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Entries for the 'Custom Hardware and Software' Category

DMC Highlight Cam Project
Jesse Batsche

DMC Highlight Cam Project

For Fed Ex Day 2014 Devon, Otto, and I worked on the DMC Highlight Cam Project. The end goal of the DMC Highlight Cam project is three-fold: Have a camera mounted so that it can continually record all activity at the ping pong table (or any other place where interesting things *might* happen) Have the ability to press a single button when something AWESOME/EXCITING/FUNNY/MEMORABLE happens to capture and archive footage of that awesome event When a “highlight” is identifi...

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Abstracting an ORM to Use Multiple Backends
Jack Cosgrove

Abstracting an ORM to Use Multiple Backends

Object-relational mappings (ORMs) took the world by storm in the mid-aughts. Obviously there are many advantages to ORMs given their success, but there are some drawbacks. I'll explain one particular hurdle that I ran into as well as the steps I took to overcome it. A client had an existing database we needed to interact with using an ORM; this necessitated a database-first approach. Furthermore, this database's schema was mirrored in other databases with slight modifications. DMC had...

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Testing SharePoint 2010 Email Receivers - Part One
Jordan Harris

Testing SharePoint 2010 Email Receivers - Part One

If you have ever worked with SharePoint development, you may have run into a situation where it becomes necessary to test the functionality of a custom email receiver event handler on a document library. This blog will not go into detail on how to create the library programmatically (Andy Burns has a good post on that here), instead we will focus on the infrastructure necessary for testing the event handler on a development server. There are two main components that need to be present in your...

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ESXi 5.5: Still Free But Limited
Timothy Johnson

ESXi 5.5: Still Free But Limited

ESXi, which is VMWare’s free bare-metal hypervisor, released Version 5.5 in late September 2013. There are some great new features that basically double every configuration maximum from version 5.1. This also includes unlimited physical RAM on each host; which was limited to 32 GB prior. What’s the downside, you ask? Once the virtual hardware of the VM is upgraded to Version 10, the VSphere 5.5 client can no longer be used to edit the specs of the VM itself. Furthermore, the only ...

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Hardware Solution to Guarantee Read-Only Access of a CAN Bus
Jack Cosgrove

Hardware Solution to Guarantee Read-Only Access of a CAN Bus

The CAN bus is a standard network allowing multiple devices to talk to each other. It’s widely used on vehicles (in fact, it's likely that your car has at least ten) as well as in the industrial automation world. Recently were troubleshooting a strange issue which was causing one of the devices on the CAN bus to periodically do something that it wasn't commanded to do. By disconnecting other devices on the CAN bus, we were able to trace the issue back to the single device w...

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Engineering Meets Pediatric Medicine at Lurie Children's Hospital
Darren Jones

Engineering Meets Pediatric Medicine at Lurie Children's Hospital

Being an engineer means you have unique skills to contribute to the world. These contributions can include improving quality of products, increasing efficiency, and generally allowing workers and companies to be more successful in their goals.  A recent project at DMC brought this social benefit even closer to home with the opportunity to work with the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago.  DMC was approached with a very special need—to develop the w...

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Remove Field from New Form, Edit Form or Display Form in SharePoint 2013
Jerry Choinski

Remove Field from New Form, Edit Form or Display Form in SharePoint 2013

In this brief blog post I wanted to describe the steps needed to remove unused fields from the New Form, Display Form and/or Edit Form in SharePoint 2013. While it is easy to add and remove fields from list views through SharePoint’s user interface, there isn’t a good way to do so for the three different forms which we use to add, edit and view information of individual items. We are often left with fields that should not be part of the forms. We might need hidden fields used by a...

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Creating a Raster Monitor from an Oscilloscope
Boris Cherkasskiy

Creating a Raster Monitor from an Oscilloscope

My friend recently sent me this video of an oscilloscope playing a video. I immediately wanted to do the same, but it's a huge project if done properly. It has an ILDA interface/driver, high-speed custom DACs, etc. Instead, I tried a simple alternative - creating a raster monitor from an oscilloscope. Here is what I did: 1. Put oscilloscope to the X-Y mode. 2. Take a standard composite video (from a DVD player in my case). 3. Separate horizontal and vertical sync signal...

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WiX Installer Tutorial for Visual Studio
Spencer Glesmann

WiX Installer Tutorial for Visual Studio

The purpose of this tutorial is to get you started using the WiX tool set to create custom installers for Visual Studio applications.  For more thorough documentation on creating WiX installers, please see this tutorial. This tutorial uses version 3.7 of the WiX tool set and Visual Studio 2012.  

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DMC  Earns Microsoft CRM Certified Software Advisor Status
Anjali Bharadwa

DMC Earns Microsoft CRM Certified Software Advisor Status

DMC has earned the status of Microsoft CRM Certified Software Advisor. This certification recognizes DMC’s investment and dedication to implementing a superior CRM application while providing knowledge and support to its CRM customers. This new competency demonstrates DMC’s expertise in planning and implementing a CRM solution through customization of the CRM application to fit the needs of its customers. Microsoft awards Software Advisor Certifications to partners who have demons...

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Updating Your Rotary Dial Phone for the Digital Age
Boris Cherkasskiy

Updating Your Rotary Dial Phone for the Digital Age

Good-old rotary dial phones have been around since forever, and they used to be a part of everyday life, like dragons during medieval period. However, like dragons, suddenly all these marvelous ancient devices just disappeared one day. I was lucky to find one of these dinosaurs at the local flea market. I was eager to try it out, but unfortunately I don't have a home phone line anymore. I hooked it up to my Voice Over IP (VoIP) adapter that I haven't used in years. It almost worked! W...

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Getting Started with Microsoft Office 365 Video Series
Rick Rietz

Getting Started with Microsoft Office 365 Video Series

Have you considered moving some of your business systems into the cloud? This year our Microsoft Consulting Services practice has seen a significant increase in Office 365 projects. A move from on-premise Exchange to Exchange Online or choosing one of the Office 365 bundled cloud offerings is especially compelling for small and medium size businesses. To help you better understand Microsoft's cloud offerings and decide if a move to the cloud is right for your business, DMC has created a v...

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VB Script to Save an SSRS Report as a PDF
Jack Cosgrove

VB Script to Save an SSRS Report as a PDF

Reporting is almost a universal requirement for new projects coming into DMC these days. As part of an HMI we developed for a customer we also installed SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS) on a Siemens PLC. This is used to generate reports for production batches run on that PLC. The customer desired these reports to be in PDF format, which after some investigation was easy to do with SSRS. A little background on SSRS... SSRS is a web application that generates nice graphical reports from SQL...

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Aiding My Horrible Handwriting With A Polargraph Drawing Bot
Boris Cherkasskiy

Aiding My Horrible Handwriting With A Polargraph Drawing Bot

People who know me have probably noticed that I have pretty bad handwriting skills. I recently realized that apparently there is a pretty scary word for my case: dysgraphia. Fortunately I was growing up long enough ago when this word hadn't yet been discovered, so this diagnosis did not affect my life. There were probably even a few times I benefited from it when my teachers couldn't figure out my scrawls and assumed that I was trying to write something profound. Once upon a time...

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LCD Paint with Nokia 3310 screen and 8051 Microcontroller
Furqan Ayub

LCD Paint with Nokia 3310 screen and 8051 Microcontroller

Engineers at DMC often tend to have fun tech hobbies to work on in their spare time. I worked on such a project a couple years ago and wanted to share it on our blog. I came across this webpage while looking for cool LCD projects: Connect Nokia LCD to LPT port This particular person had connected a Nokia 3310 LCD to a computer’s parallel port and written a PASCAL program to draw on the LCD screen using his mouse. Upon reading this I thought - why not do this with a microcontroller ...

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Siemens S7-1200 Web Server Tutorial - From Getting Started to HTML5 User Defined Pages
Tim Jager

Siemens S7-1200 Web Server Tutorial - From Getting Started to HTML5 User Defined Pages

This is a brief tutorial on getting started with the Siemens embedded web server in the S7-1200 and S7-1500.  Using the concepts explained below, you can create a simple web page or a fully featured HTML5 web app.  Getting Started Step 1.  Turn on the web server.  To do this, navigate to the web server menu in the device configuration page and check the box to enable the web server.   Step 2: Download your project to your PLC and browse to its IP add...

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CTA Bus Tracking with the Raspberry Pi
Ryan Taylor

CTA Bus Tracking with the Raspberry Pi

I've never been much of a morning person; some days, the snooze button on my alarm clock works harder than I do. I also like to take public transit to work as often as possible. An unfortunate side effect of my erratic waking habits is that an extra 30 second delay in leaving sometimes results in missing the bus - and arriving (another) 10 minutes late to the office. Recently, I pulled my Raspberry Pi out of storage and picked up a cheap TFT display and set out to cure my morning woes. ...

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Exploring Altium: Design Rules
Ryan Taylor

Exploring Altium: Design Rules

Some rules are meant to be broken. Unfortunately, none of them apply to PCB design. Designing and developing printed circuit boards can be an unforgiving process: placing a critical analog line just a few millimeters closer to a noisy clock line might be the difference between a functional widget and an expensive drink coaster. Luckily, many modern software tools provide safeguards to catch critical mistakes before they’re sent out to your favorite PCB fabricator. The most fundamenta...

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Ping Pong Web Application
Otto Gottlieb

Ping Pong Web Application

In the past year, ping pong has become a major activity for DMC employees. Starting with the purchase of a ping pong table, it has evolved from an informal game that served as a short break from work to an organized competition. In the fall of 2012, players created a ladder tournament to keep track of everybody’s ranks. With their eyes set on the top stop, challenge matches ensued and the competition became heated. The ranks were kept using pieces of paper pinned to cork board near the ...

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Office 365 Event:  Your Complete Office in the Cloud
Rick Rietz

Office 365 Event: Your Complete Office in the Cloud

If you missed this event, DMC has created an Office 365 Video Series that explains some of the benefits & drawbacks and allows you to see Office 365 in action.  DMC will be hosting complimentary breakfast events on June 18 and June 19 for organizations interested in taking advantage of Microsoft's Office 365 cloud offerings.   Is your business facing any of these scenarios?   1.  Growing in size and looking for technology to help meet your bus...

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