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Ken Gracey
06-04-2010, 02:11 AM
Hey all,

Nick came by Parallax last week to share his progress with Gadget Gangster. Having observed his very first post on the forums and the evolution from his early boards to today's Propeller Platform I'm truly impressed with the progress. Nick is working closely with Jonny Mac, bringing certain value with his documentation efforts. Board designs flounder without examples, but this part is being covered by Jon Williams in his "Spin Zone" columns published in Nuts and Volts.

Nick shared his Propeller Platform, a more traditionally-designed microcontroller board. This is a useful product for somebody getting started since you can build it yourself and it includes a nice prototype area called the ProtoPlus.

I purchased 25 units from him of each of the following:

Propeller Platform www.gadgetgangster.com/find-a-project/56?projectnum=168 (http://www.gadgetgangster.com/find-a-project/56?projectnum=168)
ProtoPlus www.gadgetgangster.com/find-a-project/56.html?projectnum=254 (http://www.gadgetgangster.com/find-a-project/56.html?projectnum=254)
and I put a PropPlug in each of the kits.

Parallax would like to put these kits in the hands of 25 Propeller newbies. We need your help to do this.

Therefore, in this thread I am requesting your input on how we could achieve this goal. I'd like to identify somebody who could volunteer to run such a giveaway on our behalf. In the end you'd be providing us with a mailing list of 25 people in XLS format. Such an effort would attract people presently outside of this forum. The ideas needn't be complicated, either, just effective and tasteful. Post your idea here and we'll choose one of them. Whoever runs the program will receive their choice of $500 worth of Parallax hardware.

We are truly busy at Parallax right now (i.e., new products such as WiFi, Spinneret; key staff will soon be on maternity / 10-year leave; new manufacturing equipment is being installed; three positions are open and maybe a 4th for IT Guy #2; Chip and Beau are making Prop2 progress; end of year inventory counts, etc). For these reasons help from our customers will be truly appreciated!

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Ken Gracey
Parallax Inc.

Follow me at http://twitter.com/ParallaxKen for some insider news.

Post Edited (Ken Gracey (Parallax)) : 6/3/2010 6:17:17 PM GMT

hover1
06-04-2010, 02:18 AM
My first thought is find a school that already uses BS2 for studies in·the lower grades and offer the Props for the advanced classes.

I wouldn't mind collecting the names.

Jim

Edit: They can't be on the forums already?

Post Edited (hover1) : 6/3/2010 6:23:39 PM GMT

Ken Gracey
06-04-2010, 02:36 AM
@hover1. I'd like to look outside of Parallax forums as much as possible. I also don't want us to look too silly trying to convert people from their other processors to the Propeller.

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Ken Gracey
Parallax Inc.

Follow me at http://twitter.com/ParallaxKen for some insider news.

KPR
06-04-2010, 02:50 AM
Current people in school is a good idea, but I think that they are already interested in this area due to their studies, and will already be on the forums if they are using BS2 products..

I think bring new inexperienced users to the forums and platform the better way of doing it.
Everyone I know wishes they had a little device to do some simple repetitive task, and have great ideas but lack the knowledge to implement it.
Photography buffs, Model Railway Buffs, Computer Users, Hardware hackers, etc..
Between the resources found on the forum, the guides from the uber forum gurus, and the books available only an idea and effort are required!

( On a side note, maybe Harprit's new book could be added to that package just help with the learning curve! )

So I'd volunteer to run it, and would base my selection process based on the following idea:

"What would you like to build using a Parallax Propeller to use in your everyday life to make it a little simpler!"


KPR.

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Microcontrolled
06-04-2010, 03:15 AM
Where I used to go to school (private) it was struggling to keep the high school classes as funding was low for special classes and extracurricular activities. This might be what they are looking for. What they lack in sports, they could make up for in extra education. It is very generous of you to do this. I will see what I can do.

Thanks,
Micro

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lockadoc
06-04-2010, 03:32 AM
One area that might be tried in is the model aviation clubs,they all use servos already. they have members that do play with electronics, they do have a large numbers of clubs around the country and the world, I'm sure there is at least one member in each of the hundreds of clubs out there could be enticed to play with the prop once given the chance to see what it could do. That would inturn interest other members to see what they could come up with.

So I volunteer to run it, and seek out clubs that do have intrest in giving one of their members one kit to come up with an idea and get back to us with the idea they came up with.

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BillS
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Kye
06-04-2010, 03:40 AM
Mmm, I wish you would have done this sooner.

I'm running a propeller chip education class over the summer, however, most of my students backed out when I told them that they would have to purchase $100 of hardware. Now I only have three students left.

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Nyamekye,

Microcontrolled
06-04-2010, 04:06 AM
I have just e-mailed the school about this. I will see if they are interested. I also made myself clear in that make sure the student would USE the kit, and that it was completely free. I also noted that Parallax has online tutorials and books that are free to download. I suspect that they will agree to be part of this but I cannot be completely sure. I'm awaiting a reply.

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IRobot2
06-04-2010, 04:09 AM
Just throwing out my two cents, but I don't think the 25 units should all go to one place. You don't plant all of your seeds in one hole ;) . Spread it out a little be and maybe give one or two to a few different groups. There are many robotic/electronic clubs out there that I am sure can tell us of a few young adults that would like to get into this but can not afford the startup cost. Some times they are the most eager to learn and appreciate the tools they acquire. Many of these groups have information on contacting them readily available. If we are able to "plant" a few props in each group, who knows what will grow from it?

Just thinking out loud.

Edit: I would also be more than happy to take on this task.

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Alex Burke
"It is not how smart you are rather, it is how you are smart." -Jon Campbell

bill190
06-04-2010, 04:10 AM
I don't have time to do anything myself, but just an idea...

...That is, there are entire industries which are relatively new to electronics and microcontrollers and the people working in those fields sorely need to learn about these things.

One such area is automotive repair. Many auto mechanics are at a loss when it comes to computers and could use some training in this area.

Or perhaps the instructors who teach these auto mechanics.

Vehicles in the early 90's had just one or two microcontrollers - these days vehicles can have 24 to 80 microcontrollers and 3 local area networks with a gateway!

Quite a change to say the least!

Perhaps offer these, one to each teacher at an automotive school (if they are interested). Some of these people hate computers and would throw them in the trash. Others are interested in learning new things.

Just an idea.

TinkersALot
06-04-2010, 04:23 AM
Publish an ad in one of the Active Military Service publications and distribute them to the first 25 responders with the stipulation that the responder must be currently serving in an active duty station in either Iraq of Afghanistan.

Fxc2hh
06-04-2010, 04:30 AM
Ken,

The Boy Scouts and Awana groups have a Pine Derby where they get a kit: a block of wood and some wheels.· Their Dads do a lot of work helping them building a wooden car.· It was yesterday that I saw an article on Sparkfun's website where a user hallowed out one of the units and added a small board and some blinky lights.· I emailed someone who does Cubbies and I'm waiting to hear back from them.· There might be some interest among the older children because it is something they can do but decorating their cars is something that I think all children like.· I think it is a low cost idea because it takes one chip, one or two boards, some blinky leds and possibly a battery.· If there is not a weight limit then an accelerometer could be added.

I think this is a low cost way to promote your product where a lot of kids would see and want one because building these cars is a big deal for kids at this age.

I'm probably going to do it for my son.

Chuck

Ken Gracey
06-04-2010, 04:35 AM
@kye

Why would you tell them "they have to purchase $100 of hardware" to take the class?

A Prop Proto Board is less than thirty bucks. A DIP chip is $8.

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Ken Gracey
Parallax Inc.

Follow me at http://twitter.com/ParallaxKen for some insider news.

Ken Gracey
06-04-2010, 04:44 AM
You've certainly pointed out something of importance: we don't want this hardware landing in a single location.

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Ken Gracey
Parallax Inc.

Follow me at http://twitter.com/ParallaxKen for some insider news.

Microcontrolled
06-04-2010, 04:51 AM
Don't worry about mine. Even though I sent out a request for "up to 25" I don't beleive that there is even 25 people in the high school classes. Still it would be nice to see some of these go to my school, and others, for that matter.....

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IRobot2
06-04-2010, 04:58 AM
Adding to what I said earlier and going off of Mico' maybe sending one to some of the smaller schools electronics clubs. I know a few years ago when I was in high school "receiving anything" like this would have made the newspaper. Haha. Would be nice to see a few more entries in local science fairs containing props.

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Alex Burke
"It is not how smart you are rather, it is how you are smart." -Jon Campbell

trodoss
06-04-2010, 06:35 AM
@Ken,
Maker Faire (San Mateo, CA -- http://makerfaire.com/) would have been a great place to hand those out. If a Parallax employee could not attend something similar maybe a volunteer from the boards could attend and hand them out?

Just a thought.

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Ken Gracey
06-04-2010, 06:41 AM
@trodoss, we were at Maker Faire and we handed out Prop Proto Boards.

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Ken Gracey
Parallax Inc.

Follow me at http://twitter.com/ParallaxKen for some insider news.

tmaynard
06-04-2010, 07:38 AM
Ken Gracey (Parallax) said...
Therefore, in this thread I am requesting your input on how we could achieve this goal. I'd like to identify somebody who could volunteer to run such a giveaway on our behalf. In the end you'd be providing us with a mailing list of 25 people in XLS format.

I have easy access to 3-5 amateur radio clubs, all active and large. Hams are, in general, great tinkerers and the Propeller is a natural for dozens (hundreds? thousands??) of ham applications -- I'm working on a keyer project myself. One of the clubs has a "Project Day" every week during some months where they gather to build things, repair things, and whatnot.

A friend of mine and I have already discussed giving a Propeller presentation at a club meeting (or more), and the Prop's native ability to output video makes the chip especially inviting ... and having multiple, free programming languages is a boon. The PST is a godsend.

I could easily "dispose" of 25 kits -- probably in a single evening!

These would be folks who've never visited the forums -- and possibly never heard of the Propeller (but certainly -- because of
QST -- would know of the Stamp).

Tom.

Kye
06-04-2010, 07:43 AM
@Ken,

The prop's kinda boring unless you add allt he nice interface hardware to it. That stuff isn't very cheap.

Audio Connectors... PS2 Connectors... VGA connectors...SD card connectors... RTC module... etc....

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Nyamekye,

Oldbitcollector (Jeff)
06-04-2010, 07:51 AM
@Kye

I agree that the Propeller IS more fun with all the addons, but there is plenty of fun in that simple kit.
Here's a short guide I wrote a while back for someone with just the bare BASICS.
www.parallax.com/Portals/0/Downloads/docs/prod/prop/32212-32812-Protoboard_Introduction.pdf (http://www.parallax.com/Portals/0/Downloads/docs/prod/prop/32212-32812-Protoboard_Introduction.pdf)

Plenty of fun to be had... :)

OBC

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Cluso99
06-04-2010, 07:53 AM
An idea...
Perhaps Jon could offer the kits as prizes in the Nuts & Volts column. The contest could be to describe what you would do with a free kit. The contest would also ask for a little background on the contestant too. This way the freebies could be selected to go to the places most likely to generate enthusiasm. I am thinking an email reply of about 1 page.

I would be happy to help judge by reading the emails. If the email volume was high, then they could be split amongs a number of judges to reduce the finalists. OBC are you up to being a judge??

Note: The contest must state the email addresses will not be used in any manner, other than to advise the winners, and two followup requests later for what the winners achieved. (I do not respond to a lot of things because of spam)

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Links to other interesting threads:

· Home of the MultiBladeProps: TriBlade (http://forums.parallax.com/showthread.php?p=786418),·RamBlade (http://forums.parallax.com/showthread.php?p=849265),·SixBlade (http://forums.parallax.com/showthread.php?p=780033), website (http://bluemagic.biz/cluso.htm)
· Single Board Computer:·3 Propeller ICs·and a·TriBladeProp board (ZiCog Z80 Emulator) (http://forums.parallax.com/showthread.php?p=790917)
· Prop Tools under Development or Completed (Index) (http://forums.parallax.com/showthread.php?p=753439)
· Emulators: CPUs Z80 etc; Micros Altair etc;· Terminals·VT100 etc; (Index) (http://forums.parallax.com/showthread.php?p=778427) ZiCog (Z80) (http://forums.parallax.com/showthread.php?p=788511) , MoCog (6809) (http://forums.parallax.com/showthread.php?p=811043)·
· Prop OS: SphinxOS (http://forums.parallax.com/showthread.php?p=819353)·, PropDos (http://www.orrtech.us/propdos/) , PropCmd (http://obex.parallax.com/objects/440/)··· Search the Propeller forums (http://www.google.com/advanced_search?q=+site:forums.parallax.com&num=20&hl=en&lr=)·(uses advanced Google search)
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Oldbitcollector (Jeff)
06-04-2010, 07:54 AM
I'm game...

OBC

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zoopydogsit
06-04-2010, 08:57 AM
Competitions are probably the best way to generate interest.·I was actually thinking that if I was going to build something for sale (ie. a sensor like a ColorPal, etc), I'd promote interest in a mini-comp to get people thinking about how and what they would do to use it. This then gets a bit viral as folks then see the advantages and go from there.

It may be a good time to reach outside of our normal community to build interest. I don't know how much a GOOGLE Ad costs, but maybe we could get Gadget Gangster and Parallax to partner in a Google Ad for a fixed period advertising a competition. This would reach a new community, and an online add may be cheaper and more widely reading. Also the reach can now be wider as we now have a PropBasic (have to check with Bean on whether he's ready for a bigger community)·to make it a bit easier (A separate PropBasic forum would make sense to keep the energy into it). For keywords, probably, "ROBOT", "Data sampling", "electronic measurement", etc. certainly things we know the Prop is good at (science, multi-tasking, etc). In most business models there should be some money set aside for advertising/advertising write down against tax, etc.

To reduce the costs to Parallax, maybe we have a separate competition thread, where people participating could log in and register, they can get help from volunteers from here (as they'll be new and not know much about SPIN/PropBasic/Props/3.3v interfacing). And to get folks more involved in this activity maybe we reward them for participation with Parallax product - again probably judged by volunteers/Parallax staff for participation. The folks participating in the competition could get help in developing their entries in the forum, get general help, resolve fundimental/basic problems. It would get them used to the Parallax support model, and the overall helpfulness (I've found the forums amazing!). And have a panel of Prop volunteers review (against previously published guidelines) the entires.·

As far as the comp prizes, I'd suggest standard lots of small prizes like GG & Parallax products ie. a ColorPal, XBand, and other sensors, Prop robot board, etc. (maybe the last batch of penguins with FCO instructions for the USB cap). Which will get interest in building things using the common building blocks. And further drive the need. There may be other folks like McTrivia/Raymond that may want to throw in an item or too into the overall prize pool. And rather than one person getting a lot of stuff, if the pool of prizes is large enough then maybe most entries would get something. Again, the view is promoting interest and·involvement.

This would give them a taste of using the Propeller, how to use it, where to get help, where to get various add-ons, building a desire for development boards and other items.

We·may want to·include the terms that it can't be for existing Prop users. Otherwise they'd have an unfair advantage - or they could participate but not be judged as a winning entry.

I'd be willing to volunteer some of my time to further develop this with some other volunteers if we wanted to proceed with something like this.

Cheers,
Dave



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It's all a function of time.

Post Edited (zoopydogsit) : 6/4/2010 2:21:32 AM GMT

Harprit
06-04-2010, 11:21 AM
Ill be getting calls and questions from beginners who bought my new book
I'll be glad to get the goodies to deserving beginners all over the world.
Harprit.

KPR
06-04-2010, 09:51 PM
Harprit said...
Ill be getting calls and questions from beginners who bought my new book
I'll be glad to get the goodies to deserving beginners all over the world.
Harprit.


I'm looking forward to getting to read your book.. When I can get it up here in Toronto..

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lardom
06-04-2010, 10:39 PM
I saw "What's A Microcontroller?" in Radioshack. I was building a project with a timer chip. I grabbed it immediately. I also searched rc hobby shops. I· think newbies could be found here as well as sending notices to high schools and community colleges. The thought of programming anything had never crossed my mind until I saw that·kit in Radioshack.·It was an eye opener. I'm not sure if this is a contest of some sort. If so, there will be someone who can get the job done in less than a day otherwise I'm sure I could find 25 newbies.·

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Harprit
06-04-2010, 11:17 PM
KPR

You can order it from Amazon today

Harprit

$WMc%
06-05-2010, 02:36 AM
How about a small classified ad in Nut&Volts for newbies to the Prop. The best 25 ideas to use the Prop wins a kit. Or maybe a small section of Your full page
ad on the back. You asked for ideas.

I'm glad to see the Parallax stuff popping up at RadioShack .This will open the door for a lot of people that haven't herd of Parallax and save those of us who have,"Time in shipping".(I hate to wait on shipping for my Parallax stuff)

A few hundred E-Mails later

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You can feel stupid by asking a stupid question or You can be really·stupid by not asking at all.·

hover1
06-05-2010, 02:51 AM
I think the reason for Ken's original request was to relieve Parallax from doing any work, ie, Parallax having to create the add and pay for advertisment.

Now if an individual put an add in N&V or Servo, would that be covered by the $500.00 bounty?

Jim


$WMc% said...
How about a small classified ad in Nut&Volts for newbies to the Prop. The best 25 ideas to use the Prop wins a kit. Or maybe a small section of Your full page
ad on the back. You asked for ideas.

I'm glad to see the Parallax stuff popping up at RadioShack .This will open the door for a lot of people that haven't herd of Parallax and save those of us who have,"Time in shipping".(I hate to wait on shipping for my Parallax stuff)

A few hundred E-Mails later

Microcontrolled
06-05-2010, 09:07 AM
I have an article coming out it N&V. I could exchange most of my pay for advertising as the $500 bounty would be worth it.

That would blow my plan for a new computer, though.

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potatohead
06-05-2010, 11:12 AM
I have an article introducing the Propeller as a fun retro-game, hobby alternative to older video game hardware, set to appear in ClassicVGM magazine next month. There are a lot of subscribers, both print and electronic. We've got a few issues out there, good response and a rapidly growing reader base.

In that article, I planned on giving away another Demoboard, as I often do, as part of a write in contest. The write in was essentially to be an explanation why the board should go to the contestant. We planned on evaluating those, picking somebody, and sending them the board, along with some games and goodies all configured to come up and run on the Demoboard.

I think I'll still do that, because the Demoboard is more or less "plug n' play", ready for a bit of fun gaming and tinkering. The barrier on it is pretty low. These kits are a bit higher, but... maybe that's ok. I don't know.

I could very easily expand on the article text, building up the hobby element some, highlighting a few projects.

It's a sure thing most all of the target audience is not on the forums here. It's not such a sure thing that they are ready to fire these up. If there is some potential here, I'm willing to get addresses for any number of boards, expand the text, and modify the contest. Time line on that would be about two months from today, as that's what it will take to get the issue mailed, and entries flowing back in.

There is a week or so before I have to lock it all down for printing, leaving time to build this in.

@Nick, it's very easy to do a quickie e-mail interview, promoting your excellent Gadget Gangster efforts. Probably take an hour or so for both of us.

@Ken, Parallax is getting a mention, along with some light background, framing the Propeller in terms of gaming / hobby fun.

Does this make any sense? Curious to hear your thoughts.

The target audience is collectors, gamers, and enthusiasts, often with some tech know how, but I've never accessed how much. We are actually hoping to generate some retro interest surrounding the Prop, largely because it has just the right feel for the era, and the expectations of what can be done hit home there too. Honestly, Prop I can do some great stuff, and I suspect be capable playing a lot of classics on emulation. If we can do a Vic, it's a home run! I think the Prop can.

On a personal note, I want to start laying the foundation for Prop II, as it will absolutely nail this niche, and be inexpensive.

I see OBC has one going to print as well. Perhaps it makes sense to just have somebody keep track of the addresses, we allocate a few for some of the ideas, and let people try to get it done. Ken waits until he sees a batch, or the whole lot, then mails them off. I know I can very easily just boil the product of the contest and article down to the data. Maybe several of us can.

Edit: I think Nick and I will do a smaller better targeted effort. Please do continue figuring out how to find the newbies with potential!

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Wondering how to set tile colors in the graphics_demo.spin? (http://forums.parallax.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=70768)
Safety Tip: Life is as good as YOU think it is!

Post Edited (potatohead) : 6/5/2010 5:25:34 AM GMT

$WMc%
06-05-2010, 11:35 AM
I think Parallax can afford the advertising. The real under lying question is would people buy these boards if Parallax started making them and put them in stores!

As a business, You have to have a market strategy,This is what keeps a company afloat.

It was an ad in N&Vs that got me to try Parallax, Man am I glad I did.

I have almost every thing Parallax has to offer, And I enjoy every cent of it.

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The Truth is out there············___$WMc%___······················ ······ BoogerWoods, FL. USA


You can feel stupid by asking a stupid question or You can be really·stupid by not asking at all.·

zappman
06-06-2010, 03:19 AM
Hi Ken,

There are some of us Propeller newbies right here in the Parallax forums.
I have a Boe-Bot, Parallax Sensors, and RF-ID readers, but nothing 'Propeller' yet.
I plan to change that as the Propeller Demo Board is on sale for a very good price this weekend.
I have been lurking in the Propeller Forum trying to learn just what it is and how people use it.
It seams that the Propeller Forum is traveled mainly by experts, that are willing to give a newbie a hand provided the newbie is trying to actively solve their problems themselves.

I think, that you could give several of the Gadget Gangster kits to Chris Savage as he is trying to generate traffic to his Savage Circuits site and forums.
He has started a monthly contest and could give away any kits you give him, as monthly prizes.

See my signature for a link to my Blog at savage circuits.

Regards,

Zappman

Visit Zappman's Blog at Savage Circuits (http://www.savagecircuits.com/forums/blog.php?120-zappman)

Fxc2hh
06-06-2010, 12:01 PM
$WMc% said...
I think Parallax can afford the advertising. The real under lying question is would people buy these boards if Parallax started making them and put them in stores!
How would you advertise Parallax?· I think that would be a great group project to see who can make the best advertisement for Parallax.

SRLM
06-06-2010, 01:19 PM
You could find some boy scouts to send them to. They have to get their merit badges in a number of techy fields (computers, electronics, energy, etc...) and so they already have a purpose to get started and perhaps get hooked. The girl scouts probably have something similar.

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Powered by enthusiasm

Markov
06-08-2010, 03:12 AM
To reach a new audience Markov would make the following suggestion for socially redeeming purposes: I would be trying to attrack the attention of high end computer users--generally called gamers such as those at "Overclockers.com" and a maybe few other major like sites perhaps. They tend to be nerdy and into technology (have the cash--target marketing stuff)and moreso easily bored with trying to increase the voltage to their processor without frying it. They spend a lot of time trying out fan controllers for instance and come to find that none of them are worth much excepting (a little) the Big NG, Mini NG, sometimes coupled with a hub (its just a DAC i think). Another example: a lot are frustrated that they can't control multiple PWM fans--nobody makes a controller for this except Zalman (only one channel 4-pin and the thing is junk evidently--just another example. The BIG NG is put out by M-Cubed (dev by some young Austrians). The names and looks look suspiciously Arduino-like to me. They get software with this thing that is a more than a bit buggy from the posts and they spend a lot of time making it work sometimes being redirected to the M-Cubed Forum (the software is rather XP reliant which struck me as weird for something targeting high end computer users until i learned that all programmers (for microcontrollers) avoided Vista like the plague and are rather XP reliant).

At any rate, my thinking is that these same persons could for that same money benefit more from buying Propellers and learning to make and program their own controllers. Then PWM and audio become matters of interest and so on. They have elaborate fan and watercooling systems and so on and i think the list grows easily form there and a lot of them might give up just playing games and take up new closely related interests in microcontrollers and robotics or in the Hydra (some must be into this but although i am not a regular visitor to these sights don't see much discussion thereabouts--never heard of Hydra until was sent a Parallax catalog.) Some may become engineers and such. For comparative purposes--generally they spend for the BIG NG ($90) and the hub ($50) and then buy extra sensors. At any rate it seems better to Markov if they spent their money on a Prop and time and energy learning to program controllers and robots than to plug and play game related hardware. They already have the technology interest but are just in need of a little encouragement to make the leap to "a more worthwhile challenge"?

Have been meaning to suggest to Parallax that it might make sense to design computer (such as Fan/Water Cooling) controller intro kit(s) based on Prop to sell to this market. (Seems to involve a different array of sensors but nothing really new--just packaging. Markov came here sort of pursuing this idea --but just to keep Markovs neurons communicating at some bare level. It's not Markov's shy place to do this (so instead Markov is struggling with lots of Aluminum to build a base (i tried to follow Erco's plans but was confused with the corners) that eventually will require 3 sets of those nice Motor Mount-Wheel position kits and 2 casters controlled via 4 HB-25's and i don't know what contoller yet or why or when --but would be nice to see Parallax or one of those who develop Prop products on the side come up with 'computer controller-oriented starter kits that would attract these (mostly youngsters) by perhaps interfacing with and supporting high end computers in a more "forthright" manner than M-Cubed--not sure how to say that but the meaning is in a way that the kit just gets them started and allows them the means to enter what i think of as a more intellectually rewarding path than merely responding to products. Spin or PBasic would be much better programs for them to learn than somebodies "program" for a product of not all that much consequence (not the best wording but not meant to trash the others but relative to learning a programming language etc....

Don't mean to trash M-Cubed or the young Austrians who developed this--just think Parallax is the better way to go (as also opposed to Microchip or say National Semiconductor who are more aligned to pure commercial endeavors than Parallax) than M-cubed asnd gaming.

Do a contest on Overclockers similar to the Prop contests you have already done but limit it to projects that interface with high end computers to encourage creativigty perhaps and give the 25 kits and whatever the reward was for the idea these largely young minds in need of a little direction and inspiration. Contests are a reg occurence at Overclockers. Send one of the kits over for a review should be enough to capture a lot of attention. From the perspective of target marketing--i think this is an ideal sector for Parallax to approach considering income, technological expertise and experience, and general interests. Few of them have considered making their own microcontrollers and such (yet) and they are not that far from budding robotists.

(Markov is not much of a capitalist and Markov's intention was just to write an instruction set as to how this could be done for $1 under the guise of One Buck Pubs or something like that but Markov has more pressing $1 things to write about making golden time-as in alchemy, quantum computing, time-traveling (maybe utilizing propellers), saving the world and so on.)))))

Markov
06-08-2010, 03:14 AM
and Markov should have included power supply applications