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Author Topic: What projects are you working on?  (Read 1908 times)
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I haven't really got any projects going right now, just wondering what other people are up to.

I'm looking at a DIY projector ala lumenlab.com and well as making a pokertable as my weekly poker game has out grown our dinning room table.
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We have just got into Arduio as a way to prototype model lighting displays.   For me the electronics are easy but the coding is not.  I am looking for code tools!
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I am currently working on converting some code I found here on the forum for the Pololu Micro Serial Servo Controller driver to a library. I don't know if anyone else has done it (I didn't find anything), but even if they have, I intend to continue with it because I want to learn how to create libraries for the Arduino.

I need such a thing for my main project (my Unmanned Ground Vehicle I am working on - the servo driver board will be used to control a pan/tilt mount for a custom vision/LIDAR system).

Essentially, the code I found was complete with the exception of functions to set the servo numbers (so you can use multiple Pololu boards on a single serial line), as well as a function for sending Scott Edwards protocol (for the SE MSSC II or something). I am figuring on making the library as complete as possible, and making it generic enough so that it isn't looked as being "tied" to only the Pololu MSSC; all of their other servo boards (not sure about motor controllers - I'll have to look) use the same protocol, so I want to make it generic enough for those as well.

When I am done, I will post here on the forums about it, and probably stick it in the playground (provided it isn't a duplicated effort, I suppose)...

Then its back to integrating it with the rest of my UGV controller code, then I get to work on making a protoboard version of my 2n3055-based h-bridge implementation (right now sitting on an Elenco breadboard); its to be used to control the steering servo motor via commands from the controller (which uses a dead-simple window-comparator logic to drive it; I plan on implementing something more complex, maybe PID, in a later version).

 smiley
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I have more projects than I know what to do with, between my new Arduino projects, the car, the stereo, school, work and other hobbies. Who says it isnt good to be busy?

Currently I am working on a nice interface for an RGB LED (seems like a nice place to start), but would love to build a nice 'weather' station, grow room controller, home automation or anything else that a small micro controller could make better.

- John
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still working on my led matrix, bout got the software up and running
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Hey Osgeld; here's an idea for the software side of your matrix (or maybe somebody else could do it?):

If you can control the brightness of each LED individually, by using PWM in the multiplexing scheme, along with its color - then by using a color palette of white/yellow/orange/red/umber/black, and the proper code - you could simulate a digital "flame".

For the code to make the flame/fire, there is a ton of it out there in the demo-coder scene; it was a classic trick in graphic demos.

I was just enjoying a fire in my fireplace the other day, and since there are so many "no burn" days here in the Arizona area (and I assume for other regions as well), a fake "fire" would be kinda fun to have sitting on your desk (maybe a small 8x8 matrix), or even something sitting inside an unused (or fake) fireplace; if you added digital pops and crackles via a speaker, that would be even better!

 smiley-grin
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well this one is not setup for pwm, tho I might be able to fudge it by just running the hell out of the shift registers, but yea since its a red display the flame idea has popped in my head

and I have done the effect a few times on various systems

but first I need to see how this thing is going to react speed wise
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Why use a voltmeter when you can just touch it?
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1. I bought a $10 keychain digital camera that I'm automating.  I'm about half-way through the sketching right now.

2. I am also working on (unsuccesfully) getting a Hard Drive motor to remain spinning indefinately without the HDD controller board.

If anyone has any suggestions on item 2, I would really appreciate it.  I found a great IC (Philips TDA5140A) that would work like a charm, but I can't find anyone who has it in stock any longer, and I can't seem to find a replacement for it...
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I bought some ATmega644s, programmed the bootloader, and starting to design a custom PCB.  Any suggestions?  I've never done a PCB before in my life.  Do I do it in eagle?
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Everybody uses eagle, and if your board size isn't too big and you don't need more than 2 layers (and it isn't a commercial product), then eagle is probably the way to go.

I'm a masochist, though - I plan on doing my first PCB in Fritzing (I'll even have to custom design some parts for it, too). I must hate myself...

 ;D
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no matter what you choose you will have a bit of a learning curve ahead of you

yes eagle is fine as everyone loves it, but other packages would do just fine, just dont expect everyone at once to jump on a kicad question as vigorously as a eagle question

oh and fritzing, I really want to like that package, but I just have not warmed up to it yet, sometimes I just have a schematic, and it seems overly difficult to do JUST a schematic without going tru the breadboard phase, maybe I am not doing it right, maybe I should actually read some (gasp) instructions ... well I think that is what they are called  ;D
« Last Edit: February 25, 2010, 05:37:21 pm by Osgeld » Logged


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Alright cool.  I never even knew Fritzing had a function to lay out PCBs (shows how often I use it ;D).  I'm going to try that out first smiley.
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Quote
2. I am also working on (unsuccesfully) getting a Hard Drive motor to remain spinning indefinately without the HDD controller board.

I think its a BLDC motor. So if you  get to generate some sine waves it should work.  But haven't explored it beyond that... thats one of my pending projects. Let us know how it goes.

Cheers,
Pracas
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I think its a BLDC motor. So if you  get to generate some sine waves it should work.  But haven't explored it beyond that... thats one of my pending projects. Let us know how it goes.

That's exactly what it is.  A 3-phase brushless DC motor.

The problem is the controller ICs I found are no longer in production and are no longer available, so I'm researching the alternative (current) ICs available.  The interesting thing is that the replacement ICs of today are "dumber" than previous versions, meaning they require more external circuitry than before.  I have been searching for a week for a suitable DIP package, and of course, they are all SMT now, so that means I'll have to etch a trial board...It's all a big frustrating headache right now, but I'm not gonna let it beat me.  Not yet.
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Just dip it in mercury and power it up
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Currently I am doing a Bachelor in processchemistry, so I am transfering the project to a mini version running on a arduino.
After using a commercial NIR + chemometry to determine octane numbers of gasoline, I will buy 3-4 NIR filters that match the right fingerprint wavenumber of NIR light to determine octane number of gasoline. I will be connecting the fuel line of my car, through 3-4 quartz kyvets behind the filters, photodiodes capture the amount of light, Arduino gathers the data and processes it and calculates the octane number of the gasoline currently running throughthe vains of my car (did i take 95 or 98 octane last time, oh no its a mix, the gasstation is screwing with me).

Cheers,
David.
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