A simple custom I2C character LCD interface for Arduino projects

Character LCDs are a fantastic and cost-effective option when your project calls for a user-friendly output method. Besides being cheap and easy to use, these displays often offer enough usable screen real-estate for displaying simple status messages and interactive menu screens. However, the standard 16-pin interface can be quite a hassle to work with, and all the wires quickly clutter up your previously simple Arduino project. While there are some I2C character LCDs out in the wild, these models are often more expensive and sometimes difficult to work with. Therefore, I decided to build a simple-to-use alternative that allows you to control pretty much any standard 14 and 16-pin LCD display with only four wires.

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Building an Arduino based capacitive touch kitchen timer – Part 5

In this part of the Arduino capacitive touch timer series, I discuss the final working version of the project and what changes I had to make to the previous revisions. Towards the end of the article, I’ll have a look at what lessons I’ve learned while working on this project.

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Building an Arduino based capacitive touch kitchen timer – Part 4

The fourth part of the Arduino capacitive touch timer series discusses the case design of the project. It also outlines how to assemble the individual pieces of the enclosure and how I plan to improve the design in the near future.

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Building an Arduino based capacitive touch kitchen timer – Part 3

This part of the Arduino based capacitive touch kitchen timer series discusses the software that will make the capacitive kitchen timer come alive. It also talks about how I implemented the capacitive touch ring and some experiments I conducted to ensure good gesture detection and user experience.

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Building an Arduino based capacitive touch kitchen timer – Part 2

This part of the Arduino based capacitive touch kitchen timer series discusses the hardware aspects of the project. In the last part, we took a look at the project idea itself, the goals, and skimmed over the theoretical principles behind capacitive sensing. So, it was now time to design a simple circuit and a PCB, which proved to be quite a bit more difficult than expected…

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Building an Arduino based capacitive touch kitchen timer – Part 1

A dear friend of mine recently sent me a very interesting idea for a new project, and I decided to pick it up and got working at it as soon as I could. His idea was to build a digital kitchen timer that operates like the USB volume knob I built a while ago. I didn’t just want to recycle an old design, and the USB volume knob would be pretty unsanitary in a kitchen anyway. So we came up with a new idea that involves capacitive touch sensing and an Arduino, and this series of articles discusses each part of the project from the first idea, to the theoretical aspects, all the way to the hardware and software. I decided to write this series as the project goes along (similarly to the older word clock series), so things are subject to changes. However, I think this gives you a good opportunity to see just how much trial and error goes into such a project, and I hope I can help you avoid mistakes that I make by documenting them.

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Arduino MKR Vidor 4000 Verilog FPGA and MCU hello world tutorial

This article discusses how user code can be uploaded to both, the MCU and the FPGA, of the Arduino MKR Vidor 4000. Some time ago, I wrote this summary of the topic which, however, didn’t include an easy to follow tutorial. Instead, it was more of an outline aimed at more experienced users. However, today I tried to re-create the steps, and I noticed that the original article wasn’t as simple to follow for beginners as I’d have liked it to be.

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