Your source for daily hacks

Published on: August 21, 2013 / Comments: 1

Connect your Arduino to the internet for about 10 bucks

While not as convenient as wireless to your Arduino, sometimes good ol’ ethernet is the way to go.  These cheap enc28J60 modules can be found on ebay for a lot less then a shield will run you.  The enc28j60 uses SPI to communicate.  So after connecting the pins in the right places, and using some of the libraries from the Ethernet shield you’ll be up and running in no time.

I don’t think that I really need to mention the possible applications here, as they are endless!  But I would be wary of your data rate, I don’t think you’ll be streaming 1080p video over this thing but it is good enough to control stuff / send images and sensor data.

Read the article for more including a demo sketch.

Published on: August 6, 2013 / Comments: None

Enabling hardware random numbers on your Pi, and explore randomness

Recently a driver has been released for the Raspberry Pi that enables the hardware random number generator on the Pi’s processor.  The numbers are generated by tiny thermal fluctuations in the processor.  On the linux side after the driver is loaded a new /dev node appears.  Once installing the rng-tools rngd it will seed your /dev/random with entropy from the hardware random number generator.

Some cool things are to visualize your random data, or to listen to it.  Check out the article or complete instructions and a little theory.

Published on: August 4, 2013 / Comments: 1

Using GPIO on the Beagle Bone Black

There’s not a lot of magic to controlling the GPIO on the Beagle Bone Black, it’s actually the same as other embedded linux boards like the Raspberry Pi.  What actually is the confusing part is knowing which pin from the header actually maps to which pin number in code.  As odd as it seems it’s not very straight forward mapping, pin 10 isn’t pin 10.  There is a GPIO interface manual you will need to consult.  After that everything is available through the sysfs interface.

If you need a refresher or want to find out more about mapping the gpio, check out this tutorial.  While you’re diggin around in the sysfs interface, there are other goodies in there such as setting pin mux and what not, but that’s another tutorial :)

Published on: July 24, 2013 / Comments: 1

Using the Peripheral Pin Select feature on a PIC24

pic24fjxxgb004Part 6 of Modtronics Australia’s PIC24 tutorial series,  Modtronics shows you how to use the Peripheral Pin Select feature on a PIC24 microcontroller.  This feature allows you to remap which pins are tied to which peripheral such as uart, I2c, SPI, etc.  Very useful feature when it comes to laying out a board, allowing you to lay things out because of convenience rather than necessity.  This could also lead to reusing of a certain pinout adapter across multiple configurations since it can be selected via software.




Other useful tutorials in this series: