I have finally finished my last exams, so now I have more time to focus on some of my own projects. It has been a while since our Kickstarter campaign was successfully funded, but we are still working on making the experience better for the final users.
After the campaign ended we sent out a survey to all our backers with several questions about there address, profession and so on, but we also asked them if they had any suggestions for improvements or extra features they would like to see added to the Balanduino. A lot of people asked if we could enable wireless streaming for it.
I was personally very excited about that since I have been playing with the thought for quite a while, so when the official camera module for the Raspberry Pi became available I bought it straight away.
The processor consists of two cores, an ARM Cortex-M0, as the low-level processor and the high-end ARM Cortex-M4. Even though the two cores are of a different kind and with independently different features, they both run at a frequency of up to a stunning 204MHz. Read more…
FPGA’s can be very advanced to get started using, especially if you are used to microcontrollers.
But when you first get the right feeling and the proper mindset you will soon see the endless possibilities with the programmable logic.
One of the great aspects of the logic is the speed and the full control of what happens at every single clock cycle.
With this full control it doesn’t takes many lines of code to generate a very time-critical signal such as a video signal.
In this short post I will walk thru our current test setup with an FPGA, the Spartan 3E, controlling a 18-bit 7″ 800×480 TFT display.
We have been working with the new Raspberry Pi board for a while but didn’t show it to you guys before now.
Many of you might already have seen and read plenty of videos and articles about it so I thought it would be more appropriate to make a tutorial on how to use the GPIO’s, and especially on how to speed up the GPIO’s.
In this video I walk you thru all the steps from installing the Raspbian image which is based upon Debian. This is by far the most complete and well working image I’ve discovered.
Together with a complete X-window system it also comes with many different developer tools preinstalled such as Python and GCC.
So go watch the video while to set up your own Raspberry Pi for GPIO control.
For you who have read about the STM32F4 Cortex-M4 processor you might know that this processor family includes a 10/100 Ethernet MAC with dedicated DMA that supports supports IEEE 1588v2 hardware, MII/RMII.
This means that the only electronics needed to enable the ethernet capability is an external PHY and the Magjack connector.
On the STM3240G-EVAL evaluation board the DP83848 PHY is used and luckily for us we were able to find a simple breakout board for this chip on eBay.
DP83848 Phy breakout board
To hook up this Phy to the STM32F4DISCOVERY board a slight change in the pins, compared to the connections on the evaluation board, had to be made. Because the STM32F4DISCOVERY board only contains the 100-pin version some of the full MII pins are missing so we have to use the PHY in RMII mode. Read more…
Recently mikroElektronika has been so kind to send us a couple of samples of their latest ARM development tool series.
The latest mikroElektronika ARM development tool series
mikroElektronika is known for their broad range of development boards especially in the PIC series where the most common board is their EasyPIC board. Now they have done it again and come up with a new product line – the ARM series. Read more…
Evaluation Type: Development Board, PIC32 Application you used the part in: Arduino form-factored development/prototyping Was everything in the box required?: The box only contains the board itself, nothing else What were the biggest problems encountered?: Shield compatibility with other Arduino shields (should be 3.3V compatible)
After several questions on how to use the NXT Shield I decided to create an Arduino library. All the code is available at github: https://github.com/TKJElectronics/NXTShield.
The library is pretty easy to use, I have provided three examples witch demonstrates all the libraries functionalities.
I works with all official Arduinos including Arduino Mega. To use the ultrasonic sensor with an Arduino Mega, one have to connect pin 20 (SDA) to A4 and pin 21 (SCL) to A5. A new revision of the shield might use the two extra SDA and SCL pins that are near to the AREF pin on r3 versions of the new Arduino boards.
Below are some photos of the NXT Shield: Read more…
Evaluation Type: Development Board, ARM Cortex-M4 Application you used the part in: QuadCopter Was everything in the box required?: The box only contains the board itself, nothing else What were the biggest problems encountered?: It is hard to find a good but inexpensive or free compiler
I have for a long time wanted to build a remote controllable balancing robot aka Segway – that’s was actually the main reason why I created the PS3 Bluetooth Library both for Arduino and the FEZ Devices. It has been a long time since the sneak peak and the performance has been improved a lot since then. The original one had a FEZ Rhino as the main processor, but I discovered that it was not fast enough to read the encoders, as it is not running embedded code. Also I was already using more than 10ms per loop, which I used as a fixed time loop, so I decided to step up a notch and go for a much more powerful device: the mbed microcontroller, which is an ARM Cortex-M3 running 96MHz.
It might have been possible with just a normal Arduino (NB: I have now ported the code to Arduino, see update for the code), but I didn’t want the speed of the processor to be an issue, so I decided to go for the mbed. The robot also features an Arduino Duemilanove with a USB Host Shield on top running a sketch based on my PS3 Bluetooth Library. The mbed board actually has USB Host functionality, but I decided not to port the PS3 Bluetooth Library as my original thought were to use an Arduino Due, but as you might know it hasn’t been released yet, despite the Arduino team announced, that it would be released by the end of 2011. But as soon as it is released I think I will port the code to it instead.
Here is a short video demonstration of the robot and me explaining some of the concepts of the design and how it works: