MacroCASE- A DIY phone case to see, up close !

A detailed build procedure of this is already posted on Instructables

Last night while I was soldering a TSSOP Package on a home-etched board, i found it really difficult to see the joints whether they had soldered fine or whether i had a healthy track? I used my eye-loupe to see up close.The idea of using eye-loupe was initially introduced to my while my time at CEPD,NSIT .Ah! That was a beautiful solder joint. Something worth saving and sharing. So, I just held the loupe in front of the phone to click a picture and save it. I figured this could be useful in taking macroshots too.
umm.. Like this bajra seed

Bajra Grain under my #MacroCase ! #Macro #Photography #Lumia #Nokia #DIY

A photo posted by Rohit Gupta (@rohit7gupta) on Feb 2, 2015 at 5:28am PST

or this brush

Results of my #own #Macro #Lens #Setup for #Phones ! These are bristles of a Brush ! #DIY #Optics #PhoneMods #Lumia

A photo posted by Rohit Gupta (@rohit7gupta) on Jan 26, 2015 at 1:02am PST

These instances started to occour more frequently. You know the feeling when you figure out that one Juggad has solved a problem and you keep on using it again and again. Sometimes, even when not quite necessary (But for fun!)

So, why not combine the phone and this eye-loupe (sadly but aptly broken due to its relocation from Delhi) and make something permanent and then the MACROCase was made and it gave purpose to that ready to throw back cover that i just made useful.

You wont need much stuff to make it, just almost everything in the picture below is enough.

Building is not very difficult (See this Instructable). I also added a LED to precisely illuminate the scene just in case we went up too close. An assorted SMD switch was added near the camera button (Yes some Lumias have it :P). The whole wiring was done using copper tape. One can also use the wires. I preffered them as they are just stick.

And there I have my own modded phone case that helps me take nice pictures of the smaller things in life and help me pick numbers of those small components like resistors and chips.

This is how a SOIC looks like:

Stay tuned for an upcoming tutorial series on umm.. Lets keep it a secret till then. ! Until next time, (as John Green says) , Dont Forget to be awesome!



Kindify: Making PDFs readable on the @Amazon Kindle

Probably YOU too bought the kindle to read those pdfs that you having been stashing in your hard drive and wondering when you will get to read them. YOU too considered it would be fantastic to read them, a single device for only books. Consider this no calumny to the device. But PDFs are seriously not its cup of tea. Mercurial, YOU might be seeing the way the PDF is rendered on the crisp screen. All those toggling and finger gymnastics to get to the line. Dah! I too didn’t seem comfortable.

Next came the fever of converting them to funny formats like .mobi etc that made a nicely indented book look like a unorganised vomit of words.

I tried assiduously to somehow read and lost interest until I stumbled upon a slick python library pyPDF while solving a problem with printing PDFs.

Clip the borders and Light you shall see !

Kindle does automatically clip borders but it retains the primordial page number which limits the usability and since, it also indexes the page number anyway, even if I remove it using some python script it wont hurt.

So, This is what kindify does. Its a command line python utility that simply takes the pdf you intent to read and returns a PDF with the same name but -kindified appended to its file name to be read on the Kindle.

The only dependency is pyPDF .

Install PyPDF using pip :
pip install pypdf

Now clone the github repository:

git clone

Now, paste the PDF in the kindify directory and run the command:

python yourPdfName.pdf

An interactive menu will pop up with list of some famous book houses that have predefined cropping parameters. You can always choose the custom one to suit your needs or edit the predefined ones to suit your needs.

Lets see the magic in this sample from Orielly.
Before the script the PDF renders as follows:

Pre Script

And after the script

Post Script

There is a difference between the two images. Clearly the second one is a bit more clear.
So, yet again Python saves the day!



Noobs Guide to Pune Relocation !

It has almost been 8 months since i moved to Pune for Work from my hometown Delhi . Pune has a comparably benevolent weather as compared to Delhi. Summers are sweeter and so are winters. People of the city are great. They are quite helpful and humble. The city’s older areas have stark resemblance to Old Delhi and has lots of nice Forts, Temples, Museums and best of all eateries. Language is not a major issue as Marathi is somewhat similar to Hindi and most people understand Hindi but prefer to talk in Marathi. Changla !

I am writing is post mostly in a log format and will keep adding information as an when I get more.

If google sent you here, then probably you too are interested/moving to Pune soon.I hope you find the information useful. The post is divided into several important sections that will be updated from time to time. Lots of unorganized info to follow so lets get started:


This section deals with housing related things

  • If you are coming here for an IT company, most of them are concentrated in Hinjewadi and Wakad side of Pune, which geographically comes under Pimpri Chinchwad city of Pune Metropolitan Region. Then most popular housing locations will be Wakad, Hinjewadi, Vishal Nagar(Jagtap Dairy), Pimple Saudagar and Pimple Gurav.
  • Before you hit the land, searching for houses/flats , take note of the relocation policy of your company and make sure brokerage is covered.
  • Choose room-mates wisely. Initial judgements can be pretentious. You would certainly like to live with people on the same frequency as your’ s else, things could go wary.
  • Prefer searching online on sites like, MagicBricks etc first and prefer ones that are listed by Owners themselves to avoid steep brokerage , which is usually 1 month rent for 11 months agreement and 2 months rent for more than 11 months.
  • Most societies have a board Beware of Dogs right below a board that says Bachelors Not Allowed that pretty much sets their priorities straight. Dont go looking for flats in them.
  • Prefer on pakka agreement which requires you to go to the municipality office against a Notary Agreement. This depends on the landlord entirely. A pakka agreement is useful when you wish to own a vehicle in Pune where a notorized one bites the dust.
  • In case you need furniture, the market has a rental based system. You can buy cheap and flimsy furniture and once you leave you can return it for 50-60% its value. Mattresses are also available for cheap.
  • Some flats come with a furnished status but are usually 10k more than normal. If you plan to stay about 11 months then evaluate the economics. 10k* 11 = 1,11,000 INR. So, if the facilities are worth that even after depreciation. Go for it! else negotiate.
  • Chalk out a Room Mate Agreement like Sheldon ! It helps in long run.
  • D Mart is the best place to shop here.


This section deals with Transportation related things

Expect Nothing

  • The city’s transport is abysmal and has been so since ages. The Pune City is a bit better but PCMC is worse. Its like Noida of Pune. Auto walla’s make money on your sufferings.Prefer Ola Cabs !
  • You wont get a direct bus quite often. That was pretty irritating initially until i met Mr. Chaturvedi on the Rakshak Chowk Bus Stop one day. He his golden words were: “Only a few buses go to your destination directly, but many go that way !” Saying so he boarded his bus to Vishrantwadi leaving me with ideas ! So, the trick is use Here Transit to find buses that go in the direction you want and board them and deboard at the point they divert from your path and then reboard. So, if you want to go to FC Road. Take a bus for PMC/Station and use the above algo.
  • Get a 2 wheeler (I don’t have one though) ! OLX is great place to find or go to Rasta Peth for second hand stuff. Again you have to pay more to the brokers here, and a notorized agreement wont work !
  • There is also a local train service in Pune but is not preferred unless you wish to travel out of the city like going to Lonavala or Malavali etc.
  • If you wish to go to Mumbai ! Trust only Shivneri , Neeta has a terrible service everywhere and even to Ahemadabad (Been there Done that). You can also take shared cabs from Chinchwad Station. They charge about 200 – 250 bucks based on demand.


This section deals with Food related things

  • Everything is awesome! There are lot of options here. Dosa’s and Vada Pao’s are like staple street foods. The Standard Price for Vada Pao is 10 bucks and Dosa is 20- 30 bucks .
  • There are lot of good places in the city. Try GoodLuck Cafe’s Fruit Fanny,La Plaisir Patisserie & Bistro’s Chesse Cake, Garden Vada Pao , Marz-o-rin’s Sandwiches, Durvankur’s Thali or Sabutdana Wadi at Shaniwar Wada. Check Zomato for more listings. There is a Burger King as well in Koregaon Park where you get gross burgers and the infamous German Bakery is there too, near Osho Ashram
  • You can’t get on eating from these restaurants on daily basis so, for usual days you can either hire a cook. There is no dearth of them and they charge around 600-700 per head.
  • If cook is too much of a pain, go get a dabbawalla . He serves hot food in a tiffin at a reasonable price. Do ping me in the comments if you need any contacts. I have tried about 4 of them 😛


This section deals with Connectivity related things

  • Internet Broadband service is a booming business here and there are tons and tons of them. To name a few Spectranet, iConnect, Reliance, Tikona, Tata Docomo, Airtel etc.
  • Tikona is Ok and there are several breakdowns, but customer service is good.
  • Docomo is great but limited to certain societies only.
  • Reliance s*#ks as usual ! No support and useless Helplines, but its the cheapest.
  • iConnect and Sprectranet are good too but again limited to some societies.
  • As far as cellular connectivity is concerned. Voda>Idea>Airtel>Docomo


This section deals with Places to roam around

  • Shaniwar Wada
  • Dagdu Shet Ganpati Temple
  • Raja Dinakar Museum
  • Lonavala
  • Karla Caves , Malavali
  • Sinhagad Fort
  • Bike ride through Pashan Area
  • will add more as i visit

Hope people find this useful!

Cheers !!


Nokia 5110 GLCD and our friendly MSP430

Originally Posted Here

I had this Nokia LCD i picked up a while back. It is perfect when you want to play with graphics on a tiny lcd that comes from the good old days of Nokia’s Monochome days. Several might have spent days playing space invaders/snakes etc.

The time came when I was bored in my hotel room and I had it in my parts bin which i was carrying while moving from Delhi to Pune.

The LCD used a Phillips PCD 8544 Driver which communicates on SPI.The voltage levels are 2.7-3.3V happy for our MSP430.

NYC has a pretty nice explanation on how it works and how to play with it with MSP430 over on his blog

For TL:DR;

The LCD has the following pins to interface to:

Pin Number Pin Label Pin Function Input/Output? Notes
1 VCC Positive power supply Input Supply range is between 2.7V and 3.3V
2 GND Ground Input
3 SCE Chip select Input Active low
4 RST Reset Input Active low
5 D/C Mode select Input Select between command mode (low) and data mode (high).
6 DN(MOSI) Serial data in Input
7 SCLK Serial clock Input
8 LED LED backlight supply Input Maximum voltage supply is 3.3V.

The display is divided into 6 horizontal bands of 8 bits each (48) and 84 columns .

At a time you write to a single bank.

And you can continue to update only a single bank just in case you have dynamic data in that particular bank.

The communication is done using SPI.

The code that i used is based on RobG’s post.

It displays the temperature (from the internal sensor ofcourse!) and some static text

Connections are as follows(PORT1):

  • LCD5110_SCLK_PIN- BIT5
  • LCD5110_DN_PIN- BIT7
  • LCD5110_SCE_PIN- BIT0
  • LCD5110_DC_PIN- BIT1

Code is available here on as a gist .

When u are #Bored in a #Hotel room, Its time to #play with new #Hardware #MSP430 #DIY #Pune

Just incase you need to play more with graphics see this cool post by Sparkfun

If you have any difficulties post here in comments.

Fiddle – The DIYed Music System

Originally Posted here

Zu ZU ZU ZU ZU UUUU ..BR.BR.CHIK Thats how my old ‘Phillips All in One’ failed a couple of weeks back. It was a pretty archaic piece. All it could do was play Cassettes, Do Radio, Had an Aux In and offcourse the marketed CD Player with a segmented Display. But today most of the music is digital and hence Upgrade was necessary.

I was planning to buy one and browsing the estores but then then Makers Dilemma struck me.

Why Buy? When it can be Built!

And alas! I was fiddling with microcontrollers and SD Cards to make one. But couldnt get to the level i wanted. I wanted one that could:

  • Play MP3s
  • Radio
  • Aux -IN
  • Take SD Cards
  • Remotes will be good too.

Fitting such things in a project would rather be heavenly. I searched online for references and You have it boy! there is one ready to amplify (supply) module from our friends in China that does it all . See this . I had seen this in a Taxi (less formally called Gramin Seva) while commuting to college once, which made me realise that this would certainly be available in India. The next day i was in the market looking for it and I did source it for about 9 $ (INR 500 ) Now all i need to do is :

  1. Decipher the connections
  2. Build a power supply and Amplifier
  3. Find/Repurpose/Build a 2-Component (1-Woof and 1-Tweeter) speaker box
  4. Modify the box to fit all in
  5. Enjoy

Connections were pretty easy as the silkscreen had some references. It basically needs a 5V DC supply that’s the two pin connected on the left for and give stereo output using the 3 of 4 connectors on right (Right, Left and GND) and the last one is for the FM Antenna The Landscape The next part was testing if i will see the blue smoke of death as sometimes they can mess up with silkscreens too. FingersCrossed It worked fine and i was playing things off the USB straight away! USB Reading Now, the power supply and Amplifier. I used the omnipresent 7805 Regulator that could power the module easily as i estimated the current requirements to be around 250-300mA . The supply was going to be 12VDC due to the Amp i was building and hence, a heat sink was necessary. The Amp was build out of ST’s TDA2030 which is a 14W,voltage friendly, High Fidelity (Correct Portrayl of sound without much loss in clarity), Class AB , Mono Amplifier. The Application circuit works charm. So, i assembled them on a single perfboard and was short of one heat sink. I now had to decide. Who needs the heat sink badly? Demo runs showed TDA2030 needs it badly. Now using some thermal glue and nuts and bolts i screwed the heatsink to the TDA2030 and made a makeshift heat sink for 7805 Ortho View Circuit -Front Circuit- Back I heard a strange buzz sometimes in the background which was because of some filtering issues. Adding a snubber (filter) for AC frequencies (50Hz) that was almost gone. Used the 10k and 0.1uF combination. I had an Old but dis functional Column 2 component speaker, we had bought probably 12 years down the line. It was the ideal candidate for the purpose. Now opening and digging i found phenolic pcb with broken and corroded traces. I reworked them and the Woofer was working . (Oh! Yeah) Look at that Woofer I planned to fit the circuit inside the speaker box itself. For that i had to cut a small square pocket in the body for the module to peep out and the other electronics would be inside it. This was a bit more difficult than anticipated. After 2 hours and 2 broken saw blades , I was able to do this. The 2 hour , 2 broken blades cut Now it was assembling time. All Messed up After a few half hours, i got it all working.. No Buzz and all music! Charm Cheers! Rohit

Mozilla Maker Party Pune- Oh Yeah!

CAUTION:This post might sound different. Writing gears need some oiling.

I have moved to pune for work now and exploring the city has always been on my top agenda.  Pune has always been a happening city of makers. Mumbai is close-by and easily commutable. There are a lot of DIY/Maker start-ups here too and who doesnt know about IOTPune/DooThings. [A more detailed city review sometime later]

Bored one night,thinking how to spend the weekend more constructively, i started to scroll through the meetups around my place on weekend. The main priority was “Distance” . People living in Pune can relate. The city transportation is awful and a thread is always running in mind querying, “Dude! Will be able to walk back? ”

Thankfully, I noticed Mozilla is organizing a big event near my place and there is no better way to spend the weekend. After visiting, MakerFest last year, I have really started to like these events.Anool(Sir) from MakersAsylum/Wyolum was coming with his team and so was IOTPune and so was Mark Surman from Mozilla and so were many others.

I stared to plan how to go at Symbiosis Centre for Computer Research, Here Transit comes to the rescue and i boarded the bus and got down at a nearby bus stop. Initial (rather first day) experience has taught me that we should have “Say No to Autos” banner erected everywhere in the city. This is more important than Polybag Awareness etc. if thought in a more citizen centric way. [Weekly, Auto Rant Ends.Stay tuned for more]. I walked another 800m and there i was at the venue.

I entered the gate of the college. I was asked my credentials to check, if i registered. I had , so i went to see the workshops as they were listed on the website. I carried my OpenBadge [A no brains LED Matrix badge that i made for MakerFest but could’nt debug it completely] and some other projects too just in case someone like-minded crossed. Swag!

I went straight to the main hall and found it jam packed. So, i gave it a pass and went on visiting the booths. There were pretty interesting things showcased. Let start the Booth WATCH:

Makers Asylum was present with all guns blazing.

The Word Clock was at display.
Word Clock

Samarth from Melting Mints who works with the Makers Asylum showed some mind blowing applications of 3D Printing. This is a human skull printed from a scan.
3D Printed real scan

A 3D Printed Jet Engine for educative purposes.
3D Printed Jet Engine

A 3D printed Music Instrument and a Car that is so awesomely finished.
Does 3D Printing sound good?

When asked if he can print custom parts and more specifically 3D Printer parts. He said, Why not? Plus he does it economically too for students willing to start printing.

The Pipe Lamp
The #PipeLamp by @makersasylum at @Mozilla #MakerParty #Pune #India #MakerWeekend #Makers #DIY

They also had a few 3D pens for visitors to play with.
3Doodling at @mozilla #MakerParty #Pune at #MakersAsylum Stall ! #Event #Makers #Meetup

I managed to build this cube. Tch!
3Doodled Cube

In the next booth, An interesting thing was up for display. A Smartphone and a DSLR ? Connect the dots and you get the triggertrap.
It translates the audio out from a SmartPhone into DSLR jack signals to do interesting stuff. Intervalometers, Event activated clicks.. You say it and app does it all.

Trigger Trap

Trigger Trap Device

I even saw a PrintrBot METAL at Maker Party by Reed Robotics. It was smoooooth.
#ReedRobotics showcasing their #PrintrBotMetal at @mozilla #MakerParty in #Pune ! #3Dprinting #Maker #DIY #Wow

Ant Farm Robotics showcased their tiny WSN nodes that last for months on 2 AAs. The tiny ATTinY Runs a full blown RTOS and uses a TI Radio (RF2500/CC1100) to do the wireless part.
A #Tiny #Node of a #WSN that can have tons of uses showcased by #Antfarm #Robotics at @mozilla #MakerParty in #Pune #India The node uses at #AVR #Atiny micro with a #TI radio. Surprisingly the ATtiny runs a #RTOS that does all the #processing. #ConnectedI

Navstick were showcasing their next generation Autonomous navigation systems that can be used in Quads, RC Planes and IGVs etc.

A Quad with Navstick installed.

A RTF Bixler that too supports NavStick

They use a GoPro for Aerial Photography. Kewl!
Go Pro

A part of Navstick Hardware Family. Built in India

On the way to the second floor, I met Nishant Modak of IOT Pune.He too is(was) suffering from HP Laptop Syndrome and we talked a bit about his Makerspace in Pune called DoThings. He is doing a Pan America trip visiting MakerFaires with his team.
With Nishant Modak of IOT Pune

They have developed an awesome BLE Arduino Board that does great things. Its called Tah! They also have a campaign running on crowd supply. Get yours now!

Its #Arduino. Its #BLE and the best part its #Proudly #MadeInIndia ! Get the latest #Tah from @anujdeshpande , @nishantmodak and Team  Support their #Crowdsourcing #Campaign #Wow

He accompanied me to their booth where Anuj was giving a talk about Tah!
@anujdeshpande giving a #Talk on #InternetOfThings at @mozilla #MakerParty in #Pune #India

They do great things at their MakerSpace which is verrrrry far from my place(Remember the thread). I saw an Intel Galileo which they had brought.
Yes! Its Intel Galileo-Top

Yes! Its Intel Galileo-Bottom

It was time to go. As i traveled back, I thought of various things like Autowalas, 3D Printing , Makerfaires and of course Food.


The Hyderabad Quickie

I was recently in South Indian city of Hyderabad, the capital of Andhra Pradesh (Now reorganized into two states called Telangana and Seemandhra ). The city is know for its Biryani and Char Minar.

Due the schedule , i could only get a day (rather a combination of one evening and one morning ) to explore  the Nawabi city. Thankfully, the city has an awesome public transportation system with buses and feeders plying to every nook and corner of the city. On the iteneary, we planned to visit Golconda Fort, Hussain Sagar, Char Minar and adjoining area and Banjara Hills.

Luckily, we were based around Medhipatnam area, which provided easy access to most of the above places.

The weather here was a bit cooler and moist than my home Delhi, which was literally breaking all time temperature records. Hyderabad is a densely populated city. Unlike most south indian cities, due to the large Muslim population who speak Urdu, there is no problem for a Hindi speaking tourist here. The state predominantly speaks Telugu and has some “super-awesome-Newton-defying” movies,some of which i watched during the bus route from Chennai to Hyderabad.

#Hyderabad #Ramzan #Mosque #India #Travel

Since, Golconda was nearest , we boarded the bus that dropped us at the gate of Golconda Fort. The Fort seemed massive. It seemed to have some features of both Hindu and Muslim architectural elements which confused me about its origins.At the entry, there is an interesting demonstration, that a couple of guides will give you like a “30- Day Anti virus Trial” . In the middle of section after the entry, when you clap , a lot of beats are generated that can be heard at different strategic parts of the Fort that were used as a signal. But when you move a few steps away from the centre, no beats are heard.

Some pretty cool sound engineering from the past. These are generated due to these structures on the roof above.

Beat Generation Mechanism at Golconda Fort

We bought a paper guide and started following the tour it promised. As we moved we saw this place where soldiers used to rest and take positions.Quite a popular picture spot it seems.

Golconda Fort

Golconda Fort

Golconda Fort

As we moved on, we approached a point where we had to start our journey of 350 stairs to reach to the top of the fort.

I saw some interesting thing on the stairs. There were marks on the stairs with a yellow background and red finger marks on all of them.

Stairs at Golconda Fort

When asked from a passer-by he explained that this is a part of ritual performed here as there is a temple on the top.

As we climbed, the air started to get a bit cooler and fresher. We could see the Fort is mostly in ruins and most of the things that it presumably had are only in books or in the guides like the one i had in my hand.

As we moved up stairs, we saw a mosque which was closed to visitors. There was also a jail which has an interesting story. It is said that, there the Munshi ( The Head of Accounts) of the king was once held there because he paid from the coffers to help build a temple without the kings permission. Then after several years, God came in king’s dream and asked him to free him. He was freed that very night. There is a temple there now.

Mosque at Golconda Fort

Next, we moved to the top most point we could see the bigger picture. Most structures were in shambles. Here is the panorama from the top most point .

Golconda Fort Panaroma

View From Golconda Fort

From the top, we could see the entire city of hyderabad. We caught a person vandalising the walls and asked him to stop. He ran away, but as we were decending we saw him writing with a charcoal on the walls of the place where the king’s Darbar meetings were held.

Golconda Fort

Mass Vandalisation at Golconda Fort

As we descended, we could see ruined arches and rooms that once housed the dignitaries of the king.

Golconda Fort

Golconda Fort-Arches

Golconda Fort

Below, is the room where the queen(S) used to live.

Golconda Fort

Next we moved to the place where artillery was stored. These large iron balls were propelled by cannons apart from the famous hot oil protection scheme to save the fort. I remember, the hot oil was also used to protect Kangra Fort, in Himachal Pradesh.

Artillery at Fort

After this fort walk, we exited the complex and moved to the Bus Stand and sipped a couple of tender coconuts while we waited for the bus.

Next we moved to the Hussain Sagar Lake, Again we got a direct bus leading to the lake’s gate. Like the fort, the lake was huge. So, huge that there were ferries running in the lake to take visitors to the large statue of Lord Buddha. There is a small amusement park that has been set up for kids.

Hussain Sagar Lake

The sunset near the boarding point.

Sunset at Hussain Sagar Lake

Hussain Sagar Lake

The ferries take 5-10min and drop you at the Statue where you can stay as long as you want and catch any ferry back. The statue is decorated with beautiful lights.

Hussain Sagar Lake

Buddha Statue in the middle of Hussain Sagar Lake

After spending some time there, we made a quick exit and caught the next bus to the Epic Charminar. With thoughts of Biriyani for which i have been running almost empty stomach  i boarded the bus.It took us about 30 minutes to reach. A couple of minutes of walk, an there stood the Charminar.

Busy Streets near Char Minar

This was not the correct time to visit the place. It was jam packed. The streets has shops selling pearls, fruits, clothes and bakery items. We moved closer.

Char Minar

The crowd density increased. We could now see the Char minar a bit clearly, The site was highly polluted. The vehicles were running too close to the monument and the pollutants were quite evidently damaging the monument.



We say an interesting site that depicted, the diversity in our country. A Temple inside a Char Minar. #ProudIndian

It happens only in India. A Temple in a Mosque

The issue was Biriyani. We searched the famous shops but none of them served Vegetarian Biriyani. One person suggested us, to go to a shop down the lane and supposedly the only one to serve veg biriyani. Ah! Delighted 🙂

Hyderabadi Biryani (VEG) :)

Biriyani is like pulao but with an overdose of clove, cinammon and some secret ingredients . After having this delicious Biriyani, we started our way back to the Hotel. On the way we stopped at Banjara Hills, Its the CP of Hyderabad, picked up a Sundae and headed back.

If you visit the CharMinar area and Banjara Hills in the order, you would see how the country is moving forward, Preserving the culture and the soul of its existence as well as We are going in hand with the more developed outlook and are leading the world in some things!

Cheers 🙂


#NowShipping- Micro Adjustable Breadboard Supply V2

Ahh! I am back ! I have been travelling a lot and quenching the inner travel monster in me. According to my calculations largely based on GPS i have done 6444kms in the span of 8 days this month. That an average of 800kms per day. I covered states from Tamil Nadu in the south to Jammu and Kashmir in the north. The travel bug is now on a hangover of sorts ! Quite a while back, i made an adjustable, tiny-form-factor,no space wasting supply as you can see here . I really loved that project and went on to make it a bit better. Since, i wanted to keep that form factor intact. I went on and invested in getting the PCB made professionally. It turned out great! I added the two things to enhance usability :

  1. Ability to measure current on the fly without messing( Ah! Argentina..:/ ) with  whats connected to the supply.
  2. Provided some pads on which you can use a multimeter to set voltage without poking into the breadboard.

Here is the final board and the kit-assembly sequence.

Kit Contents

Kit Contents

A diode on the bottom! Do'nt worry it sticks out and doesnt hinder!

A diode on the bottom! Do’nt worry it sticks out and doesnt hinder!

Pads to measure voltage! The Headers poke into the power rail on the breadboard!

Pads to measure output voltage!
The Headers poke into the power rail on the breadboard!

Supports standard DC jack with polarity protection

Supports standard DC jack with polarity protection

The pink jumper can actually be removed and an ammeter can be connected to measure current!

The pink jumper can actually be removed and an ammeter can be connected to measure current!

The completed board

The completed board

Aligning the regulator with the silkscreen

Aligning the regulator with the silkscreen

Heat Sink

Heat Sink

Heat Sink Compound

Heat Sink Compound

Just in-case anyone is interested ! I am providing a DIY kit around it that is available here. Free Shipping(India Only)Yeah! Only additional tools required are just nippers( micro-shear)/cutters and soldering iron+solder. Cheers, Rohit

The Small Solution to the BreadBoard Power Problem

We all use breadboards for prototyping. We all use DC Adapters to add power to them. But i used to do this by simply taping the wires to the DC Jack and then use it on the breadboard. This was always loose and clumsy and i always has to find out the polarity as some manufacturers are smart to not ground the outer shell. I even blew an IC this way once, when it was taken for granted. Some manufacturers do keep the outer part (shell) as positive while ‘most’ keep it negative!


So, I found out a better way to make breadboards compatible with DC jacks and polarity issues. This is small board with headers that plug into the breadboard. It has a diode to make sure nothing flows reverse and a small 0.1uF cap to provide some rudimentary decoupling.

I quickly designed the board,etched it and filed it to shape.

Board design

Board design



Before the bath

Before the bath

On the breadboard

On the breadboard

And Tada! I have one little board that has ‘inherited’ two worries ! Two things of the “To-Worry-about” list 😀
This shall end the biggest #issues while using #breadboards #DCJacks and #PolarityCheers!

CoffeeBreak Tutorial #4: Windows Phones on Ubuntu 12.04LTS


I have a Nokia Lumia 520 device that fails to enumerate as a USB Storage on my Ubuntu 12.04 LTS desktop. Things are not as plug and play it seems. I have been using the skydrive( *cough* OneDrive ) route to access media for a few weeks until today i sat down to fight the issue Running..



nokia1This means the Linux knows that we have a nokia mobile phone! But it doesnt provide a file access to it.

A little dig shows that ‘modern’ ‘smartphones’ use MTP (Media Transfer Protocol) to transfer data ! Its a modified Picture Transfer Protocol.. Ubuntu 12.04 has no ‘native’ support but Ubuntu 13.04 does have it.

So, 2 options :

  1. Install 13.04 (rather upgrade)
  2. Find a work around

Well it turns out there is a PPA called GVFS (Genome Virtual File system)-MTP( Media Transfer Protocol) that can be installed to help nautilus get the device! This surfaced when some android devs were getting issues working with MTP on Android 4.0+ .(Does anyone care about WP8 anyway? )

The commands/steps are:

  1. sudo add-apt-repository ppa:langdalepl/gvfs-mtp
  2. sudo apt-get update
  3. Run the update manager and install update
  4. Restart
  5. Plug the Lumia
  6. It must show!

So, i followed the above link and after a bit of restarting the device finally showed up!


But i was not quite able to access it as it failed to mount the device repeatedly. I replugged it a couple of times and went to Terminal and typed natilus and then it got mounted! I was able to access the SD Card and phone memory without issues.


The read(copy from device) and write( paste to device) both operations worked!

nokia3But there was no thumbnail preview ! If you want to view an image just copy paste it somewhere outside the device to view it.

Hope this helps the small niche of people who have a WP8 based phone and have an Ubuntu System !