Optionally send date/time over serial monitor/serial plotter

A really huge improvement to the Arduino IDE would have been if it were possible to get a tickbox in the serial monitor and in the serial plotter to send automatically the date/time (e.g. every minute) over the serial connection.

That should not be specially difficult to program in the IDE and would open countless possibilities for all of us, who use their Arduinos tethered and work with the serial monitor/plotter.

We cannot do it in the host by ourselves, since the serial port is busy!

Currently we need hardware for that, need programming to manage the time, as the modules don't have that ability.

I would highly appreciate, if you could file my request, to whom it may concern.

Regards
Laszlo.

What would you use this feature for?

pert:
What would you use this feature for?

...personally to build up statistics and other metrics by hour, days, months and so on.

But the applications realm would be much wider:

  • switch on/off items at given times
  • home automation
  • counting events by hours/days/months
  • heating ventilation and air-conditioning
  • medical
  • agro technology
  • solar tracking
  • ...

IMHO

More or less everything where you need to take action depending on the time of the day...

Even for applications having an RTC chip, the process of setting the time could have been dramatically simplified.

RIN67630:
...personally to build up statistics and other metrics by hour, days, months and so on.

For this application, since you have the board connected to the computer, it would make much more sense to send the data to the computer, where it is stored along with the timestamps.

RIN67630:
But the applications realm would be much wider:

  • switch on/off items at given times
  • home automation
  • counting events by hours/days/months
  • heating ventilation and air-conditioning
  • medical
  • agro technology
  • solar tracking
  • ...

I don't think it would be typical to have the Arduino plugged in to a computer for many of those applications.

RIN67630:
Even for applications having an RTC chip, the process of setting the time could have been dramatically simplified.

That makes some sense, but you only need to set the RTC once. For that, the user could just type the current time into Serial Monitor.

pert:
For this application, since you have the board connected to the computer, it would make much more sense to send the data to the computer, where it is stored along with the timestamps.

You are just forgetting, that in order to do that, and to take simultaneously advantage of the serial monitor/plotter, one would need an additional transmission path, since the serial port is busy. :frowning:

One would also need to develop a program on the Arduino to make the first path of the job and another one on the target computer to finish it, develop the communication between both and finally develop a user interface. All that is given free of charge by the serial monitor/plotter
:frowning:

pert:
I don't think it would be typical to have the Arduino plugged into a computer for many of those applications.

That is probably more common, that you're thinking:

  • Think about Raspberry Pi, both worlds together on forming an unbeatable team...
  • Think also going for solar data-gathering. The remote part is done off-grid by an Arduino Pro mini, another one works as receiver and is plugged into the computer.
  • Think also on applications where you are using a pair of arduinos to controll remotely something...

You have got thousands of cases like that...

P.S: you may want to take a look at https://forum.arduino.cc/index.php?board=12.0 and see by yourself how many people are using the communication between PC and Arduinos.