Arduino For Free, Almost.
It is amazing how the movement initiated by the Arduino Team has led to a widespread growth of both hardware and software to develop applications using microcontrolers.
This growth has allowed to offer an Arduino UNO Compatible for only $2.84 (Including shipping to many countries).
One of Massimo Banzi’s aspirations was to have an inexpensive and easy way to create devices that interact with their environment using sensors and actuators. Mission accomplished !.
I got this Arduino UNO compatible from China (Delivered in 10 days). After installing te CH340G driver, I was able to download sketches without problems.
While taking some pictures with the Magnifier Plus-HD of my Galaxy NOTE, started to realize how well designed and assembled is this development board.
Upon inspection of this Arduino compatible we can observe :
-AMS 1117-3.3, 3.3 Volts regulator, capable of providing 1 Ampere. The regulator is capable of feeding radios and telephone modems directly, specially the ESP8266 for Internet connections.
– 25V capacitors, instead of the usual 16V used in some clones.
-16Mhz Crystal, instead of a Ceramic Resonator, which allows us to measure time more precisely.
-MICRO-USB connector. Much more common and easy to find.
-Additional holes to solder headers for:
*Double connector for the whole Arduino I/O.
* Analog pins A6 and A7.
*Serial connection (GND 5V TX RX)
*I2C onnection (GND 3.3V SCL SDA)
Originally was considered the use of the DIP-28 package rather than the SMD counterpart of the ATMEGA328 in the Arduinos, now it turns out that is less expensive to replace the whole product instead of substitute the ATMEGA328. You can buy from MOUSER or DIGIKEY the microcontroller in 10 counts for a price bigger than the complete board! . This without taking into consideration that one still has to burn the bootloader in the new device.
We are very fortunate to live in this age with plenty of sensors and controllers to experiment with.
All of this is empowering people to create new solutions to old problems, many of them will become products and prosperous business.
In honor of the enormous contribution the Arduino Team has made and continue making, I absolutely support the purchase of their products to give continuity to the great project of democratizing knowledge.
The open hardware and open software movements has allowed everyone to have access to these advances without regards of their socio-economic status.
You did it Massimo!