HydroBot: Prototyping new modules


Matthew Reed writes:

ProtoModule is a HydroBot module designed to easily develop and test new monitoring or control functions that may someday go into a HydroBot module. It has 11 GPIO pins and the power rails broken out on a 0.1” pin header for easy breadboarding or interfacing with ribbon cables. The provided pins give access to a variety of digital and analog I/O, as well as digital communication peripherals, to allow for many flexible design options.

More info at protofusion.org.

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  1. Back-Story… Quoting: “HydroBot is a modular control system for automating hydroponic gardens.” More about it here:


    Interesting work. But I would like to see the HydroBot project address the HUGE problems that modern indoor grow-lighting systems cause with their contamination of our shared HF-SHF radio spectrum with unwanted illegal RF interference.

  2. Hydroponics is like home automation. Every year you have folks who start projects like these and think it will take off and become a big thing… but no, just like home automation, it ain’t gonna happen, it will remain a niche.

    Everybody has an idea of creating a hydroponics unit that takes minimal effort and time on the part of the user and move hydroponics into a mainstream thing, this is nothing new. Well, ‘effortless’ growing only works if everything works perfectly for the plants. The moment an issue appears, such as a caterpillar infestation or yellowing leaves, you can throw ‘minimal effort’ out of the window. And perfectly growing plants also need attention — even the most popular types like tomato plants need to be supported and non-bush (or indeterminate) tomato plants need to be pruned. Gee, for tomato you even need to vibrate flowers to aid pollination. Or think about transplanting a few dozen vegetable seedlings. The utopia of a set-up-and-ignore hydroponic garden is unattainable.

    Automated hydroponics projects are a dime a dozen. Realistically, only whose who are already gardening and want to do hydroponics would be interested and/or become potential users. To the average consumer, no hydroponics setups can beat the convenience and low cost of the supermarket.

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