his degree and his vocation and he said that it was the same thing, just bigger pieces and bigger numbers. For myself, I barely understand enough about electricity to turn on/off a switch.

Hope you're doing well.

Mar 31, 2020, 12:25 PM
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Hi Tony,
Yeah. doing fine here. Hope you are too! I'm one of the weird people.. "Free to move about the cabin"? Hey, as long as I can use this hand sanitizer on my balsa, I'm good. Less good, my EMT son-in-law picked up a patient, who was found to be positive, so we all have our fingers crossed there. I am VERY proud of my Nurse Practitioner daughter, and her husband.. both very caring, as are all of our health care workers, esp in this serious time. I may do some tinkering.. I have a few "extra" CPAP machines.. lets see.. take blower, draw air in thru a HEPA filter bag, pass that over a black light O3 generator and thru standard flex tube to a nose mask?! Hum..? If nothing else, it should be good for a laugh at the grocery store. (a update.. no health issues reported with daughters family YEAH!)

Electronics.. or electrical? A lot simpler than you might think. Ever play with Legos? All different colors, but they only go together (properly) one way. And even then, what might look good, falls apart if you pick it up.. careful designs make a big difference. "Whatever" can be built, as one puzzle, or with interchangeable modules. Started out with flux gates.. vacuum tubes as electron on-off valves and amps. Then transistors took their place. Make those tiny and stuff em into a Integrated Circuit of thousands.. or a stack of THOSE to make a processor. VERY simple instructions.. eventually build us a computer, and a word processor to send messages on RCG forums! I mean.. what else do we need, other than Instant CA? Uh... well...

HOPE? We do have this seriously bad virus. And behind that.. we have some serious global warming issues.. and a country more divided than I've ever seen before. So my hope, is firstly for my daughter's family, right there in the face of the virus patients. I'll hope that we all have some time to reflect, while we are shut down... or at the very least.. build some new models!!
Hang in there, stay well.. Jerry
Last edited by hobiepilot; Apr 24, 2020 at 11:28 AM. Reason: typo
Oct 11, 2021, 10:56 AM
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If memory serves, I've seen a 4k hard drive. Probably from the 1960's. I think it might have been a couple of feet in diameter and at least a foot high. It was cylindrical, rather than disk shaped. A housemate was thinking about turning it into a really smooth turntable.

I don't get much past V=IR.

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