Jim Williams: The light side and classic electronics art sculptures
Once their son Michael was born, their lives got much busier than before. Williams and his wife split up evening duties. He got the night shift from 2 AM to 7 AM. Once the routine was running smoothly, Williams introduced their son to the “glories of late night circuit hacking.” Williams first learned about wee hour’s circuit design at MIT in the 1970’s. There was a subculture there that loaded up on pizza, soft drinks and junk food, brought it into the lab and closed the door until long after daylight appeared. Williams was an enthusiastic convert.
Williams and his son changed the rules a bit at home by loading up on formula, diapers and bottles that he took into his home lab.
The circuits in Chapter 32 represent their efforts which stopped as soon as Michael began to sleep the entire night. Most of the bread boarding took place between feedings. You will notice the circuits being annotated with the number of feedings required for their completion; e.g., a “3-bottle circuit” took three feedings. The circuit’s degree of difficulty and Michael’s degree of cooperation, combined to determine the bottle rating recorded in each figure.
An easy circuit. (Image courtesy of Elsevier/Newnes from Chapter 32 of “Analog Circuit Design, Volume II”)
A harder circuit (note number of baby bottles) (Image courtesy of Elsevier/Newnes from Chapter 32 of “Analog Circuit Design, Volume II”)