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Hi

i have recently been working with a TextStar serial LCD, see (http://cats-whisker.com/web/node/7).  It is a great little product and makes working with a display very easy for a novice.  Although the Textstar is not the cheapest display you can buy it does have some additional features, such as serial interface, bar graphing, line wrap and 4 buttons.

here is my code if it is of use to anyone, it builds upon Rowan Simms (http://rowansimms.com) textstar tutorial.

James


Code:
/*
3rd Jan 2011 - experiments with Textstar LCD
objectives
1 - connect to screen and display message - done
2 - draw a static graph - done
3 - draw a dynamic graph - done
4 _ read buttons when pressed - not done
5 - display live data from sensors - not done


with thanks to
  Rowan Simms (http://rowansimms.com) textstar tutorial
  Mikal Hart (http://arduiniana.org) New Soft Serial Libralty

*/
#include <NewSoftSerial.h>  // real serial is being used for debug with arduino gui

NewSoftSerial serial_lcd(10, 9); //rx tx
void serial_lcd_WriteLine(int lineNum);
void serial_lcd_ShowLine(int lineNum);
void serial_lcd_init();
void serial_lcd_Graph(int graphStyle, int graphLength, int graphPercent);

// static data for graph example
    int graphStyle = 98;  // 98 = capped barchart, 66 = open
    int graphLength = 12; // max length 16, allows a description of 4 chars
//  int graphPercent = 42; //value from sensor??
    int fuelPercent = 25;
    int altPercent = 65;


void setup (){
// print to laptop
  Serial.begin(115200);
  Serial.println("Arduino & TextStar LCD example");
  Serial.println("Dynamic Graphs");
  Serial.println("by James McEwan");
  
// print to serial_lcd
serial_lcd.begin(9600);  // textstar happy at this speed
  
    serial_lcd_init();
    serial_lcd_WriteLine(1);
    serial_lcd.println("Textstar Demo");
    serial_lcd_WriteLine(2);
    serial_lcd.println("by James McEwan");
    serial_lcd_ShowLine(1);


    delay(3000);             // give you a chance to see the result

 // show initial values

    serial_lcd_init();
    serial_lcd_WriteLine(1);
    serial_lcd.print("Fuel ");
    serial_lcd.print(fuelPercent);
    serial_lcd.print("%");
    serial_lcd_WriteLine(2);
    serial_lcd.print("Alt  ");
    serial_lcd.print(altPercent);
    serial_lcd.print("%");
    serial_lcd_ShowLine(1);
    
    delay(3000);             // give you a chance to see the result




  
}


void loop (){
  
  // changes bar chart
    serial_lcd_init();
    serial_lcd_WriteLine(1);
    serial_lcd.print("Fuel");
    serial_lcd_Graph(graphStyle, graphLength, fuelPercent );  // draw the graph
    serial_lcd_WriteLine(2);
    serial_lcd.print("Alt ");
    serial_lcd_Graph(graphStyle, graphLength, altPercent );  // draw the graph
    serial_lcd_ShowLine(1);
    
    //delay(50);             // give you a chance to see the result
  
    fuelPercent = --fuelPercent;
    altPercent = ++altPercent;
  
  
  // stop the % going negative - optional
  if (fuelPercent == 0) {
                        fuelPercent = 1;
                        }    
                          
   if (altPercent == 0) {
                         altPercent = 99;
                        }    
                    
}

/* Sends LCD command sequence to initialise the LCD
 * Sets cursor style to 'no cursor'
 */
void serial_lcd_init() {
    delay(2500); // let the screen initialise if it has only just been powered up

    /* Clear the display and take us to line 1 cell 1
     * Notice that this instruction to the LCD does not
     * require a command-bit to be send first
     */
    serial_lcd.println(12,BYTE);

    /* Setup the Cursor Style */
    serial_lcd.print(254,BYTE);  // we are sending a command
    serial_lcd.print(67,BYTE);   // we wish to set the cursor style
    serial_lcd.println(0,BYTE);  // we wish to have no cursor
}

/* Sends LCD command sequence to write to LCD line n
 * @param  int   lineNum   Line Number to write to
 */
void serial_lcd_WriteLine(int lineNum) {
    serial_lcd.print(254,BYTE);       // we are sending a command
    serial_lcd.print(76,BYTE);        // goto line n command
    serial_lcd.print(lineNum,BYTE);   // clears the line the line number (1-16)
}

/* Sends LCD command sequence to display to LCD line n
 * @param  int   lineNum   Line Number to display (top of screen)
 *                         will show n and n+1
 */
void serial_lcd_ShowLine(int lineNum) {
    serial_lcd.print(254,BYTE);       // we are sending a command
    serial_lcd.print(71,BYTE);        // display the following line number
    serial_lcd.println(lineNum,BYTE); // the line number (1-16)
}



void serial_lcd_Graph(int graphStyle, int graphLength, int graphPercent){
    serial_lcd.print(254,BYTE);       // we are sending a command
    serial_lcd.print(graphStyle, BYTE);  // setting style 98 for closed graph or 66 for open graph
    serial_lcd.print(graphLength, BYTE);  //setting the number of chars 16 max
    serial_lcd.print(graphPercent, BYTE);  // setting the value to display
}

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Nice work, THANKS !
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