Ralph S Bacon

MicroControllers, Electronics and IOT

A Journey Milestone – Thank You

My YouTube journey has reached a psychological milestone in the last day or so, and I’ve passed the 10,000 subscriber marker.

I can say only one thing: thank you all for your support on this journey. Whether you’re a ‘regular’ or just pop in now and again it all counts!

I’m not sure whether YouTube takes more notice of my channel now; I’ve heard anecdotally that they will suggest videos to viewers from channels with higher subscriber counts (which almost seems the wrong way to do it).


Benny musing over ESP8266 Deep Sleep

For most viewers, the subscriber count is totally irrelevant. It’s the content that matters and to some degree the presenter and his or her style. But which all lead to an increase in subscriber count if the viewers like what they see and hear, so it’s a good feedback measure to the video creator.

I’m about to release an oft-requested video about putting the ESP8266 to sleep – and waking it up again, although the way it wakes up is a bit odd, to say the least. In fact, I’m sure it contravenes the Trades Description Act in the UK!

The good news for us all (I hope) is that all this Arduino (ATmega328P) and ESP8266 sleepiness has fired off a number of potential future video thoughts including, but not limited to:

  • writing a custom bootloader (easier than you think) for customised boards
  • running the chip at a lower or higher speed
  • with or without an external clock
  • uploading sketches without a bootloader at all (more space)
  • looking at a bootloader shield, just to make life easier
  • some bare-bones ATmega328P PCBs to tidy up our breadboard designs
  • a tiny 3W class D amplifier, perfect for Arduino usage

Well, these and many other thoughts mean that there should be videos for some time to come and I haven’t even mentioned the Raspberry Pi ideas including some nice HATs (Hardware Attached on Top, aka shields to us Arduinites) that allow some easy prototyping.

And what has happened to my workshop automation project?

Let me know what your preferences are – your comments could easily influence which way I end up going.

And, once again, thank you all.


14 replies

  1. Congrats on 10k. Now on to the next milestone.
    I have been following you for a while but just spent some time looking at some of your past videos. I like the cat run project. I did a robotics controller project recently using RFM69 radios and the new Radiohead library. I was struggling to send the multiple data points when someone suggested using structs but instead of converting the data on both ends like I was trying (and you did) just transmit and receive the whole struct. One line of code took care of it on both sides.
    rf69.send((const uint8_t*)&joyStick, sizeof(joyStick));
    rf69.recv((const uint8_t*)&joyStick, sizeof(joyStick));
    You just have to have identical structs on both Arduinos. I was cautioned it may not work mixing 8 and 32 bit processors. I can’t take credit for the code but that is the power of the community.
    Here’s to your next milestone! Keep up the great videos.


    • Nice coding technique for transmitting data using a struct in its entirety you have there, Keith. And thanks for the congrats; as you say, Onwards and Upwards, to Infinity and Beyond. I might be mixing my metaphors, though. Thanks for posting, nice to hear from you.


  2. Well done, Ralph. I appreciate how much work goes into each lesson – you’ve helped me a lot and it’s great that Benny’s fan club is more than 10k too.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Congratulations on your 10K, Ralph.
    Many videos ago you outlined the way to run an Arduino from a 3.7 LiPo cell with TP4056 charger module and a booster board.
    Whilst there are ‘Hats’ which claim to provide ‘a UPS-like’ function for a Raspberry Pi, all the devices and configurations I’ve tried (including the 18650-based board you described recently) run with the ‘lightning strike symbol’ 😦 — so they’re not perfect.
    How about that as a project?

    I look forward to your future videos.


    • Thank you, David! An interesting idea; the most obvious solution is a quality DC-to-DC buck-boost board to convert the (almost) 5v to a decent 5.1v that the Raspberry Pi is happy with. I have one of those boards somewhere, so that’s a good idea for a small project, thanks!


  4. Hi, I would be interested in the “no booloader” way to program those arduinos… but, any new video will be accepted of course. Always intersting to view your videos.


  5. congrats Ralph !………..regarding “deep sleep” I guess Benny will be your main source of inspiration and contribute the majority of the code, I look forward to that. Also can’t wait to see your tutorial on “no external clock”


  6. Excellent news and well deserved!


  7. Well done, Ralph! And fully deserved! Looking forward to seing more videos!


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