Welcome to this Arduino Tutorial series of articles.

The Arduino Project is an exciting new way of exploring and learning about electronics as well as a start into making your own electronics project prototypes, that might turn into real products!

This article serves as the introduction of the series and will explore a bit about the Arduino project and the different arduino boards. It will also introduce the purpose of the first of the following articles.

First things first: What is Arduino?

From the Official Arduino website:

Arduino is an open-source electronics platform based on easy-to-use hardware and software. Arduino boards are able to read inputs - light on a sensor, a finger on a button, or a Twitter message - and turn it into an output - activating a motor, turning on an LED, publishing something online. You can tell your board what to do by sending a set of instructions to the microcontroller on the board. To do so you use the Arduino programming language (based on Wiring), and the Arduino Software (IDE), based on Processing.

Recently the Arduino Project rebranded their product line outside the US to Genuino.

The Arduino boards come in different variants. For the time being we will concentrate on three basic boards: Nano, Uno and Mega.

The Nano and the Uno are based on the same chip, the Atmel ATmega328. The Mega uses the ATmega2560. The main difference between the two is that the ATmega2560 has more memory and more I/O lines. So if a project needs more space and more connections, the Mega board is the right choice. The Nano has a smaller footprint than the Uno.

I will be using the three above boards in these articles, as they are the ones I have. They are interchangeable. All three boards can be used to the different projects, unless stated. The three boards I have are all clones from three different manufacturers: Sainsmart (Nano), Geekcreit (Uno) and an unmarked (Mega).


Checkout the Lego section of the site!

I want to see some Lego!