Want to Learn Some Electronics?

08 Mar Want to Learn Some Electronics?

Last year I learned how to do some basic soldering. It almost seems magical when LEDs light up and circuits work so I’m a lot more curious about how they work than I ever was before. I wondered if I could learn some basic things about circuits and even create a project of my own.

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So check this out: I recently discovered a free online learning tool called 123D Circuits. The program has an interactive virtual environment (best used in the Chrome browser). I’ve learned a bunch of basic electronics in this program, such as how to light an LED with a battery, how measure current with a multimeter, and how a push button switch opens and closes a circuit. It makes learning about circuits super accessible, and there’s no investment in materials to get started.

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You can even take your new understanding to the next level with more detailed introductions to resistors, capacitors, series and parallel circuits, LED lights, and more on the SparkFun website. Experimenting with 123D Circuits has motivated me to explore some projects that I could actually make myself. SparkFun has some great beginner’s projects on their “Start a Project” tutorial page. In addition, AdaFruit also has some great projects and videos to get you started on learning about circuits and creating some projects.

But here’s the best part of my learning story: On the AdaFruit website I learned how to make and sew circuits with conductive thread and add lights to my clothes or accessories! How cool! And the library is offering a beginner’s class on sewing circuits on March 19 (check the calendar and registration here) and then a workshop at the Little Theatre in La Porte on May 17.

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Circuits are fun! Start learning today! What will you make?