It is a given that anyone who is interested in electronics, computing and developing devices along these lines must have heard of open-source electronic prototyping firm, Arduino. This is due to its numerous contributions—microcontrollers, kits, libraries, scripts etc.—to furthering DIY projects in many fields. Today, Arduino’s extensive products have been used to bring innovative ideas to the physical world across a lot of industries such as; IoT, electronics, cloud computing, robotics, smart appliances and a host of others.
Here, we will be taking a look at a couple of ideas you can bring to fruition using the Arduino platform. The items or ideas that will make-up this list will vary from the simple to the more complex creations in other to give beginners, as well as more experienced hardware developers something to play with.
5 Things You Can Do with the Arduino Kit
Receive Timely Weather Reminders with the Weather Display
Starting your first project with an Arduino kit can be quite tasking as you would be building your first electrical hardware from scratch. Therefore, it is recommended that you start with a project that is neither too easy nor difficult to execute. This makes the weather display project a smart idea to take on. As with all projects, starting out requires the use of certain tools which you must have at hand to simplify the entire process and for the weather display you will need;
- A HUZZAH ESP8266 Breakout or an Arduino Yun
- An OLED graphic display screen
- USB Micro-B Breakout
- Thin wires
- A web server that can run PHP scripts
- A soldering iron, solder, screws and cutters
Once you have assembled the needed tools, starting out requires you to follow the instructions on building the weather display that can be found here. The total sum needed to execute this project is under $100 but the knowledge gained will serve you throughout your hardware development career.
Make Music with the Midi Composer
For music lovers out there interested in electronics, starting your hardware development career with the creation of a MIDI board is highly recommended. This is due to the fact that such a project will fuse your love of music together with the creative effort needed to design a music creation instrument.
The MIDI composer, is an intermediary projects that allows you get your hands familiar with the bolts and nuts of working with a microcontroller. The preparatory tools you will need for this project includes;
- A plastic casing. This can be 3D printed to be more aesthetically pleasing
- A tool kit complete with; spanners, cutters, screw drivers etc.
- An Arduino Uno microcontroller
- A soldering kit; soldering iron, solder
- And the necessary wiring materials
Once all these are in place, the next step is coupling the MIDI controller into the casing structure you have chosen. To do this, you can follow the steps stated here and you will be on your way to creating your own music composition instrument which you can use at your own discretion.
Keep Your Space Private with the Finger Scanner
The finger scanner which can be integrated into your door post or garage door is one of the creative items you should consider developing when you choose to get into the trenches with an Arduino kit.
The finger scanner is actually interactive and comes with prompts on its messaging or display screen. This is definitely a more advanced project which will test both your mental capacity as well as your ability to craft the casing for your finger print. The tools you will need include;
- A finger print scanner
- LCD kit
- A Buzzer
- Batteries and speaker wire
- A soldering kit
- An electronics and crafting kit
- Access to plastic casing or a 3D printing kit
- An Arduino board
Getting this project together will definitely task all your skills and crafting abilities for there is a lot of technical work, design, programming and schematics that goes into the entire project. This means you should welcome all the help you can get when designing or developing this project and this step by step instructions should help you design and setup this finger scanner on your door. The practicality of this project also means you will not have to ever worry about forgetting your key once it is installed on your door.
Protect Your Mental Space with the TV Mute
The saying that ‘televisions bring into your home people and characters you will never consider physically inviting’ is true. Therefore, imagine having the power to mute certain names, subject matters and topics whenever they come-up on your TV. The TV mute is made possible with an Arduino hardware contraption that can help you accomplish the level of censorship you desire. The tools to get this going include;
- An Arduino board
- An electrical tool kit
- A soldering kit
Although thinking of accomplishing something like this would sound difficult, thankfully, the steps to accomplishing this project are at the intermediate level. Therefore, with the right tools and correct mental orientation you could be designing your own mental kit in no time.
Build Your Own Robotic Arm
One of the most important roles the Arduino brand has played overtime is as a solid helper to the robotics industry. Therefore, it shouldn’t come as a surprise to see the robotic arm making an appearance in this list for it requires the computing abilities of the Arduino microcontroller to work efficiently. Designing a robotic arm consist of more than just programming your Arduino board for it includes a lot of technical designs to create the frame the Arduino will power. This puts the robotic arm at a high-level of difficulty. The tools you will need include:
- An Arduino starter kit
- A 3D printer or 3D printing services
- An electronics kit
- A robotic kit
- An Arduino IDE etc.
The task is one you have to be mentally prepared for and you can start by following the steps here. And with the right tools, you can create the robotic arm as well as take the knowledge you acquire here and apply it to even more creative tasks.