Test Platform Underway

It feels so good to be working on the PMCv1 again!  The software feels ready for release, and I think I finally figured out how to to build up a test platform to test PMCv1’s “en mass.”  This has been a good day for PMCv1..  It may be time to place a bulk-order for those shipping envelopes from Amazon..

Software “Feels Ready”

Tonight I finished stepping through at least 80% of the code on my test PMCv1 board (loving labeled “#1”).  Since the new PMCv1 hardware arrived earlier this summer with buttons and LEDs and a different pinout than the little premade board I was using before, there quite a few code changes that needed to occur.  Splitting up LED functionality into red and green, adding dual toggle switch support (only one is being used in the current firmware), and then trying to place myself into the lay-person’s shoes trying to figure out how to install this thing..   All of these scenarios induce their own pressures onto the code.  LED colors and blink patterns need to make sense (and I hope they do); Switches need to be intuitive (and I hope they are); and it needs to be reasonably dummy-proof (and and I hope it is).  But as choppy as my time has been, even though I’ve been working on the software, I always felt fairly disconnected and “not fully with it.”  Tonight that changed and I am feeling very confident with the code now.

So far as I can tell, the code is ready for release.  It finally “feels ready.”

Test Platform Underway

My career background is in telecommunications (where “Five-9’s,” [99.999%] reliability is required), automotive (where 100,000 mile and 10 year reliability is required), and military (where things have to sit on a shelf for 30 years and still work when you need it).  Needless to say, when I set out to engineer something, my wife wonders (a) if we’ll still be alive when it’s ready, and (b) how many generations it will take to break..

Long story short, I need a way to test 98 PMCv1 units, and have been struggling all summer with test platforms ideas that each end up more complicated than the PMCv1 itself! But this isn’t telecom, automotive, or military.  I needed a paradigm shift in my thinking and the Lord finally gave it to me tonight while I was writing this update. With this new test concept, I may be able to have the Test Platform ready for use with just a couple hour’s work (using a few buttons, wires, and an oscilloscope)!  If all goes well, then we’ll have PMCv1’s shipping within a few weeks!

New Office Arrangement

I always think its fun to see where people work..  Today I rearranged my office, and thought it’d be fun to show it off..  In the lower middle you can see a PMCv1 with its Red (UNDO) light illuminated.. (and another one sitting next to it waiting to be tested)


On a Personal Note..

I wanted to thank those of you who have written through email and online forums asking for updates on my wife and sharing kind words regarding all the goings on in recent weeks with our personal life.  My wife’s recovery has been touch-and-go, but it seems that is actually normal when recovering from multiple pulmonary embolisms and pleurosis.  The pain has been ebbing and flowing even after being discharged from the hospital.  She’s not allowed to “overdo it” but also not allowed to “sit down all day.”  Overall we both feel things are improving however and her pain this week is less than last.

We had planned almost a year ago to go on a mission trip to Guatemala together, but with her condition occurring just one week before our scheduled departure, she had to give up her seat.  It was bittersweet however because we were able to bless someone else who took her spot who may not have been able to go otherwise (we don’t know, but we didn’t ask for a refund).  I still went and had a wonderful experience (and took over 600 pictures for my wife to enjoy) and look forward to going with my wife next time.

That’s all for this week..