Monopoly in Lights

Enriching the Electric Company


Got the PCBs in, but before playing with those, I finally had a chance to test some of the wireless communication bits.  Seemed like the XBees were set up to be as easy to use as possible, and that’s the experience I ended up having.  Did a little bit of digging to confirm what chunks of code I needed, but pretty quickly got it up and running.

The Netduino that I’ve been using all this time is still running the LED driver, and now has a countdown cycle that I can trigger with the on-board button which lights a number of LEDs, then turns one off each 1/4 second. I then added an XBee Series 1 to it using an Arduino shield, and put in a bit of code to also trigger the countdown cycle any time the XBee receives data.

That meant it was time to break out the Netduino Plus, hook up an XBee, and have it transmit a single character when its on-board button is pressed.  At first I worried it hadn’t worked, because it didn’t seem to respond to my first button press, but later presses worked exactly as desired.  Press button on one board, watch LEDs controlled by other board light up then die down.  Pretty dang cool.

Side note here is that this is the first time I’ve run the LED board off battery power.  Got a lot of flicker on them in this configuration, unfortunately.  That being said, it’s working on 4 AA cells, whereas the final is probably going to be running 4 D cells.  Hopefully that difference will help even out the power and make things shinier.  If not, I’ll have to spend more time figuring out the power solution than I’d hoped.

September 20, 2012 - Posted by | Electronics, Microcontroller

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