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Topic: Computer GUI to Control Arduino/Adafruit (Read 4 times) previous topic - next topic


Hi guys,

I'm building a spectrograph for my 36" telescope and since this device could be 13 feet in the air I'd like to remotely control it.  I've built the Adafruit Motor Shield and have attached it to my Arduino board.  I'm hoping there is a path to create a GUI with buttons I can mouse-click on that will activate a relay to turn the power to one of two calibration lamps, argon and neon, slowly turn three reversible DC motors that will be geared to two micrometer stages and rotate a 200mm camera lens focus, plus, while I was planning on a fourth DC motor to rotate in a mirror to divert the calibration light into the device but I think it may be better to use a servo there to slowly go from 0 to 180 to bring that optic in and back again.  I know Arduino can control 4 DC motors and I think it can do 3 DC's and 1 Servo.

The computer on the telescope, that'll control the spectrograph, is part of an adhoc network where I remote desktop control it from 20 feet away.  I've found AutoHotkey and SmartGUI, but are these what I really need?

A description of what I'd like is;
GUI buttons within a frame to; turn on the lamps via relay activation (I may need to add a Light Dependent Resistor so Arduino can determine that the lamps actually lit which then may require an indicator light within the GUI frame), buttons to rotate each of the DC motors slowly (PMW?) reversibly, and a button that would slowly rotate the servo to 180 and slowly back again when its button is clicked again.

The spectrograph will have two CCD cameras for me to see visually something that indicates the motors have turned or optic rotated in.

Does this sound do-able?  What software would be easy for a programming newbie?
Thanks, Steven


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Does this sound do-able?

What software would be easy for a programming newbie?

Ummm. There don't seem to be any. Every language trips up any number of users. Personally, I like C# for GUI development, and it's ability to interface with the Arduino, via the serial port. The only difficulty is that the GUI runs in one thread, and serial communication takes place in another thread, so you need to code in the GUI to allow the serial thread to update the GUI.

I have a sample C# app that I could share. PM me with an e-mail address if interested.



As an alternative, there are a number of GUI widget libraries for Processing.


Thanks, I'll look into it.

I've also found FirmataVB Sample Applications; http://www.acraigie.com/programming/firmatavb/sample_applications.html.  I'm too new to programming to know what's what though....


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