Exploring Digital Computer Electronics
(Above) Review, test of AAEON EMB-B75A motherboard salvage from dumpster. Had 2 Gigs RAM, quad core 3 Gig processor.
This is an offshoot of my website Hobby Electronics. That site was oriented towards building hardware projects such as H-Bridge motor controls or microcontroller circuits with Arduino, Picaxe, and Microchip PICs.
While touched on at my other site, this is dedicated to computers and related electronics. Reusing older computers or what I call "upcycle". What software to use and when. Learning computer hardware. Connecting computers to actual hardware. To use an old computer as a super microcontroller.
A computer as I define it is a complete system usually consisting of a motherboard and attached peripherals - printer ports, serial ports, plug in cards such wireless and video, USB ports, external memory, etc. It is a system.
Review older computer mother boards and explain aspects of software and hardware - how they come together.
What can I do with them? Running lite versions of Linux we can learn programming - python, C/C++, bash files, set up various desktops such as Openbox, Fluxbox, PEKwm, and JWM.
Compile and create C programs to operate hardware connected to printer ports or build a complete plug in card.
- Hobby Electronics Home Page
- Exploring Digital Computer Electronics
- Hardware Review Connecting PC Parallel Ports
- Operation TB6600 Stepper Controller with PC Parallel Port
- Build or Buy Parallel Port Breakout Board?
- Build Serial HD44780 LCD Display Connect to Parallel Port
- Presario 1999 CM1001 Gaming Computer Salvage
- Live Test 2002 VIA EPIA-800 Mini ITX Motherboard
- Salvage, Test 2012 AAEON EMB-B75A Industrial Motherboard
These subjects were touched upon with Raspberry Pi on my electronics website. They apply equally here. See the following:
- Main Light Fast Linux Desktops with Openbox, JWM
- Test Reuse Surplus PC Power Supplies
- Add WBAR Launch Dock to Raspberry Pi
- Add MPG123 Terminal Music Player to Raspberry Pi, Linux
- Basics of Alsamixer Audio Control for Linux
- Add Solid State Hard Drive to Raspberry Pi
- Beep a PC Speaker Add Beeper to Raspberry Pi
- Using FEH Wallpaper Setter Under Linux
- Scrot Lite Weight Screen Shot Software for Linux
- Using Light Weight Beaver Text Editor
- Install Viewnior Image Viewer for Linux
- Zmixer ALSA Sound Control Tutorial
- Tutorial Xinitrc Desktop Manager Control for Linux
- Setup Raspberry Pi Using JWM Window Manager
A microcontroller often refers today to single board controllers built around a single integrated circuit with internal memory, IO, etc. An example is the control panel on your microwave oven.
Fig. 1 shows an example PIC microcontroller from Microchip Corporations. There are likely hundreds of variations. See my earlier projects. These are done in assembly.
- PIC12F683 Microcontroller Projects
- Microchip PIC16F84A H-Bridge Motor Control
- Microchip PIC16F628A Basic H-Bridge Motor Control
The above video at the top of the page is an example. To learn computer hardware and how it has changed. To fix, salvage, program vintage machines. To reuse an older system means less e-waste, easier learning curb, and low cost. A lot of us can't afford the latest and greatest.
That 20-year-old Presario still does a lot even with some versions of more modern Linux. I used it for streaming audio, word processing, software design, etc. Yes it can even operate a CNC machine. The one in the video I got for free.
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