Hah! I told you! I told you! But did you believe me? NooOooOoooooOooo. What am I blathering on about, you ask?

Well, we finally now have all the PICAXE Starter Packs available with USB cables instead of serial. There are four new bundles in total:

All of these include a battery pack and cable, project board, and (of course) a PICAXE USB programming cable.  Each bundle is a bit different, so click on through to check out the details and specifics.

K CMDIn other news, our motor drivers are freaking awesome. And yes, that’s a technical term – we’ll abbreviate it to ‘FA’ for short. We get a lot of interest in the L298, particularly in regards to how to put this bad beast to work with some motors. It has some pretty impressive characteristics, operating from 6V-50V with a total output current of a 4A. But if you want to really get it going in your own FA designs, it can take a bit of effort. This is where our nifty L298 Compact Motor Driver Kit comes in. Within its 40mm/1.53″ footprint, we cram in four indicator LEDs, EMF-protection diodes, terminals (for power and connections), and a handful of other neat-o features. Keep in mind that this is a kit, so you still get to build it yourself. And as always, it comes with our 100% satisfaction guarantee – there’s free tech support and repair for those who need it. And hey – if you’re looking for something similar but for the L293D, try our Secret Motor Driver!

Jérôme Demers, of a certain Beetlebot fame, is currently doing some work for us here at Solarbotics. He likes it so much that we installed a bed in the garage so that he can stay and work and never go anywhere else at all. Before the rest of us take off for the night we leave him large amounts of poutine, and when we arrive in the morning it’s all gone and replaced with FA robots. His latest labour of love is a Joule Thief Lamp, that… Well, you can find out for yourself over at Instructables – Feel free to even throw a vote his way if you’re so inclined. In the mean time, we’ll just stock him up on an extra large pile of poutine before we take off for the weekend.