Most of the technological advancements that we see today are due to electronics. The products that we use in our everyday lives were once just concepts, before someone made them a reality. Whether it is a Smartphone or a toy robot, the people who actually design and make these products for the first time are the type of people who are capable of going one step further to convert their ideas into reality. If you think that you can make a product that can solve even the smallest problem, you should learn basic electronics to convert your ideas into reality.
Don’t I Need to Get Some Sort of a Degree to Make Electronics Projects?
Yes, if you plan to make a decoupled electronic load controller, but if you want to create simple solutions to simple problems I.e. a Clap Switch that turns on/off an appliance; a Rain Alarm, or even an Automated Lawnmower using your old one, then you just need to learn basic electronics and work on a few projects less complicated than these, to get a better understanding of how the basic components work.
So Where Do I Start?
As I mentioned above, you need to learn basic electronics and understand what the basic components in an electronic circuit do. The problem, however, with learning a new set of skills is finding the right place to start. Searching out electronics tutorials and electronics courses on the internet is always a good strategy, but if you don’t know much about electronics you won’t be able to understand the technical jargon, and you will surely get confused and possibly despondent.
On the other hand, going to a college or university that teaches basic electronics can surely be helpful, but that’s not something that everyone can do as it costs a lot of money and you have to designate a fixed time slot for this form of learning.
Intro to Electronics
So to learn the basics of electronics, you need a resource which explains everything in a super simple way. Though it is not the purpose of this article to explain basic electronics, the following points will give you an outline of the most basic concepts you should be looking to learn:
What are Voltage, current, power and their respective units?
What is the function of a resistor, and how to tell its resistance by looking at it?
What is a capacitor and what is its function?
What is an inductor and where it is used?
How to measure resistance, impedance, capacitance, current and voltage etc.
What are semiconductors & transistors and why are they used.
The difference between AC and DC.
How to draw circuits on paper and how to understand and solve/simplify them.
These are just a few of the most basic electronics concepts that your intro to electronics course or book should cover.
I was very grateful for the electronics books I managed to get hold of when I was a young budding electronics hobbyist, around thirty years ago now. That was obviously way before the internet, and the technology wasn’t as it is today. But those books were able to set the foundation for a very fascinating hobby and then a successful career.