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by vputz
May 08 2017, 13:09 PM
Forum: Spaceware Software
Topic: It lives again... almost...
Replies: 29
Views: 9661

Re: It lives again... almost...

Will do if I can ever get the thing out the door. Lost a lot of time this weekend playing with voltage doublers with mixed results. Best candidate so far is the TC1240a, a tiny little six-pin sot-23 device... and man, I could NOT get the thing to work well with the capacitors I had, but I can't see ...
by vputz
May 05 2017, 13:53 PM
Forum: Spaceware Software
Topic: It lives again... almost...
Replies: 29
Views: 9661

Re: It lives again... almost...

Hey, Doosh--the short answer is it's pretty small (the width of the RS232 plug and about twice as long, so about as long as your thumb), there's a "case" (two pieces of plexiglas, so it's sturdy but not watertight), and it was released about two years ago and like an idiot I decided to "improve" it ...
by vputz
April 23 2017, 11:41 AM
Forum: Spaceware Software
Topic: It lives again... almost...
Replies: 29
Views: 9661

Re: It lives again... almost...

I'll get there; I just wish it was faster. I'm pretty convinced that if nothing else the level shifter on the old 5v chips would work, it's just not "the right thing"; I would have tried it this weekend but my wife's coming back into town early so deserves the time spent (my parents are about to vis...
by vputz
April 21 2017, 12:29 PM
Forum: Spaceware Software
Topic: It lives again... almost...
Replies: 29
Views: 9661

Re: It lives again... almost...

No luck in ECE. Parts on order but will breadboard it out before ordering more boards. These boards MAY work with other orb models; if I have a chance I'll try, but they all use the same basic ball sensor so I'm not optimistic. The "add chip, program, add rest of components" that sort of made the fi...
by vputz
April 20 2017, 20:33 PM
Forum: Spaceware Software
Topic: It lives again... almost...
Replies: 29
Views: 9661

Re: It lives again... almost...

Oookay. The problem is (and this has been a problem the entire time) the SpaceOrb, like many serial devices at the time, used the DTR ("Data Terminal Ready") and RTS (Request To Send) lines on the serial port for power (pins 4 and 7, now connected to V+ on the serial out circuit). They were never me...
by vputz
April 20 2017, 12:57 PM
Forum: Spaceware Software
Topic: It lives again... almost...
Replies: 29
Views: 9661

Re: It lives again... almost...

AAAAARGH. One of the new chips "works" (the other one should but for some reason the first prototype didn't do anything)--power to the main processor is down to 3.3v as it should be and it communicates with the orb... ...but exactly as predicted, it isn't powering the LEDs in the ball sufficiently, ...
by vputz
April 14 2017, 15:35 PM
Forum: Spaceware Software
Topic: It lives again... almost...
Replies: 29
Views: 9661

Re: It lives again... almost...

...actually that sounds pretty sweet. You never know... I think there's a certain market for high-end niche controllers once you get into the serious simulation crowd. But yeah, you certainly can't compete on price with someone that has mass production infrastructure like Logitech. On the plus side,...
by vputz
April 10 2017, 11:03 AM
Forum: Spaceware Software
Topic: It lives again... almost...
Replies: 29
Views: 9661

Re: It lives again... almost...

Hmm, thanks. The need to switch to the 3.3v chips is a pretty hard requirement, though (since I can't even program the chips if the 5v serial chip with open connections is driving the microprocessor to 4.4v), so we'll see how it fares. I have the 3.3v chips, and they're pin-compatible so the only ch...
by vputz
April 03 2017, 11:06 AM
Forum: Spaceware Software
Topic: It lives again... almost...
Replies: 29
Views: 9661

Re: It lives again... almost...

Ok, got a couple candidates for the 3.3v serial converters ordered. One possible problem is that some versions of the Orb relied on higher voltage than is maybe common (for a while there were even add-on "battery packs" to provide enough juice for them, and if you've ever had an orb to which the but...
by vputz
April 03 2017, 7:31 AM
Forum: Spaceware Software
Topic: It lives again... almost...
Replies: 29
Views: 9661

Re: It lives again... almost...

I'M A STINKIN' IDIOT. Okay, guys, I really have to apologize for this one. Since the one worked so well, I built up a few more... and they all failed in exactly the same way: they were supplying 4.4 volts to the 3.3v processor. I was completely mystified--the one I sent away to a tester worked 100% ...
by vputz
March 31 2017, 15:05 PM
Forum: Spaceware Software
Topic: It lives again... almost...
Replies: 29
Views: 9661

Re: It lives again... almost...

[quote]I have been having a better time building controllers and tinkering than playing the games I'm making them for. I must be getting old.[/quote] Same here; almost always been the case. I "grew up" gaming-wise in the complex Thrustmaster days of Mechwarrior, Freespace, and X-Wing, and half the f...
by vputz
March 29 2017, 11:20 AM
Forum: Spaceware Software
Topic: It lives again... almost...
Replies: 29
Views: 9661

Re: It lives again... almost...

Agent_13: Not with this board directly--all it will do is the USB connection. I'd thought about exposing enough to do it, or trying to embed a bluetooth-capable chip like the Nordic Bluetooth NRFXXX chips, but it came down to trying to get this done and as simple (low part count) as possible. Additi...
by vputz
March 29 2017, 11:06 AM
Forum: Spaceware Software
Topic: 'bout damn time.
Replies: 5
Views: 2712

Re: 'bout damn time.

I'll definitely check it out--I'd actually downloaded Overload, but a lot of things in life got Overcome By Events. There were actually a few 6dof games out recently that played pretty nice with the orb, but I don't remember the names offhand. At any rate, I hope to have three boards available by th...
by vputz
March 28 2017, 14:37 PM
Forum: Spaceware Software
Topic: 'bout damn time.
Replies: 5
Views: 2712

Re: 'bout damn time.

Sparky-- yeah, pretty much the same. If anything it may be a little easier (there's slightly simpler integration with the Arduino environment--mostly their doing, not mine). The advantage of the new Arduino firmware is that with some additional hacking, you can define the HID report on the fly... wh...
by vputz
March 28 2017, 14:32 PM
Forum: Spaceware Software
Topic: It lives again... almost...
Replies: 29
Views: 9661

Re: It lives again... almost...

Thanks :) Okay, SORRY for the delays, I think we're at a final board model now and I just need some parts to make the next three. This is a somewhat simplified version; I got rid of several components to simplify the build and get price a little lower, with the catch that it must be connected via US...

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