I admit it: I'm a total geek. I love electronics, programming, 3D art, vintage Apple hardware, and whisky. I'm always juggling half a dozen projects. I also enjoy documenting it all: my successes, my failures, my experiences... and everything geeky along the way.

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Kevin Rye

Geek Extraordinaire. Yeh, I said it.

Upgrading My Old 7490 Clock, Part IV

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The last prototype Arduino board I made for the 7490 clock rework didn’t turn out as well as I had hoped. The board did what it was supposed to do, but the implementation wasn’t that great. The more I thought about it, the more it became clear that the Bare Bones Arduino boards I designed months ago were the perfect solution. After all, it’s projects like these that inspired me to create the Barebones Arduino in the first place. Read More...

Upgrading My Old 7490 Clock, Part III

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Since I wasn’t happy with the engraving on the first spin, as well as totally forgetting to make a cut out for the display, I revised my SVG file and resubmitted it to Ponoko. As far as the color, I think it’s going to look pretty good. I might lower the value of the resistors in order to brighten up the digits. I’ll have to see what it looks like when it’s all put together. Read More...

Happy Father's Day!

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My wife asked me what I wanted for Father’s day. I told her she could just buy me booze. Not only did she pick me up a bottle of Black, but she picked me up a huge 1.75 liter bottle!
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LCD Clock Version 2 - Part II

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With my PCBs and the laser cut acrylic in hand, it was time to wrap this guy up. I think this clock came out so much better than version 1. I can’t think of a reason to do a version 3. With this, I think I’ve done all I can do with a 16x2 LCD clock. Read More...

LCD Clock Version 2 - Part I

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When I had shelved this clock a year ago, I had gotten pretty far with the PCB. Although I still had some design decisions to make, as well as a ton of code to write, it was pretty much complete. Now that I’ve spent some time working with SMD Atmegas, I decided to redo the PCB to make it all SMD. Read More...

Unite the Clans!


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We're going to Disney! That's right. We have a summer vacation booked for Orlando, Florida. It's going to be awesome! Between Scotland, and 3 states in the US, we're all going to converge in Florida for one huge family vacation. This calls for a commemorative t-shirt, since a family reunion of this magnitude has not been seen in years.
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Upgrading My Old 7490 Clock, Part II

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While the PCBs for the new daughterboard were being fabbed, I took the time to design a new laser-cut acrylic enclosure. It needs a few tweaks, but overall it came out awesome... and the PCB fits like a glove! Read More...

Anker Hardware

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I picked up a new USB 3 hub for my Mac, but I wasn’t happy with it at all. Despite it costing $30 bucks, it was a cheap piece of junk. I sent it back to Amazon. In my search for a better model, I came across Anker. Their stuff looks awesome. Not only did I pick up their 7-port USB 3 hub, but I also picked up a 4-port USB charger and a 2-port 10000 mAh external battery. Read More...

Drinkin' the Whisky


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Being born in Scotland, there’s just something that tells me that I should be drinking whisky. Isn’t this stuff supposed to run in or veins? Someone from Scotland who doesn’t drink whisky is like someone from Scotland who doesn’t own a kilt. (And yes, I own a kilt.) I decided it was time to acquire a taste for it. Read More...

Upgrading My Old 7490 Clock, Part I

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Despite looking like a prototype, as well as a total piece of junk, I’m still very proud of the first clock I built in 2001. The 7490 clock was the first “big thing” that I ever designed and made from scratch. It’s a shame to leave it just sitting in the closet. After 13 years, I think it’s time to finally get it up and running the way it should, give it some upgrades, and a new enclosure.
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