CJS Software and Electronics Resources

Developing from an early interest in general science, I've been interested in electronics and software both from a hobby perspective and in my professional career. This site contains a range of resources such as software applications, and informative or constructional articles on electronics mostly relating to those long-standing interests.

This site was completely rebuilt in 2016 using responsive web design, and new material has been added including new software apps, and additions to many of the previously published articles.

Software

My software pages include the following:

IRCDSS

A freeware IRCD server and simulator for the Windows OS, supporting IPv6 and Unicode, that mimics the behaviour of commonly used IRC server networks and enables you to test IRC clients without going online to an external network, view predefined test channels populated with simulated users that chat on various topics, practice IRC commands without getting into trouble on a real network, and run a local IRC network creating your own chat channels, without all the overhead of a full Linux IRCD.

BackupCat

An easy-to-use application that keeps your data files continuously and automatically backed up to a second or remote drive as you work, without having to manually update the backup every time. It's designed to be suitable for installation for someone else (e.g. family member, friend, employee) who might not otherwise want to be bothered with making backups, so that backup gets done automatically for them. Free for personal use or evaluation.

Visual Colour Selector

This application enables you to visually preview colours from predefined palettes (e.g. CSS3, X11, wxColourDatabase, etc.), clip colour names and RGB values, create new palettes, optimise palettes for colour separation, preview colours and images simulated as seen by people with colour deficiencies, and optimise palettes for colour deficient viewing, open and save various palette file formats.

Available cross-platform for Windows, Linux and macOS X.

wxLeakyBin

wxLeakyBin is a graphical tool to assist in identifying even small memory leaks quickly. wxLeakyBin allows you to view system and process memory usage graphically, zoom in using a magnified scale factor, plot commit charge for individual processes as well as the system, and measure changes in memory usage and rates of change with update speeds down to 100ms intervals, 5 times faster than Task Manager.

GuidScreener

GuidScreener is a custom GUID/UUID generator available cross-platform for Windows, Linux and macOS X, which generates RFC 4122 format GUIDs from the system generator or a high quality random number generator and allows you to preset selected digits to generate a more easily recognisable ID (e.g. C0FFEE42-31C2-478A-A6A3-97F1EBCA6256), or groups of GUIDs that will appear adjacent in a sorted list (freeware).

CCTScribe

CCTScribe (Circuit Scribe) is a freeware circuit/schematic drawing and netlisting program capable of creating decent quality schematics and drawings and also able to export netlists for PCB layout and SPICE modelling.

WAVToCode

WAVToCode is a freeware audio format converter that generates C code format from WAV files, enabling sound effects to be incorporated in embedded processor code.

RFProp

RFProp is a freeware Windows program that calculates the radio wave propagation signal budget applicable to many kinds of VHF, UHF, microwave and satellite communications.

WinShoe IRC Client

This application can connect to multiple Internet Relay Chat (IRC) networks, and works on Windows XP, 7 and 10.

Software continued...



Electronics

My electronics pages include both some articles exploring the fundamentals of electronic engineering, and some articles describing some specific constructional projects.

Theory Articles

My theory articles cover the basics of the whole spectrum of electronics from valves (tubes) to semiconductors, including their principles and practical use, which should give you a basic introduction to the subject of electronic hardware. They include the following:

  • Basics of Bipolar Junction Transistors - How semiconductor diodes and transistors work with a basic introduction to their semiconductor physics.
  • Introduction to Biasing and Load Line Analysis - Explains biasing, and describes biasing methods for various types of transistor.
  • Physical Fabrication of Transistors, from Point Contact to Planar Epitaxial - Describes the development of transistor fabrication technology that led to the main bipolar junction and field effect families of devices and chips.
  • Introduction to Thermionic Valves (Vacuum Tubes) - Describes the history and fundamental principles of valve diodes, triodes, tetrodes and pentodes.
  • Introduction to RC coupled Audio Frequency Triode Amplifiers - Describes how triode valves are used in audio frequency amplifiers stage, how multiple stages are coupled together, how this relates to field effect semiconductors, and comments on other coupling methods and valve types. Includes examples of a 3W RC coupled triode amplifier, and a 5W pentode amplifier.
  • Modelling the LM35 Temperature Sensor in SPICE - How the common LM35 temperature sensor can be simulated using a SPICE model.
  • GPS Vehicle Tracking Systems - Describes how Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) systems work and can be used for tracking vehicles.

Constructional Articles

My constructional articles include the following:

  • A versatile, expandable 4-channel Sequencing Light Controller - Describes a light sequencer designed for future expansion by means of a plug-in module, for functions such as sound-to-light.
  • A Compact Digital TV Antenna for Home Construction - Describes the design and construction of an antenna for digital TV, which suits the UK Freeview, and other systems in a similar frequency band.
  • Geiger Counter and Ratemeter - This article describes the principles and construction of a Geiger-Muller radiation monitor and counter, that I had published in Electronics Today International, February and March 1987 (as of 2018, still working perfectly).
Electronics continued...



Photography

As an extra off-main-topic bonus, I have also included various miscellaneous articles that generally have an interest in photography in common.

The subjects include the Brunel Museum and Thames Tunnel, some photographs of Chrissie Hynde at a concert by The Pretenders, photographs and diary from a visit to Albania in 1987, photographs taken in Israel and the Golan in 1989, and some collections of tram and light rail pictures including some from other contributors.

Photography continued...