All About Arduino

All About Arduino

Whether you are new to Unplggd or have been a reader for years, you know that we mention this little thing called Arduino quite often. Arduino seems to make an appearance in almost every DIY project that involves electronics, and we thought it might be time to provide a little explanation of what it is...

Thanks to the very helpful Arduino site we were able to learn everything we wanted to know about Arduino. Arduino is quite simply an open-source electronics prototyping platform. It has easy to use hardware and software which makes it an ideal way for a variety of folks with different programming and circuit know how to get their feet wet with automation and make some really neat things.

If you're curious as to what a prototyping platform looks like, in the case of Arduino, it most often looks like a tiny circuit board that can fit in your hand. This board can sense the environment by receiving input from a variety of sensors and can affect its surroundings by controlling lights, motors, and other actuators (hence why it is so popular to use with automation projects).

One of the things that is great about Arduino is that you don't need to know Python or Objective C to program the board. The microcontroller on the board is programmed using the Arduino programming language and the Arduino development environment. Arduino projects can be stand-alone or they can communicate with software on running on a computer.

How do you get an Arduino board? As you can tell from many of the projects we've featured on Unplggd, boards can be built by hand or purchased pre-assembled.

Have you built your own Arduino board? Used Arduino in a DIY of your own?

For some great projects using Arduino, check out these posts:

(Image: Flickr members LenP17 and Roo Reynolds licensed for use under Creative Commons)

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