Any electronic hobbyist want to share ideas?

I like reading Nuts and Volts Magazine. I'm currently trying to build Bob Blick's Propeller clock. If you search the web under Bob Blick, the project is easy to find. I'm having a hard time finding another motor. I destroyed the only motor I had trying to modify it like he did. I'm at an Intermediate level in electronics. Any programming advice is helpful too. I destroyed the a 40 dollar programmer because I wasn't sure how to put the IC in. How dumb was that? Any other ideas or tips will be helpful too. I have a few projects that I've done myself. The last thing that I built was a fumction generator. I ahd a hard time with the transformer though. T6hose things are pretty dangerous. You have to be careful. Thanks!

Answer:
While programming is not something I have done, I am an experienced in electronics.
Your issue with IC's is common, but easily changed. Holding the IC so that the notch at one end is on top and facing away from you, pin one is the first pin on left side. A good reference manual would be a real help for you.

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