What is the Arduino ?

Arduino is an open source platform for building electronic projects. Arduino consists of both physical programmable circuit board and a software that can run on your computer. The main idea is completing the coding on the computer and upload code to the physical board.

Unlike the other programmable cards, Arduino is really easy to use. Since the more people have recognized electronics and been interested in electronics, Arduino IDE gets much more attention.

Arduino IDE uses a simplified version of C++ which makes programming a bit easier and encouraging for the people who want to follow a path on programming.  Even though it is hard to believe, 10 lines of code is just enough for a little project.

WHAT DOES ARDUİNO DO?

The people who use aruino are designers, artists, hobbyists or every people who is interested in creating an interactive object . When we think about the large interaction area of Arduino, it must have had the breakthrough. Boards are cheap, software easy to learn, what else do we need? I can tell you a lot more about Arduino and its usage areas but it will be just the tip of the iceberg.

WHAT IS ON THE ARDUINO BOARD?

POWER

Every Arduino board needs a socket for connection to power source. In the image (1) denotes the USB connection and (2) denotes the barrel jack connection.

PINS on arduino board

Pins are the places in our board where we connect the wires to construct a circuit. A board has several different kinds of pins each used for different purposes.

GND (3): We use GND pin to ground the circuit.

5V(4) and 3.3V(5): 5V pin supplies 5 volts and 3.3V pin supplies 3 volts as you guess. Most of the Arduino project can be done without a problem with 3.3V and 5V.

ANALOG (6): These pins can read the signal from analog sensor and convert it into a digital form that we can read and understand.

DIGITAL (7): We use these pins for both digital inputs (like pushing a button) and outputs (like doing something physical after the input; lighting the bulb).

PWM (8): These pins act as normal digital pins, but can also be used for something called Pulse-Width Modulation (PWM).

AREF (9): Stands for Analog Reference. Most of the time you can leave this pin alone. Sometimes we use that when we need to set an external reference voltage (between 0 and 5 Volts) as the upper limit for the analog input pins.

RESET BUTTON (10): This button will reset the any code temporarily. If your code doesn’t repeat itself when you want to check it for couple of times, it is very useful.

POWER LED INDUCATOR (11): There is a tiny LED next to “ON” on the board, it should light up whenever you connect the board to your computer. If it does not then there is something wrong with your circuit for sure.

TX AND RX LEDS (12): TX denotes “transmit” and RX denotes “receive”. These markings actually appear in electronics to indicate the pins that are responsible for serial communication. These will give us a clear information when our Arduino is receiving or transmitting data.

MAIN IC(13): The black box with metal legs is IC of our Arduino.(IC=integrated circuit.We can consider IC as the brain of arduino. The main IC can change from board to board. So it is best to check the type of IC you have before loading a new program.

VOLTAGE REGULATOR(14): The voltage regulator controls the amount of voltage that is sent to Arduino board.It is necessary for the board since sometimes there may occur problems in the board because of high voltage values. In such cases, it just cuts the voltage.

In our next post we are going to introduce Arduino Family which will help us to understand Arduino’s and their usage.

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