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IV-4 Smartsocket Update

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  • fixitsan2
    Yes, another update ! The basic 4 tube socket is working well when configured as a standard array of four smartsockets, and also it now has a Letterplay
    Message 1 of 17 , Mar 8, 2010
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      Yes, another update !

      The basic 4 tube socket is working well when configured as a standard array of four smartsockets, and also it now has a 'Letterplay' function which it can run in isolation.
      The onboard RTC is now integrated and there are time and date setting routines included.
      I need to work on some group effect transitions now, possibly borrowing ideas from existing products, but mostly all new effects.

      Each tube has it's own delay before changing and so by setting this value to a pseudo random figure some interesting ' intermediate words' are also produced as well as the 3500 or so already programmed into the memory.

      Here's a brief Youtube clip, which hopefully doesn't become too choppy to be viewable !

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UpLI9r3jEmI
      (may not be available until processed in about an hours time)

      Chris
    • Quixotic Nixotic
      ... Very cool Chris, I will look forward to the documentation and prototyping a set very soon. John S
      Message 2 of 17 , Mar 8, 2010
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        On 8 Mar 2010, at 19:02, fixitsan2 wrote:

         

        Yes, another update !

        The basic 4 tube socket is working well when configured as a standard array of four smartsockets, and also it now has a 'Letterplay' function which it can run in isolation.
        The onboard RTC is now integrated and there are time and date setting routines included.
        I need to work on some group effect transitions now, possibly borrowing ideas from existing products, but mostly all new effects.

        Each tube has it's own delay before changing and so by setting this value to a pseudo random figure some interesting ' intermediate words' are also produced as well as the 3500 or so already programmed into the memory.

        Here's a brief Youtube clip, which hopefully doesn't become too choppy to be viewable !

        http://www.youtube. com/watch? v=UpLI9r3jEmI
        (may not be available until processed in about an hours time)

        Chris


        Very cool Chris, I will look forward to the documentation and prototyping a set very soon.

        John S
      • michail1@aol.com
        Very kewl. Basic smart socket? It there thought about running 8 or 12 tubes? (adding 4 tube boards - strings) Just wondering. Michail
        Message 3 of 17 , Mar 8, 2010
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          Very kewl.
           
          Basic smart socket?
           
          It there thought about running 8 or 12 tubes?  (adding 4 tube boards - strings)
           
          Just wondering.
           
          Michail
        • andybiker2
          ... Ok Guys, I just have to prototype this too. I love the video clip, you had me convinced with shit but to throw in goer too ....... I must edit the code
          Message 4 of 17 , Mar 8, 2010
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            --- In smartsockets@yahoogroups.com, Quixotic Nixotic <nixotic1@...> wrote:
            >
            >
            > On 8 Mar 2010, at 19:02, fixitsan2 wrote:
            >
            > > Yes, another update !
            > >
            > > The basic 4 tube socket is working well when configured as a
            > > standard array of four smartsockets, and also it now has a
            > > 'Letterplay' function which it can run in isolation.
            > > The onboard RTC is now integrated and there are time and date
            > > setting routines included.
            > > I need to work on some group effect transitions now, possibly
            > > borrowing ideas from existing products, but mostly all new effects.
            > >
            > > Each tube has it's own delay before changing and so by setting this
            > > value to a pseudo random figure some interesting ' intermediate
            > > words' are also produced as well as the 3500 or so already
            > > programmed into the memory.
            > >
            > > Here's a brief Youtube clip, which hopefully doesn't become too
            > > choppy to be viewable !
            > >
            > > http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UpLI9r3jEmI
            > > (may not be available until processed in about an hours time)
            > >
            > > Chris
            > >
            >
            > Very cool Chris, I will look forward to the documentation and
            > prototyping a set very soon.
            >
            > John S
            >

            Ok Guys,
            I just have to prototype this too.
            I love the video clip, you had me convinced with "shit" but to throw in "goer" too .......
            I must edit the code and put in a "watershed" so the best words are saved for when the kids are in bed......
            Andrew
          • fixitsan2
            ... Yes Michail, each four tube unit actually responds as a string of four individual smartsockets. Therefore as with all smartsockets a large number can
            Message 5 of 17 , Mar 8, 2010
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              --- In smartsockets@yahoogroups.com, michail1@... wrote:
              >
              > Very kewl.
              >
              > Basic smart socket?
              >
              > It there thought about running 8 or 12 tubes? (adding 4 tube boards -
              > strings)
              >
              > Just wondering.
              >
              > Michail
              >

              Yes Michail, each four tube 'unit' actually responds as a string of four individual smartsockets. Therefore as with all smartsockets a large number can simply be connected together and they will always respond as a single display device

              A twelve tube array of B7971 or ZM1350
              devices requires twelve individual smartsocket boards, but this IV-4 version will only need 3 boards, each with 4 tubes, and each tube is still addressed independently of the others and still has it's own font, effect and transition speed parameters

              Chris
            • John Rehwinkel
              ... Does it have a nice centertapped AC filament supply (hope, hope)? - John
              Message 6 of 17 , Mar 8, 2010
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                > The basic 4 tube socket is working well when configured as a standard array of four smartsockets, and also it now has a 'Letterplay' function which it can run in isolation.

                Does it have a nice centertapped AC filament supply (hope, hope)?

                - John
              • fixitsan2
                ... Hello John. I am driving the clock from 5Vdc. For the filaments I am using resistor based current control. For the Vbb (45Vdc) I am using an SMPS In a
                Message 7 of 17 , Mar 8, 2010
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                  --- In smartsockets@yahoogroups.com, John Rehwinkel <jrehwin@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > > The basic 4 tube socket is working well when configured as a standard array of four smartsockets, and also it now has a 'Letterplay' function which it can run in isolation.
                  >
                  > Does it have a nice centertapped AC filament supply (hope, hope)?
                  >
                  > - John
                  >


                  Hello John.
                  I am driving the clock from 5Vdc. For the filaments I am using resistor based current control. For the Vbb (45Vdc) I am using an SMPS
                  In a traditional linear vfd display, where the filament runs in a straight line, it is easy to see a voltage differential between one end of the display and the other because the luminosity gradually changes.
                  With the IV-4, the filament is a folded wire, making two 90degree turns. It starts at the bottom left, rise up in front of the left half segments, turns right for about 10mm, and then right again to go down back to the bottom right of the display. Therefore it is inherent that the natural DC generated voltage gradient is far less visually noticeable. Using a value of about 2.5V(filament voltage) for the gradient, and 45V for Vbb, the differences in voltage between the ends of the filament and the segments are 45V and 42.5V respectively, and this relatively small difference for this level of Vbb produces no noiceable gradient between the bottom left and the bottom right of the tube (The top/centre is always at midvolts as per tradition)

                  I did look at getting into a bit of transformer action but so far I haven't been able to justify the extra effort/costs involved in terms of benefits to tube operation or lifetime.

                  I once ran a lifetime test on an IV-4 usingdc applied to the filament and just 24V for Vbb but again there was no visible gradient at the end of the test even with this lower Vbb

                  Chris
                • fixitsan2
                  ... Now that you mention it some formal documentation seems to be long overdue. I m currently working from a 120 page A4 sized logbook, and it now contains so
                  Message 8 of 17 , Mar 8, 2010
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                    --- In smartsockets@yahoogroups.com, Quixotic Nixotic <nixotic1@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > Very cool Chris, I will look forward to the documentation and
                    > prototyping a set very soon.
                    >
                    > John S

                    Now that you mention it some formal documentation seems to be long overdue.
                    I'm currently working from a 120 page A4 sized logbook, and it now contains so much detail for this project that trying to find commands and data structures just to test basic features involves just flicking about randomly. I'm looking forward to bringing some organisation to that side of it and taking a break from the coding !


                    Chris




                    >
                  • shklaw75
                    Looks fantastic Chris! I think I now know what you meant when you asked Does anyone have a favourite way of displaying the time on 4 tubes? How about HH:MM
                    Message 9 of 17 , Mar 9, 2010
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                      Looks fantastic Chris!

                      I think I now know what you meant when you asked "Does anyone have a
                      favourite way of displaying the time on 4 tubes?"
                      How about HH:MM without the seconds? No need to scroll. You
                      could also use the right "leg" of the 2nd tube (the segment that connects to pin 10) and the left "leg" of the 3rd tube (the segment that connects to pin 2) as a 1Hz indicator.

                      Cheers.
                      Simon
                    • fixitsan2
                      ... Thanks for the idea Simon. Here s what I ve done so far with regards to indicating the passing of time using the DP s...
                      Message 10 of 17 , Mar 10, 2010
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                        --- In smartsockets@yahoogroups.com, "shklaw75" <shklaw75@...> wrote:
                        >
                        > Looks fantastic Chris!
                        >
                        > I think I now know what you meant when you asked "Does anyone have a
                        > favourite way of displaying the time on 4 tubes?"
                        > How about HH:MM without the seconds? No need to scroll. You
                        > could also use the right "leg" of the 2nd tube (the segment that connects to pin 10) and the left "leg" of the 3rd tube (the segment that connects to pin 2) as a 1Hz indicator.
                        >
                        > Cheers.
                        > Simon
                        >

                        Thanks for the idea Simon.
                        Here's what I've done so far with regards to indicating the passing of time using the DP's...
                        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fqYaM6HDzEU

                        Chris
                      • shklaw75
                        ... Nice one, looks like you have the DP options all under control!
                        Message 11 of 17 , Mar 10, 2010
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                          --- In smartsockets@yahoogroups.com, "fixitsan2" <fixitsan@...> wrote:

                          > Thanks for the idea Simon.
                          > Here's what I've done so far with regards to indicating the passing of time using the DP's...
                          > http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fqYaM6HDzEU
                          >
                          > Chris
                          >

                          Nice one, looks like you have the DP options all under control!
                        • fixitsan2
                          ... I hope so. I have just combined the pendulum effect with the ordinary Letterplay function, and it actually doesn t look too annoying! Anyway, Simon,
                          Message 12 of 17 , Mar 10, 2010
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                            --- In smartsockets@yahoogroups.com, "shklaw75" <shklaw75@...> wrote:
                            >

                            >
                            > Nice one, looks like you have the DP options all under control!
                            >


                            I hope so. I have just combined the 'pendulum' effect with the ordinary Letterplay function, and it actually doesn't look too annoying!

                            Anyway, Simon, weren't you talking about LED Smartsockets ?

                            Chris
                          • shklaw75
                            ... Yeah I was/still am! After a couple of false starts getting some common cathode alphanumeric displays, I have some coming in as well as some PIC s. Will
                            Message 13 of 17 , Mar 10, 2010
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                              --- In smartsockets@yahoogroups.com, "fixitsan2" <fixitsan@...> wrote:

                              >
                              > Anyway, Simon, weren't you talking about LED Smartsockets ?
                              >
                              > Chris
                              >

                              Yeah I was/still am! After a couple of false starts getting some common cathode alphanumeric displays, I have some coming in as well as some PIC's.
                              Will report back once I get something working.

                              Simon
                            • fixitsan2
                              ... ah I was/still am! After a couple of false starts getting some common cathode alphanumeric displays, I have some coming in as well as some PIC s. ... Cool,
                              Message 14 of 17 , Mar 11, 2010
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                                --- In smartsockets@yahoogroups.com, "shklaw75" <shklaw75@...> wrote:
                                >
                                ah I was/still am! After a couple of false starts getting some common cathode alphanumeric displays, I have some coming in as well as some PIC's.
                                > Will report back once I get something working.
                                >
                                > Simon
                                >

                                Cool, common cathodes are ideal for obvious reasons. In the version I have just made I only had common anode devices, so had to invert everything. Had it not been for that then I could have got away with reusing the IV-4 code completely.

                                The next job with this IV-4 design is to write some pleasing transition effects which consider the set of four tubes as a homogeneous synchronised group. I'm hoping that will lift the design and make it a bit more interesting.

                                Chris
                              • fixitsan2
                                ... Hahaha, It just happened like that Andy. i had my reservations about posting it , because my daughter sometimes looks at my Youtube channel, but then again
                                Message 15 of 17 , Mar 14, 2010
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                                  --- In smartsockets@yahoogroups.com, "andybiker2" <a.r.jardine@...> wrote:

                                  > Ok Guys,
                                  > I just have to prototype this too.
                                  > I love the video clip, you had me convinced with "shit" but to throw in "goer" too .......
                                  > I must edit the code and put in a "watershed" so the best words are saved for when the kids are in bed......
                                  > Andrew
                                  >

                                  Hahaha, It just happened like that Andy.
                                  i had my reservations about posting it , because my daughter sometimes looks at my Youtube channel, but then again she is at highschool, so she probably hears worse and probably has no interest in anything I do !

                                  Word filtering is something I have to look at soon, because I think it works in a similar way to word selection when the code, for example, chooses words with 2 or 3 identical letters to the last word, and so on.

                                  A bit like the way that Matt Gorbet's 'Me to you' sculpture works, which changes only one letter at a time, and in doing so proves that less is sometimes more. It seems that sometimes changing all letters at once is quite frantic when compared to changing fewer letters at a time, if that makes sense.

                                  'Me to You'
                                  http://www.gorbetdesign.com/proj_metoyou.html

                                  I have no idea how to make that work though, so it is very interesting at the moment. Assuming that I can get the SD card side of things working quickly enough there will be almost unlimited memory to make themed lists of words, as well as picking lists.
                                • Quixotic Nixotic
                                  ... Chris, I was looking at the one-letter-at-a-time idea the other day. Fortunately it seems to be one of those things that lecturers routinely set to
                                  Message 16 of 17 , Mar 14, 2010
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                                    On 14 Mar 2010, at 18:18, fixitsan2 wrote:
                                    > It seems that sometimes changing all letters at once is quite
                                    > frantic when compared to changing fewer letters at a time... I
                                    > have no idea how to make that work though, so it is very
                                    > interesting at the moment. Assuming that I can get the SD card side
                                    > of things working quickly enough there will be almost unlimited
                                    > memory to make themed lists of words, as well as picking lists.
                                    >
                                    Chris, I was looking at the one-letter-at-a-time idea the other day.
                                    Fortunately it seems to be one of those things that lecturers
                                    routinely set to students, so there's a wealth of info available. The
                                    magic phrase I found was 'Word ladder'. This threw up loads of
                                    strategies for doing this bollocks.

                                    The thing I'd also like to do is a pseudo English speech machine. I
                                    found a javascript to do this but need help in converting this to
                                    Basic structures, so I can use PICbasic to code something up. By
                                    Basic I mean the old programming language, not Visual Basic.

                                    Is there anyone up for the challenge of converting this javascript? I
                                    am happy to make the parts of speech lists, it's the structure I have
                                    difficulty with. Please collaborate.

                                    Example javascript at:
                                    http://www.jsdesign.co.uk/random/

                                    JS
                                  • fixitsan2
                                    ... I think the trick is going to be in filtering the bollocks to make sure that it never produces a meaningful sentence ;-) For example, taken out of the
                                    Message 17 of 17 , Mar 14, 2010
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                                      --- In smartsockets@yahoogroups.com, Quixotic Nixotic <nixotic1@...> wrote:
                                      >

                                      > Is there anyone up for the challenge of converting this javascript? I
                                      > am happy to make the parts of speech lists, it's the structure I have
                                      > difficulty with. Please collaborate.
                                      >
                                      > Example javascript at:
                                      > http://www.jsdesign.co.uk/random/
                                      >
                                      > JS
                                      >

                                      I think the trick is going to be in filtering the bollocks to make sure that it never produces a meaningful sentence ;-)

                                      For example, taken out of the current context who knows what this means
                                      "Thanks to the word ladder tip research could begin"
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