Saturday, October 3, 2009

Whats all this about?

So lately ive gotten pretty interested in a little piece of magic called an Arduino [click here for the wikipedia link.]

Pretty much it is just a microcontroller (a small computer) that will take an input, and accordingly (given a set of commands) give an output. It's a very basic principle, and many things can be accomplished with it. Your own programmed tasks can range from flashing an LED, update you with info via a text message from a mobile cell phone, and most recently posted on be used to grow algae. These are just things very creative people have come up with, but honestly the possibilities are endless as to what can be done.

About a year back i purchased a Seeeduino.It's an ATmega168 microcontroller, in the form of a "breakout board." Which means the microcontroller's pins are easily accessible, in this case a row of black headers along the sides of the board. The concept of this board is the same as the arduino, however with some differences. For one, the Seeeduino has all SMD parts, which are much smaller. Also it can be powered via a usb port on board or an external device such a a 9v battery. The boards power itself uses either 5v or 3.3v depending on your needs, and is easily switched between a toggle switch.

So That i guess gives an idea of what the device i am working with is. I have in the past year created many small projects, only to disassemble them and recreate new ones (the seeeduino is $30 on ebay, too expensive to keep buying them) and with no documentation process.

I now however have a very sexy 7MP digital camera, a blog, lots of perf-board and tons of broken or useless gadgets laying around with precious parts ready to be brought back to life with new purposes. This blog will document that process. Enjoy it, feel free to comment, and please ask questions! I hope for this to be a significant part of a learning experience.

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