An Engineer in Wonderland – Arduino and brake lights

arduino.jpgArduino is intriguing.

It is a simple cheap development system, including microcontroller hardware, for developing processor-based control systems.

I have never used such a thing, for my imagination ends at BASIC and assembler coding, but it looks likes with Arduino you could string a programme together pretty quickly without having to learn how which bits in the ADC do what (said Alice bitterly).

For example, WyoJustin used it to make this novel brake light for bikes – which is not just a microswitch taped to the brake mechanism, but uses an accelerometer no less.

I like the way it fits in unused space, but do wonder if other road users are expecting brake lights in such a novel position.

There have been similar things to Arduino before – its website mentions Parallax Basic Stamp, Netmedia’s BX-24, Phidgets, and MIT’s Handyboard.

I am guessing Arduino’s success has something to do with it being open source.

Ed – Check out Gadget Master’s roundup of its Arduino-related posts (from laser harps to beer thermostats!) – The many faces of Arduino

‘Alice’

Should you feel the need, respond below.

(The photo comes from m4rlonj and is published under a Creative Commons Atribution licence.)

Tags: creative commons

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2 Comments

  1. 'Alice'
    November 16, 2009 12:05

    Thanks Mike.
    Lets give it the oxygen of publicity.
    Take a look at http://www.picaxe.co.uk folks.
    Has anyone use it?
    Is it easy to get something running?
    ‘Alice’

  2. Mike Meakin
    November 11, 2009 12:19

    Don’t forget our own UK based PicAxe microcontrollers ! Based on ‘flash’ Microchip PICs they are programmed in Basic and really are dead simple to use.

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