Element Details

There are currently no details or properties, other than the name or type, for any elements other than adding them in by hand with the Component Creater. Adding these would be extremely useful for quickly identifying proper elements to use in a circuit.

Adding details that appear when the mouse hovers over an element on the screen, and making a toolbar that appears (maybe slides in from the right or left) with modifiable properties for a selected element would be beneficial for quickly troubleshooting a circuit, especially with the integrated Arduino IDE and circuit simulation.

1 Like

Thanks for this excellent suggestion, and all of the invaluable feedback you’ve been providing!

This will definitely be part of our roadmap. We can support component data sheets too. We’re also looking into autogenerating a BOM leveraging these details tied into each component.

One question I have for you. I’ve been putting some thought to how to integrate with specific parts rather than generic components as we currently do, while also making it easy to find the right part. Here are a couple of alternative approaches I’m considering:

  • Look up the part ID in our components panel - I feel like this would be the least useful, except for the most experienced engineers that already have a list of parts they commonly use and know the specs of.
  • Select a generic part from the components panel. As a property of the component, select the component ID, which populates component specs. I could imagine a GUI here that lets a user specify desired characteristics of the component too for searching quickly.

These are the ideas I have right now. I’d be very interested to hear your thoughts on the proposed workflows, and also if you have a different workflow in mind, I would love to hear it.

Both of these are great! I especially like the idea of the user being able to manipulate specs as this would make changing one or two of many similar components really quick and easy (just click, change, and save). Speaking of which, would your proposed GUI show up after the part is already on the layout or while the user is still in the search results?

For the datasheets, maybe having a database with different datasheets from different manufacturers of a similar component would be useful. That way, you can easily compare components of the same model but different brands (for example, Microchip and Texas Instruments) and can choose the component best suited for an application, or the most common, the cheapest, etc.

On top of having a database for the supported components that come with the program, it would be extremely useful to have an internet search tool that finds datasheets for a user-created components. This could range from suggesting one or two, or letting the user search directly for datasheets from a few trusted sources like Digikey, Mouser, Arrow, etc., or both!

Currently, my thought is for the proposed GUI to show up after the part is already on the layout.
I’m hoping to avoid having a bunch of similar parts in the components library, and also avoid impeding the click-drag-and-drop workflow for adding parts to a circuit.

Would you find that workflow easier or hader to work with compared to the alternatives? For myself, I usually like to draft a rough sketch of the circuit, and then to come back afterwards and identify the exact part with the specs I need.

I really like the idea of a search tool to find specs for user-created components. It shouldn’t be a huge leap for us to add this, since we’re already looking to link our core library to supplier APIs, and it has to be much faster than manually pulling this data from the supplier websites. We’ll definitely prioritize adding this in.