Have any of you noticed at libraries that there are more electronic
theory books than electronic project books? I've noticed this at both
general libraries and my university library. In fact, my university
library (like any other) has myriads of technical papers and theory
books but hardly any project books.
How did this happen? I don't see how anyone can gain a good grasp of
electronic theory without building something. Without a project or
device to relate to, electronics theory is just mumbo jumbo.
Jason Hsu, AG4DG
Are there still people that do elecronic projects? When R/C cars are
now a child's throwaway toy, and anything interesting is happening
with computer chips and software, what's the motivation for doing
those basement bench projects?
You should check around a bit. It's not hard to find people who are
designing and building things like HF SSB transceivers in their
basements - some of them are even on the web and post their designs to
Perhaps this is because threory books teach universally applicable
knowlege, while project books teach only things of interest to a
From what I have obseve over the past 50 years, the ARRL Handbook does
the best job of accomplishing both objectives.
i GUESS you have never designed a piece of equipment to go into space.
Some using a thousand components.
I DO NOT FOLLOW MANY OF THESE NEWS GROUPS
To answere me address mail to
In that case, you guess wrong. Working for Kodak in my younger days,
Lunar Orbiter was the first of quite a few. Working on projects like
these you have very little to contribute to design if you haven't yet
mastered the underlying conceputal theory and analysis of simple
circuits. I found the same thing to hold true on my later projects in
transporation control systems and military electronics.
You're obviously confusing complexity of scale with conceptual
sophistication and design elegance. Compare the design of a computer
where a few simple circuits are repeated ad nauseum to that of to that
of a Colpitts oscillator or the underlying theory behisnd a negative
feedback amplifier and you'll discover the difference.
In universities, theory is often combined with laboratory excercises
through which the student may confirm his understanding of theory, but
rote construction of projects designed by someone else contributes
very little to one's knowledge or comprehension.
The practical solution for someone wishing to learn electronics on
their own is simply to study the theory, then construct simple
circuits to test and verify the concepts that they have previously
learned. Once you have secured confidence in your ability to
understand and predict what is going on within the circuit, you are in
a position to attempt the design of almost anything.