I’m Nick! I’m an Electronics Engineer, Product Designer, and Serial Hobbyist in Southwest Virginia. I’m a long tenured team member at SparkFun Electronics — where I joined the team in 2011 — but I spend my free time doing other nerdy things.

SignalDitch is my YouTube channel where I’ve been documenting my adventures trying to build vacuum tubes in the home lab. It also plays host to some assorted project updates and streams. I qualified for monetization in 2023 and my vacuum tube research is supported in part by my generous patrons on Patreon under the banner of Integrated Thermionic™

GreatBigFactory is the tradename for my electronics assembly contracts. I currently run a full SMT line comprising two pick and place machines, a 5-zone conveyor reflow oven and automatic stencil printer. I usually take a few contracts per year building hundreds of units per contract. In 2022, I introduced my first product under the GreatBigFactory house brand: A handheld tape-and-reel parts counter called BeanCounter.

Some of my very early circuit layouts and design concepts can be found under various other names such as “Fringeneering” and “Northallen Lambda.” I can be found online variously as North, N0rth, northallenpoole, or CardinalHeavyIndustries.

(Brands That Are Actually Just Me)

Various brand logos with names like "SignalDitch" "GreatBigFactory" "Integrated Thermionic" "Cardinal Heavy Industries" "Fringeneering" and "Northallen Lambda"

I have (many) other hobbies besides electronics design that will occasionally feature on the blog. I play several instruments badly and also produce electronic music. 𝑔𝓇𝒶𝓅𝒽𝒾𝒸 𝒹𝑒𝓈𝒾𝑔𝓃 𝒾𝓈 𝓂𝓎 𝓅𝒶𝓈𝓈𝒾𝑜𝓃™. I sometimes write about philosophy and politics from a queer anarcho-socialist perspective. I started this blog in order to put all of my creative output in one place, some things won’t be for you and that’s okay.