A generation shaped by smartphones, the iGen

Obviously smartphones have changed how we behave, in many ways for the worse.  Jean Twenge in the Atlantic shows how clearly this has affected kids born between 1995 and 2012, the iGen as she calls them.  A very interesting read:


The Smartphone Generation: A Statistical Portrait form The Atlantic. https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2017/09/has-the-smartphone-destroyed-a-generation/534198/

Taking notes on paper vs. computer

Research shows writing notes is better for learning than typing.  See here:


I have always been looking for better ways to learn whether it be in a lecture, a meeting or a conference.

  • Should I take notes?
  • Sould I write or should I type?
  • Should I not take notes and listen more intently?

Then there is the medium:  Is paper the way to go? My handwriting is atrocious, but it is certainly the way I’ve taken most of my notes.  What about a computer?  You can definitely type faster than you can write by hand, but then come the stumbling blocks of diagrams, graphs and any other drawings you may want to add to your notes.  The advent of the Wacom Pen enabled Laptop was very exciting.  I had professors giving lectures on their IBM laptops with Pen input and colleagues taking notes on similar devices.  I loved the fact that you could kick back and rest assured that the professors notes were going to be posted just as he/she wrote them as we walked out of class!  Also, it amazes me to think that Pen input existed on laptops since 1994, that’s over 20 years ago!  Finally what about tablets?  Most recently popularized by the Microsoft Surface devices and of course the iPad Pro, tablets turn on immediately, they have long battery life, and the option to type or write using a pen.

Ultimately, I think a big factor in the use of one note taking medium or another is convenience.  Most of the time pen and paper are easy to come by.  Sometimes the laptop is already open and one can quickly type a note.  Using a digitizing pen on either a laptop or a tablet, however, seems to still requires more effort, but offers some benefits which are worth taking advantage of with enough warning, such as a planned meeting or lecture.

Well what about the quality of the learning experience?  At least in terms of writing vs typing I found an interesting paper that finds that writing is a better aid in learning than typing.  They posit that the slower throughput of writing requires us to think more about what hear and synthesize it on paper.  Further their data show that it’s harder for us to do the same thing on a computer while typing even when instructed to try to synthesize.  It is an interesting read so please take a look!

So what about writing on a computer or tablet with a pen?  My wife is currently doing her own test, but I’m curious to know if there is more research on this out there.

Measuring micro-amp and nano-amp current on the cheap

In order to test and benchmark the various products we will discuss including microcontrollers (MCU’s),  integrated BlueTooth systems on chip (SoC), we need to have equipment capable of accurately measuring currents in the nanoamp (nA) and microamp (μA) range.  One of the least expensive ways I have found to do this is using this μCurrent from Dave Jones who writes the EEVBlog.  Plug it into your favorite multimeter or data recorder and set the correct current range, and your off!

uCurrent Gold precision low-current multimeter adapter
uCurrent Gold from Dave Jones at EEVBlog

The key to this device is that it has a very low burden voltage, which means that the measurement itself won’t disturb the actual device under test much by dropping voltage along the line it’s connected to.

Welcome to sucint.io!

Our goal is to share our knowledge on electronic product design for low-power applications such as IoT, wearables, and medical devices.  Topics will include a smattering from management topics to hard-core electrical engineering including:

  • Innovation (it’s a process not an invention)
  • Product Management (from opportunity identification to product launch)
  • Outsourcing: Offshoring and Nearshoring (with a bit of a personal bias)
  • Electronic Design (the nitty gritty) covering a variety of topics:
    • Embedded system design
    • Microcontrollers, Wireless Radios and combined Systems on Chip
    • Testing and benchmarking
  • Industrial Design and product packaging (admittedly, with a little help from some friends)

Wherever possible our goal is to give you a simple and concise explanation first, so you can get to the main point and move on, then give you the option to dig deeper into the rabbit hole.

We hope you enjoy it!