The first program you usually write when learning a new programming language is called “Hello World”. The program outputs those words as its only function. When learning to program microcontrollers such as the Arduino, the equivalent of “Hello World” is a program that blinks an LED. Guess what it is called – Blink.
A variable is like a bucket. You choose what types of stuff you want in the bucket and can change the contents as often as you like. When you declare a variable, you are telling the program two things, firstly – what types of things you plan to put in the bucket, and secondly, what the name of the bucket is so you can refer to it later. If you tell the program you will be putting fluids in the bucket, than you can go all day filling it with beer, water, and iced tea – but the second…
The coding language that Arduino uses is very much like C++ (“see plus plus”), which is a rather common language in the world of computing. As I have alluded to in previous lessons, the code you learn to write for your Arduino will be very similar to code you write in any other computer language – all the basic concepts remain the same – it’s just a matter of learning a new dialect should you pursue other ventures. The code you will be writing is called “human readable”, that is, it will make sense to you (sometimes) and will…
IDE stands for Integrated Development Environment. Pretty fancy sounding, and should make you feel smart anytime you use it. The IDE is a text editor like program that allows you to write computer code for your Arduino board. When you open up the Arduino program, you are opening the IDE. It is intentionally stream lined to keep things as simple and straightforward as possible. When you save a file in Arduino, the file is called a sketch – a sketch is where you save all the computer code that you have written. Lets take a look at some…
One of the absolute best things about the Arduino platform is how easy it is to get started. The software that installs on your computer is completely free and designed specifically for ease of use. The program is called an Integrated Development Environment, or IDE. The fancy name might intimidate you but it runs just like a text editing program. As with any software install, you may have some peculiar things working on your computer that could hinder a smooth install. I have loaded the Arduino several times on different operating systems and have not had too many troubles….
What are all the components on that aesthetically pleasing blue Arduino circuit board? What does GND stand for, and what is with the “~” mark next to those plastic lifted holes mean? This tutorial covers the hardware on the Arduino board that you will likely use as you work on projects. It is by no means a comprehensive study of the physical layout, but enough to make you familiar with the parts you will be using.
This video shows a step-by-step tutorial on showing data from your GPS on Google Earth. The project uses the Adafruit Ultimate GPS board and an Arduino Microcontroller. The lesson shows how to properly configure GPS coordinates from NMEA sentences into a KML file that Google Earth can display. For more info, see Arduino LESSON 25 at www.toptechboy.com, where we have the code and supporting material.
This tutorial presents step-by-step instructions on using the Adafruit Ultimate GPS unit and the Virtuabotix SD card reader and an Arduino to create a data logging GPS. This builds on the work presented in LESSON 22, so go back and review that one first.
This tutorial has step-by-step instructions on creating a GPs tracker based on the Arduino and Adafruit Ultimate GPS breakout board. This lesson will get the circuit connected, and the module streaming and reading good NMEA sentences. In lesson 23 we will parse the data and save to an SD card.
This video shows step-by-step instructions on logging sensor data from an Arduino to an SD card. This facilitates easy importing into Excel and easy charting, graphing and data analysis. We use the BMP180 pressure sensor and a standard SD card reader.
This tutorial takes you step-by-step through creating a simple device for measuring distances. The measurements are made with an ultrasonic sensor connected to an arduino microcontroller. The results are displayed on an LCD screen.
In this tutorial we show simple step-by-step lesson on how to measure distance with an arduino microcontroller and an ultrasonic sensor. The measured distance is based on the ping time to the target of an ultrasonic ping. The measured distance is displayed via a servo and hand drawn scale. The sensor used is the virtuabotix ultrasonic sensor, and the servo is from the Sparkfun Inventor kit. Key concept in this lesson is to show students how important it is to apply what they know from Algebra related to lines in order to map inputs (distance measurements) onto outputs (servo angle)….
This tutorial presents simple step-by-step instructions on how to accurately measure the speed of sound using an arduino microcontroller and an ultrasonic sensor. It operates based on echolocation, and is similar to the mechanism used by bats to navigate in a dark cave. It is also similar to how Sonar works on submarines.
This tutorial shows you how to create a project where a color sensor reads the color of a colored card, and then sets the RGB LED to that color. This is done with an arduino microcontroller. The system works well for a wide variety of colors, not just the primary colors.