Using Bluetooth and an Android phone for debugging Arduino sketches

I bought a Bluetooth module a few months ago and never really tried to use it because in my mind it would be another module that would require hours digging the internet to find libraries, and some code sample to get me started. Only after reading Stan's post about Bluetooth modules I realized how easy is to get them working and how useful they can be to troubleshoot projects that require movement (like robots). Bluetooth basically makes your serial port wireless and open a whole new set of possibilities with two way communication…continue reading →

Arduino robot controlled from an Android phone via Bluetooth

Project overview

This is a differential steering robot that can be controlled from an Android phone via Bluetooth. The robot’s "brain" is Arduino Uno compatible board (an “Arduino on a breadboard”). The robot uses a JY-MCU Bluetooth module for communication with the Android phone. A custom Android app, created with the MIT App Inventor 2 essentially acts as a remote control, sending commands to the Arduino that tell the robot to move forward, reverse, stop or rotate.…)

Simple Android apps with App Inventor

App Inventor provides a fast and easy way to build simple apps for Android phones and tablets. It is targeted primarily at those of us with limited, or no experience in Android development. App Inventor has a fairly intuitive graphical interface, where you first visually design the application screen and then add the logic by dragging and dropping a series of colour-coded code “blocks” that snap together with a satisfying click, when connected correctly. (more…)

Programming ATtiny84 / ATTiny44 with Arduino Uno

My order of ATTiny84 chips from Mouser arrived yesterday, so it is time to load the Arduino Blink example sketch onto it. I made a small line follower using the ATTiny85 a while back, and quite liked the idea of having a smaller, cheaper IC that can run simpler Arduino sketches. The ATTiny84 comes with extra 6 I/O pins (see datasheet), so it should be an even better replacement of an Arduino for smaller projects. Here is a beautifully rendered mapping of the ATTiny84 / ATTiny44 pins courtesy of  Alberto (PighiXXX):ATTiny84 ATTiny44 pinout (more…)

Connecting Arduino Uno and the JY-MCU Bluetooth module using SoftwareSerial

My previous post covers the basics of setting up a Bluetooth connection between an Arduino Uno and an Android phone using the JY-MCU Bluetooth module. We connected the  JY-MCU Bluetooth module to the Arduino via a serial connection on (digital) pins 0 (rx) and 1 (tx).This uses Arduino’s built in hardware support for serial communication (via something called UART) and requires no additional libraries. The Arduino has a 64 byte serial buffer and can receive and store data in it, while executing other tasks in your program. For some great examples of using serial communication, as well as wealth of other Arduino related info see Nick Gammon’s web-site.There are a couple of downsides of this set-up for Bluetooth connectivity: (more…)

How to connect an Arduino Uno to an Android phone via Bluetooth

The purpose of this tutorial is to cover the basics of setting up a connection between  Arduino Uno and an Android phone via Bluetooth. Smart phones pack a ton of cool features (camera, accelerators, speakers, microphone, a nice screen to show data from your sensors, wi-fi adaptor...) that will make an excellent addition to a robot, or any other Arduino project. I will use Blueterm a basic free Android terminal emulator app to send a single digit (zero or one) from a phone to a BlueTooth module connected to the Arduino Uno via a serial…continue reading →