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Featured Community Blog

17 Posts

Congratulations to the October and November 2012 Blog of the Month, Let’s LabVIEW! Written by electronic engineer Bo Fu, the blog discusses specific LabVIEW tricks and tips as well as ideas about electronics and optics. It also highlights some work done by Bo Fu while being a research fellow at the University of Nottingham in the U.K. The blog has been active since July 2010 and it was written initially to help Bo remember the tricks, but has since become a communication outlet for others interested in LabVIEW. Some of Bo’s hobbies are optimizing LabVIEW code and drawing all the comics that are found in Let’s LabVIEW.

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Make sure to check out the blog content and all the drawings as well! Congrats Bo!


Congratulations to the September 2012 Blog of the Month, The Daily CLAD authored by Steve Brown! The blog consists of a Certified LabVIEW Associate Developer examination style question that is posted on an almost daily basis. Community members can post their questions and answers to get the discussion started, while Steve provides guidance towards the correct answer.  Steve began writing the blog in February 2012 when he was a part of the Certification Rewards Program pilot.  He enjoyed writing the 30 CLAD questions for the program and thought a blog on the same subject would be beneficial to the NI Community. Steve finds it fascinating to see the different ways people approach CLAD problems and believes that there is always something new to learn since LabVIEW is such an extensive platform. There are currently 115 posts as of October 4th, 2012.






Steve is a Certified LabVIEW Architect, Certified TestStand Architect and Certified LabWindows/CVI Developer. He is currently a Principal Software Engineer at Serco Project Solutions based in Hampshire in the UK.  Serco has been an NI Alliance Partner for over 20 years and specialize in military aerospace, data acquisition and automotive test solutions.


For the months of May and June Blog of the Month, we have selected Greg Payne’s personal Blogspot – Etching Pathways. The blog was started to share ideas and simple concepts that can easily be resolved with LabVIEW users once collaborated. The blog consist of sharing of codes, LabVIEW structures to creating custom buttons!


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Besides working on his projects, Greg uses his spare time cycling, running and competing in triathlons. Greg says training helps him clear his head come up with innovative ideas and different ways to approach things. Because of this there are occasional blog posts about his adventures.


Check out Etching pathways.


The JKI Blog, led by justin.goeres, has been selected as the April 2012 Blog of the Month. The blog was started in 2009 with the intent of improving communication with friends and customers who use LabVIEW. Many of JKI’s engineers have a high level of involvement in the LabVIEW community and they decided it would be important to have an official blog in order to keep their own users aware of what was going on with JKI. Justin says: “we want the blog to be a window into JKI more than a way to just reach out”.


Check out a couple of their previous blogs titled Pass Your CLD/CLA Exams the JKI Wayand an especially unique one, sarcastically titled LabVIEW Sucks. In relation to NI Week, Justin says, “we’re working on some cool new stuff related to that, and will be posting about it in the next few weeks”. He also mentioned that they have recently started running guest posts by talented LabVIEW developers. So if you have a subject you would like to write about, get in contact with him and you could end up on the JKI blog!






For the March 2012 Blog of the Month, we would like to recognize BMac's Power Electronics Development Center Blog. This blog is dedicated to power electronics design, prototyping, commercialization, HIL validation and testing using graphical system design tools. Posts range from software demonstration videos to best practes and recommended downloads, helping it become one of the most highly visited blogs in the past several months.




This month’s Blog of the Month is The NXT STEP, a blog for news and information on the LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT system. With several contributors to the blog, it takes on many different perspectives and looks at a wide variety of projects. It even has a section devoted to building instructions.




When I asked Damien Kee, the current editor, about the blog he said that it “strives to both inspire young kids with ideas and projects that are manageable through some of the most incredible creations”. The blog started when the blog founder, Jim Kelly, got his kit and found that no-one else was talking about it online. This made it difficult to find information and inspiration. Jim’s blog was initially about his experiences, but soon turned into a community where people could bounce ideas off one another.


Be on the lookout for one of The NXT STEP blog contributors on our very own NI Community: bazmati.


Happy 2012 Blog of the Month, NI Community! You may have noticed that we missed December, so we made sure to start off the New Year with an exciting blog by a hobbyist working on a big project and utilizing LabVIEW.


The L-1011 Project


Curd Zechmeister's L-1011 Project is a blog documenting his venture into creating a replica of a Lockheed L-1011 cockpit. Earlier in life, his dreams of being a pilot went by the wayside, but recently he had the opportunity to take part in a flight simulation and decided that in order to recapture the experience, he would rebuild a cockpit of his own. The blogging project was started as a way to document this endeavor, as a reference while building, but also to reach out for suggestions and collaboration from any like minded hobbyists.




Curd takes a great interest in the combination of the mechanical devices and the computer equipment in this project. LabVIEW has been an integral part of his project as he uses it to drive the cockpit equipment that can be 30 or more years old. Before utilizing LabVIEW, he was writing complicated interface software that was simplified by LabVIEW's network integration.


In the future, we can look forward to seeing posts by Curd about several of the milestones in the project. We wish him all the best in getting a cockpit shell and look forward to seeing the pictures when he does! I would encourage you to check out his blog and interact with him as he is interested in suggestions and getting anybody involved that has an interest in doing so.


     “Walking the Wires" is an up and coming blog written by Chris Roebuck, a Certified LabVIEW Architect and Certified TestStand Architect. He uses the blog as a sounding board for his personal thoughts and experiences within the automated test arena and more specifically with regard to the use of LabVIEW for ATE software development.

     One topic that will be covered in the blog is: Utilizing software engineering principles with LabVIEW and large application architectures. Some future topics we can expect to see covered are: The use of style guides and static code analysis tools and Design patterns for larger application architectures.

Here a couple posts that have already been published:


Bill's Blog written by Bill Miller, director of robotics at FIRST, is a behind the scenes look into the FIRST Robotics Competition.

Capture.PNGThe blog is used to share late breaking news and insider information of interest to the teams in the competition as well as fans of the varsity Sport for the MindTM program developed to help high school age young people discover how rewarding the lives of engineers and scientists can be. Bill posts frequently making this an extremely valuable resource for those interested in the competition or in the field of robotics.


The LabVIEW Field Journal is written by NI's Field Architects: Charlie Knapp, Nancy Hollenback, and Brian Powell. These veteran members of NI's team have many years of LabVIEW experience in addition to being active NI Community members.

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In their roles as Field Architects, they work with some of NI's top LabVIEW customers to help bridge the NI relationship from just a “vendor” to a technical “partner.” The blog tackles some of the difficult issues faced by customers, and is honest with customers about things that work well and things that don’t. The authors encourage participation on the blog with comments and occasional guest blog posts from other technical leaders in the community.


These bloggers are constantly uncovering some of the most unique applications created by NI customers. From laser-powered space elevators to robots that play Angry Birds, the Sweet Apps blog finds extraordinary LabVIEW applications in everyday life.




The blog is also a great way to share your own unique LabVIEW apps. Contact Sweet Apps to share your story.


Here are a few recent apps featured on the blog:


Curiosity and an aptitude for graphical programming are traits that will serve you well as you read through and comment on the blog posts for Where in LabVIEW? The blog showcases NI LabVIEW functions you may have never come across while programming.


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Grant Heimbach,a LabVIEW product marketing engineer, created the interactive blog in an effort to help graphical programmers “-strengthen [their] graphical skills by identifying [virtual instruments] VIs by just their images. Hopefully [they] will know some of them and will have fun looking for the ones that [they] don't.”


Each entry starts with a signature title, “Where in LabVIEW Can You Find....” followed by an image of an unknown VI. It is up to you to discover what the LabVIEW function is.


Fortunately, you can check back on the blog to find a complete post where Heimbach reveals the LabVIEW function and provides an explanation on why you would use it.


Submit your guess for this unidentified LabVIEW function


Read the full description of this LabVIEW function, Wait On Notification From Multiple With Notifier History


Bits and Bots is a blog written by Enable Training and Consulting, Inc. (ETC). The blog’s 13 categories’ topics vary from Enable my LEGO, which includes updates on ETC’s add-ons to their own LEGO project to education, including a post containing links to FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) tutorials. These types of posts characterize the services Enable Training and Consulting, Inc. has provided since 2006.


ETC creates training products, educational resources, and supplies technical writing services. In addition, ETC hires Certified LabVIEW Associate Developers and offers consulting and programming services. The blog About tab succinctly describes the ETC mission: “We’re proud to help all sorts of people and organizations make their ideas a reality, and we also help people share and teach their ideas.”


Check out the following Bits and Bots posts:

Category: Enable my LEGO

Ipods + Robots=Awesome

See how ETC engineers used an iPod touch application and a program in LabVIEW to power the Gantry Robot Optimus Prime (GROP).


Category: Education
Tetrix Meets “Steel”
Get an overview and video preview of the ETC Project Superior TETRIX Engineering Enabled by LabVIEW (S.T.E.E.L.), which debuted at the NI booth at the FIRST World Championships in St. Louis.


If you use LabVIEW to develop large, complex applications, this group is for you. Since 2008, this group has been active in sharing engineering best practices and ideas among its membership.


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Central to this group is the LabVIEW for Large Application Development blog, written by LabVIEW Product Manager, Elijah Kerry. Elijah uses the blog to work with customers developing large LabVIEW applications to incorporate software engineering and configuration management best practices and tools to ensure the quality and reliability of their applications.


Here are some of the most viewed blog posts:




Here are other great documents you can find in the group:


VI Shots explores the world of virtual instrumentation (VI) through interactive media and informative posts. The unique blend of tutorials, podcasts, interviews and industry news creates a dynamic space which fosters collaborative idea conception and discovery within the LabVIEW user base.

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Michael Aivaliotis of JKI created the VI Shots site to highlight developments in virtual instrumentation and offer LabVIEW tutorials and podcasts. Aivaliotis is a LabVIEW Champion and Certified LabVIEW Architect who founded LAVA and serves as the lead developer of VI Package Manager.


VI Shots features audio podcasts every two weeks hosted by Aivaliotis. These podcasts feature interviews and discussions with leading members of the LabVIEW landscape. Additionally, Aivaliotis calls on his expertise in LabVIEW to help answer questions from the VI Shots audience. The video tutorials on the site offer engaging insights into enhancing the LabVIEW experience and spark discussion and discovery.


Be sure to check out VI Shots and join in the discussion about virtual instrumentation!

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