I just ordered my Arduino Uno last night and a ProtoShield kit from Sparkfun. I'm somewhat new to electronics, I have a basic understanding of things and have built other small projects before following guides online.
My idea is to build a strobe controller, like one you can place in your car in the windshield and powered by a 12 volt cigarette lighter plug. Which would have 1 push button to change to a different type of pattern, and after 3 secs that pattern would be saved to memory as default. My biggest question I think would be how specifically can I wire up about 60 LED's, 30 for each side of the controller, am I going to need resistors and whatnot? Essentially two sides of 30 LED's would alternate with the different patterns I plan to create. My thought was to connect each set of 30 LED's to the arduino, which I'm not sure what I need to do to accomplish this. I once I get this working instead of using my Arduino Uno all the time to run it, I think I can upload my code to this: http://www.sparkfun.com/commerce/product_info.php?products_id=8846
or something similar that is cheaper.
I was thinking of using these LED's if they will be bright enough: http://www.ebay.com/itm/100-X-5mm-Round-white-led-light-Super-bright-100PCS-/170684507716?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item27bd96e644
This is essentially what I want to create: