Links – Arduino Development for Visual Studio 2010 and 2008

Visual Micro has developed a plugin for the Visual Studio 2010 and 2008 Development environment that allows full featured Arduino development with such features as intellisense. This plugin frees one from having to use the Arduino IDE to develop and upload sketches.   Visual Micro CodePlex,  Adafruit PostVisual MicroVisual Micro on Arduino.cc

Links – Using Dropbox to Centralize Arduino Sketches

I was browsing my typical batch of favorite blogs and I came across a post that discussed how to use Dropbox to centralize sketches.  Now, this is a great idea in my opinion as it allows me to work on the same file from multiple computers, back up the file, and keep a track of the different versions just in case I screw something up.  Here is a screenshot of my setup and a link to the author’s site.

All you need to do is click on File -> Preferences in the Arduino IDE and browse to the location in your Dropbox folder that you want to use for your Arduino sketches.  You can get a free 2gig account from Dropbox which may be plenty for most.

Links – Programming an ATtiny with the Arduino IDE

The MIT High-Low Tech Lab posted a tutorial on how to program an ATtiny45 or ATtiny85 micro-controller using the Arduino IDE.  This functionality is accomplished by using a subset of the Arduino libraries to add a set of core runtime source files to support the ATtiny45/85.  Matt Richardson of MAKE Magazine posted a video demonstrating how to use the Arduino IDE to program the ATtiny.

There is also an open source project called the “Arduino-Tiny” that enables Arduino users to work with the ATtiny84/44/24, ATtiny85/45/25, and ATtiny2313.

** Update ** This tutorial has been updated for the Arduino IDE V1.0 and includes some updated commands.  Check it out here.

Software – Voltage Divider Network Calculator

I’m working on several projects that I want to include a voltmeter to monitor battery levels.  One of the easier methods is to use a resistor voltage divider network and a zener diode to scale the input voltage to a value safe for the Analog-to-Digital (ADC) pin.  I developed a voltage divider calculator in C# to help me determine the correct resistor values for the selected voltage range I would like to measure.  You can find it here.

Software – Arduino TFT Touchscreen RGB Color Mixer

Adafruit sells a really nice touchscreen and shield for the Arduino (other microcontrollers welcome).  They also provide a library for the Arduino that makes the touchscreen easy to use.  I want to use the touchscreen to develop some custom menus but, found it difficult to figure out RGB color codes.  So, I wrote a little C# program to take care of that for me.  You can find it here.

General – Arduino Optiboot Boot-loader

I’ll soon be updating the Hobbyduino Mini to the Optiboot boot-loader.  According to the Optiboot Google Code Page:

  • Allows larger sketches.
  • Is a quarter of the size of the default bootloader freeing 1.5k of extra space.
  • Sketches upload faster.
  • Optiboot operates at higher baud rates and has streamlined programming.
  • Adaboot performance improvements.
  • Runs sketches sooner with no watchdog issues.
  • Compatible with 168 and 328 Arduinos.