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DK Tech Talk - Volume 4

Building Inspiration

Like many people nowadays I probably spend too much time on social media. Recently in a post on the Digi-Key Facebook page I saw a quote: “I don’t use kids to build Robots. I use Robots to build kids.” The quote was from Dean Kamen at FIRST Robotics. For those of you who know me you know how much I love robotics and the impact they have on students in almost every level of their education. The quote got me thinking about what others are doing to help build-up students.

Digi-Key is involved in so many great causes and building students through FIRST Robotics is just one. While I don’t participate directly with any of our local FIRST teams, I have had the opportunity to volunteer at a couple of their events. They are both amazing and inspiring to attend and if you have never been to a robotics event, I would encourage you to attend a local one. Every time I go I am amazed at the astonishing level of skill these students have of not only building, but programming and controlling these robots. Each event gets me even more excited for the future of engineering and what these young minds will create and build. Have you been to one of these events or been involved in robotics? Comment below or tell us about your experiences.

NEW Content - Let’s look at some recent experiences and products we have been working with here at Digi-Key.

Maker: With Halloween around the corner, one of my favorite recent additions to Maker.io was the IoT Sweet Dispenser. This post shares the details, build information, and code so you can use the Particle Photon to build your own sweets dispenser.

eeWIKI: Taylor R. gets us started with the TI AWR1645 mnWave Sensor. He has an entire guide from set-up, navigation to running a demo.

Blog: Eric H. shared some great information on DIN Rail mount overvoltage protection for your equipment in his article “DIN Rail Mountable Surge Protection Devices-Type 1 and Type 2.”

Article: Bruce Rose from CUI Devices shared an informational article on designing Micro Speaker enclosures. He gives some great tips and explains why you don’t have to be an audio expert to improve the sound quality of a speaker or micro speaker.

TechForum: Troy H. takes some time on our Forum to talk about how to calculate pressure with an analog output voltage.

Yeah, we sell That! A little look at the things you didn’t know Digi-Key carried.

For those engineers who are working too hard, we have new Klein PVA cooling Towels in Blue (1742-60090-ND) or Grey (1742-60093-ND). While I haven’t seen any ESD specs on the towel, I can think of a ton of times it would have been nice to have.

(Image source: Klein Tools, Inc.)

Are you a Race Fan? Maybe you are a Safety Fanatic? Maybe both? Combine your interests with these piston-shaped earplugs (3M161974-ND).

(Image source: 3M)

Inside the walls of Digi-Key Electronics

Recently, Digi-Key was awarded Electronics Components Distributor of the Year by Electronics Maker for 2019. Chief Editor for Electronics Maker, Arvind Kumar Vaid said, "High service distribution is key to moving this industry forward, and Digi-Key excels at this year after year." You can see the whole press release on this here.

Thank you for stopping by and as with all the content I write, I am open to discussion, questions, and contributions. Please feel free to comment below or send me your Digi-Key questions so I can answer in the next edition.

-Robert

About this author

Image of Robert Fay

Robert Fay, Senior Applications Engineering Technician at Digi-Key Electronics, has been with Digi-Key since 2010 and is currently the TechForum lead, working on the forum since its inception in 2017. He holds a certificate in Aerospace Propulsion from his time in the Air Force and degrees in both Powersports Technology from Minnesota West, and Electronics Technology and Automated Systems from Northland Community and Technical College. When not at work or tinkering in his garage, Robert enjoys introducing robotics and engineering to kids at a local elementary school through an afterschool program.

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