EERef Version 2.1 now available!

I think I’m rushing updates too much so I think I’m going to take a break from EERef…

Anyways, I’ve added two new tabs: Arduino and Pinouts. They’re both reference material that I think is handy to have for quick offline access. I tried to make it so that you get the information you most likely need without having to scroll through pages of a datasheet.

The other “new” thing is that there will be an update notification when the program starts if there is an update available. It’s a little more aggressive now because I feel it’s more important to get updates out with the new pinout material. (Yes, I know people don’t care much about this program to even think it has something like update notifications, but let me play a little.)

Get it now!



EERef Version 2.0 now available!

compareI am happy to announce a major update release of my Electronics Engineering Reference Windows program! The past few minor updates have been focused on the design but I felt like I was going in the wrong direction. Version 2 is a shift to a completely new design and layout. It’s a lot more polished this time around.

new1Each section now has a dedicated window with everything, including the tutorials. Pretty much everything is contained in the main program window so there’s no reason to open a bunch of other smaller windows. Removing those windows actually shaved off a third of the program’s file size.

The new design allows for the program window to be resized and maximized. There are just a couple sections that will stretch with it, but the ones that don’t really don’t need to.
new2I was going for that “flat” UI that’s trending these days. There’s a lot of Segoe UI font in there so hopefully you have it installed on your PC.

Besides the new design, a new feature is the Essential Formulas section which is just a quick reference to basic formulas. I hope to continue building on it to make it larger and to include calculators. I also fixed a bug in the number systems calculator that told you there was an overflow error if the result was 1.

Download it now!

EERef v1.3 now available!

1A new number systems calculator is added in this update where you can add, subtract, multiply, and divide numbers that are in different number systems. This tab was actually in the last couple of updates but hidden because it was incomplete. I started over and was able to work it all out.

As you’ve seen in the recent updates, I’ve been working on the look of the program. The Message boxes for the number systems calculators that tell you if there is an issue with your input is now color coded as purple. I’ve changes some fonts and the look of the buttons around the program.

Download it now!

EERef: v1.1.1 update

A new update for my Electronics Engineering Reference (EERef) program is now available! With no new features, but still quite a few changes, we’re now at version 1.1.1. Here’s what’s different:

  • The program now needs admin rights. I wish it didn’t have to but it seems like it doesn’t want to open links (changelog, EERef website, updates) without it.
  • I added more levels to the Tutorial selection menu.
  • There is a new capacitor code quiz.
  • New terms were added to the Terminology section. I also combed through the existing terms to revise some of the definitions.
  • The Logic Calculator now updates automatically instead of waiting for you to click OK.
  • The Update Checker’s refresh button was removed because I found it was inconsistent. It’s not really necessary anyway.

The next update I’m planning on will revamp the resistor and capacitor calculators, hopefully allowing decimals. We’ll see how that goes.

PLC Trainer: Mixing Tank Simulation

It’s been a while since I’ve made a ladder logic program. I decided to go back to the mixing tank simulation that seems to come up wherever I go to learn about ladder logic programming.

The machine adds two ingredients into a tank, and then stirs it all for 10 seconds. The mixture is dumped from the tank and the process can be started over. A toggle switch allows for the ratio of the two ingredients to be changed. The process can be stopped at any time, at which point the tank will be emptied. This is all shown in the video.

Some notes:

– Along with the stop button, an overflow situation will also throw the program into a fault. I didn’t program in any intentional overflows, though that was part of the original plan. While I was debugging, there were times when errors in my program got the ingredient valves stuck open and the imaginary tank would overflow. If there are any hidden bugs that come out later on, hopefully that will catch it.

– Something that I discovered that I guess I forgot from my lessons is that outputs in subroutines will remain the way they are even if the subroutine isn’t called…

– Any time an ingredient valve is open, a counter is increased by 1 every second.  Any time the empty valve is open, 1 is deducted from the same counter every second. The float switches are simulated using compare instructions that compare constant numbers to the accumulator value of the counter. It’s two seconds between each float switch, so a full tank (not an overflowing tank) would take 14 seconds from empty because there are 7 LEDs, or 7 float switches.

So that’s it! I didn’t think it would be done this quickly. It took about a day to complete, but that’s thanks to planning everything in a Word document first.

EERef: Version 1.1 now available for download!


Version 1.1 of my EERef project is now available! You can get the update here: update includes a few more terms, as well as a new title area that shows the word being defined. I’ll admit, some of the terms need some tweaking, but I like that it’s growing at least.3The reason this update is 1.1 and not something like 1.0.1 is because it includes a new feature: Quizzes! There are two topics available right now with more likely to come soon.

At this point, I’m going to slow down a bit with this project and turn my attention to other things…

EERef: Update 2 (Releasing Friday!)

Since the last update, some great things have happened. I’m excited to share some good news!


I put up a website for this project. I’m in a love-hate relationship with WordPress because there’s not much I can do with the themes. I’ll still put up a project page on this blog eventually, but I’m focused on the Google Drive site because it actually plays a role in the program.

The Visual Basic program will connect to a page hosted on Google Drive that will pass it information. This allows me to push update information to the Visual Basic program on your computer. It doesn’t actually push the information, though, you have to check for updates manually. This is the only thing in the program that needs an internet connection.

If you look at the website I linked earlier, you will see the program features. All of the features listed there are complete at this point, and they are all of the features I wanted to have as part of the initial launch. I still have plans for more content so that’s why having a way to send update information was important to me. There will be update posts here and on my Google+ page.

With all of that said, the initial release will be this Friday! From now ’til then, I’ll just be testing the program and going over the content for mistakes. I also need to decide the version number. I don’t think it’ll be 1.0.

Thanks for visiting! I hope you’ll give it a try on Friday!