A few years back, I spent a bunch of time playing around with Arduino microcontroller development projects, spending some time getting into hardware & embedded software development. It was a lot of fun and I wrote a number of blog posts and pages on my projects.
I lost all that blog posts in a database incident, and I just kind of left the site sitting dead for a while. But then I ended up on my Google Analytics account and discovered that I had one page that was receiving a fair amount of traffic, 100+ visits a day!
It was a simple calculator that I put together to determine the right components to use for a timing circuit with the 555 Timer IC. It approaches things a little different from other web resources in that it starts with what most people want (the timing that you want) and gives you what you need (the right components). Most online calculators just implement a simple equation and take the parts you have and tell you what the timing would be. I always felt that I was solving a problem that those other tools weren’t, and it seems like hundreds of people a week feel the same way.
So, when I started this new blog, I wanted to get the calculator ported over and updated. Moving to this new site also let me turn on comments, and I’ve already received several very nice comments from people. I’ve even had a couple of suggestions for ways to extend the tool and I’ve started making changes. It’s really nice to see people finding it and using it — and seeing them visit the blog in general once they are here.
Who’d have thought that a throw-away project from a phase I went through a few years ago would be the thing that brings the most people to my new blog? Love it.