Creating an interactive map - These are our challenges!


We are a group of students working on a project, and we have decided to create a interactive map.

There are some technical challenges, and we would really like hear your thoughts!

Our idea is simple; A interactive map displays the current state of a building; usage of study rooms, PC and so forth using LEDs. We have a PC which pulls all the data we need, and saves this data to a TXT-file. Our Arduino Uno is connected to this PC, using USB, and we are wondering, what is the best approach to make Arduino read from this file?

Also, we need to display about 59 or so LEDs, so I guess we have to rely the shift register that comes with the Arduino Starter kit. Is there any good tutorials on how to program these?

Thanks for your time, Coffeelicious.

Thanks for the links!

So you recommend Processing to read from file?
Is this the most reliable/stable method?

Is this the most reliable/stable method?

Don't know about that, but it works well.

Why not just open a DOS window and echo the file to a serial port (can you still do that?).


Coffeelicious: Is this the most reliable/stable method?

The method you outline doesn't rank very high on those criteria. There are many better ways to do things if stability and reliability are needed. However, and this is the most important thing, this method will work well enough and can be implemented with your level of knowledge.

So don't worry about it, get started and make something that works first. Once you have that, you can always go back and improves those areas where you think your solution is lacking most. And by then, you will already have some more knowledge from the first implementation to do more complex things.