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July 2010

Jameco Electronics Newsletter

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Greg's Corner Have you ever wondered why we have an index finger? Some may say it's for picking, but I know it's used for pointing. Especially when one company blames another. Sometimes I wonder why I attract bad service, but when two companies both point the finger at the other... I go crazy.

My cell phone had been welded to my hip for 5 years without incident before it died a slow death. If I could have purchased the same phone I would have. But alas, technology moves forward. My cell phone needs are simple, but the one thing that's really important is the ability to create custom ringtones for everyone in my family so I know whose calling me when I'm driving.

I successfully downloaded numerous MP3 files to my new phone but could not assign them as ringtones. After 20 minutes of questions to the phone manufacturer they pointed the finger at the service provider. After another 45 minutes with the service provider they pointed their finger at the phone manufacturer.  It's now been three weeks of finger pointing and I'm putting up with none of it. I'm sure both companies' strategy is that I will eventually give up and go away. Clearly they don't know me too well.

It made me think about how we do it at Jameco. Believe me there have been many times we've been tempted to point our finger too. We customize, kit and repackage components, but we don't manufacturer the products we sell. And yet when a customer calls within the first 90 days we don't say "call the manufacturer." We say, "we'll take care of everything."

We understand that for many the cost of the hassle can be more than the cost of the product. From our perspective we assume that one unhappy customer will infect five more, so we always try to treat even our smallest customer with big customer service. If you ever see it working differently, please drop me a note.

Greg Harris
Vice President, Marketing
[email protected]

IQ Test

IQ Test Technology has a way of dropping in price over time. Today our telephone is reasonably affordable for most people but back when the first trans-Atlantic call between New York and London was made on January 7, 1927 a three minute call cost a pretty penny? How much did the call cost?

A: $15    B: $45     C: $65    D: $75

See how you did...
DIY Rcipe

A Forrest M. Mims III Summer Project

Is it the button or the button pusher? Man or machine? When it comes to controlling your television it might be something sticky that you spilled on the remote control. Nevertheless, product guru Forrest M. Mims III has a great project to figure out if your remote control has has stopped working.

Read about creating your own infrared remote control tester.
Maker Faire

Maker Faire 2010

What's a Maker Faire you ask? It's a place where makers go to show off what they make. Still confused? Well at least 100,000 people know exactly what happens at a Maker Faire where people create what for most of us would remain in our imagination. In fact, it's safe to say that many of the Maker Faire wonders are well beyond any of our imaginations.

Stretch your imagination and see the wild and whacky from the 2010 Maker Faire.
Electronic Design

Ingenuity, Electronics and WWII

It wasn't by sheer heart that the Allied Forces were able to hold off the Nazi bombers and turn the tide in World War II. According to an article by Bob Pease in the April issue of Electronic Design, quick thinking, clever engineering and some dastardly high jinx may have played a role as well.

Read more here...

Product Design & Development's Virtual Build

Virtual Build We got together with our friends at Product Design and Development to create what we're calling a Virtual Build. This contest is designed to test the creativity of any designer. From a list of seemingly random components, the winner will be the one who can design the most interesting solution.

Learn how to show off your designing talents.
Lascar Panel Pilot

Lascar Panel Pilot

Panel meters don't have to be boring. While it's rarely worth your time to program a panel meter to achieve the perfect display, Lascar's new Panel Pilot software makes it easy.
This month product manager Shalin Shah reviews a brand new product for sale that may well be more exciting than the data it's displays!