Circuit boards are wonderfully cheap to had made (even with the "president's ill-conceived tariffs). Having custom circuit boards made is really open to everybody. But there are a lot of steps between finishing a circuit board design and having it ready to send to a fab house. I've developed a piece of software to make the process a little easier.
When the board design is finsihed, Gerber files must be generated. A file is required for each layer of the circuit board. Top and bottom copper - 2 layers. That doesn't seem so difficult. Actually, your board layout's CAM processor generates many more layers: the silkscreen layers showing the labeling of the board, the soldermask layers, paste layers if you're having a stencil made, the Excellon drill file, various layers showing routing and Vscores. The list gets pretty long.
The pcb fabricators like each of these layers to be the board name plus a particular extension for each. I like to include a readme text file listing the board parameters, including the name of the file for each layer. This gets pretty tedious! I have created the Gerber File Readme Generator to make this process a breeze. Enter in a few parameters, click a few boxes, and the file is written to disk. A very tedious task is done in a few seconds.
I loved it! And I like how you wrote the app in VB6!! I have not done that in years, but OMG did I write a lot of apps in that platform.
I do all my stuff in webapps now, mostly, or in Linux. Only because I try to stay in the platform for coding that I use for my embedded stuff. I had no idea you were proficient in code sir! NICE JOB!
Fact is, your tutorial assumes I am further along this genre of design than I am at. My lack of analog electrical training has kept me from even designing my own boards. It SEEMS like it is .... peel a layer back, and a dozen more layers are there to solve. Things like how large the ground plane should be, etc etc.
Like ALL your tutorials and guides though, I certainly saved it all because I know that sometime soon I will catch up and need that info.
Sorry I'm the only one here so far that offers that praise though. You deserve SO MUCH MORE!!!!
Praise is nice, but I'd be happy for ANY sign of life here! Articles are getting read - I can see that by the number of hits - but some kind of feedback would be nice. Thanks, a comment or even "This is lame, I could do it so much better" would let me know that somebody is really reading this stuff.