Arduino MKR1000 With headers - Purpose of the headers (Male-Female)

Hi all, I am new here and I just bought an Arduino MKR1000 with the pre-soldered headers. I am a little confused so I have a few questions about the pins. So, why there are both male and female headers and in which material should avoid contacting the male pins? Do you believe is better to cut them or is it possible to use them at the same time both? Lastly how to secure the male pins to isolate in order to burn the board. Any advice will appreciate it, thanks!! :slight_smile:

arisIoT:
why there are both male and female headers

The male headers allow you to plug the MKR1000 into a solderless breadboard:

The female headers allow you to plug add-on boards called "shields" into the MKR1000 to add accessories. For example, here's an Ethernet shield:

Note the shield also has male and female pins. In fact you could plug the shield into the top or bottom of the MKR1000 and even stack up multiple shields as long as there is no conflict between the pins they use.

arisIoT:
in which material should avoid contacting the male pins?

You definitely need to avoid shorting the pins by resting the board on a conductive surface, but that would hold true for a board with only female pins on top since you still have the solder points on the bottom of the board. What I would do is get a solderless breadboard and stick that MKR1000 into it. Then it's very easy to connect wires to it and prototype circuits.

arisIoT:
Do you believe is better to cut

I think they're very useful. In fact I think the male pins with standard spacing makes the MKR boards way better than the UNO/MEGA/ZERO type Arduino boards. If you decide to incorporate the MKR1000 permanently into a project where the male pins are not necessary then you could cut them off but I would not just arbitrarily cut them.

arisIoT:
is it possible to use them at the same time both?

Sure. There's no magic to it. The male and female headers are both connected to the same thing.

arisIoT:
Lastly how to secure the male pins to isolate in order to burn the board.

I've already recommended a solderless breadboard. If you don't want to do that you could get some standoffs that are longer than the male pins and attach the standoffs to the mounting holes on the MKR1000 with screws to act as feet for the board. You can make a circuit board for your project that has female headers and then you can just plug the MKR1000 right into the board.