FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist   UsergroupsUsergroups 
 ProfileProfile   PreferencesPreferences   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 
Forum index » Electronix » Misc
How does anyone learn electronics these days?
Post new topic   Reply to topic Page 1 of 1 [13 Posts] View previous topic :: View next topic
Author Message
Bill Shymanski
electronics forum beginner


Joined: 04 Mar 2006
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Sun Jun 25, 2006 4:14 pm    Post subject: How does anyone learn electronics these days? Reply with quote

When I was a youngster, I spent many a happy childhood hour tearing
apart old radios and TVs, messing about with bags of surplus transistors
bought at Radio Shack, and poring over old issues of "Elementary
Electronics" trying to make sense of the tutorial series. My pride and
joy was the 20,000 ohm/volt (analog) multimeter my Dad bought for me.
I *dreaded* of One Christmas I was given a Heathkit "19-in-one"
electronics kit and spent many a happy hour trying to improve on the
original projects.

But - how does a kid get involved in electronics today? You really
can't impress the parents by pulling out a tube and riding down to the
drugstore, testing it, and getting Grandma's table radio working again.
Everything is built of mystery chips with 37-digit part numbers that
were made for three weeks and will never been seen again. Everything is
potted in plastic. The gap between listening to a local AM broadcaster
on the tiny crystal earpiece from a breadboard TRF radio and the typical
consumer electronics is now so huge that it would be hard, I think, for
even an intelligent and motivated child to make the leap between them.

And I can't even buy the 15-volt battery for my old VOM.

Bill
Back to top
Art
electronics forum Guru


Joined: 03 May 2005
Posts: 331

PostPosted: Sun Jun 25, 2006 7:33 pm    Post subject: Re: How does anyone learn electronics these days? Reply with quote

Generally enrolling in the technical training courses given a many of the
schools, most are directly pointed at computers rather than consumer
electronics however.
Google for electronic training on the net and check out those which
particularly interest you or the kids.
Most of the technical schools stress computers over consumer electronics
because must of the items we purchase now are either not serviceable, do not
have manufacturer support, or service parts are not available.
Best way is find a small shop that still is in business, have the person
hire in at minimum wage as a trainee to get their feet wet, then learn as
much as available from the owner and the soruces they can recommend.
Sorry to say, the good old days of tearing apart equiptment to learn how to
repair it has almost gone the way of the unicorn, check out many of the
service related sites including those referred to @ sci-electronics-service.
Good Luck.
"Bill Shymanski" <wtshyman@mts.net> wrote in message
news:VCyng.2198$Vk3.578@newsfe20.lga...
Quote:
When I was a youngster, I spent many a happy childhood hour tearing
apart old radios and TVs, messing about with bags of surplus transistors
bought at Radio Shack, and poring over old issues of "Elementary
Electronics" trying to make sense of the tutorial series. My pride and
joy was the 20,000 ohm/volt (analog) multimeter my Dad bought for me.
I *dreaded* of One Christmas I was given a Heathkit "19-in-one"
electronics kit and spent many a happy hour trying to improve on the
original projects.

But - how does a kid get involved in electronics today? You really
can't impress the parents by pulling out a tube and riding down to the
drugstore, testing it, and getting Grandma's table radio working again.
Everything is built of mystery chips with 37-digit part numbers that
were made for three weeks and will never been seen again. Everything is
potted in plastic. The gap between listening to a local AM broadcaster
on the tiny crystal earpiece from a breadboard TRF radio and the typical
consumer electronics is now so huge that it would be hard, I think, for
even an intelligent and motivated child to make the leap between them.

And I can't even buy the 15-volt battery for my old VOM.

Bill



Back to top
Michael Black
electronics forum Guru Wannabe


Joined: 24 Mar 2005
Posts: 251

PostPosted: Sun Jun 25, 2006 9:23 pm    Post subject: Re: How does anyone learn electronics these days? Reply with quote

"Bill Shymanski" (wtshyman@mts.net) writes:
Quote:
When I was a youngster, I spent many a happy childhood hour tearing
apart old radios and TVs, messing about with bags of surplus transistors
bought at Radio Shack, and poring over old issues of "Elementary
Electronics" trying to make sense of the tutorial series. My pride and
joy was the 20,000 ohm/volt (analog) multimeter my Dad bought for me.
I *dreaded* of One Christmas I was given a Heathkit "19-in-one"
electronics kit and spent many a happy hour trying to improve on the
original projects.

But - how does a kid get involved in electronics today? You really
can't impress the parents by pulling out a tube and riding down to the
drugstore, testing it, and getting Grandma's table radio working again.
Everything is built of mystery chips with 37-digit part numbers that
were made for three weeks and will never been seen again. Everything is
potted in plastic. The gap between listening to a local AM broadcaster
on the tiny crystal earpiece from a breadboard TRF radio and the typical
consumer electronics is now so huge that it would be hard, I think, for
even an intelligent and motivated child to make the leap between them.

And I can't even buy the 15-volt battery for my old VOM.

I don't know what it's like to be ten nowadays, that's how old I was

when I got interested in electronics, but I think some of the issue
is that we are much older, and can no longer imagine being young.

Back then, 1970, there wasn't much in the way of electronics around
the house. I didn't lust after much of it, I simply was interested
in science, and somehow electronics became interesting to me. Over all
these years, I've never built much in the way of finished projects, but
have spent lots of time breadboarding things and trying things out. I learned
a lot about the world using electronics to learn about learning, and as
a vantage point to view the world. If nothing else, I don't have the
fear of electronics that many people do have, and certainly some simple
repair things that most people wouldn't even think of tackling are just
automatic to me.

But 36 years later, my interests have changed and no, electronics
isn't so appealing to me now.

But that's irrelevant, because the issue is the ten year old. I'd
like to think the same sense of accomplishment I had when I finally
built something that worked, when I finished off grade 6 likely having
a ham license (I took the test in May of 1972 as soon as the rule
here in Canada that you had to be over 15 went away, failed the code
test, retook it in June a few days before the end of school but the
results weren't back until school finished), when I was learning things
that weren't being covered in school, and when I learned the morse
code, would still apply to a ten year old today. Electronics was
never a popular hobby, and the ones who pursue it are likely less
interested in the popular. None of this has changed, even if
morse code is even less relevant today than it was in 1972, it
is still an accomplishment for someone who is still pretty young.

Babies are explorers, with pretty much everything coming to them
through experience. But once they hit school, experience becomes
secondary, while they learn to do something, rather than do something
to learn. Being ten years old is nearly infinitely older than
being Age 0, but it's still pretty early on the curve. Learning is
still a significant factor in their lives, while it's pretty easy
to push the boundaries.

I suppose some things have changed. But I also think that somehow
something else changed, so the kids stopped coming, which resulted
in a gap of few new kids coming in. So those who remain are much older,
and puzzling over how to attract kids to the hobby. And while I don't
have an answer to it, I truly do believe that it's merely a matter
of marketing rather than competition with the perceived competition
(ie the internet, CD players, video games and such). Once the focus
is on the competition, it's about competing rather than making a strong
case for the hobby.

The hobby magazines have pretty much disappeared in North America. I
don't think kids had any affect on that happening, they were part of
the readership but the readership was varied enough that it wasn't
just aimed at them. (Indeed, it can be argued that reading the hobby
magazines meant early entry into the adult world, when the rest
of the class at school was still reading "Jack & Jill" and "Highlights
for Children".) But whatever the reason for the magazines to disappear,
the result is that there's nothing much on the newsstand to lure kids
in. When I was young, much of what I learned was from the magazines, and it
was easy to get the fifty cents to get another magazine, far easier than
getting the money together to buy a book. That sort of thing is
gone. Maybe the children's libraries no longer have beginner books
about electronics.

But the key is to figure out how to talk to the young, how to show
your love of the hobby (especially as it was when you were ten years
old), convey the sense of wonderment and accomplishment. And only
then, and only if the kids yawn, do you know there is a real problem.

Michael
Back to top
hhc314@yahoo.com
electronics forum addict


Joined: 11 Sep 2005
Posts: 88

PostPosted: Mon Jun 26, 2006 1:53 am    Post subject: Re: How does anyone learn electronics these days? Reply with quote

Bill, you can still buy those old 15V batteries, but it takes more than
a little research to find a mail order source that can supply one. (I
just replaced on in my Triplett, but am not going to hold my breath for
when I need another maybe 10 years from now. IIRC, Newark Electronics
was able to supply it, but it cost something like $20.)

You're correct, now that ham radio has essentially gone the way of the
dodo, very few people lean basic electronics today. The best starting
point remains the ARRL Handbook, and the followed by Horowitz and
Hill's, "The Art of Electonics", but few people other than serious
hobbiests bother to study material at this very important basic level.

I can share with you as a fact that many EE college graduates today
don't have an understanding of basic electronics, except perhaps kids
from MIT, Cal Tech, and similar places. Still, when I was a kid back in
the 1950s, your average radio and TV repairman has a more in dept
understanding of the fundamental than some college graduates have
today. Still I'm not complaining, because this vacuum of practical
knowledge is precisely what creates a consulting market for some of old
farts to retired from the industry close to ten years ago. Some dark
clouds have a silver lining.

Harry C.






Bill Shymanski wrote:
Quote:
When I was a youngster, I spent many a happy childhood hour tearing
apart old radios and TVs, messing about with bags of surplus transistors
bought at Radio Shack, and poring over old issues of "Elementary
Electronics" trying to make sense of the tutorial series. My pride and
joy was the 20,000 ohm/volt (analog) multimeter my Dad bought for me.
I *dreaded* of One Christmas I was given a Heathkit "19-in-one"
electronics kit and spent many a happy hour trying to improve on the
original projects.

But - how does a kid get involved in electronics today? You really
can't impress the parents by pulling out a tube and riding down to the
drugstore, testing it, and getting Grandma's table radio working again.
Everything is built of mystery chips with 37-digit part numbers that
were made for three weeks and will never been seen again. Everything is
potted in plastic. The gap between listening to a local AM broadcaster
on the tiny crystal earpiece from a breadboard TRF radio and the typical
consumer electronics is now so huge that it would be hard, I think, for
even an intelligent and motivated child to make the leap between them.

And I can't even buy the 15-volt battery for my old VOM.

Bill
Back to top
Dr. Anton T. Squeegee
electronics forum Guru Wannabe


Joined: 30 Apr 2005
Posts: 140

PostPosted: Mon Jun 26, 2006 5:19 am    Post subject: Re: How does anyone learn electronics these days? Reply with quote

In article <1151286785.640558.206450@y41g2000cwy.googlegroups.com>,
hhc314@yahoo.com (known to some as hhc314@yahoo.com) scribed...

< Top-posting corrected. Please don't top-post on Usenet! See these
links for the reasons why:

http://www.blakjak.demon.co.uk/gey_chr0.htm

http://www.html-faq.com/etiquette/?toppost

http://www.dickgaughan.co.uk/usenet/guide/faq08-topp.html >

Quote:
Bill Shymanski wrote:

When I was a youngster, I spent many a happy childhood hour tearing
apart old radios and TVs, messing about with bags of surplus transistors
bought at Radio Shack, and poring over old issues of "Elementary
Electronics" trying to make sense of the tutorial series. My pride and
joy was the 20,000 ohm/volt (analog) multimeter my Dad bought for me.
I *dreaded* of One Christmas I was given a Heathkit "19-in-one"
electronics kit and spent many a happy hour trying to improve on the
original projects.

But - how does a kid get involved in electronics today? You really
can't impress the parents by pulling out a tube and riding down to the
drugstore, testing it, and getting Grandma's table radio working again.
Everything is built of mystery chips with 37-digit part numbers that
were made for three weeks and will never been seen again. Everything is
potted in plastic. The gap between listening to a local AM broadcaster
on the tiny crystal earpiece from a breadboard TRF radio and the typical
consumer electronics is now so huge that it would be hard, I think, for
even an intelligent and motivated child to make the leap between them.

And I can't even buy the 15-volt battery for my old VOM.


Quote:
Bill, you can still buy those old 15V batteries, but it takes more than
a little research to find a mail order source that can supply one. (I
just replaced on in my Triplett, but am not going to hold my breath for
when I need another maybe 10 years from now. IIRC, Newark Electronics
was able to supply it, but it cost something like $20.)

You're correct, now that ham radio has essentially gone the way of the
dodo, very few people lean basic electronics today.

<snippety>

Hamateur radio gone the way of the dodo?

That's news to me. It's very active in this area (Washington
state), and there are more than enough tinkerers left to keep it
interesting.

Yes, it's become tied in with the Internet, in the form of Echolink
and APRS. However, these are just tools. They can add utility to
hamateur radio, but they can never replace it. Simple radios still work
point-to-point without the need for any sort of infrastructure.

I would say a more accurate statement would be that "ham radio has
fewer people involved in the technical side of the hobby, but it is
still alive, and you still need to learn at least basic electronics to
pass the exam (even if most folk forget what they learned very
quickly)."


Quote:
The best starting
point remains the ARRL Handbook, and the followed by Horowitz and
Hill's, "The Art of Electonics", but few people other than serious
hobbiests bother to study material at this very important basic level.

Spelling nitpick: 'hobbyists.' Anyway, no argument otherwise. Both
are excellent reference books.

For my part, I got lucky and got started in the 60's. Been a
tinkerer ever since. I don't think I've got a single piece of test gear
in my lab that's younger than 10 years, and several of my O-scopes
(Tektronix 7000 series, mostly) are nearing 30 (and still working quite
well, I would add).

The way I see it, the face of electronics hobby-tweaking is in a
transitional stage right now, thanks to the leaps in microprocessor and
DSP technology. It will settle down again, but the way I see it now is
that us older folk are often mightily confused, while the youngsters
don't understand the value of The Basics, and what the past can teach
them. A good balance has yet to come.

Keep the peace(es).


---
Dr. Anton T. Squeegee, Director, Dutch Surrealist Plumbing Institute
(Known to some as Bruce Lane, KC7GR)
http://www.bluefeathertech.com -- kyrrin a/t bluefeathertech d-o=t calm
"Salvadore Dali's computer has surreal ports..."
Back to top
hhc314@yahoo.com
electronics forum addict


Joined: 11 Sep 2005
Posts: 88

PostPosted: Mon Jun 26, 2006 6:31 am    Post subject: Re: How does anyone learn electronics these days? Reply with quote

Friend, you need so little electronics or basic electrical knowledge to
pass the FCC exam that the formality of taking it is simply a joke.

Fact is, that most of the people taking and passing the FCC exam could
not construct even a basic CW transmitter or receiver from components
today, even if their lives depended upon doing so.

You refer to people increasingly not being involved in the "technical
side" of the hobby, so I have to ask you what other side of the ham
radio hobby is there? If not for some degree of expertise in the
technical side, someone may as well pick up a telephone.

Frankly DOCTOR, I really don't believe that you have the faintest grasp
about the nature of amateur radio, as evidenced by your silly post.
Sadly, it's clueless idiots like you that have destroyed ham radio with
your silly and misguided ideas. Realize that ham radio is likely 90%
about understanding the technology sufficiently that you can construct
your own rig and operate it under the worst case circumstances, even
when the power and telephone network is out. Electromagnetic radiation
is wonderful stuff, since it requires no wires, cell phone towers,
repeaters or anything. A ham capable of thowing a home built 30 watt
homebuilt rig on the air using a 2E26 or 6146 (terms that you will
likely have to look up) can save a community. Without this technical
capability, ham radio is no different than a phone call.

Fortunately for the communities, some of us older farts are still
lurking around, who have sufficient savy to construct a communications
system using the most primitivite components available, after the phone
lines, cell phone towers, and the Internat links have gone out of
operation (as often happens during disasters).

Now granted DOCTOR, few us old fart amateur radio operators live
waiting for a disaster, in fact most of us spend most of our time
bullshitting with one aother, and honing our technical skills. Many of
us have a reasonably well equipped electronics shop in our basements,
an boxes of spare parts and thing that remotely may come in handy at
some time. Most importantly, all of us old farts know how to improvise,
which requires a fairly sophisticated level of technical expertise.
Some of us are graduate engineers, while some of us are simply
self-educated hobbiests, but many of us are capable of kludging
tothether a communication system from thing we find around our homes,
when pressed to the need.

The sad fact is that kids today lack these skills. Before I retired, I
was a manger at a major defense electronics firm, and the lack of
knowledge in our new college recruits had us hiring 5 people for every
open engingeering position, and then hiring retired consultant to help
handle the technical short fall.

If you aren't aware of this problem, then you are not entitle to wear
the title of DOCTOR.

Harry C.










Dr. Anton T. Squeegee wrote:
Quote:
In article <1151286785.640558.206450@y41g2000cwy.googlegroups.com>,
hhc314@yahoo.com (known to some as hhc314@yahoo.com) scribed...

< Top-posting corrected. Please don't top-post on Usenet! See these
links for the reasons why:

http://www.blakjak.demon.co.uk/gey_chr0.htm

http://www.html-faq.com/etiquette/?toppost

http://www.dickgaughan.co.uk/usenet/guide/faq08-topp.html

Bill Shymanski wrote:

When I was a youngster, I spent many a happy childhood hour tearing
apart old radios and TVs, messing about with bags of surplus transistors
bought at Radio Shack, and poring over old issues of "Elementary
Electronics" trying to make sense of the tutorial series. My pride and
joy was the 20,000 ohm/volt (analog) multimeter my Dad bought for me.
I *dreaded* of One Christmas I was given a Heathkit "19-in-one"
electronics kit and spent many a happy hour trying to improve on the
original projects.

But - how does a kid get involved in electronics today? You really
can't impress the parents by pulling out a tube and riding down to the
drugstore, testing it, and getting Grandma's table radio working again.
Everything is built of mystery chips with 37-digit part numbers that
were made for three weeks and will never been seen again. Everything is
potted in plastic. The gap between listening to a local AM broadcaster
on the tiny crystal earpiece from a breadboard TRF radio and the typical
consumer electronics is now so huge that it would be hard, I think, for
even an intelligent and motivated child to make the leap between them.

And I can't even buy the 15-volt battery for my old VOM.


Bill, you can still buy those old 15V batteries, but it takes more than
a little research to find a mail order source that can supply one. (I
just replaced on in my Triplett, but am not going to hold my breath for
when I need another maybe 10 years from now. IIRC, Newark Electronics
was able to supply it, but it cost something like $20.)

You're correct, now that ham radio has essentially gone the way of the
dodo, very few people lean basic electronics today.

<snippety

Hamateur radio gone the way of the dodo?

That's news to me. It's very active in this area (Washington
state), and there are more than enough tinkerers left to keep it
interesting.

Yes, it's become tied in with the Internet, in the form of Echolink
and APRS. However, these are just tools. They can add utility to
hamateur radio, but they can never replace it. Simple radios still work
point-to-point without the need for any sort of infrastructure.

I would say a more accurate statement would be that "ham radio has
fewer people involved in the technical side of the hobby, but it is
still alive, and you still need to learn at least basic electronics to
pass the exam (even if most folk forget what they learned very
quickly)."


The best starting
point remains the ARRL Handbook, and the followed by Horowitz and
Hill's, "The Art of Electonics", but few people other than serious
hobbiests bother to study material at this very important basic level.

Spelling nitpick: 'hobbyists.' Anyway, no argument otherwise. Both
are excellent reference books.

For my part, I got lucky and got started in the 60's. Been a
tinkerer ever since. I don't think I've got a single piece of test gear
in my lab that's younger than 10 years, and several of my O-scopes
(Tektronix 7000 series, mostly) are nearing 30 (and still working quite
well, I would add).

The way I see it, the face of electronics hobby-tweaking is in a
transitional stage right now, thanks to the leaps in microprocessor and
DSP technology. It will settle down again, but the way I see it now is
that us older folk are often mightily confused, while the youngsters
don't understand the value of The Basics, and what the past can teach
them. A good balance has yet to come.

Keep the peace(es).


---
Dr. Anton T. Squeegee, Director, Dutch Surrealist Plumbing Institute
(Known to some as Bruce Lane, KC7GR)
http://www.bluefeathertech.com -- kyrrin a/t bluefeathertech d-o=t calm
"Salvadore Dali's computer has surreal ports..."
Back to top
JohnR66
electronics forum addict


Joined: 13 Apr 2006
Posts: 61

PostPosted: Mon Jun 26, 2006 2:22 pm    Post subject: Re: How does anyone learn electronics these days? Reply with quote

Michael Black wrote:
(snip)
Quote:
The hobby magazines have pretty much disappeared in North America. I
don't think kids had any affect on that happening, they were part of
the readership but the readership was varied enough that it wasn't
just aimed at them. (Indeed, it can be argued that reading the hobby
magazines meant early entry into the adult world, when the rest
of the class at school was still reading "Jack & Jill" and "Highlights
for Children".) But whatever the reason for the magazines to disappear,
the result is that there's nothing much on the newsstand to lure kids
in. When I was young, much of what I learned was from the magazines, and it
was easy to get the fifty cents to get another magazine, far easier than
getting the money together to buy a book. That sort of thing is
gone. Maybe the children's libraries no longer have beginner books
about electronics.
(snip)
Michael


Amen. Elec. hobby magazines - and books, to some extent - drew me in powerfully
.... with block and tackle, one might say. I loved "Radio TV Experimenter" (my
all-time favorite) and built many of the projects therein. Years passed; I went
to war; returned and attended college; got a nine-to-five and made lots of
money. In the mean time RTE had morphed into something else, something much
less. I didn't know because I had moved on, so I hadn't been present at the
wake, so to speak. When I did find out, it was as though an old friend had
died.

Every once in a while I encounter a cheap publication printed on newsprint. The
look, feel, and smell take me back to the 60's when I read RTE cover to cover,
over and over, and breadboarded with one of those big ol' Weller guns.

Teaching the importance and relevance and fun! of component level futzing to a
youngster today is made more difficult by the dearth of good hobby pubs.
Yesterday's components were, e.g., condensors and resistors and tubes; today's
components are "chips". We are both richer and poorer for this, and because of
it the youngsters suffer, albeit unknowingly.

--
(another) Michael
Back to top
Bill Shymanski
electronics forum beginner


Joined: 04 Mar 2006
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Tue Jun 27, 2006 1:58 am    Post subject: Re: How does anyone learn electronics these days? Reply with quote

<hhc314@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:1151303504.952382.60920@r2g2000cwb.googlegroups.com...
Quote:
A ham capable of thowing a home built 30 watt
homebuilt rig on the air using a 2E26 or 6146 (terms that you will
likely have to look up) can save a community. Without this technical
capability, ham radio is no different than a phone call.

This happens, how often?


Quote:
Now granted DOCTOR, few us old fart amateur radio operators live
waiting for a disaster, in fact most of us spend most of our time
bullshitting with one aother, and honing our technical skills.

For years and years I listened to shortwave on various multiband
portable receivers. I
remember how disappointed I was when I first got a receiver with a BFO;
the conversations
were much more portentious-seeming when I couldn't make them out.

I don't think amateur radio is a useful way to get people interested in
electronics as a hobby - it
had zero impact on my interest, anyway; by the time I got my licence I'd
been working for years. Sure are lots of glossy magazines giving
contest results and ads for $2000 fully-digital equipment; the only way
of fixing those involves UPS and VISA.


Bill
Back to top
Michael Black
electronics forum Guru Wannabe


Joined: 24 Mar 2005
Posts: 251

PostPosted: Tue Jun 27, 2006 3:27 pm    Post subject: Re: How does anyone learn electronics these days? Reply with quote

Michael (nospam@att.net) writes:

Quote:
Teaching the importance and relevance and fun! of component level futzing to a
youngster today is made more difficult by the dearth of good hobby pubs.
Yesterday's components were, e.g., condensors and resistors and tubes; today's
components are "chips". We are both richer and poorer for this, and because of
it the youngsters suffer, albeit unknowingly.

But one of the odd things is that discrete components are still readily

available.

When I was a kid, there weren't many electronic devices around the home,
so if you were lucky you'd find a TV set or radio in the garbage. And
since most of those were tube based, they were covered with that grunge
that seemed to be attracted to the heat.

Now, there is so much available. A few weeks ago I was walking to
the grocery store, and found a tv set that had the back off. The
actual circuit board was loose too, so I just had to snip some wires
to get it off. I salvaged some parts, but of course at this point I'm
loaded with junked parts. It could have been a source of capacitors,
and even resistors, given that it wasn't surface mount components.

VCRs are plentiful in the trash, and they are still full of discrete
transistors, and small motors, and pushbuttons, and usually some LEDs.
For some beginner things, it likely can supply enough parts.

Though ironically, the problem is that the beginner will be fearful
of using odd components, feeling a need to use the exact parts in
the magazine (if those magazines were still publishing). I remember
being the same way, pulling a store out of the Yellow Pages to go
down with my parts list copied out of the magazine. And that project
didn't work, because my soldering was awful and because I didn't have
a clue whether the parts the store offered as alternatives were
suitable. Only when I started using scrap parts did I have
success. But even in the old days, there wasn't enough emphasis
on how to use recycled parts.

And of course, pulling small speaker (and amplifier IC) out of
a scrap radio is cheaper than buying those parts at the store, assuming
even that there is a store in your locale that sells in small quantities
to hobbyists.

Michael
Back to top
techie_alison
electronics forum addict


Joined: 27 Sep 2005
Posts: 89

PostPosted: Wed Jun 28, 2006 12:44 pm    Post subject: Re: How does anyone learn electronics these days? Reply with quote

"Bill Shymanski" <wtshyman@mts.net> wrote in message
news:VCyng.2198$Vk3.578@newsfe20.lga...
Quote:
When I was a youngster, I spent many a happy childhood hour tearing
apart old radios and TVs, messing about with bags of surplus transistors


Hi Bill :-)

Was a youngster here in the mid-90's. Admittedly stuff today is so mega
advanced that you need so many pre-requisites to do anything at all. The
moment of serendipity here was when the modularity of digital electronics
popped into my head. So many of these chips can be bolted together in all
sorts of different ways, but it took a while for the penny to drop.

My excitement here was a 7-segment display clock which I built with a
microcontroller at the heart of it. Six 7-segment digits and a SINGLE
18-pin chip driving the lot. Had fancy things like sweeping the changing
digits in a circle, flashing digits for the ones being set, different digits
brighter than another.

But as a youngster today, I would imagine that they've either got-it or they
ain't. It's quite a learning curve to do anything more than flash a few
LEDs. Ahhhh, flip flops, two trannies, two caps, erm, two resistors, two
LEDs, hard wired together without a PCB, button cell 3V battery.

As for 15volts. Two high mA 9v batteries strapped together maybe??
Back to top
Don Bowey
electronics forum Guru


Joined: 25 May 2005
Posts: 451

PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 2:36 am    Post subject: Re: How does anyone learn electronics these days? Reply with quote

On 6/26/06 6:58 PM, in article uNEog.1372$Su4.1363@newsfe24.lga, "Bill
Shymanski" <wtshyman@mts.net> wrote:

Quote:
hhc314@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:1151303504.952382.60920@r2g2000cwb.googlegroups.com...
A ham capable of thowing a home built 30 watt
homebuilt rig on the air using a 2E26 or 6146 (terms that you will
likely have to look up) can save a community. Without this technical
capability, ham radio is no different than a phone call.

This happens, how often?


Now granted DOCTOR, few us old fart amateur radio operators live
waiting for a disaster, in fact most of us spend most of our time
bullshitting with one aother, and honing our technical skills.

For years and years I listened to shortwave on various multiband
portable receivers. I
remember how disappointed I was when I first got a receiver with a BFO;
the conversations
were much more portentious-seeming when I couldn't make them out.

I don't think amateur radio is a useful way to get people interested in
electronics as a hobby - it
had zero impact on my interest, anyway; by the time I got my licence I'd
been working for years. Sure are lots of glossy magazines giving
contest results and ads for $2000 fully-digital equipment; the only way
of fixing those involves UPS and VISA.


Bill




You obviously aren't the usual type of person who gets interested in ham
radio. It will be pointless for you to assume everyone today views it as
you do however.

Many of us became initially interested in radio in general; what is it and
how does it work?..... When I found out about ham radio I became driven to
get a license so I could experience radio first-hand - simply listening to
others wasn't enough. I got my license while I was a sophomore in High
School and it became consuming. I lived in Oregon, and stayed up very late
at night and into the morning, using CW to "talk" with people around the
world.

How can you compare this with talking with people by simply phoning them? I
talked with leaders of countries and military leaders in the US, as well as
to people like myself.

Life got in the way, so I am not active in ham radio now, but I probably
will be again. My collection of radios is sizeable and I listen around
enough to keep my CW speed usable. At 70 I have the same enthusiasm for
electronics, and being retired, I can ignore the career electronics and get
back to the fun things.

The application of electronics is more simple than in the 50's, and the
costs of building a receiver or transmitter is far less.

If I were starting over, I would again buy a copy of the ARRL Handbook and
consume it to see how components work (and today, what specialized
integrated circuits can do). Build a radio. Have fun. Reach out and be
touched by the world.

Don

Ex w7sat, kl7bcq, etc.
Back to top
dsaint
electronics forum beginner


Joined: 10 Jun 2005
Posts: 29

PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2006 3:10 am    Post subject: Re: How does anyone learn electronics these days? Reply with quote

And if you are studying at a university a thing totally different from
electronics i am a production manager in the Tv industry im graduated
as DOP director of photogrphy - but want ot mantain electronics as a
hobby what route should i embark. I want to get a good grasp of basic
electronics than move to intermediate stuff like digital circuit design
and mincrocontrollers processors


Don Bowey wrote:
Quote:
On 6/26/06 6:58 PM, in article uNEog.1372$Su4.1363@newsfe24.lga, "Bill
Shymanski" <wtshyman@mts.net> wrote:

hhc314@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:1151303504.952382.60920@r2g2000cwb.googlegroups.com...
A ham capable of thowing a home built 30 watt
homebuilt rig on the air using a 2E26 or 6146 (terms that you will
likely have to look up) can save a community. Without this technical
capability, ham radio is no different than a phone call.

This happens, how often?


Now granted DOCTOR, few us old fart amateur radio operators live
waiting for a disaster, in fact most of us spend most of our time
bullshitting with one aother, and honing our technical skills.

For years and years I listened to shortwave on various multiband
portable receivers. I
remember how disappointed I was when I first got a receiver with a BFO;
the conversations
were much more portentious-seeming when I couldn't make them out.

I don't think amateur radio is a useful way to get people interested in
electronics as a hobby - it
had zero impact on my interest, anyway; by the time I got my licence I'd
been working for years. Sure are lots of glossy magazines giving
contest results and ads for $2000 fully-digital equipment; the only way
of fixing those involves UPS and VISA.


Bill




You obviously aren't the usual type of person who gets interested in ham
radio. It will be pointless for you to assume everyone today views it as
you do however.

Many of us became initially interested in radio in general; what is it and
how does it work?..... When I found out about ham radio I became driven to
get a license so I could experience radio first-hand - simply listening to
others wasn't enough. I got my license while I was a sophomore in High
School and it became consuming. I lived in Oregon, and stayed up very late
at night and into the morning, using CW to "talk" with people around the
world.

How can you compare this with talking with people by simply phoning them? I
talked with leaders of countries and military leaders in the US, as well as
to people like myself.

Life got in the way, so I am not active in ham radio now, but I probably
will be again. My collection of radios is sizeable and I listen around
enough to keep my CW speed usable. At 70 I have the same enthusiasm for
electronics, and being retired, I can ignore the career electronics and get
back to the fun things.

The application of electronics is more simple than in the 50's, and the
costs of building a receiver or transmitter is far less.

If I were starting over, I would again buy a copy of the ARRL Handbook and
consume it to see how components work (and today, what specialized
integrated circuits can do). Build a radio. Have fun. Reach out and be
touched by the world.

Don

Ex w7sat, kl7bcq, etc.
Back to top
Don Bowey
electronics forum Guru


Joined: 25 May 2005
Posts: 451

PostPosted: Fri Jun 30, 2006 1:24 am    Post subject: Re: How does anyone learn electronics these days? Reply with quote

On 6/28/06 8:10 PM, in article
1151550600.851002.108920@x69g2000cwx.googlegroups.com, "dSaINt}S{"
<divineworld@gmail.com> wrote:

Quote:
And if you are studying at a university a thing totally different from
electronics i am a production manager in the Tv industry im graduated
as DOP director of photogrphy - but want ot mantain electronics as a
hobby what route should i embark. I want to get a good grasp of basic
electronics than move to intermediate stuff like digital circuit design
and mincrocontrollers processors


Don Bowey wrote:

(snip)

Quote:
If I were starting over, I would again buy a copy of the ARRL Handbook and
consume it to see how components work (and today, what specialized
integrated circuits can do).

Or jump right into microcontrollers. Google PIC or just check this link for
a start:

http://www.brouhaha.com/~eric/pic/

Don
Back to top
Google

Back to top
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic Page 1 of 1 [13 Posts] View previous topic :: View next topic
The time now is Tue Dec 12, 2017 2:26 am | All times are GMT
Forum index » Electronix » Misc
Jump to:  

Similar Topics
Topic Author Forum Replies Last Post
No new posts Electronics Hobby Projects and Circuit Applications Gundam001 design 0 Sat Apr 04, 2009 11:02 am
No new posts A new way: Wanna earn while u learn mssm143@gmail.com design 3 Wed Jul 19, 2006 12:45 pm
No new posts Turn $6 into $15,000 in about 30 days!!! money maker Repair 1 Tue Jul 18, 2006 6:31 pm
No new posts Sentom Electronics? Paul Hovnanian P.E. design 2 Sat Jul 15, 2006 9:26 pm
No new posts Career in the Electronics industry? Ant_Magma design 8 Sat Jul 15, 2006 4:03 pm

Copyright © 2004-2005 DeniX Solutions SRL
Other DeniX Solutions sites: Unix/Linux blog |  Unix/Linux documentation |  Unix/Linux forums |  Medicine forum |  Science forum  |  Send and track newsletters


Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2005 phpBB Group