All that is needed is one of these cables:
They all look like ordinary USB cables on one side, but have either bare wires or a connector on the other that is serial (TTL or RS232). Things are not any more complicated when you use one these cables...
My Geiger counter is going great (thanks to you). A friend brought his two sons into my office the other day -- the oldest had read my columns and was delighted to see it in the flesh.
A USB Geiger counter would be great so that we could data-log the hits to see if background levels varied over time (like daily or monthly/lunar or yearly cycles)
Yep..been there...done that...wtih VGA connectors as well....
They're all still better than the @#$%&* RJ type telephone / network connectors which always seem to lose their locking tangs. I know how to put new ones on (which makes me in demand sometimes) but the guy who invented those ought to have been strangled with the first one he made. At least most network connectors now have a little boot on them which lets you pull one cable thru a whole bunch without snagging...sometimes....
I remember being thrilled when I got my first USB keyboard & mouse, so I would no longer be smashing any of those 7 little PS/2 connector pins and subsequently having to bend them back with a small pair of needle nose pliers.
I mangled more than a few PS/2 connectors, reaching behind the computer and rotating the connector around until I found the key position...or at least thought I found the key position :)
Do you know, now that you mention it, I'm embarrassed to say that I remember thinking much the same thing ... "do we really need another connector" and "PS/2 was good enough for my great grandfather so it should be good enough for me" (grin)
In the spirit of humility, I have to admit: when USB was first introduced, I confidently predicted it would fail in the market. I was sure we didn't need yet another interface standard, especially "just" for connecting keyboard, mouse, or printer to our PC.
Shows what I know!