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The Engineer Guy explains how smartphones know up from down

Posted: , by Nick T.

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The Engineer Guy explains how smartphones know up from down
One of the less-touted components that you will find inside of a smartphone or a tablet is its accelerometer – a small component that reacts when the device is being moved or rotated. Thanks to this tiny piece of silicon, your handheld can detect whether you are holding it sideways or in portrait mode and respond adequately, usually by rotating the display in the correct orientation.

But how do accelerometers work? That is a question for Bill Hammack, also known as the Engineer Guy, who reveals the inner workings of every day gizmos in his YouTube show. And as you can already guess, accelerometers were last episode's topic.

So, it turns out that accelerometers were a bit more complex that we though they were. The elements that go inside one are so small that manufacturing them by hand or with a machine is practically impossible, which is why some chemical trickery must be used instead. Curious to know more? Then just sit back and check out the video that we have embedded below. 


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posted on 22 May 2012, 09:10 3

1. mercorp (Posts: 954; Member since: 28 Jan 2012)


That was eductional.thanks.

posted on 22 May 2012, 09:37

2. blinkdagger (Posts: 81; Member since: 04 May 2012)


I'm making one..

posted on 22 May 2012, 09:47

3. knihai (Posts: 1; Member since: 22 May 2012)


haha You need a freaking million dollar "nano technology" machine to etch silicon for those chips. Either you own intel or have so much money to burn

posted on 22 May 2012, 10:14

4. tward291 (Posts: 559; Member since: 14 Feb 2012)


learn something new everyday. today was no exception. ever since i started school in electrical engineering the things we can do, and how we do them just amaze me every time.

posted on 22 May 2012, 13:44 2

5. jopancy (Posts: 55; Member since: 25 Apr 2012)


If such intelligent piece of engineering needs thought and careful designing by the engineer, how come people say life or cells were not designed, but was a 'product' of blind chance???

posted on 22 May 2012, 15:57

6. tward291 (Posts: 559; Member since: 14 Feb 2012)


what!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

posted on 23 May 2012, 00:46

8. redrooster13 (Posts: 107; Member since: 20 Feb 2012)


I agree. This is nothing compared to the human body and some people think that there was no creator behind us. They just think we just some how came about from an explosion. Anyways, it was cool to get an idea of what goes into a accelerometer.

posted on 22 May 2012, 20:11

7. cncrim (Posts: 415; Member since: 15 Aug 2011)


awesome..... learn something.

posted on 23 May 2012, 02:41

9. darkskoliro (Posts: 885; Member since: 07 May 2012)


should post more stuff like this

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