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Author Topic: twitter, bluetooth, hardware £100 challenge  (Read 1190 times)
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Hi, I'm vaguely familiar with arduino but have been set a challenge that has really stumped me. I've been asked if it is possible to make a simple mood light that responds to a twitter account for under £100. To keep installation and wiring to a minimum it might also have to be bluetooth. An almost plug-in-and-play device is the aim, not something that would require the user to install arduino and set up all sorts of parameters. obviously some installation procedure is unavoidable.

with so many new bits of equipment to choose from, and so many bluetooth options available, i'm slightly lost! Plus the £100 limit is pretty hard to work within. Any spontaneous advice or existing tutorials are very much appreciated, thanks!  smiley-grin
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meh. just lost my post, so in short:

i have found bluetooth to be tricky. got myself burnt with arduino BT. I would leave that to the end.

I think your project is definitvly duable:

5$ for USB Cable
5$ for bright RGB Led
30$ for Arduino

the optionally 50$ for bluetooth module.

... leaves you with another 50$ to spend on diffusionmaterial for LED and protoboards, enclosure etc.

if you're extravagent you could even squeese in an RGB LED strip ... I love those things...

Anyway, 100 pounds are definitvly within reason. imo.

Cheers

p.
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thanks, do you know if it would be possible to make this usb device a standalone object, something that communicates to the web without the need for processing or arduino software running? i dont know how complicated that aspect of the project would be... the advice i got was that an installation sotware would need to be written that installs the drivers for the usb-based moodlight, and that the software would also need to cater for different operating systems. any knowledge on these things? thanks
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How much is a Chumby at your location?  Seems like it would have all the needed pieces, if you're willing to make the screen be your light.  (if not, add an arduino + LEDs)  Just a Small Matter of Programming.

Another possibility: wireless router + dd-wrt or open-wrt + arduino.
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Add another 100 pound for a wifi shield (OK probably less)
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If it can be kinda near a computer, try http://arduino.cc/forum/index.php/topic,57485.msg413060.html with two xbees
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lunchtimecinema...

the type of thing you are envisioning has already been done. (well not exactly what your are planning) ... but I remember having seen standalone arduino projects which recieve input via twitter. you may want to search the exhibit part of this forum and check out how other people went about it. (or go ask google...)

again, the way I would tackle it, is getting everything working via usb. Once you have that, you can move on to wifi or bluetooth. I would recommend WiFi over bluetooth. Xbee is probably the easyest solution, however if your goal is to design a consumer product I find Xbee sort of unelegent (though thats just a personal bias...) ... if you are just building this for yourself or a friend and just want a proof of concept, Xbee is probably the way to go...

cheers

p.
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Hi, thanks for all the suggestions, I'm actually thinking maybe the arduino ethernet shield is the best way to go costing around £30 on Farnell. However the fact that no one has mentioned ethernet here in response to my post has me a little worried, is ethernet not the way to go? is there any potential problems i should be aware of? Thanks again for the help.

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An ethernet shield (+ arduino +lights +switch/hub port) should work fine; it's just that your original post strongly implied that you were interested in a wireless network connection.
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