- Start early ... it actually helps. Use your summer wisely
- If you measure something, save a picture. For your Report and Presentation!
- Matlab has a great export tool, with settings to export presentation quality figures, use it!
- Make and keep many working copies of your project
- Focus on you specifications initially
- Just because you spent all night in Barrows doesn't mean you are working hard. (Cough .. Rigel .. Cough)
- Just try SOMETHING!
- Don't be afraid to ask for help
- Order extra parts, you'll need them and the shipping is a pain.
- The quicker you want a part the more the shipping will cost. Its not a linear relation, its exponential!
- Start with small PCBs. PCB fab houses charge based on surface area.
- Having small component PCBs protects you if mistakes are made.
- OSHpark is a great fab for small quantity orders. (< 15 boards)
- PCBCart is also a great fab, but for larger quantity orders > 15 boards. Compare the costs. The stencils are useless.
- Use Google Docs for everything except your final report. We created a shared folder with all of the documents generated along the way.
- If you are interested in PCB design get a copy of Altium Designer and learn to use it well. Its the gold standard in the prototyping/layout field. (Umaine has licences, just ask).
- When you are putting together your presentation make sure the text is large enough to be read from the back of Hill Auditorium
- Use Prezi for your presentation. It has a great multi-present feature that lets you watch as one presents. Use a wireless keyboard then you and your partner can see and advance the presentation.
- Learn to use the search interfaces on Digikey and Mouser's sites. Its easy to get turned around.
- Read the datasheets. They usually contain all of the answers you need and hints, buried in wordiness verbosity!
- Find relevant app notes for parts to learn how to properly use them
- Learn how to use test equipment!
- Why is it that some function generators output an amplitude double what you ask for?
- The ground on your scope probe is usually connected to Earth Ground so be careful when measuring 120VAC power circuits.
- Avoid power projects.
- Become a computer engineer :)
- Your priorities should be:
- Work Hard
- Learn Lots
- Sleep & Eat
HOUND project 2015 Copyleft some right reserved.
Blake Bourque - Benjamin Carlson