April 26, 2008

I Are An Engineer

Spent a bunch of hours this weekend working - getting prepared for a trip to Tulsa. Perhaps I have credit due in the technology karma account, because a series of hardware and software "what ifs?" were settled positively this afternoon.

* A new hand-held o'scope I picked up to capture current waveforms worked great.
* It interfaced nicely with a current probe I have, via a BNC to banana jack interface.
* The O'scope software, downloaded from the website, worked fine with Windows vista
* A RS-232 to USB converter I picked up last time I was in San Diego (Jude hearts Fry's Electronics) also installed nicely on the laptop
* The whole shebang (current probe to scope, scope interface to RS-232, RS-232 to USB, and scope software) worked like a charm.

On the whole, a remarkably positive afternoon of technology implementation. If this keeps up, I may have another go at installing the database and software for my power monitor, which proved impossible on my old laptop.

Bonus: Talking tech with the folks down at Cables and Connectors. They see me often enough to know that when I come in, I know what I want and it's gonna be something unusual. Still, I think they have a gendered gut instinct that I'm gonna be looking for a remote control or a computer cable or something. So when I start slinging around baud rates and interface requirements and sampling rates and the like, or assembling a pile of parts that are clearly going to add up to something fun, in a techie sort of way, that they are a bit taken back....heh.

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