Recently in Arduino Category

Trés cool programming of an ultra-cheap ATtiny 45/85 using the Arduino IDE. Perfect for embedded systems. Now there's no reason for me to go back to PICAXE!

This tutorial shows you how to program an ATtiny45 or ATtiny85 microcontroller using the Arduino software and hardware. The ATtiny45 and ATtiny85 are small (8-leg), cheap ($2-3) microcontrollers that are convenient for running simple programs. They are almost identical, except that the ATtiny85 has twice the memory of the ATtiny45 and can therefore hold more complex programs. We like to use both of them with paper circuits and other craft electronics. To program them, we’ll use a port of the Arduino core libraries created by Alessandro Saporetti and slightly modified by HLT.


Have been playing with the Seeeduino Bluetooth module. Will report more later, but just wanted to note that there's a simple UNIX command to turn your terminal into a … terminal on another port:

Knowing the serial port, you can just type screen portname datarate to show the serial data on the screen. In my case, it was:

screen /dev/tty.Keyserial1 9600

Then I started typing bytes at the PIC, and it sent bytes back to me. Whee! No need for zTerm! To quit the screen app, type control-A, then control-\.

Very useful!


There are a couple of free (as in beer) programs that can help you draw up wiring diagrams or schematics. Some of them will even turn them into PCB templates for you. These are the ones I've used:

Fritzing: Fritzing is designed to work with Arduino systems, but is still very much in alpha. Still, I use it for quick and simple schematics of my Arduino projects as it has most of the wiring all set to go.

Eagle: This is the program most serious people seem to be using. I find its interface to be extraordinarily complex and non-intuitive. There's a free version with just a few limitations, or pay for the real version with none. Can export to PCB templates.

Any suggestions on other alternatives? I'm a Mac user, so I only listed the Mac-compatible ones here. I know that other folks use ExpressPCB and some other programs that are Win-only.

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