Monday, April 4, 2011

Half Way!

Well... I just finished Project 25 which puts me at the halfway mark. Plenty more left to do, but I'm happy to say that I'm learning a lot, especially when it comes to programming. I certainly don't expect this book to teach me every aspect of coding with this language, but I'm amazed at what I'm picking up from the author's explanations of the code - I have to give the author large praises for taking the time to really go over the code - so many books (not just Arduino ones) that I've used in the past simply give you the code and you're just to trust that it works and not get curious about diving into it.

Project 25 is an interesting halfway point for me, as well... I like humanoid robots like the Robonova-1 and I have this itch to design my own one of these days using servos... I could totally see building a custom robot using an Arduino and servos... could be fun.

So, thumbing through the book I see I have some more interesting projects ahead - the RFID and Ethernet chapters are of interest, too, as I have some ideas for some home monitoring activities that I'd like to investigate.

So... thanks for sticking with me as I continue to work through the book. I haven't heard from very many of you about whether you've got the book and are working your way through the projects... let me know if you are and where you are! If you're ahead of me, I think it might be nice to have some guest commentary for some of the later projects... just a thought.

(And, well... because it's just my way... I'm already hard at work trying to figure out what to do next when I finish this book - what can my next hands-on project be? There are some front-runner ideas, but I'm open to suggestions, too...)


  1. I just got my copy of the book today. While waiting for it I read through the “Getting Started with Arduino” book by Massimo Banzi and I did all of the 14 projects in the “Sparkfun Inventor's Guild” that came with my Arduino. Your blog is what convinced me to use this as a platform for teaching my kids basic electrical theory, electronics and introducing them to computer programming. I look forward to reading through this book as well. My goal is to combine the best of all three books in order to make a curriculum that they could follow.

  2. You are not hearing from some of us because Blogger frequently returns an "unable to process your request" error. I've tried to reply to this post three times now.

    For your next project, I have two suggestions, both of which I am considering myself.

    One is to continue down the digital electronics path with the O'Reilly title "Building Wireless Sensor Networks". Which will require an outlay for more electronic parts and sensors.

    The other is to put electronics aside for a while and take a trip into the world of chemistry. Make has published the Illustrated Guide to Home Chemistry Experiments. I'm not a chemist, but I have been reading it for the past few months and collecting the labware required.

    I need to buy an electronic balance and a stock of chemicals if I'm going to do the chemistry, or I need to buy sensors and more electronic gear for further Arduino experiments. The cost is about the same either way.

  3. cthdahle - nice suggestions, but as I struggled through Chemistry I and II in college, I'm not sure if I've recovered from the trauma yet... but I do have one VERY good idea for my next blog project... hate to give it away just yet, but it's not technology-related... investigating the costs and time involved and will probably share something before I hit Project 40 in the book. That said, I would LOVE for you to give serious consideration to doing a blog for the Illustrated Guide to Home Chemistry Experiments - Make would probably love to see someone document his/her work on that book. Think about it...

    Dan - Glad you like the blog and I'm happy to hear that it's moved you towards taking this stuff to the classroom... let me know if I can help in any way.

  4. I am glad you are enjoying my book James. Thanks a lot for reviewing it and placing it on your blog. I came across it purely by accident.

    Please email me if you need any help with anything.