Microcontroller Projects

I have bought an Arduino, with a starter pack, like 3-4 months ago. I didn’t really have time to work with it. The world of microcontrollers are really interesting. Especially if you have seen some projects made with them. The first project I have made was the unavoidable traffic lamp project. After some time working with small projects, I started thinking bigger and bought some external modules.

This video was the first Arduino project I had seen and it inspired me to work with microcontrollers.

ESP8266 WiFi module
This, here, is a WiFi module(ESP8266, I think this one is the ESP-3 version. I couldn’t find enough information on the internet.). I wanted to connect Arduino to internet, so that I can post a Facebook status from Arduino, maybe get tweets from Twitter and read them on my 2×16 LCD screen. Well, these are possible with the WiFi module, but the main reason I get this module for is to control the Arduino from computer wireless, or vice versa. The important part for me, of course, is controlling pc from Arduino. I’ll mention this later.
Unfortunately, the module is not working. I think I have ripped some conductive parts of it while trying to solder the cables. Soldering is hard. Don’t try by yourself, kids :V. You can see the ripped parts on the lower right corner of the chip. It is unfortunate that this would have been the chip I would use most. But, hey… at least other chips are working well.


MPU6050 in action
MPU6050 in action

This(on the right) is an accelerometer and gyrosensor combined in one. After reading the chip datasheets, I have learned that there’s also a temperature sensor on the chip. It was relatively easier to solder. And, thank god, it had a little LED on it that signifies its functionality.
Getting it to work was a little mess. There’s a datasheet for all the registers on the chip. It’s 47 pages long!! It’s not really long actually, especially if we compare it with the Intel IA-32 Architecture Manual (more than 3000 pages!!! Click here :D). Though, sometimes I miss the days where I used to send a command to a program and it returns the value I wanted.
Reading the registers was the easy part. But these are all raw values. Filtering, calculating real values are not in my scope for right now. Even the temperature sensor requires a math equation to return the real temperature. But I’m glad that the chip works well.

What I want to do with this chip is, I want to build a gauntlet that makes me able to control the computer just by moving my hand in air and making some basic hand gestures. Just think what happens if I put it right on the middle of my middle finger. I can use my open hand to control the mouse, and close my hand whenever I want to click and hold. Only then, I can use the force to control the computer, without becoming a jedi knight. I’ll write a post about this whenever I get it working.


NRF24L01 size comparison with my fingers. :D
NRF24L01 size comparison with my fingers. 😀

The last module I bought is an RF module(Radio communication module) which I never even read about it. The curled conductive part on the right is its antenna, i suppose. And I think I am the only one who finds this antenna cute. 😀


Well…, here’s my whole experience with microcontrollers. I’ll suggest you to buy one and work with it. It’s another world where you have to get (mostly) everything by yourself. Be careful with the soldering machine, though. 🙂

We will be joining Google HashCode competition on 11th of February.(More Info) Wish us luck. 🙂 And I’ll see you next time…


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