Before I start today's post, I'd like to acknowledge I haven't been an awesome lead the last couple months. I've been pretty busy becoming an actual engineer and working with the city of Denver to end youth homelessness (a project I will talk about on my personal @justjose page.) But fear not, there's lots of awesome stuff coming! Now without further ado...
The Magic of Microcontrollers!
I'm sure there's a considerable portion of you that have followed this page in hopes of finding awesome projects to try. So if you want to get into engineering DIY, microcontrollers are the place to start.
I love talking about these because I didn't even know they existed until well after I had learned to design complex analog circuits. Had I known about microcontrollers, my learning curve in robotics would've been considerably faster.
Microcontrollers, like Arduino (left) and Raspberry Pi (right), are essentially tiny, programmable computers that control your circuit. The big difference here is that Arduino is better suited for low processing power needs (like controlling motors), while Raspberry Pi is powerful enough to run an OS.
To get an idea on the possibilities, here are two pages I often check for new projects:
Raspberry Pi Projects
How to get started?
Get yourself an Arduino board, and get this kit. It's my favorite kit because it comes with simple projects and all needed components to get started.
If any of you would like me to talk about more advanced DIY robotics projects let me know, and I'll make sure to touch on those next.