how can one incorporate multiple USB-like connections to/from an arduino?

Hello All,

I am hoping to create peer-to-peer connections (essentially a network) of multiple arduinos (or for that matter, ATMega's). However these do not have separate power supplies and each one will be powered up when connected to the other previously connected one. At the same time I would like these units to know about each other's existence when they connect (each chip should know if another chip is connected to it). I was told to think of a USB-like connection where you can share both the power and the data on the same, say, bus line. My question is how do I create multiples of this connections (more than one) and how could I make sure they work as OTG (e.g. hot plug) and can be used as both host or client at any given time?

Any help is much appreciated.

Thanks. Karim.

I was told to think of a USB-like connection where you can share both the power and the data on the same, say, bus line.

No USB does not share power and data on the same lines.

Have you seen the DXM system, that uses a chain of serial coms. http://playground.arduino.cc/Learning/DMX

Some variation of that protocol could be used.

Using I2C instead of USB, every Arduino can broadcast its address so that all others know about the new network node.