Arduino – everything you need to know
If you ever wanted to work with electronics, you most likely heard the term Arduino. If you haven’t, or want to know more about it, you’re in the right place! When you look at it, you’ll see a small blue circuit board. It might not look like much at first, but it can do quite a lot. We fell in love with it the moment we got our hands on it, and we think you might as well!
Is it a company or hardware?
It’s both, actually. We know it might be confusing at first, but let us explain.
The Italy-based company Arduino developed the programmable circuit board with the same name. Arduino, a circuit board commonly referred to as a microcontroller, is based on the ATmega328P microchip. You put commands written in code onto the Arduino board through software called Arduino IDE (Integrated Development Environment).
But circuit boards existed before, what’s so special about this one?
A significant advantage of Arduino to older programmable circuit boards is its port to upload new code. And the ease to do it in two steps. The first step is to plug a USB cable into Arduino and your computer. The second is to press the upload button on Arduino IDE with the code you want on the board. After a few seconds, when the code is uploaded, Arduino will start doing what you’ve instructed it to do. If all instructions are correct, of course.
Arduino is open-sourced, meaning everybody can manufacture an Arduino board and software. The hardware boards are cheap, the software is free, and the community is growing each passing day. What’s not to love?
Arduino is for everyone!
No matter what your profession or hobby is, you’ll find something interesting about Arduino. It was made for people of all skill levels. It can interact with buttons, LEDs, speakers, GPS systems, cameras, the internet, your smartphone… The possibilities are practically endless!
Arduino runs on Windows, Mac, and Linux. The IDE uses a simplified version of C++. Thus, it’s easy to learn to program Arduino even for absolute beginners. Some prior programming knowledge won’t hurt, though. Having at least basic electronics knowledge beforehand will make learning it that much easier. We’d recommend getting at least some understanding of that before jumping into the fun and exciting world of Arduino.
Arduino vs Croduino vs Dasduino
Okay, but what about Croduino and Dasduino? What are those!?
As mentioned before, due to it being open-sourced, everybody can create their Arduino circuit board. We wanted to create our own so we made Croduino Basic – the first Croatian Arduino compatible board. Hence the name. It was smaller than the regular Arduino and had two pins more. After tinkering and upgrading a bit more, Croduino Basic2 and Basic3 saw the light of day.
Years have passed and we rebranded from e-radionica to Soldered. With company makeover, our boards and other products received a makeover as well. We upgraded our Croduino Basic2 and Basic3 boards, standardized them a bit, and rebranded them as Dasduino.
Same as Croduino, Dasduino boards are all fully compatible Arduino boards. In other words, everything that works on Arduino works on Dasduino as well. Any Arduino code you write will work on Dasduino. Any component you would connect to the one you can connect to other.
What is on Arduino?
Sensors, shields, and everything in between
Arduino without any add-ons would get pretty boring pretty fast. It wouldn’t have much use either. Fortunately, Arduino was made to work with pretty much all electronic sensors and modules through easy-to-understand code. Therefore, it can measure the temperature, light intensity, humidity, barometric pressure… Almost anything you can sense, Arduino can measure using sensors!
Arduino works well with electrical components or devices that are responsible for moving or controlling a mechanism or system. We call those electrical components actuators. In layman’s terms, they turn the electric energy to movement or another energy, such as light, heat, etc.
There are also these things called breakout boards and shields that were made to work with an Arduino. Simply put, breakout boards make a single electrical component easier to use and they fit perfectly on solderless breadboards . An Arduino shield, on the other hand, takes complex hardware and puts them on a simple interface. Unlike breakout boards which are connected to Arduino with wires, shields are put on top of it. We have a more in-depth analysis of both breakout boards and shields if you’re interested in reading more about them.
Link na Arduino shields tekst.
Getting started with Arduino/Dasduino
While reading this article, you most likely thought about some projects you’d want to create. We can already tell that some of these projects are too complicated to make if you’re an absolute beginner. Don’t let that discourage you! We had some way too complicated projects in the beginning as well. That’s why we would like to offer you guidance so you don’t get too overwhelmed in the beginning.
To get started, you will need an Arduino board, of course, as well as some components. There are a lot of components to choose from, and you probably won’t know what you need right away. To make it easier for you to start, we made some Dasduino starter kits for you to choose from.
We also prepared some easy Arduino projects you’ll want to try to slowly dip your toes in the Arduino world. The first project you’ll want to do, which everybody recommends, is a blinking LED . With that, you will learn the basics you need before starting to make something complex. After that, be sure to check out some of the other beginner-friendly projects we’ve included.
There are also these things called libraries that make typing the code easier. An Arduino code library essentially lets you replace a long and complicated code with a simpler one. Installing the library is really simple to do, and we covered it in a separate tutorial . Keep in mind to check that out when you start making some more complex projects. You’ll love using them!
Products used in this tutorial
No products found