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Physical Computing: Cool Arduino Applications

Arduino Project Examples

With Ardunios almost anything is possible!

Check out these interesting projects below that reveal a wide variety of real-world application use for the Arduino microcontroller.

These are just a few examples, but there are thousands, maybe millions of projects floating around online.

Example 1:

This project was developed during the Physical Computing and Creative Coding Course at the School of Form in Poznań, Poland. The assignment was to focus on building a project that is based off "the aesthetics of interaction" keywords. The lecturers for the course were Wiesław Bartkowski and Krzysztof Goliński. The project goal was to rethink about typical button-like interface of audio sequencer and design unique tangible interface for it. This project uses a CNC Router to cut out the wooden base and a bench drill press. Then sensors were placed in each hole and connected to the arduino device (32 sensors in all). There are images of how to construct a project like this if you click on the link "Behance" shown above.

Example 4:

Becky Stern is the director of Wearable Electronics at Adafruit in New York City.

She blogs about interesting arduino/microcontroller wearable projects. These project vary from runway-ready light up dresses to Bluetooth talking dog collars. Many of these projects she blogs about use a Lilypad Arduino which is specially designed to easily be sew into fabric elements of projects. It is sewn to fabric and similarly mounted power supplies, sensors and actuators with conductive thread. 

She also has a very interesting channels on twitter, youtube, instagram, pinterest, flickr, Google+ and Tumblr that will keep you inspired all day long.

 

Example 2:

"Rik Kretzinger grew up on a Christmas tree farm and spent his college years studying horticulture, but he found it too difficult to make a living as a small farmer so he spent most of his career working for others.

A few years ago, he began to tinker with aquaponics (fishfarming + hydroponics), sensors and the open-source microcontroller Arduino to create an automated garden that could compete with commercial farms.

For the first couple of years he spent thousands of hours struggling to learn programming languages to automate his backyard mini-farm. Then while speaking at an international conference (along with Eric Maundu and Rob Torcellini, he’s among the elite few experimenting with aquaponics and automation) he was introduced to APDuino (open-source firmware for aqua- and hydro-ponics).

APDuino allows Kretzinger to read the sensors in his garden without any programming. Now Kretzinger’s garden can send him tweets or Facebook updates if something is going wrong and Kretzinger can adjust the water flow, pH and temperature from a smartphone.

Now, what started as a hobby may provide Kretzinger with the boost to compete as a small farmer. His plan is to keep it urban (or suburban). He’ll use unused backyards or vacant lots to grow his produce and he’s created a prototype tower (PVC structures similar to those in our videos of Rob Torcellini’s greenhouse and of rooftop hydroponics on Manhattan restaurant Bell, Book & Candle).

His towers can be removed and taken to farmer’s markets where customers can “pick” their strawberries or lettuce directly from the units. His set-up is also highly mobile so if a property owner decides he wants his land back, Kretzinger can move within a week."

 

Here is a link to his blog: https://rik94566.wordpress.com/category/agponics-com/

Example 5:

Critter Capture Cam: Motion Capturing Camera

The Critter Capture Cam was developed by Julius Schmiedel and Nick Normal and is posted on the Make.com website.

It combines several common components to create a camera that only takes pictures when critters move in front of it. The image above shows a stopmotion image of a cat captured using the camera. The basic hardware needed to complete this project include an Arduino uno, jpeg camera, PIR sensor to detect motion, and an SD card. The comprehensive list of hardware, software and sketch code can be found on the link at the top.

Example 3:

Arduino Powered Candy Vending Machine

This project is great for Halloween season, if you want to surprise kids with a new and innovative way to get their candy from trick-or-treating. It uses an Arduino Leonardo mircocontroller, stepper motor, various pvc pipes cut to size, led lights (for show), wood for the base structure, two Adafruit motor shields, and an Adafruit proto shield. A second arduino was used for the LED light show. The overall material cost was under $450 and it took about a month from idea to "finished" product. This project intersects mechanical electrical, and software systems as well as design. This project was created by Scott N. Miller (and his kids). Scott is the CEO and Co-Founder of Dragon Innovation. He has worked on various robotic projects many years with well established companies like Disney Immagineering, Hasbro, and iRobot. He has also helped build a robotic tuna fish at MIT, for which he recieved his Masters Degree.

Example 6: