☐ Salt-and-Vinegar French-fry Cheese-puffs

Many (many :-|) years ago (probably early 1987), my mother, sister, and I say down to watch Top Gun (on VHS). Obviously my sister and I didn’t find it very interesting because we fell asleep, and woke up later on in the movie. When we woke up, my mother got us a snack (in wooden bowls which we still have), which I have been searching for ever since. I’m fairly sure that my mother had gotten them from Bulk Food (a bulk-foods store, obviously).

The snack was puffy, white, elongated things, something like hickory-sticks, but thicker, like a cross between french-fries and cheese-puffs. They were salt-and-vinegar flavored.

Recently, I actually found a similar product at the dollar-store; it was Krack-o-Pop BBQ fries. I’m not sure if they’re exactly the same texture, but they’re pretty close to what I remember, except for them being BBQ flavored instead of salt-and-vinegar.

Does anyone remember a snack-food like this?

☐ Does PWM reduce the lifespan of components (LEDs)?

PWM is a way to fake an analog signal from a digital signal. Instead of outputting an analog signal in the middle of the range, the digital signal is turned on and off at rate that results in an average at the desired analog level (for example, rapidly turning a 5V signal on and off at equal intervals would result in a signal that appears to be 2.5V).

This is a convenient way to fake an analog signal without a real ADC but it has some disadvantages too. For one thing, it doesn’t always work and can cause anything from annoying flickering to outright not working as with some motors.

Bending a piece of metal, like a coat-hanger or soda-can–tab will eventually cause metal-fatigue and break it. Likewise, repeatedly heating and cooling an incandescent light-bulb will cause it to die sooner. Does rapidly turning some electronics components on and off, LEDs in particular, damage or break them or shorten their lifespan? 🤔