Growing up in Electronics #History #Vintage #Electronics
Nathan’s Possibly Interesting web site posts about growing up with all the electronics of the era.
I was fortunate to grow up at a time and place where Radio and Electronics were accessible to the determined hobbyist. The determination was crucial, however…
I started into this hobby at thirteen, when someone gave me the Philips “Electronic Engineer” construction set for my Bar Mitzvah. Until then I was into building model airplanes, and this new vista of things to build captured my imagination. I assembled the included transistor radio, intercom, amplifier, intruder alarm, Morse communicator… and managed to learn some of the theory that would later enable me to design my own circuits.
I remember the day I first saw an article about the new Op Amp integrated circuits that had just been invented. My first thought on seeing the schematic diagram was “hey, this is not that complicated – I can build one from discrete transistors!” As it happened, one of my classmates had just gotten his hands on a pack of surplus, unmarked transistors…
You’re welcome to brand me a Geek — I’m proud to be one — but it really was a wonderful hobby for a technically minded teenager. In those days, electronic gear was far less ubiquitous than it is now.
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.