Matatino lets Arduino connect to Mac apps

Robotgrrl posted a link to her coding project Matatino, “a Cocoa framework for Mac that provides a straight-forward way to communicate with your Arduino through its serial connection.” Matatino is an open source project. You can learn how to add Matatino to your Xcode project at Robotgrrl’s Apps4Arduino site. Via the Arduino blog.

RS-485 and Arduino

As seen in the above illustration from National Instruments, RS-485 ports are identical in appearance to RS-232 but with different pin assignments. You will not find them on contemporary home computer hardware, and they are only rarely seen on legacy machines. They are, however, found on various types of commercial computer and telecom equipment and […]

Tutorial: Using SD/micro SD cards with an Arduino

Our friends at Adafruit have posted this tutorial on using SD and Micro SD cards with Arduino. This is a great resource for beginners looking to expand their knowledge as well as advanced users who want to brush up on microcontroller interfacing skills. They use the latest version of the Adafruit SD Card library available […]

Maker Shed kit lets you connect iPhone to Arduino — no jailbreaking!

MAKE announces the availability of the Redpark Breakout Pack for Arduino and iOS. This kit includes the only Apple-approved serial interface cable having a DB9 serial connector on one end and the iPhone connector on the other. As MAKE describes it: Exclusively in the Maker Shed, the Redpark Breakout Pack for Arduino and iOS makes […]

Tutorial: Arduino and the SPI bus

Tronixstuff has posted a great tutorial explaining how to use the Arduino and the SPI bus. This detailed tutorial is presented in two parts. Part 1 presents the basic theory on the serial peripheral interface (SPI), including examples of using the eals with a Microchip MCP4162-series 10k rheostat and an Analog Devices AD5204 four-channel digital […]

LIN: Local Interconnect Network comms

The Local Interconnect Network (LIN) is a single-wire, low cost, serial communications system which is a subbus of CAN used primarily in automotive systems. In this video Microchip provides an overview of LIN and some of their related products and tools. For more info on the specifics of the LIN protocol, see this tutorial from […]

Introduction to the Controller Area Network (CAN)

A controller area network (CAN) is ideally suited to the many high-level industrial protocols embracing CAN and ISO-11898:1993 as their physical layer. Its cost, performance, and upgradeability provide for tremendous flexibility in system design. This application report presents an introduction to the CAN fundamentals, operating principles, and the implementation of a basic CAN bus with […]

Arduino to Android IO on the cheap (aka Poor Man’s NFC)

Joe Desbonnet was looking for a cheap and easy way to transfer data from an Arduino to an Android device. The hack he devised requires only a 1-meter length of wire wound into a coil, a resistor and diode. He writes: This is a little hack that allows very low bandwidth communications in one direction […]

Outdoor temperature data server using Picaxe-08M

Max Carter likes to experiment with Picaxe microcontrollers. He was looking for a way to take readings of the outdoor temperature and make the data available on the internet. He devised a project requiring minimal hardware, consisting of a Picaxe-08M, LM34 temperature sensor and a few discrete components. He programmed the Picaxe to take readings […]

How cops hack your cellphone in 90 seconds

You may have seen reports in the media recently, such as this MSNBC report highlighting the practice by police of extracting data from the cellphones of innocent civilians. While we’re not going to discuss the political or legal aspects of this practice, from a hacker perspective it’s interesting to know what type of tools and […]

Using the EUSART

The term UART (Universal Asynchronous Receiver Transmitter) is the technical term for the good old serial port found on most MCUs. The term USART similarly refers to a serial port capable of handling both synchronous and asynchronous operation. Over the past few years, Microchip has been integrating an updated serial port into many of their […]

Open Data Protocol (OData)

The Open Data Protocol (OData) is a Web protocol for querying and updating data that provides a way to unlock your data and free it from silos that exist in applications today. OData does this by applying and building upon Web technologies such as HTTP, Atom Publishing Protocol (AtomPub) and JSON to provide access to […]

Model rocket GPS altimeter using Picaxe 18X

For his USC Rocket Propulsion Lab, Chris Fenton designed this project using a Picaxe 18X microcontroller which accepts a GPS NMEA data stream, pulls out the altitude and logs it to a 24LC512 external EEPROM. Upon recovery the data is then read from the EEPROM. Source code for the Picaxe and hand drawn schematic for […]

Packet radio and the Arduino Radio Shield

Packet radio is a means of sending data wirelessly over radio channels, and is often used by Amateur Radio Operators. (One form is APRS, described in our earlier post.) In the video following the break you get some idea of how packet radio communications are conducted. The video uses a piece of hardware known as […]


Nimbits is a free, social and open source data logging system. It provides a mechanism for recording time series data, such as a changing temperature or stock price, into a data channel called a “Data Point”. Your data is stored on a global cloud computing infrastructure that provides remarkable uptime and scalability. You can download […]

Mystery QR code found in radio digital data

When receiving digital radio data with a program such as FLDIGI you may occasionally see unusual patterns on the software’s “waterfall” display. Scott Harden found what looked like a QR barcode encoded in digital amateur radio data on the 40 Meter Band and proceeded on a quest to decipher the code. Via Hack a Day

USB port in wall gives new meaning to file sharing

What would you do if you saw a USB connector sticking out of the wall in a public place? Makers in New York City want find out! They’re launching project “USB Dead Drop”,  an anonymous, offline, peer to peer file-sharing network using USB flash drives embedded into walls, buildings and curbs accessible to passersby.  Just […]