# Mechanical engineer looking to expand knowledge

J

#### JRW68

Jan 1, 1970
0
I am a senior M.E. student at penn state who is looking to learn alot
more about electronics, mainly in microcontrollers and similar
topics. I dont want to come across as a TEACH ME person. I searched
ALL of the posts on this forum as well as other ones, I have also
searched the web and frankly am tired of sifting through all the
results. So, I was hoping for some direction. I have had C++,
Electrical engineering, and Controls classes for my degree. We were
taught alot about each topic but not how to combine everything to
produce an outcome, if you know what I mean. You might ask why I
dont just take a class in electronics at PSU, well I dont care to pay
for something that I will probably be forced to learn on my own even
if I have a proffessor teaching it. (thats headed in a whole other
topic)

I was curious about what books you might suggest that would suite my
level of knowledge. As well as books on using a computer as a
control device, I have seen some info on this but a good book would
be nice. I have looked several places at books, when I find books
they either seem too simple or not really what I want. Text books
would be fine too

I understand the physical aspect of what I will need todo: make a
program, transfer it to a PIC, and "plumb it up"..... I was wondering
if there was software that allowed you to basically construct block
diagrams of your control system, set range of input values, and
simply apply output scenarios... I think this would be more M.E.
oriented.... if no thing exists, some programmer reading this should
make it haha (pass it on)...Basically im trying to avoid relearning
programming languages although I can if I have to, which i probably
will have to.

Also I was wondering if anyone scavenges parts from things, like old
computers, VCRs, and whatever... I have several old computers and a
working old laptop (good old presario), Car ECMs.... im a junk
collector.. I was just curious if there was a book that i could get
that would help identify certain things and where they would be that
would be worth rescueing.

Man, now you guys probably think i chose the wrong major... if you
knew me you would understand....

John

F

#### fpd

Jan 1, 1970
0
snip

I understand the physical aspect of what I will need todo: make a
program, transfer it to a PIC, and "plumb it up"..... I was wondering
if there was software that allowed you to basically construct block
diagrams of your control system, set range of input values, and
simply apply output scenarios... I think this would be more M.E.
oriented.... if no thing exists, some programmer reading this should
make it haha (pass it on)...Basically im trying to avoid relearning
programming languages although I can if I have to, which i probably
will have to.

snip

You want LabVIEW (and/or LabWindows). After a lot of definitions, you can
watch a signal "bubble" through your circuit. Take a peek on National
Instruments web site:
http://www.ni.com/labview/

J

#### JRW68

Jan 1, 1970
0
that software looks awesome, Im going to have to email them and talk
about student discounts... 999$wont burn a whole in my pocket..... it would probably burn straight through both legs.... Im sure any good software is going to be up there though thanks, any more pointers? F #### fpd Jan 1, 1970 0 Sorry about the$1k price tag. The package is used in HUGE systems (city
size), so it's good stuff, and could possibly be overwhelming (Autocad-ish,
but actually interacts with physical devices). I hope a student's discount
works for you, or if you can convince your school to pay for it and make a
backup copy... More pointers? Study until your eyes bleed, then study some
more. When you are done with school, your work will be a cake walk - so
have fun!

JRW68 said:
that software looks awesome, Im going to have to email them and talk
about student discounts... 999\$ wont burn a whole in my pocket.....
it would probably burn straight through both legs.... Im sure any
good software is going to be up there though

thanks, any more pointers?

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