Humanity has always blossomed when makers and tinkerers got their hands on the right tools to design a better world.
There’s a need for making prototyping easier, and as an inventor I’d like to do my part to make prototyping for everyone smoother and more of an enjoyable and intuitive experience. To do that I need your help funding this open source Programmable Capacitor.
Why a Programmable Capacitor?
When prototyping a circuit you face a challenge acquiring all the components and tools necessary to make your LED’s blink, your speakers speak, and your robots work! The capacitor is an essential component of any electronics design, and without them, even the most basic circuits wouldn’t function.
How Does it Help Me?
It helps you with 3 major problems in prototyping.
- Time: I can’t tell you how many hours I’ve wasted looking for just the right part in my years of designing circuits. Whether you misplaced that one capacitor you needed and can’t get a quick replacement because your local RadioShack doesn’t carry that value, or you are too busy deciphering teensy capacitor labels using a magnifying glass hoping you stumble across the right one in your bin of hundreds of capacitors. It becomes apparent that with a better tool you could’ve been done with your new toy a lot earlier.
- Money: Anyone who’s done any level of making hardware knows that you need money, usually quite a bit more than you planned on spending for a specific project. The main reason people end up paying more for their design is because they realize they needed another part they never planned for, or they might want to add more functionality and clarity to their circuit. To accomplish that in an electronics design I can guarantee you that you’ll need some more capacitors! Sometimes rare values that you may not have, so you’ll either endlessly construct the desired value using your other capacitors (which of course you’ll have to dig through your parts bin for), or you’ll end up having to fork over your cash to get your circuit functioning.
Ease: I want to make it easier to prototype and learn electronics. Everyone wants the prototyping process to be as smooth as possible because you don’t have to be a clairvoyant to know that there will be rough spots. That’s where the Programmable Capacitor comes to the rescue! Instead of digging through your pile of components, plugging in dozens of different values for the desired result, or dealing with tons of unnecessary math to get your high pass filter to work, you can just plug in the Programmable Capacitor and change the value of the capacitor in seconds by just clicking a few switches. No coding or digging required.
A big constraint beginners have when learning electronics is getting accustomed to all the different components and buying all the right values. Usually this would boggle any beginner because all the different capacitor values can disorient a newbie (trust me, I was one). So instead of buying a bunch of random values you may never use, why not pick up a Programmable Capacitor and save yourself a hassle!
How Do I Use It?
1. Attach jumper wires into the screw terminal.
2. Place other ends of Jumper Wires into breadboard.
3. Select desired capacitor value(s).
Capacitor values add up. So just pick the values that'll add up to your desired value, it's that easy! You have a plentiful range of 0.1pF to 596uF, with 4.29 Billion+ combinations in between! You'll be able to do quite a bit of selecting and fine tuning in a matter of seconds.
Why We Need Your Help
In order to keep the cost low and and to get off on a strong start, we'll need to assemble and distribute between 100 and 200 boards. Which means that a good funding goal is a minimum of $3,000. Since the cost of the device starts at just $25 we believe that reaching the goal will be reasonable and makers will enjoy using our product.
Manufacturing will be very straightforward. Since our initial batch will only be between 100 and 200 boards they will be assembled by my colleagues and myself. We will order the boards and parts, and then solder them using hot air reflow stations and soldering irons. Then they will be inspected, packed, and shipped.
I've learned from my own personal experience that having a strong and clear start is key to reaching the end. As a self taught maker I understand how difficult it is to get started with electronics and to keep up with it. So to help beginners getting started and pros to keep their game prime I designed a very easy to use tool that'll help anyone designing and building circuits.
With your help more inventors and makers will be able to develop a better future for all of us!
There will be minor changes to the silkscreen in order to make it more readable. The version number will also change from V1.1 to V1.2.
Risks and challenges
I have ordered the parts and boards from the same suppliers that I will use for fulfilling this campaign, and they delivered with high quality therefore I will continue using them as a source.
The largest problem that may occur with this project would be time. I've already set delivery dates late, so most likely backers will receive their Programmable Capacitors before the expected delivery date. If minor to mild setbacks occur then backers should still receive their Programmable Capacitors on the expected delivery date. If for some unforeseen circumstance arises, I will notify the backers immediately and explain what circumstance arose.
Due to the simplicity of manufacturing these boards I'm confident I will be able to deliver them in the best condition possible with my oversight on the entire assembly process from ship in to ship out.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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