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166  Using Arduino / General Electronics / Re: Conductive Rubber on: October 21, 2012, 11:03:29 am
Mike is correct in how to get it to work, if you were curious how the science of it works, it's really simple. It works similar to capacitive touch works, what you are really doing is increasing the resistance. By getting closer or touching a surface it takes a longer time to get a reading, hence you can measure the time offset . However, unlike capacitive touch, here you are increasing the distance for the current to travel and in turn increasing the resistance. Also you are decreasing the size of the "wire" (or conductive rubber) so this might have an affect on the resistance too (not sure if measurable? someone can correct me if I'm wrong in this assumption)

check this out if you need an example of how to use it:
167  Using Arduino / General Electronics / Re: 2 sharp IR sensors + 5v servo on arduino uno on: October 21, 2012, 10:48:25 am
one that I have is rated for the arduino, and is very small--it should be ok.
I will eventually try to power it on separate supply, but I would like to keep it as contained as possible. having two batteries is a bit cumbersome and seems unnecessary...?
168  Using Arduino / General Electronics / 2 sharp IR sensors + 5v servo on arduino uno on: October 20, 2012, 12:05:33 pm
Is it possible to hook up 2 IR sensors and a servo to an uno? I can get one IR sensor and servo hooked up but when I add the 2nd IR sensor I don't think it's getting enough voltage to run both the sensors and servo. I might be just doing something wrong, I am basically running them all off of the 5v supply on a prototype board that feeds 5v to them all, assuming there is a voltage drop and I have to accommodate for it somehow?
169  Development / Suggestions for the Arduino Project / Re: Total rewrite of the Arduino App needed! on: October 18, 2012, 06:22:32 pm
I've implemented some changes to the current system. I did a post on how to modify them as well if you are interested. It's here:
170  Development / Other Software Development / Re: Custom syntax highlighting and dark UI on: October 18, 2012, 05:54:27 pm
ok here is the mac version of the mod. It should be easy enough to get the PC version rocking too

I will try to add PC side of things soon.
171  Development / Suggestions for the Arduino Project / Re: Interest in overhauling the IDE user interface? on: October 18, 2012, 05:44:32 pm
I love that there are professional quality alternative IDEs but that is no reason to let the main Arduino developer tool atrophy.  We are talking about the first thing that a new user experiences. It should be as good as possible.

I suggest a two phased approach. First, implement a bunch of small fixes and improvements that increase usability without fundamentally adding anything new.  Things like:

* Smooth fonts
* Resize fonts with a shortcut (cmd+ and cmd- usually)
* Match native key bindings. Right now certain keybindings are available in native apps that aren't there in the IDE.  Ctrl-A for start of line, for example. (on Mac)
* Serial port names.  When the IDE asks you for the serial port of your Arduino it gives you a list of names that contain no useful information. There must be some way to fix this.  Perhaps if there is only one serial port attached we don't even ask you, just assume the default.
* Add a "Window" menu showing the currently open windows
* line numbers in the gutter
* a selection of nice alternative color themes
* make the toolbar look nicer (new colors? gradients?)
* switch to nicer icons from the Noun project.
* make the serial port dock-able with the main window
* support fullscreen mode on OSes that support such a concept.

The second phase would tackle deeper issues

* syntax highlighting and code completion
* a sidebar with inline help for the language reference
* a sidebar with docs on each library you have imported into your project
* a way to discover and add new libraries from within your IDE. Perhaps a repo of common arduino libs?


- Josh

Hey Josh,

I'm actually a UI designer who got into creative coding and inevitably into hardware stuff, so the IDE kind of drove me crazy after being used to a lot of designer designed UIs. I actually have dug around on the IDE files and managed to hack into a few things. I did a writeup today here: since it was generating some interest and also have a thread going here:,120268.0.html feel free to add to it or poke the developers for some suggestions smiley maybe they will implement some of the changes.

I have managed to do a few things like: smooth fonts, change UI colors and Icons, change the syntax highlighting. It would be nice to have a tool writing in something like processing that would allow to write to the file I edited so edits could be seen easier too. Still a lot to be desired, but its a start.

As a side note, read up on your arduino IDE project, and if you need design, hit me up. I would love to help.
172  Development / Other Software Development / Re: Custom syntax highlighting and dark UI on: October 18, 2012, 09:08:58 am
Wow this looks really cool. Can you post some more information? Is it Mac only?

at the moment it's MAC only, however I will port it to PC soon--if I have time tonight I will do that as well.
173  Development / Other Software Development / Re: Custom syntax highlighting and dark UI on: October 18, 2012, 09:08:22 am
Think this is pretty sweet.  Would like a tutorial or maybe a zip file with updated files...

I will write up a tutorial tonight on it, it involves changing some settings and digging into a lot of directories. Not too bad though. I wrote one on the processing side, and its very similar:
174  Development / Other Software Development / Custom syntax highlighting and dark UI on: August 26, 2012, 05:39:11 pm
I did a little hacking on the processing UI and realized arduino was pretty much built off the same IDE (not sure which came first). But figured I would port the changes over to ardiuno too since it wouldn't take much extra work. here is what I was able to achieve. I can only look at a white UI for so long... hah.

button states:

I really would like to do more with it, but I didn't have time to poke around a all the files-- just found a few images and code theme files.
let me know if you're interested and I'll write up a tutorial, or video of it, its pretty easy just copying some files over. maybe someone has more experience with this and can tell me where I can actually move placement of buttons and maybe edit scroll bars and such.

ideally I would like to do something like this (note this is the processing version):
175  Using Arduino / General Electronics / playing sound from external media on: June 22, 2012, 03:38:26 pm
I want to try to play wav forms that sound decent (and could easily be edited by anyone, so adding a wav file or something) over a good speaker (non-piezo). I am thinking of using an SD card to read off of because I've seen posts on it before. Was curious what route you would suggest to do this, I want it to be completely standalone from computer.
176  Using Arduino / Sensors / Re: reacting to specific frequencies on: May 03, 2012, 06:17:52 am
Implementing an envelope detector might help with capturing claps - the envelop is pretty distinctive.  Basically rapid attack and no noticeable duration before decay.  The only frequency-dependent part is choosing a time-constant for the decay - wants to be short but long enough to not count a single clap as several events.

that is genius! never thought about adding envelope detector. any suggestions on where I should go to learn about this? assuming this would be done software side. I might even be able to do redundant tests, envelope, freq, pitch etc.
177  Using Arduino / Sensors / Re: reacting to specific frequencies on: May 03, 2012, 06:14:45 am

That might help you, but he's right, claps are difficult to differentiate from other complex high frequency waveforms.  If all the others are low pure tones and less brief than it will be easy!  Read the datasheet within my link above.

ooo, this is awesome! something I will definitely try out. thanks.
178  Using Arduino / Sensors / Re: reacting to specific frequencies on: May 03, 2012, 06:13:03 am
The main problem is that a sound like a clap is a complex waveform and is not just one frequency. That makes it difficult to recognise.
For getting at the frequency content of a waveform look to use a FFT. However that gives you in effect a list of all the frequencies and their relitave strengths. Recognising a specific sound is a lot more complex because its FFT will change over time.
While you can implement a band pass filter digitally it will not be a very high order filter due to the lack of processing power of the arduino.

I understand they are complex frequency but everything has a fundamental or a dominant freq, so you can basically search for a specific freq something likes to resonate at. I have done this purely digitally, no problem. It's doing it with an arduino that I am stuck on.
179  Using Arduino / Sensors / reacting to specific frequencies on: April 16, 2012, 10:12:04 pm
is there a direction someone can push me on how to build a circuit that would react to a certain sound like a clap?

was thinking of using something like this with a filter:

I have means of recording and analyzing a sound so I can find what frequency the sound is around at least. I was thinking of building a hardware or digital band-pass filter (not even sure how I would do that honestly, hah) that would only trigger a signal to arduino if that frequency was met.

I've seen suggestions in using a UM3763:

This is only my guess at how to do this. maybe there is a better way? any ideas?
180  Using Arduino / Motors, Mechanics, and Power / best servo/wireless adaptor for low power consumption on: April 01, 2012, 08:10:00 pm
I want to build a few things with arduino that will use low power. Is there a way you can have arduino "wake on LAN" because I don't want it to constantly use power unless it is told to do so. afraid if wireless adaptor is added it will always be awake and draining power.

I basically want to patch into arduino via a web app or something and have it turn a nob when I give a command. it will be running on battery so I need it as energy efficient as possible.
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