Sensors in general and in detail

Hi there,

I'm new here and new with Arduino and in electro-technics at all, so be patient with me :-)

I have a comprehensional question:

Can I use any sensor I can find in electrotechnical shops with Arduino boards or do I have to search for Aduino-specific sensors?

And another question: I'm searching for a cheap distance sensor for short distances (Up to 1m max). Any recommendations? :-)

Thanks, Josch

Can I use any sensor I can find in electrotechnical shops with Arduino boards or do I have to search for Aduino-specific sensors?

The short answer is "No". ;)

The long answer is "You can use most of them, but not all. And you definitely don't have to find Arduino-specific ones, but you'll probably find it much easier to use sensors that more-experienced folks have already experimented with and produced example code to use as a starting point. Especially because you're a newbie".

As time goes on, you may well become one of those "more-experienced folks" who pioneers the use of new hardware with the Arduino. For now, your best bet is probably to use the search box at arduino.cc when you see a sensor that looks interesting, to see whether someone has blazed a trail for you.

Thanks a lot, I will take a look at the site before I buy any sensor.

At…

http://sheepdogsoftware.co.uk//sc1s.htm

… you will find some general notes on sensors which may be useful.

These notes are not just about sensors which have been interfaced to Arduinos in the past; they discuss the broad classes of sensor available, and some of the considerations involved in chosing a sensor for a project.

Not so much “how to” answers as “What is possible” temptations.

The trick is to know what common sensors are called away from microcontrollers. Thermistors ( a type of temperature sensor) and LDRs (light dependant resistors or light sensor) being two examples. These two examples are pennies (cents) apiece but tend to command higher prices when sold as "sensors" .

Cynical ? me ? nahhhh......