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Arduino Programming and Electronics

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Have you ever had a bright idea?

I don't know about you, but when I have an Idea, I think of a lightbulb over my head.  That light bulb can mean anything.  It could be an idea of something I'd like to create, draw, do or any number of things.

Maybe you'd like to create a toy, or maybe you'd like to make a robot that does yoru chores. Either way it all started with a light bulb in your head.

So let's get started with setting up your Arduino.

How to install the Arduino

There are things needed to work on the Arduino.  The Arduino itself with the USB Cable and the installation program you will need in order to program the Arduino.  Please have an adult help you if needed.

HARDWARE INSTALLATION:

1. Do not plug in your Arduino to the computer yet.

2. Download the software for the Arduino at http://www.wespeakpc.com/downloads/arduino-1.8.0-windows.exe

3. Once downloaded, you should be able to click on your downloaded file and select open/run.  This software will have the files needed to let windows recognize your Arduino as well as to allow you to program it.

4. When the Program begins the install you will see the following

Select all and click next

Accet the default and click Next

5. Once the install has finished you will need to make sure the arduino will talk with your computer.  So go ahead and plug in your Arduino with your computer using the USB cable provided.  (By plugging it in, it automatically turns on.  For the moment use the cable to keep it powered on and for programming it when in use.)

6. Click on the Start Menu, and open up the Control Panel.

7. While in the Control Panel, navigate to System and Security. Next, click on System. Once the System window is up, open the Device Manager.

8. Look under Ports (COM & LPT). You should see an open port named "Arduino UNO (COMxx)". If there is no COM & LPT section, look under "Other Devices" for "Unknown Device". (PLEASE take note of the com port # noted as xx in "Arduino UNO (COMxx)"  you will need this # later.

9. Right click on the "Arduino UNO (COmxx)" port and choose the "Update Driver Software" option.

10. Next, choose the "Browse my computer for Driver software" option.

11. Finally, navigate to and select the driver file named "arduino.inf", located in the "Drivers" folder of the Arduino Software download (not the "FTDI USB Drivers" sub-directory). If you are using an old version of the IDE (1.0.3 or older), choose the Uno driver file named "Arduino UNO.inf"

12. Windows will finish up the driver installation from there.

SOFTWARE/PROGRAMMER CONFIGURATON:

1. Double-click the Arduino icon created by the installation process.

2. Open the LED blink example sketch: File > Examples >01.Basics > Blink.

3. Go to Tools > Board menu and select the Arduino board that corresponds to the one you have purchased.

4. Go to Tools > Port and select the comport associated with your Arduino.

5. Now, simply click the "Upload" button in the environment. Wait a few seconds – you should see the RX and TX leds on the board flashing. If the upload is successful, the message "Done uploading." will appear in the status bar.

A few seconds after the upload finishes, you should see the pin 13 (L) LED on the board start to blink (in orange). If it does, congratulations! You've gotten Arduino up-and-running.  If you run into problems, Please contact us using the contact page.