I need help!

Thread Starter


Joined Nov 24, 2008
At least that's what my wife says.:confused:

Okay, so this is not the typical plea for help here. I have a couple of designs I'm working on and I want to make them better. These designs are prototyping tools for the MCU game. Specifically one for PICAXE and one for Ardunio Mini/Mini Pro.

What's in this for you? You'll get free stuff. I will send you one of my designs and all I ask is for maybe a hour or so of your time to answer a few questions about how you do things now, and to evaluate the tool.

What's in it for me? With your help I'll learn how to do things right.

So, I need 4 people to make this work. Two of you will have fairly current experience with 8, 14 or 20 pin PICAXE MCUs. One will get a kit, the other will get a fully assembled board, so let me know your preference. The other two people will have fairly current experience with Arduino Minis or Mini-Pros. Again, one will get a kit, the other will get a fully assembled board. All 4 of you have a good depth of MCU knowledge/experience, are AAC regulars (400+ posts), are detail oriented and are willing to be really honest with your evaluation.

The process is as follows.

PM me if you are interested and let me know;

  1. Your MCU experience (just a single sentence)
  2. Whether you want to participate with the PICAXE tool or with the Arduino Mini tool.
  3. Whether you'd like a kit or a fully assembled board.
Then I will send you the list of questions regarding your current methods ( kinda what you use, how you use it, what you like, what you don't like, etc..). If there are more than 4 wanting to participate I'll look at your responses to the questions and your contribution to the AAC community and Based on that I will choose the 4 evaluation participants. I'll send you the tools and once you receive them you give them a workout and let me know what you like about and don't like about them and any advice you might have on how to make them better.

How does that sound?:)
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Joined Feb 19, 2009
Do you want us to debug/write code, or evaluate the code that is loaded once assembled?

Been working with PICs since erasing them with UV. I have ICD 2 and 3, PicKit 2 and 3, good knowledge of BASIC, great knowledge of C. I help kids get into uC programming and robotics at a couple high schools.

Have a few scopes and logic analyzer. What will I be testing/trying to break (That's the testing I'm used to having to do)

I'd be interested in the PICAXE kit or fully assembled, whatever is left, I guess. When you say "kit", does that include all the parts?

Some experience with Arduino, but haven't really made a new project using Arduino in over 6 months, so debugging it would be a tad more difficult, will try if that is last available.

I can give you a UPS Shipping code to send to me on my dime as well.


Joined Oct 29, 2009
I have about a year or so experience with PICs. Built a few projects including a solar lighting system. I would be interested.

Thread Starter


Joined Nov 24, 2008
@ Georacer - Sure. Is the mail service in Greece reliable (unlike Italy)? If it is, then I'd have no problem.

@ thatoneguy - I don't need any code per-se. I imagine you'll have to get a PICAXE chip and write something in order to see if everything is working and how it works. Any code you do write would be yours and I would never have to see it.

@ spinnaker - sounds good.

@All - so, shall I send each of you the initial questions?

These tools are small boards that are aimed at taking the 'kludge' out of working with PICAXE and Arduino Mini/Pro Mini MCUs. My idea in designing them was to reduce the time and error in the initial set-up before programming the chips can begin. I'll communincate more about the philosophy behind them to the group that volunteer.
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Thread Starter


Joined Nov 24, 2008
I'm confused as to what it is your asking of the volunteers.
I need to know what you are using now. I have a questionnaire for that. Then, I'll send you a development board that (I hope) is desinged to improve the process. You get to play with it then tell me what you think. For your trouble, you get to keep the development board.

I estimate the whole effor would be around and hour, unless you want teh kit. Then it might take you a little while to assemble it too.

So the net-net of all this is, you get a new dev board for your time, and I get to know how to make better designs.


Joined Apr 2, 2009
Not at all.

Is the mail service reliable in paradise?

I'll send you the questionnaire.
It get's here nevertheless...remember the treadmill belt I wanted, I got a refund and the belt came after two months...:D

Send me one. kit or not don't care, I can solder almost anything but a BGA chip. :cool:

Thread Starter


Joined Nov 24, 2008
Okay, I have all the folks I need, so it's closed for new applicants.

Georacer - Rduino Mini tool, kit
Byron - PICAXE type II tool, kit
Chips - Arduino Mini tool, assembled
Nerdegutta - PICAXE type I tool, assembled
thatoneguy - PICAXE type II tool, assembled
Rifaa - PICAXE type I tool, assembled

The PICAXE type II tool and the Arduino Mini tool have gone to manufacturing and should be ready to send out in about 2 weeks.

The PICAXE type I tools are ready to go, so Nerdegutta and Riffa, I will send you a PM asking for a mailing address.

Thanks everyone!