Noob here, need help please for urgent project

Hi Everyone,

i'm a noob in programing and arduino but for starters figured i'll work on this instructables alarm clock project. unfortunately i keep getting an error and I've been trying various struff for the past 5 hours but no luck.

here is the error im getting: Arduino: 1.6.1 (Windows 7), Board: "Arduino Uno"

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:69:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:70:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:71:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:72:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:73:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:74:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:75:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:76:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:77:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:79:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:80:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:81:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:82:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:83:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:85:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:86:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:87:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:88:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:89:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:90:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:91:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:92:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:93:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:94:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:95:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:96:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

Phi_1_test_alarm_clock_v3.ino:97:9: error: 'prog_char' does not name a type

hmi.ino: In function 'void render_DOW_in_place(int)':

hmi.ino:39:11: error: 'dow_00' was not declared in this scope

hmi.ino: In function 'void render_alarm_in_place(int)':

hmi.ino:44:11: error: 'alarm_00' was not declared in this scope

hmi.ino: In function 'void render_month_in_place(int)':

hmi.ino:49:11: error: 'month_00' was not declared in this scope

Error compiling.

This report would have more information with "Show verbose output during compilation" enabled in File > Preferences.

Phi-1 shield for Arduino
Test program: Alarm clock

Programmed by Dr. John Liu
Revision: 11/19/2010
Commerical use without authorization is prohibited.
Find details of the Phi-1 shield or contact Dr. Liu at
All rights reserved.

List of functions:

  • Display real time clock with Year month, date, day of week, hour, minute, and second.
  • Four individual alarms (change Max_alarms to get more alarms)
  • Alarms are stored on Arduino EEPROM and won’t be lost when the power is out.
  • Alarms Daily, Weekday, Weekend, Once, Off.
  • Adjustable alarms. Press B to choose alarm and adjust the time.
  • Adjustable clock and date. Press A to adjust clock and date.
  • TODO - Add snooze function.
  • TODO - Add special function on the alarm to drive outputs other than the buzzer and LED. You can be creative!


You need to set the clock before you can use it.

  1. Uncomment this line “#define setRTC” among the #define lines.
  2. Update the time in setup() to the current time.
  3. Upload the sketch to arduino to set the time.
  4. Then comment the line “#define setRTC” and recompile and upload to arduino.
  5. If you don’t do step 4, the clock will be reset every time arduino resets.


RTC created by

EEPROM Author: hkhijhe

#include <LiquidCrystal.h>
#if ARDUINO >= 100
#include “Arduino.h”
#include “WProgram.h”
#include <Wire.h>
#include <stdio.h>
#include <avr/pgmspace.h>
#include <EEPROM.h>
#include “buttons.h”
#include “DS1307_1.h”
#include “alarm_clock.h”

int hmi_with_update_2(int current, int lower, int upper, byte inc, byte column, byte row, byte space, void (*update_function)(int));

// Defining pins used
//#define setRTC
#define buzzer 16
#define ch1 16
#define ch1_analog 2
#define led 17
#define ch2 17
#define ch2_analog 3
#define btn_u 5
#define btn_d 10
#define btn_l 11
#define btn_r 3
#define btn_b 14
#define btn_a 15
#define alarm_EEPROM_storage 1023-3*Max_alarms // Where the alarm is saved.
// Messages used in program.
PROGMEM prog_char dow_00=“SUN”;
PROGMEM prog_char dow_01=“MON”;
PROGMEM prog_char dow_02=“TUE”;
PROGMEM prog_char dow_03=“WED”;
PROGMEM prog_char dow_04=“THU”;
PROGMEM prog_char dow_05=“FRI”;
PROGMEM prog_char dow_06=“SAT”;
PROGMEM prog_char dow_07=“M-F”;
PROGMEM prog_char dow_08=“Day of the week”;

PROGMEM prog_char alarm_00="Off ";
PROGMEM prog_char alarm_01="Daily ";
PROGMEM prog_char alarm_02=“Weekday”;
PROGMEM prog_char alarm_03=“Weekend”;
PROGMEM prog_char alarm_04="Once ";

PROGMEM prog_char month_00=“JAN”;
PROGMEM prog_char month_01=“FEB”;
PROGMEM prog_char month_02=“MAR”;
PROGMEM prog_char month_03=“APR”;
PROGMEM prog_char month_04=“MAY”;
PROGMEM prog_char month_05=“JUN”;
PROGMEM prog_char month_06=“JUL”;
PROGMEM prog_char month_07=“AUG”;
PROGMEM prog_char month_08=“SEP”;
PROGMEM prog_char month_09=“OCT”;
PROGMEM prog_char month_10=“NOV”;
PROGMEM prog_char month_11=“DEC”;
PROGMEM prog_char month_12=“Month”;

// Defines button objects
buttons btn_1(btn_u, LOW);
buttons btn_2(btn_d, LOW);
buttons btn_3(btn_l, LOW);
buttons btn_4(btn_r, LOW);
buttons btn_5(btn_b, LOW);
buttons btn_6(btn_a, LOW);

int rtc[7];
LiquidCrystal lcd(8, 9, 7, 6, 2, 4); //Phi-1 shield setting
DS1307 RTC=DS1307(); // Create RTC object
alarm_clock clock1(false); // Create an alarm clock

void setup()
lcd.begin(16, 2);
Wire.begin(); // initialize wire

// Set button pins to input with internal pull-up resistors

// Set the two channels to output to drive the buzzer and LED.

#ifdef setRTC
// Set/init RTC
RTC.set(DS1307_DOW,3); // value from 1 to 7. User define whether 1 is sun or mon.

//Set alarms
EEPROM.write(alarm_EEPROM_storage,6); // Alarm 0 hour
EEPROM.write(alarm_EEPROM_storage+1,50); // Alarm 0 minute
EEPROM.write(alarm_EEPROM_storage+2,2); // Alarm 0 frequency M-F

EEPROM.write(alarm_EEPROM_storage+3,7); // Alarm 1 hour
EEPROM.write(alarm_EEPROM_storage+4,00); // Alarm 1 minute
EEPROM.write(alarm_EEPROM_storage+5,2); // Alarm 1 frequency M-F

EEPROM.write(alarm_EEPROM_storage+6,7); // Alarm 2 hour
EEPROM.write(alarm_EEPROM_storage+7,10); // Alarm 2 minute
EEPROM.write(alarm_EEPROM_storage+8,2); // Alarm 2 frequency M-F

EEPROM.write(alarm_EEPROM_storage+9,9); // Alarm 3 hour
EEPROM.write(alarm_EEPROM_storage+10,30); // Alarm 3 minute
EEPROM.write(alarm_EEPROM_storage+11,3); // Alarm 3 frequency Weekend
// Set alarm on the clock from EEPROM.


void loop()
int temp1;;
if (!clock1.alarm_is_on)
switch (temp1)
case 1:
lcd.print(".com for details");

case 5:

case 6:


The easiest answer is to uninstall the IDE and go download version 1.0.6 and install that instead.

prog_char is depreciated, you need to replace prog_char with char PROGMEM

Please read Nick Gammon's two posts at the top of this Forum for guidelines on posting, especially when posting code. It will help us help you.

Thanks Everyone. I've just been super frustrated working on this code tonight.

Do you mean change

PROGMEM prog_char dow_00[]="SUN";


char PROGMEM dow_00[]="SUN";


Yes, i believe so. Thats what i did to my code at it seemed to work. I've only be messing with arduinos and c++ for six months... so take my word for what it is worth.

I would make a back up just it case my advice messes something up. (or wait for more advice)

Thanks so much!. I tried it but instead i got this error:


const char PROGMEM dow_00[]="SUN";

Error: hmi.ino: In function 'void render_month_in_place(int)': hmi.ino:49:19: error: invalid conversion from 'const char*' to 'char*' [-fpermissive] functions.ino:8:6: error: initializing argument 1 of 'void msg_lcd(char*)' [-fpermissive]

here is the function:

void render_month_in_place(int number) { msg_lcd(month_00+(number%12)*4); // *4 because month is 3-character+ zero }

The easiest answer is to uninstall the IDE and go download version 1.0.6 and install that instead.

As opposed to trying to rewrite someone else’s library. Especially if time is of the essence.

Delta_G: Especially if time is of the essence.

..... well, it is a clock 8)

Lol.. any other ideas, ill go aead and uninstall the ide. But i doubt that would work, I feel like this is the last hurdle for this project and then i can turn it in:)

Any other advice, please?

uninstalling the ide will work, but someone on here with 10k posts said you need to keep the ide updated, so I spent hrs fixing my library to get it updated...

In your example the function declaration needs to be updated, but I don't know how

Thanks so much!. I tried it but instead i got this error:


const char PROGMEM dow_00=“SUN”;

hmi.ino: In function ‘void render_month_in_place(int)’:
hmi.ino:49:19: error: invalid conversion from ‘const char*’ to ‘char*’ [-fpermissive]
functions.ino:8:6: error: initializing argument 1 of ‘void msg_lcd(char*)’ [-fpermissive]

dow_00 has type “array of char (of unknown length)”. Making it const is irrelevant. PROGMEM seems to be some sort of scope modifier rather than being a type, so it comes first:

PROGMEM char dow_00[]="SUN";

How to use this forum

Two words we don't want to see in a thread title "noob" and "urgent".

The problem is the time doesn’t get updated on the lcd display an I have to continually upload the code for it to show the correct time. Suggestions?

See attached code.

alarmclock_2014.ino (12 KB)

Please edit your post, select the code, and put it between [code][/code] tags.

You can do that by hitting the “Code” button above the posting area (It looks like a scroll with < > inside it).