Photo 4  To quickly test construction of a computer parallel port interface, cardboard was used as a base, with easily found parts, and power was achieved by using the "joystick" port's + 5 volt pin (connecting to the red power wire inside the computer is usually easier, but requires some way of connecting the circuit to the case). Three buffer chips were used to connect 8 LED lights (Light Emitting Diodes) thru 8 resistors, to the 8 BIT output pins of the 'printer' cable. Buffer chips were used to isolate the circuit board from the computer's chips, which are very sensitive, and easily damaged.  A row of 5 switches was added to INPUT  5 pins thru 5 resistors to the computer printer port. This simple circuit board was used to allow teaching and practice for kids who were learning to program their own robots. The cardboard was cut the size of an ordinary CD case, since the case could be used as a bottom and lid-- this gives strength to the interface, and protects the wiring on the bottom.

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