SD Card “disk box”

Its getting colder outside and its time for cool retro projects!

Today I had a really fine idea on how to better store all the SD cards I have lying around here on my desk…

With lots of retro projects using SD card as primary storage media I have lots of them here on my desk (e.g. for sd2iec, Chameleon 64, some Raspberry Pis, Arduinos …). All are usually shipped with their crystal plastic cases that also take up space…In daily use most of them are piled on the desk and the cases fly around somewhere else. So I really needed something to clean up this mess a bit.

Today, I copied some 5.25 inch diskettes for my real C64 machine and while storing the floppy disks back in the floppy disk box, I had an idea… why no build a disk box for SD cards? 🙂

After some hours of paper work the job was done:

If you want to build your own SD card disk box: Here are some hints:

  • Basic housing was the packaging of a SAM 256 uController from Olimex
  • I cut away the top cover and used the spare cardboard to model the separator in the middle
  • Finally I completely covered the box with self-adhesive plastic foil (Here in germany its called d c fix)
  • The foldaway dividers were cut out from SD card packaging (its a mixture of cardboard and plastic foil and its really durable) and stuck into a ground plate so you can move them a bit.

Now, its on to you! Prepare your scissors and start the paper hacking today 🙂

BTW: Another retro paperware project fits very well with this project: There is a thread on Forum64 that describes how to build scale replicas of 5.25 disk sleeves for your SD cards. See this thread for details and also downloadable PDFs with the sheets of construction paper…

vamos runs on Windows now

User kyberias was so kind to port the native part of vamos (the m68k emulation) to Windows and send me his patches for inclusion. The port is now included in my source tree and Windows user can now enjoy using vamos on their platform, too. Have a look at the README.WIN for build instruction.

With Mac OS X and Linux/*nix support available since the beginning, vamos is now available on all major platforms.. Yay!

Build an Arduino-based Temperature Logger

Ok, this time its no retro project, but a rather useful tool to measure your temperatue at home over a longer period of time. I had trouble with my heating devices at home and so I wanted to record and present temperature curves of various rooms to show that something is wrong…

This was a friday night project and done in a few hours (some might call it a hardware hack – but it works fairly stable for weeks now!). All you need is an Arduino 2009 Board, a Logger Shield, a push button, 2 1k resistors, and a DS18S20 temperature sensor. With these ingredients I was able to build the following compact temperature logger:

Arduino and Logger Shield: Temperature Logger

The logger samples the temperature every 10s and gives you a digital temperature value with +/-0.5 degree Celsius precision. It has a RTC (real-time-clock) on board that time stamps every measurement. Addionally, the SD card allows you to store the temperature samples in log files.

The logger has two modes of operation: Either directly read the temperature via a Mac/PC connected via the virtual serial port available on USB or write a temperature log onto the SD card. The latter mode allows you to use the device stand alone in any room without the need to directly connect your computer.

Read on for the full build and usage instructions…

Continue reading