Max posted an innocent enough blog post. If you have a design idea for the Altium NanoBoard, send me an email. Maybe, if you are lucky, you can win one of the boards. I thought "Why not? Email is free."
When Max's reply came back with the title "CONGRATULATIONS, you won!!!" my first thought was wow, great, yippie, I am a winner of cool tech, lucky me. My second thought was "Wait, someone will want me to actually do something with this NanoBoard. Oh no!"
The object of the contest is this article, all about using the NanoBoard and Altium Designer. With a wife, four year old and brand new six month old twins at home, plus a day job, I must be crazy to take on a side project. But then I reasoned, I am the perfect man for the job. I do embedded software at Xilinx as my day job. I have done embedded hardware and FPGAs at previous jobs. The tools seem pretty cool, so why not take on a challenge. I am up at 4 a.m. feeding babies anyhow.
Turns out I was crazy to take it on. It must have been baby-induced sleep deprivation. But I learned a few things and had fun. Getting five months to play with something as cool as the NanoBoard, even if I never got the complete system working was worth some early mornings and late nights.
What was the winning idea and how did it go? Read on for my story.