Chapter 1. Hello Arduino


This chapter covers

  • The history of the Arduino
  • Arduino hardware
  • Hardware and software setup
  • The first blinking LED

What can the Arduino be used for? The answers are surprisingly diverse. The Arduino has been used in a wide variety of projects:

  • Video games such as Pong and Space Invaders that will remind some readers of their childhood and introduce others to the games their parents played when they were young, complete with monochrome graphics and simple sound effects
  • Line-following robots that introduce robotics principles but are also used in factories and warehouses to deliver components along predetermined paths
  • Light harps that produce music with a wave of your hands, as used internationally by the performer Little Boots
  • MIDI controllers that control a series of instruments
  • Self-balancing robots that mimic the Segway

These are all examples of projects built using the Arduino, a microcontroller so small that it fits in the palm of your hand. Originally designed to be used as a tool for physical computing projects by design and art students, the Arduino has been adopted as the tool of choice by communities of tinkerers and makers interested in building and prototyping their own projects.

1.1. A brief history of the Arduino

1.2. The Arduino hardware

1.3. Setting up your working environment

1.4. Make something happen!

1.5. Touring the IDE

1.6. Anatomy of a sketch

1.7. Commenting code

1.8. Summary