Switching power supplies have come to replace the conventional transformer-focused power supply as a cheaper and more efficient alternative. While many advances have been made over the years to bring these devices down to microscopic sizes and near-perfect efficiency, there is still some room for improvement in the field of bidirectionality, and here I aim [...]
3D printers are the latest hobbyist craze, going so far as to make appearances en masse at CES this year. But how practical are they outside of the hobby market? Do they really have the potential to become the next big thing as it stands?
It happens: your phone charger bites the dust, you lose it, or you need another one. So you go off to an online site such as Amazon.com seeking a new one, and are faced with the decision of buying the “official” one or the 75% cheaper one manufactured by a company you’ve never heard of. [...]
I am sick and tired of hearing these stories of LEDs being more than 100% efficient – that is, outputting more power than they consume. Usually, the stories are embellished, non-factual, or have a severe scientific flaw (the laws of thermodynamics have yet to actually be broken). Did they actually perform cold fusion? No, they’re [...]
Nikola Tesla broke much ground during his lifetime, but much of his work is still under-utilized to this very day. In the face of Anthony’s article earlier about the smart grid’s lack of solid state electronics at the power distribution level, there is a marriage of solid state switching and Tesla’s more under-appreciated work that [...]
I worked at a home automation firm for 5 years, and during my tenure there as R&D lead we played with all sorts of wonderful hardware and software. Much of our toys included relay-based equipment, for switching outlet-connected stuff on and off, but they were usually connected to a large piece of integration equipment that [...]
There’s always been talk about the updated “Smart Grid,” ranging from talks of the U.S. experimenting with changing the line/mains frequency to modulate Internet communication over it, to better energy monitoring and management at the micro and macro scale. How much of it is hype, and how much of it is a reality?
You may have seen those “wireless charging mats” in stores: You place your (i)phone on this little mat with a thing plugged into its power port and it charges without interconnecting wires. The iPhone 5 is said to have this built-in by default according to a variety of sources, some public some not. But why [...]
The iPhone architecture, although generally out of the scope of application development, is a very simplistic design in terms of operating system theory. A decent understanding of it is necessary for a detailed overview of the iPhone’s functionality, and this article may help to satisfy the curiosity of those interested in how it works (i.e. [...]