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Entries for 'Alex Krejcie'

DMC Joins the Things Network
Alex Krejcie

DMC Joins the Things Network

With IoT solutions becoming more and more important in product design, DMC has been very interested in the viability of wireless devices as tools to solve new problems. LoRa, is one of the new solutions that provide viable results for use cases that weren’t possible before. The Things Network is one of the prominent public examples of this technology that promises to enable a variety of new use cases. Naturally, we wanted to get more experience with this up-and-coming LoRa tech, by esta...

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A Balloon's Journey: Testing Distance Capabilities of a LoRa Gateway and Tranceiver
Alex Krejcie

A Balloon's Journey: Testing Distance Capabilities of a LoRa Gateway and Tranceiver

Recently, some of us at DMC have been interested in the capabilities of the LoRa protocol. We were curious about how far it could actually transmit. The theoretical range of a device is very long—upwards of 500 miles, but without knowing for sure that long range transmissions are possible, it’s true potential for clients was nothing more than an uncertainty for DMC. With the freedom to work on an internal project during this past FedEx day, a group of engineers in our Chicago...

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Using Segger Real Time Transfer with an EFM32
Alex Krejcie

Using Segger Real Time Transfer with an EFM32

Today, I want to detail a couple of cool tricks to use Segger Real Time Transfer with an EFM32 to create an easy-to-view trace log. Segger Real Time Transfer, or RTT for short, is a debugging interface designed specifically around the J-Links capabilities to provide an extremely efficient debug message input and output interface.  This is accomplished by writing messages to a RAM buffer on the microcontroller that the J-Link is capable of reading through the standard ARM d...

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DMC Chicago Virtual Office Tour
Alex Krejcie

DMC Chicago Virtual Office Tour

In January of 2016, Google released an Android app called Cardboard Camera, which can turn a single smartphone camera into an impressive 3D panoramic image-making machine. Using this tutorial, we learned how to convert those images into a 360 view YouTube video, which allows us to create a 360-degree, interactive panorama that can be viewed across a multitude of platforms, operating systems, and browsers. Android users with VR headsets (such as Google Cardboard) can even view the video i...

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Introduction to Bluetooth
Alex Krejcie

Introduction to Bluetooth

With the wide adoption of smartphones and the attractive market for the Internet of Things (IOT) and other accessories, Bluetooth connectivity has made its way into many products and most people’s daily life. In the last five years there has likewise been rapid advances in the Bluetooth protocol and its integration in devices. Beyond the consumer applications most people think of when Bluetooth is mentioned, the technology has also proven its worth in the Industrial IoT (IIoT). Thi...

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USB Charging Overview
Alex Krejcie

USB Charging Overview

In this video, I'll give you an overview of the USB charging specification, how it came to be and the limitations and hardware design of each charging port.  

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Android Open Accessory Protocol (AOA) using an FTDI 311/312
Alex Krejcie

Android Open Accessory Protocol (AOA) using an FTDI 311/312

In this video, I'll give you a brief overview of implementing the Android Open Accessory Protocol (AOA) using an FTDI 311/312. AOA is a protocol designed by google to allow android devices to connect with a wide variety of external peripherals over USB.  Since the AOA device acts as a host, it is able to connect to most Android devices, even devices that do not have USB host capabilities themselves.  FTDI provides chips that are preprogrammed with the AOA protocol, making it ...

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Firmware Programming and Configuration Application for Embedded Device
Alex Krejcie

Firmware Programming and Configuration Application for Embedded Device

In order to support development, deployment, and management of a customer’s embedded device, DMC developed a simple windows GUI using C# and WPF to assist in programming and configuring the device. The program uses a single USB connection for both actions, allowing the customer to simplify connections and have access to all functions even on assembled devices. Technologies Used Texas Instruments MSP430 NET C# (WPF) HID, CDC device interfaces Programming DMC leveraged t...

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VR Labyrinth: Exploring the Tilt Table with an Oculus Rift
Alex Krejcie

VR Labyrinth: Exploring the Tilt Table with an Oculus Rift

If you have been following DMC I’m sure you’ve seen or heard of our awesome tilt table demo. The latest big news is that our demo has made a leap into the future. That’s right, were talking about Virtual Reality! Not those silly adverts from the 80’s; now you can fully explore the Labyrinth generated by our tilt table using an Oculus Rift. Check out the video below to learn more about the FedEx Day project Grant and I worked on and see it in action.

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Improving Battery Life in Low Power Embedded Applications Part 2: Case Study
Alex Krejcie

Improving Battery Life in Low Power Embedded Applications Part 2: Case Study

In Part 1, I talked about how battery capacity is rated and how certain conditions can affect relative battery capacity. This case study will specifically focus on a solution DMC provided for a low power embedded application designed around user interaction with a high base current draw. Many of its principles can be applied to all embedded applications. Active/Sleep Programming One of the first steps DMC took to help improve battery life was to use an active/sleep architecture for running...

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Improving Battery Life in Low Power Embedded Applications, Part 1: Basics
Alex Krejcie

Improving Battery Life in Low Power Embedded Applications, Part 1: Basics

As portable devices become more capable, powerful and smaller, people expect them to have more features, perform better, and replace the functionality of multiple devices. However, while embedded performance has skyrocketed, battery performance has stayed relatively the same. This has forced developers and engineers to be much more conscious of power consumption.   The Simple Case When discussing battery life and power consumption, average current draw is king. If certain electronics...

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Alex Krejcie

Sharing Enums and Constants Between a C# and C++ Project

Shared File In a recent DMC project using a combination of C# and C++, it was necessary to share enums and constants defined in one project with the other to guarantee compatibility and reduce errors. This was accomplished through the use of compiler directives and a single shared header file. Below is example code outlining the required format of the shared file which we will refer to as “SharedEnums.cs.h” (note that the .h suffix was used to enable intellisense support on t...

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Office Autonomous Robot: Part 2
Alex Krejcie

Office Autonomous Robot: Part 2

To continue the ongoing plan to conquer the world via our autonomous robot, several enhancements were made to the robotic platform and a new path finding algorithm was tested. Hardware Changes After deploying the robot around the office, it became clear that the Bluetooth wireless module used for communication would not provide sufficient range and coverage to give the robot full mobility about DMC’s office. With this in mind, a new wireless communication method was sought. After res...

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Office Autonomous Robot
Alex Krejcie

Office Autonomous Robot

With the imminent arrival of DMC’s second FedEx Day, the brainstorming began. Amid ideas to improve our internal network and everyday tasks, the idea to one day take over the world started gaining support. Everyone knows that the first step towards world domination is the creation of your very own robot army. With that in mind, DMC decided it was time to build its own office autonomous robot. Hardware Selection In order for our robot to provide a lasting platform for autonomous devel...

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