What is it? So, you enjoy geeky stuff? You like to tinker with an ESP12, or do you prefer an ESP32-module? Maybe you need to program a batch either of them? Well, maybe you can't choose or plan to ...Read More…
So, you enjoy geeky stuff? You like to tinker with an ESP12, or do you prefer an ESP32-module? Maybe you need to program a batch either of them? Well, maybe you can't choose or plan to switch between both modules in time or simply want to get the freedom to do it all. This Flex TinkerTwin is what it takes!
Write source code until the job is done. From that moment on, you can start production, by multiple programming those modules.
Initially, the Flexible NodeMCU programmer for ESP12-modules (and ESP7 and 8) got developed to support easy programming and tinkering. A bit later, a similar tool for the ESP32 was released. Most of the time, you probably would like to go for the ESP12, although the ESP32 is also an interesting module. For me, I can't really choose between the two of them. Nor do I like to have multiple programmers at my desk (not much space). I jumped in to a new adventure, see if it is possible fusing both programmers into a single toy. It took some precious time to create several prototypes, and here it is: Flex TinkerTwin.
Point proven, problem solved.
So far, you could buy several types of tools with integrated ESP12 or ESP32-modules. However, programmers for multiple programming jobs are hard to find. But, what if you like both modules? Previously, you had to look for 2 separate programmers. From today on, not anymore!
Switching between both modules is easy. Use a switch to swap between an ESP12 and ESP32. If you need to tinker or write basic source code first, the module should be "locked" into the programmer. This is done by the "Tinker LockPlate", which is included. The "Tinker LockPlate" is specially designed, so you still can hook up all kind of external devices to the programmer.
So what makes it so special? Well, there's no other tool available, which can handle both types of modules in a single programmer.
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About 20 years ago I finished my study Business Management (B.Sc) including a background in Chemistry. During my study I assembled / repaired computers, designed web-pages to get some money to burn. When I finished study I became a software engineer (Oracle and Visual Basic) and worked for several large companies. In 2002 I got in contact with a small business in dental healthcare. Their request was to develop a software-tool for their whole business : keep track of sales, stock, working procedures, Human Resource and alike. Spending time at each department, I figured out what they needed. Developed it from A to Z. I even had to design the carton package for it (am still proud of it). It was a wise lesson. It provided very good experience, to run such a project on my own.
After a while, the software-tool required an encryption hardware key (kind of USB-stick). Oh man, this was my real introduction into the world of electronics. I loved it, looking for more and more input, gaining experiences. It was the moment I felt :" I can create whatever I want". It's a mighty feeling !
Back in those days, electronic shops were still scarce. Whenever I needed something, most of the time they didn't even had it in stock. I had to pre-order it. Next, I noticed I could order components at a far better price, in large quantities, abroad. Those were the days internet-shops popped up. It made me order all kind of components. After a while I stocked 1.000.000+ components.
If I look back now, it's hard to say : "I'm just a hobbyist".
Research and Developement is where my heart is. Whenever I notice an electronic device lacks a certain functionality, it peeks my interest. Same goes for tools which don't exist yet, but I wish there was "something" available / for sale. That's the moment you'll see me absent minded. I'm searching and crawling for solutions (even outside the box), start with raw ideas, create prototypes and tinkering. And when ready,... use it.
When creating prototypes or final versions, I often end up with 10 pieces (minimum). And exactly this is where selling at internet (i.e. Indie) steps in.
So what am I ? If I can't come up with a straight and short answer, people mumble : "Creative problem-solver". I think it's a good description. I can stick with that.