Finally, Massimo Banzi released the new Arduino Leonardo design, which offers some long discussed and useful features, such as a simplified layout, additional analog IO Pins and a lower price.The Leonardo line introduces a new pin layout, dubbed R3, that will become standard across all Arduino boards. That’s good news for Arduino shield makers who only have to design the different shields once to be compatible with the entire Arduino product line, which saves a lot of engineering time and effort on the long run. Another interesting change is that the circuitry for converting USB to serial
communication and the processor itself have been combined, which not only simplifies the design and drives down costs, but allows the direct communication a host computer. That means that Arduiono is able to directly act as all sorts of accessories, like mouse or keyboards. The price for an Arduino Leonardo will be around $25, which is a little bit less than the Arduino Uno.
At the Red Bull Creation Contest 2012, a team came up with the idea of an Arduino driven Telepresence Zengarden. In detail this robotic garden is able to remotely print your symbols and texts in a garden of sand and of course erasing it again. So this garden is designed to last for unlimited write cycles ;), look for yourself:
The ‘10 Dollar Robot‘ Design Challenge calls for programmable and cost effective robotic designs. The goal of these designs is to learn how to program robots or to simply do physical computing with an affordable set of hardware parts, that can move and sense theyr environment. The outcome of this challenge is especially targeted for use in African countries and other emerging economies (but the competition is open to anyone worldwide). You can win Raspberry Pi boards and a little bit of additional money to buy hardware 🙂
Adafruit recently published a Raspberry Pi cobbler in order to help you to use Raspberry Pi’s PIN outs for your hardware or physical computing projects. In fact it seems as if the Raspberry Pi’s pinout alone are not easy to address, so Adafruit helped us a little bit to overcome this challenge and to get your project on the way more quickly. The Pi Cobbler solves that problem with a ribbon cable, some header pins and a custom PCB. The kit lets you easily run those 26 I/O pins to solderless breadboard. The unassembled Adafruit package costs just $7.95, which sounds like a good deal.
Massimo Banzi one of the inventors of THE electronics prototyping system called Arduino spoke at TEDGlobal 2012 about the cool things people are making with Arduino. At the moment Arduino is one of the most popular prototyping platforms worldwide. Some weeks ago Massimo Banzi presented their new Arduino package design at the Maker Faire and he got a lot of interested people around him. The usability of the Arduino system is that good that even children are developing their first electronics project with it. And with a price around 20€ its definitely cheaper than the traditional PIC microcontroller programming enviroments i used.
Make had a small stock of Arduino Leonardos in the Maker Shed for their announcement at Maker Faire but they sold nearly as fast as they could put them out. Make finally got them back in stock so you can buy one right now in the Maker Shed (while they last!)
At first glance, the Arduino Leonardo looks just like an SMD version of the Arduino Uno with a micro USB port. It’s blue, has the same foot print, same pin-out, and the same layout as its brother. The internals are also very similar. It features nearly the same RAM, flash, and clock speed as the ATmega328 processor found in the Uno. So why is the Leonardo different? Because it uses the ATmega32u4. This processor has built in USB communication which eliminates the need for a secondary USB to serial converter. The ATmega32u4 creates a virtual (CDC) COM port on your computer every time it runs its bootloader. Since it’s virtual, it can also behave like an HID (Human Interface Device) meaning the Leonardo can “act” like a keyboard or mouse, opening it up to a whole new range of projects. This processor also has additional I/O capabilities, allowing pins 4, 6, 8, 9, 10, and 12 to be used as analog inputs (12 total vs. the UNO’s 6). In addition, the Leonardo has one additional PWM pin (13) and all 20 I/O pins can be used as digital pins.
Of course, this new functionality doesn’t come without a price (although the price is only $20!) Since the Leonardo uses a virtual COM port, it can make certain tasks a bit more complicated (see the Getting Started Guide.) For this reason, we recommend this board to makers with some Arduino experience. Also, some of the pin assignments are slightly different so while the Leonardo is compatible with most shields, it may not be compatible with all. Advanced shields that use I2C or SPI (such as Ethernet shields) will work so long as they were updated to match the new Arduino Uno layout that was released last year. For full shield compatibility and ease of use, see the tried and true Arduino Uno.
- Microcontroller ATmega32u4
- Operating Voltage 5V
- Input Voltage (recommended) 7-12V
- Input Voltage (limits) 6-20V
- Digital I/O Pins 20
- PWM Channels 7
- Analog Input Channels 12
- DC Current per I/O Pin 40 mA
- DC Current for 3.3V Pin 50 mA
- Flash Memory 32 KB (ATmega32u4) of which 4 KB used by bootloader
- SRAM 2.5 KB (ATmega32u4)
- EEPROM 1 KB (ATmega32u4)
- Clock Speed 16 MHz
The Nanosatisfi team has made it their mission “to provide affordable space exploration for everyone!,” and with ArduSat, they move one step closer to reality. ArduSat is a Arduino-controlled miniature 10cm cubic satellite, weighing 1 kg, which is roughly equivalent to half a store bought loaf of bread. Its size might not be impressive, but it packs over 25 sensors including: Myspectral’s open source spectrometer, inertial measurement unit, magnetometer, along the standard set, and many others. This impressive little machine boasts a camera to take photographs, it could send messages back to earth, or it can run your space experiments. With the ability to upload code directly to the ArduSat while in space, the possibilities are virtually limitless. [via Make]
You wanted a Netduino with more speed, flash, and RAM. You wanted a Netduino with more GPIOs, more serial ports, more analog inputs and more PWMs. You wanted an easy to use, plug and play board with no soldering required. You wanted it and now it’s here; The Netduino Go Starter Kit. Available now in the Maker Shed.
The Netduino Go is an open source, plug and play Netduino with 4 times the speed (168MHz), 6 times the code space (384KB) and twice the RAM (100KB+) of the Netduino Plus. The peripherals are virtualized and contain a microchip that works with the mainboard. All you have to do is pick what you need, plug it in, and it’s ready to go.
The Netduino Go Starter Kit is designed to get you up an running quickly. It includes the Netduino Go mainboard, one button module, shield base (beta) module, potentiometer module, RGB LED module, two 5cm Go cables, two 10cm Go Cables, and a 3 foot micro USB cable. It’s like freedom in the form of electrons!
Jaanus Kalde has made the Tinydino, an Arduino clone that’s just 7.4 mm square. He used the ATmega88 chip and built the rest of the components around it. According to Jaanus, its features are:
-4 analog channels
-1 digital i/o
-funny readme with BOM
It needs arduino bootloader for atmega88 like ottantotto bootloader, probably it needs some hacking too because the resonator is 8MHz not the Arduino regular 16MHz.
[via Electronics Lab]
Look at Phil Tucker’s motion-detect sprinkler home defense system, it activates upon any motion and starts a sprinkler in your garden. Phil defends his garden against dogs and cats, which permanently poop into. So he built this nice device which is based on an Arduino microcontroller. It can be completely controlled by a smartphone too.
Testing a motion activate sprinkler. A TRENDnet IP camera triggers a GPIO output read by an Arduino which then triggers a relay/solenoid valve to turn on a sprinkler. IP camera already records video and sends email alerts.