Getting Started with Robotics/Physical Computing
Sometimes the most difficult part about robotics is knowing
where to start and knowing which of the many options are the best to go
with. Below we have a selection of tutorials to get you started with
Arduino Kit. Arduino is an open source platform that has some really
great features to make learning to interact with the outside world easy,
fun and fast.
Arduino Tutorials - A Great Place to Start
Resistor Codes - Including calculator
MindKits Arduino Tutorials
Pick up all the needed kit for each tutorial here
and make learning Arduino fun and stress free. The kits have everything
needed for each tutorial but leave out anything in the kits for
previous tutorials. This means you'll never have to buy something twice
and always have just what you need to make your way through the tutorial
(we do pop a few extra resistors in there though as they're always
handy). Remember, you can pick up most items on MindKits if you want to
skip a tutorial too.
Tutorial Home - Index of Tutorials
Tutorial 0 - Getting Started
Tutorial 1 - Loops, PWM and Analog sensors
Tutorial 2 - Temp Sensing, Serial Communication, LCDs
Tutorial 3 - Relays, Interrupts and Servos
Tutorial 4 - Shift Registers, Sound, Arrays
Tutorial 5 - Shift Registers and LED displays
Tutorial 6 - Distance Measuring with IR, Protoshields
Tutorial 7 - Realtime Clocks and their magical uses
Tutorial 8 - Building a Clock With Display, Servo Powered Clock
Tutorial 9 - LED Matrix Control, UI Design, Alarm Clock
Tutorial 10 - DIY Breadboard Arduino, Time Controlled 240v Devices
In my humble opinion these books are the complete toolkit for robotics
and tinkering - How to use the Arduino, getting a workspace setup,
trouble shooting, making sensors, deep diving with Arduino and
All of these are great starting guides for Arduino and electronics and
take you through the learning curve from the start. You just can't beat
Jonathan Oxers book for being a complete reference though and is my
Getting Started With Arduino - Massimo Banzi
Electronics Sensors for the Evil Genius - Thomas Petruzzellis
Practical Arduino - Jonathan Oxer
User Groups and Clubs
MindKits Arduino Meetup - Monthly meeting on the second Thursday of the month to catch up over a beer, talk and learn.
- Guest speakers - delivering information on
current areas of interest or requested info.
An opportunity to ask experts for advice and help with
A show and tell so you can share what you've been
working on with others
A chance to meet people interested in the same stuff as
A fun way to quench your thirst over a beer
- Bit or byte swap - exchange your goodies for
Christchurch based robotics enthusiast group but their mailing list is
active with people all over New Zealand. Very friendly bunch with great
support and regular meet ups.
- Fantastic Archive of everything Arduino. If you ever wondered if
Arduino could interface with a piece of hardware this is a great place
to start. Lots of code and tutorial links.
great people at SparkFun have put together a series of tutorials which
you may find helpful. Things like how to make a power supply for your
breadboard to how serial communication works. It's not specifically
Arduino based but is very helpful indeed - Thanks SparkFun.
A great tutorial by Make Magazine to help you get started with the Arduino Basics.