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Frankenstein's Fix: Dashboard Demolition
Engineering Investigations  
10/23/2013   4 comments
Many modifications to the instrument cluster of a Ford Focus make its owner much happier.
Frankenstein's Fix: Growing New Life
Engineering Investigations  
10/23/2013   8 comments
While inspecting a rack, Grover discovers a new life form growing from a battery pack.
Frankenstein's Fix: Virtual Insanity
Engineering Investigations  
10/23/2013   1 comment
Experiments in virtualizing pay off, till they perform too well.
Frankenstein's Fix: Power-Hungry USB
Engineering Investigations  
10/22/2013   1 comment
A power-hungry USB data-acquisition device gets an overhaul.
Frankenstein's Fix: You Lazy Motor!
Engineering Investigations  
10/21/2013   4 comments
It took years to find the odd cause of this motor's laziness.
Frankenstein's Fix: Immaculate Imaging
Engineering Investigations  
10/21/2013   5 comments
A plague of image artifacts is resolved and a patent rises from the ruins.
Frankenstein's Fix: Rebuilding the TV Lightning Killed
Engineering Investigations  
10/21/2013   2 comments
Dave's grandparents lost their TV to lightning. He resurrected it thoroughly.
Frankenstein's Fix: Relay Reanimation
Engineering Investigations  
10/18/2013   8 comments
Like Frankenstein, Richard breathes new life into relays by using scavenged parts.
Frankenstein's Fix: Power Supply Parables
Engineering Investigations  
10/18/2013   6 comments
The original designer of this power supply should have been promoted into management before he/she could design any more disasters.
Frankenstein's Fix: Misbehaving S-Meters
Engineering Investigations  
10/17/2013   2 comments
Glen gets a pleasant surprise when he finds his redesign of a Heath Kit's circuit had become official documents!
Frankenstein's Fix: The Unrestricted Lawnshredder
Engineering Investigations  
10/17/2013   4 comments
When young Jack found his lawnmower overpowered by a jungle of a yard, he set his sights on the motor's governor.
Frankenstein's Fix: Troublesome Psychedelics
Engineering Investigations  
10/15/2013   14 comments
A psychedelic light-show gets quirky and Glen has to figure out why.
Frankenstein's Fix: Global Telecommunications Breakdown
Engineering Investigations  
10/15/2013   10 comments
When the entire Middle East loses telephone service, Bob has to take charge and work blind.
Frankenstein's Fix: The Ghost in the Proton Pack
Engineering Investigations  
10/14/2013   6 comments
Peculiarities in the LED display of a prop proton pack nearly drive an engineer insane.
Frankenstein's Fix: Resurrecting a Massacred Organ
Engineering Investigations  
10/11/2013   18 comments
A challenge to clean up a mess and repair a broken organ paid off.
Frankenstein's Fix: Dirty Signals
Engineering Investigations  
9/26/2013   16 comments
When a clock counts too fast, a dirty signal is to blame. How did Will Sweatman solve it?
Frankenstein's Fix: When in Doubt, Try Banging on It!
Engineering Investigations  
9/26/2013   13 comments
After all these years, at the height of our technology lies a simple solution to many problems: Blunt force.
Frankenstein's Fix: The Tricky Toroid
Engineering Investigations  
9/26/2013   3 comments
Using a logic analyzer to investigate the problem, an engineering technician finds a simple way to meet the design requirements for an early RF device.
Frankenstein’s Fix: The Haunted Radio Station
Engineering Investigations  
9/25/2013   12 comments
An engineer struggles through the night to fix a radio station's transmitter as the townspeople begin gathering, pitchforks at the ready.
Frankenstein’s Fix: Up the Creek With a Useless Product Manual & No Code
Engineering Investigations  
9/25/2013   2 comments
Buying used signs online seemed like a good deal, until engineers realized there were no instructions included.
Frankenstein's Fix: Designing Speed Controllers for R/C Boats
Engineering Investigations  
9/12/2013   1 comment
After seeing a mess of wires, intrepid George set out to make a better motor speed controller for radio-controlled boats.
Frankenstein's Fix: No Smoking in the Emergency Room
Engineering Investigations  
9/2/2013   23 comments
When a piece of medical equipment turns out to be a fire hazard, a quick fix by an engineer on the hot seat saves the day.
10 useful science and engineering search engines
Engineering Investigations  
6/18/2013   23 comments
Use these tools to hunt up standards, circuit diagrams, chemical properties, and more.
Piezoelectric straw-covered skyscraper harvests energy
Engineering Investigations  
5/30/2013   1 comment
Strawscraper, the invention of Swedish architecture firm Belatchew Arkitekter, aims to extend a building in Stockholm with an energy-producing outer shell made of piezoelectric straws that can recover wind energy.
Industrial robot helps researchers
Engineering Investigations  
5/10/2013   Post a comment
Rethink Robotics is giving researchers an ability to get up close and personal with its Baxter industrial robot with a new research version they can use to build custom software and applications.
IP Nightmares
Engineering Investigations  
4/9/2013   6 comments
While we accept the necessity of IP, everyone seems to have plenty of grips as well. What are your biggest complaints about IP developers or users?
What were they thinking: no transparency
Engineering Investigations  
4/5/2013   3 comments
I am getting on my soapbox today to complain about the way tickets are sold for large concerts. This may not be true where you are but this is the way it is done in Portland…
My MP3 player won't shut up
Engineering Investigations  
3/26/2013   13 comments
Thanks to some type of hardware/software glitch, my inexpensive MP3 player just won't shut down.
What were they thinking: A clock
Engineering Investigations  
3/22/2013   18 comments
It is amazing what some people consider simple or complex. While time is not the most rational number system and decimal might be easier, this patent has another idea…
Embedded vision: Is your smartphone watching you?
Engineering Investigations  
3/18/2013   11 comments
The new Galaxy S4 smartphone from Samsung will be able to use its camera to watch you watching it.
Un-compromising a compromised iPhone?
Engineering Investigations  
3/5/2013   4 comments
My friend has an iPhone, which he believes has been compromised.
PCBs help take the measure of Mars
Engineering Investigations  
3/1/2013   1 comment
Determining thermal effects on general purpose pc boards is tough, but it’s another story to control PCB reliability in mission critical applications where device failure is not an option.
What were they thinking: Can a mouse be used for that
Engineering Investigations  
3/1/2013   8 comments
Crazy patents are often the work of a single person who wants to become a mad inventor, but large corporations do it as well…
What were they thinking: the iWatch is coming
Engineering Investigations  
2/22/2013   1 comment
OK, so perhaps that is a little premature, but Apple thinks the idea has enough merit that they have filed a patent about it. At the moment it has not be granted, but it does provide some interesting insights…
What were they thinking: heated glasses
Engineering Investigations  
2/15/2013   19 comments
I love it when something thinks they are being really clever and yet it is also clear that they don’t have a clue. How many ways would this invention not work…
USB 3.0 makes itself right at home
Engineering Investigations  
1/31/2013   1 comment
The latest connectivity technology promises to revolutionize electronics in the home.
Dis-ARMing the data center – Separating myth from reality
Engineering Investigations  
12/12/2012   11 comments
ARM keeps talking the microserver talk, but when is it going to start walking the walk? And is it even worth it?
Circuit protection; shock tactics in real time
Engineering Investigations  
11/12/2012   2 comments
When you’re dealing with something as volatile as electricity, it’s always better to be safe than sorry. At least, that’s what fuse maker Littelfuse believes, and the reason why the firm is putting its not so little weight behind an initiative that promises to deliver rapid responses, in real time, to engineers working on designs requiring circuit protection.
Prototyping your way to shorter design cycles
Engineering Investigations  
10/30/2012   Post a comment
This articles contains two case studies where design teams on different continents were able to reduce their design cycle time. In both of these examples, the design teams used virtual prototyping and accurate models...
Simulations show pilots should steer clear of wind farms
Engineering Investigations  
9/6/2012   20 comments
Questioning the risk of wind farms for ultra-light aircraft, researchers have developed a simulation tool that can compute how power plants influence aircraft at various wind speeds and wind directions.
How well does Gorilla Glass work?
Engineering Investigations  
9/6/2012   6 comments
Most smart phones these days come equipped with Gorilla Glass - a scratch resistant and toughened glass. But exactly how tough is it? Can you safely drop your device? What about all the shrapnel in my pockets - will they scratch or damage my beloved smart phone?
Controlling noise – the great engineering challenge for wireless devices
Engineering Investigations  
9/4/2012   4 comments
Increased RF design complexity makes it almost impossible to fully contain noise and emissions that impact transmission and reception.
iPhone iOS6 finds better connection when Wi-Fi is overwhelmed
Engineering Investigations  
8/30/2012   13 comments
Rumor has it that Apple’s new iOS 6 operating system, due to launch in the next quarter, will contain a feature that keeps users connected to the best possible network at all times.
Opinion: Security is the Achilles heel
Engineering Investigations  
8/16/2012   9 comments
One of the first changes that must occur is in the way Internet of Things System-on-Chip devices are designed and manufactured…
Deconstructing complex semiconductors layer by layer
Engineering Investigations  
7/5/2012   4 comments
Recently, our sister company UBM TechInsights delivered a webinar on how it goes about doing the magic it does to uncover the secrets within semiconductors and other bits of integrated circuitry used in all the devices we’ve come to know and love.
Multi-Platform Integration
Engineering Investigations  
4/19/2012   8 comments
Balloons, they seem like a simple product ... that’s what I use to think before I was asked to build a machine to make foil balloons.
Controller PCB problem solved
Engineering Investigations  
1/24/2012   7 comments
Problem with a controller PCB causes significant yield loss at an off-shore drive assembly plant and Ravinder is sent in to investigate...
Wire we fixing this
Engineering Investigations  
1/19/2012   5 comments
Dwight has a story from his academic years and work done at a company that "built just about anything."
HMI squeeze
Engineering Investigations  
1/18/2012   6 comments
Problems with the human-machine interface on a Korean drilling platform have the users stumped ... until they call in the engineer, of course.
Liquidated damages
Engineering Investigations  
1/11/2012   10 comments
Sometimes it's necessary to resort to a bit of stealth work to preserve your reputation...
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