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22

Apr'20

Raspberry Pi 3

Objectives Setup and run Raspberry pi with the OS package installer NOOBS (New Out Of Box Software) through an SD card Install the OS Raspbian Raspberry pi pin structure overview Understand the capabilities of Raspberry pi Connect Raspberry pi to the network and update it with the latest files Things For this project, you will need Raspberry Pi 3 RPi 3 board (quantity: 1 no.) VNC Viewer Micro SD card (quantity: 1 no.) 5V power adapter (quantity: 1 no.) Micro USB cable A to B (quantity: 1 no.) WiFi router / mobile hotspot (quantity: 1 no.) Let’s begin! Raspberry pi is a credit card sized single board computer which can be used to run multiple programs and tasks together. It has everything that a computer has like dedicated memory, processor, graphics card for output through HDMI display. This piece of hardware revolutionized the opensource world. Hobbyists and engineers started building things like home automation to servers, bitcoin mining rigs etc.   Raspberry Pi   So let’s explore and see what we can do with this! Raspberry pi vs microcontrollers and microprocessors You might have seen or heard people saying, my PC is very slow… I need to upgrade my RAM…

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22

Apr'20

Arduino special pins

Objective Learn about special pins on the Arduino Uno board Let’s begin! The following special pins impart some unique functionality to the Arduino. TX/RX pins We communicate with the Arduino board using serial communication, as elaborated in the previous posts. The digital pins D0 and D1 facilitate serial communication. If you observe closely, you can see ‘TX’ written next to D1 and ‘RX’ written next to D0. Here, ‘TX’ stands for ‘Transmission’ and ‘RX’ stands for ‘Reception’. As the name suggests, transmission of data from the Arduino via serial communication takes place through the ‘TX’ pin and receiving information occurs through the ‘RX’ pin. There are LEDs connected to the board which also have ‘TX’ and ‘RX’ written next to them which serve as indicators of successful communication. The ‘TX’ LED will blink when data is transmitted and ‘RX’ LED will blink when data is being received.  These pins can be used for digital I/O just like digital pins 2 – 13. However, they can’t be used when serial communication is happening. To recap, serial communication is the process of sending data one bit at a time, sequentially, over a communication channel. We need to set a parameter called ‘baud…

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22

Apr'20

Arduino hardware

Objective Learn about Arduino Uno hardware Let’s Begin Now you know what microcontrollers are and the impact that they’ve had on the world we live in through their countless applications in our lives. We sometimes take for granted the enormous complexity of these devices. After decades of evolution, we have programming boards which are incredibly user-friendly with simplified, yet sophisticated and efficient architectures (the word “architecture” refers to the general layout and arrangement of components that make up your programming board). The Arduino is the epitome of this tremendous evolution. As a result, it has emerged as an extremely popular tool among engineers and hobbyists. So, what is the next step? You need to learn how to actually use an Arduino board. Understanding the hardware is the first step in this direction. A solid fundamental knowledge about the hardware will help you evaluate the capabilities of the programming board. Consequently, the decision on the choice of programming boards to be used in your own projects will become much easier. As discussed in the previous post, there are several types of Arduino boards you can use based on your application. Let’s start by understanding one of the simplest and most popular…

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22

Apr'20

A connected device

Objective Learn about a connected device Let’s begin! A connected device is an electronic device that is commonly used in our daily life like a smart phone. These devices are connected to a central network hub through any of the wireless communication protocols such as WiFi, bluetooth, GSM etc to transmit data regarding its application. This data is also used to improve the device’s performance over subsequent versions. The role of connected devices is not only limited to large scale end consumer products. Applications of connected devices for personal projects, monitoring remote areas, smart cities are also increasingly gaining traction. It is estimated that there will be over 50 billion connected devices by 2020. This is a very good sign, as entire societies or even organizations will be digitally connected, resulting in numerous benefits like companies cutting down expenses by predicting the maintenance period of their products and hence improving the quality of their products. Connected devices and IoT Connected devices have played an integral role in bringing the concept of Internet of things (IoT) into prominence and being widely used as it is today. IoT is an enormous network or an ecosystem of connected devices connected to the existing internet…

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22

Apr'20

A serial monitor and a serial plotter

Objective Learn about serial monitor Learn about serial plotter Let’s begin! Serial Monitor Serial monitor can be opened by selecting Tools->Serial monitor. It opens as a separate pop up window in the Arduino IDE. The serial monitor acts as a bridge between the Arduino board and the computer. The serial monitor only opens when an Arduino board is connected to the computer. It is used to send and receive serial data. So we can send characters to the Arduino or view data sent by other peripherals to the Arduino. To begin the data transfer, the command we use is Serial.begin(baud rate). The baud rate is the rate at which data is transferred. It is usually set at 9600 for Arduino Uno. Some of the other Serial commands in Arduino IDE are Serial.print()-prints data to the serial monitor as human-readable ASCII text. Serial.read()-reads incoming serial data. Serial.available-get the number of bytes(characters) available for reading from the serial monitor. Let us see an example where we send data through the serial monitor to the Arduino. Upload the code to your Arduino IDE View the code on Gist. Your serial monitor should read   Serial Plotter Serial plotter can be opened by selecting…

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22

Apr'20

ESP8266

Objective Learn about ESP8266 and ESP8266 based IOT Platforms Let’s begin! Arduino Boards (UNO, Nano, Mega, Due) can be connected to a network by interfacing it to a WiFi Shield. This is inconvenient when space is a constraint. ESP8266 serves as a much better alternative. The ESP8266 is a series of WiFi chips produced by Espressif Systems. It is a System-on-Chip (SoC) which integrates a 32-bit Tensilica microcontroller, standard digital peripheral interfaces, antenna switches, RF balun, low noise receive amplifier, filters, power amplifier and power management modules into a small package. There are multiple variants of ESP8266. Commonly used variants are Raw Modules: ESP-01 ESP-05 ESP-12 Development Boards: NodeMCU Wemos D1 Lolin Olimex ESP8266 The first variant of ESP8266, called the ESP-01, comes with 8 pins. 2 of them being used as General Purpose Input Output pins (GPIO0 and GPIO2) 2 pins are reserved for Rx and Tx for communicating with a computer to upload codes to the chip 1 VCC pin (Input power supply) 1 GND pin (Ground) 1 RST pin (Reset) 1 CH_PD pin (Chip enable)   ESP-01 variant of ESP8266   The ESP-01 is designed to operate at 3.3V, anything higher may cause damage to the module and is not…

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