November 13, 2012

Making Arduino displays visually appealing

 I'm sure many of us are guilty of creating an interesting project for use around the home - and after creation and successful implementation have left the controls or user panel a little more "home-made" than it should be. Instructables user 'ray74' also had this though and has thus documented his efforts of creating an Arduino-based display panel. By using a nice picture frame some planning, a respectable-looking LCD/button panel was acheived. Furthermore it has a simple software clock. 

Although this may not suit your own project, it's a great demonstration of what can be possible with just a little more effort to make our projects much more usable and possibly approved by the non-technical people of the household. Click here to follow the design detailsAnd for more, we're on twitter and Google+, so follow us for news and product updates as well. 

If you're creating a project that requires a clock, don't use software that risks inaccuracy or failure - instead use a real-time clock IC. And at Freetronics we have the Maxim DS3232 real-time clock IC module:

Apart from keeping accurate time for years due to the temperature-controlled oscillator and having a tiny coin-cell for backup, it is very simple to connect to your Arduino project. A driver library allows your program to easily set or read the time and date. Perfect for clock projects, dataloggers or anything that needs to know the date and time. Furthermore it contains a digital thermometer and 236 bytes of non-volatile memory to store user settings and other data. For more information, check out the module page here

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