January 20, 2012

Mechanism Of PenDrive

USB Flash Drives or commonly called as Pen Drives are popular removable storage media having a storage capacity up to 256 GB. They are preferred over the other conventional storage devices like floppy disks or CD ROMs as they are faster, smaller and have a longer life span.

The internal circuitry of the pen drive draws power from the computer for its operation. They have an integrated USB interface to communicate with the computer. The important parts of the pen drive are USB connector, crystal oscillator, memory chips and a controller to interact with the PC. The pen drive used here has storage capacity of 4GB.
A printed circuit board carrying the circuit elements and a USB connector is shown in the above image. The circuitry is protected inside a pair of plastic cases (connected to each other by means of mechanical hooks) which can be carried in a pocket or a key chain. The USB connector is protected by either retracting into the body or by covering by a removable lid. There are two chips, one is the USB controller and the other is the flash memory chip, which are discussed in detail later in the article.

The IC SK6211 shown in the above image is a controller which facilitates the data communication between the PC/Laptop and the flash memory (EEPROM) of the pen drive. It is fully compatible with USB 2.0 protocols and USB Mass storage class V1.0 specification. The devices like memory card, hard disk, pen drive etc with high data storage capacity fall under the category of Mass Storage Devices. In order to communicate data with devices falling under this category the USB has defined a set of protocols. The operating system provides inbuilt libraries to handle such devices thereby preventing the need of any external drivers to be installed before using these devices. This controller IC can interface with all kind of NAND EEPROM.

The second chip which is shown in the image above is a NAND type flash memory which has fast read, write and erase cycles. The data is stored in memory cells of the EEPROM, known as “floating gate transistors” - a regular metal-oxide field effect transistor (M0SFET) consisting three terminals - source, gate and drain. The storage capacity of this memory is 2GB. There is another similar chip with storage capacity of 2GB on the other side of the PCB, thereby making the total capacity of the pen drive to be 4GB.  

 The above image shows the other side of PCB. The second memory chip, a crystal oscillator and a number of surface mount components are soldered which are required for the operation of the pen drive.
The crystal oscillator produces the clock signal for the correct operation of the device. The crystal oscillator used here runs at a clock frequency at 12 MHz.

© 2012 Electroclub

January 17, 2012

Project intends to advance robotic surgery

Three of the Raven II surgical robots (Photo: UW)

A couple of years ago, the Willow Garage robotics company gave ten of its PR2 robots away to deserving research groups. The idea behind the project was that these groups would use the PR2s for robotics research, then share their discoveries with each other, thus advancing the field farther than would be possible if they each had to build their own unique robots from scratch. Now, a similar but unrelated project is underway, and this time the robots are designed specifically to perform surgery.
The National Science Foundation-funded project involves seven identical Raven II surgical robots, which were designed in a joint effort between the University of Washington (UW) and the University of California, Santa Cruz. At the end of this month, five of the robots will be shipped from UW to medical robotics researchers at Harvard University, Johns Hopkins University, the University of Nebraska, UC Berkeley, and UCLA. The other two robots will remain at UW and UC Santa Cruz.
There are reportedly already four other universities waiting to get their own Raven IIs.
Each system consists of a two-armed surgical robot, a guiding video camera, and a surgeon interface system (which could be located far from the robot). They are run by software created using the popular Robot Operating System, which should allow them to be compatible with many other robotic devices. All of the systems are open-source, and will be linked with one another via the internet. In this way, the groups can work together on collaborative experiments, and share data on the new hardware, software and algorithms that they each develop.
"These are the leading labs in the nation in the field of surgical robotics, and with everyone working on the same platform we can more easily share new developments and innovations," said UW's Blake Hannaford.
The UW video below shows the Raven II in motion, in the lab.

© 2012 Electroclub

January 15, 2012

Who actually invented the computers, Not Charles babbage?

This is a cool debating content below which could make the invention and inventor of computers more clearer.

We all know about computers just by handling it in day-to-day life but we wont search, who has actually invented it. There are so many issues on computer invention either of Billgates?  Steve jobs? Some saying savy? Or Alan turing? Konrad Zuse who was created something called “Z1” credited as "first freely programmable computer" but probably all above said prove wrong there were so many question on discussion". 

Whether eccentric scientist charles babbage conceived of first programmable computer in 1830s, a hundred years before the idea was put forth in modern form by alan turing?" but of course charles babbage born in 1791 died in 1871 made an attempt during first half of nineteenth century in designing kind of mechanical calculator named it to be difference engine to compute various set of numbers but there  is confusion turing or zuse is the true father of modern computer.  babbages, mall-based chain that eventually merged with software, etc. but before his company went bankrupt,  was picked by bernes & noble's leonard riggio folded eventually into gamestop chain. babbages never built  difference engine eventually because of cost overruns and political disagreements but he had bigger plans to construct analytical engine. A monster machine occupies size of a room with capacity of its own cpu, memory and enable to programmable with punch cards but he never had build whatever he imagined before his death. 

The problem here to conclude is: where the difference engine plan were complete, where analytical engine were a work-in-progress.  When we enter science museum, London which plans to construct babbage's analytical engine after century-and-a half and solution of work in porogress hurdle by putting plans online succeeding year by inviting passarby to weigh in. but one of important question the project's designed to answer whether babbage would have been able to actually build it at all.  if we suspect answer is "yes, he could be" it could challenge the prevailing academic belief that turing, not babbage,  designed first general purpose computer and while today question is completely academic, the machine's con struction, assuming it really is doable, should prove fascinating to watch what would be next.

© 2012 Electroclub

Robots became Guards in Prison

The word robot, has always been a term, which naturally stimulates the excitation of engineers. We all know that robots are replacing humans in almost every venture, now they are also going to guard the prisons of South Korea. As the country tries to lead the robotic industry, it has taken a step further to get the help of the new droid to strengthen its pace. The ministry of justice sponsored project, the robots, guards measuring 150 cms in height are going guard prisons of Pohang and South Korea form march next year. The prison plans to introduce them properly if the month-long trial is a success.

A whooping amount of $850000 has spent on these robots make the human guards to concentrate on the rehabilitating the offenders. The robots have been installed with a host of sensors to keep an eye on the behavior of the criminals and also the conditions of the cell.

“Unlike CCTV that just monitors cells through screens, the robots are programmed to analyze various activities of those in prison and identify abnormal behavior,” Prof. Lee Baik-chul of Kyonggi University, who is in charge of the 1 billion-won ($863,000) project, told the Journal.

The robots can also work as a communication channel when inmates want to contact guards in an emergency.
According to Mr. Lee, prison officers have welcomed the idea because the robots can potentially reduce their workload, particularly at night.

And how about the reaction of inmates?

“That’s a concern. But the robots are not terminators. Their job is not cracking down on violent prisoners. They are helpers. When an inmate is in a life-threatening situation or seriously ill, he or she can reach out for help quickly,” he said.

Mr. Lee said his team is putting the final touches to the appearance of the robots to make them look more “humane and friendly” to those behind bars.

© 2012 Electroclub

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