An EEWeb Interview with Todd Harrison

Although Todd Harrison could be one of many of our readers (and most of our writers), it was nice to see one of “us” featured in [EEWeb]. [HAD] has featured him before in posts such as this recent one about replacing solder tab batteries.

What may be interesting to many is that soon after [Todd] graduated he took a job as a computer programmer, but like many other part-time makers, he still had the need to physically create and modify things. This article goes over some of his preferred tools, as well as some of the various projects that he’s done or is working on now.

In the article, [Todd] goes over what he sees as the biggest challenges to inspiring new generations of engineers. One of these is that circuitry is increasingly locked down and are not easily tinkered with. Without exploring how things work, his view is that fewer will be inspired to go into engineering. Although there is certainly some validity to his point, as some doors close, others hopefully will open. The accessible learning environment of the Internet, open source resources, and many maker-friendly materials like the Arduino should help to fill in the gaps.

For more information, [Todd] also has his own blog, Toddfun.com, which features his projects.

Comments

  1. Bob Spafford says:

    It’s good to look a bit before you take this potentially damaging route. We have a store here in Olympia WA called Batteries Plus which stocks an amazing inventory of batteries at reasonable prices. I needed three small 2016 lithium coin cells to replace RTC batts in some IBM Thinkpads. When I asked about tabs, the salesman said “No problem!”, walked into a small room, and spot welded tabs on the cells in about 90 seconds. When I asked how much the tabs would add to the $1.49 price tags on them. He cheerfully said “Oh, no charge!” To say the least, I now go there for all my battery needs. Olympia is actually a small town. I advise a bit of looking before taking a soldering gun to your new replacement batteries!

  2. @Bob, I agree. I did buy my Ni-MH coin cell at Batteries Plus in Mesa, AZ. I asked if they could spot weld the tabs but they wanted $12.99!!! to do the job. Crazy!! That came to ~$18.00 with battery so I had to solder the tabs myself.

  3. GCL says:

    Wow!
    If that’s the same store, (as a small chain) then I know them. I went to one such place in Florida several years ago for having a set of batteries installed into an APC designed thing for supporting a routine shutdown for stuff, sortof like the UPS we’re all supposed to have for our electronics.

    APC discontinued the poor thing years ago, but B+ found them and installed them. I forgot how much it cost but it safely supported everything.

  4. Jerzmacow says:

    Would that be one of the shirts dave jones designed?

  5. @Jerzmacow, Yes :) I have several EEVBlog Ts

  6. Ren says:

    Todd,
    Is that a POV bicycle wheel?

  7. Robert manchilla says:

    :D

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