Basic understanding of microcontroller interrupts

Earlier I’ve made a mistake by referring this tutorial to older AVR family microcontrollers like Atmega8/16/32/64/128. But AVR is being changed constantly with various new tweaks and updates like enhanced pin control or different register names. Since now tutorial will be based on Atmega328 microcontroller which is popular in Arduino boards. So you’ll be able to test all code examples on Arduino as it can serve as general purpose AVR test board with no problem.

Understanding Interrupts

Probably you won’t be able to find a microcontroller without interrupt capability. These are essential attributes of any modern microcontroller or processor. They may seem confusing and tricky at first glance, but during the time you will find out that normal MCU operation is impossible without interrupts.

Interrupts can be easily compared to real life events. Look around – all your activities are full of them. For instance you are reading this tutorial and find it interesting so you are all in it. But suddenly you cell phone rings. What you do? You remember last stroke you’ve red and answer the phone. Once phone conversation is over you get back to your reading as nothing happened. Well this is only one example of interrupt to give some visual clue what interrupts are. Continue reading

Wake up with sun anywhere you are

Direct sunlight is perfect for waking up in the morning. But it happens that there is no sun or simply your bedroom is in western side of the house. Then there is the only way – start cheating with sun simulator. It is based on ATTiny13 microcontroller which takes care of dimming the 150W halogen lamp.

Alarm clock can be set to reach its maximum intensity from 2 minutes up to 8 hours. Microcontroller takes alarm signals from regular digital radio alarm clock so no need to do additional time tracking. I agree it looks a bit dangerous to have halogen lamp near pillow, but it is worth to risk for a bit of sun.

The Outstanding Arduino Strobe Algae Bioreactor

We all knew that Arduino is definitely a very special electronic device, as you can do many incredible electronic projects with a simple arduino!

Well, if you’re looking for a home décor, but you don’t want to spend huge money out from your wallet, maybe this fantastic Arduino Strobe Algae Bioreactor is your ideal choice.


Believe it or not, the Arduino Strobe Algae Bioreactor is only cost you about $60 and less than three hours to accomplish it! Honestly, you don’t need to be an expert to build this project, as it only require basic power tools.


For your information, algae has been recognized as one of the most potential environmental friendly powers, where many researchers have been involved in the algae experiment to cultivate the unknown parts of algae.

In this project, it’s a very easy one, where you use a platform for one technique that is broadly used with to trick the algae into reproducing. The algae species reacts differently in many ways to its environment.

You can create a microcontroller platform that can be variably set and allows for easy configuration to any bioreactor. Furthermore, the LEDs can be easily swapped out to experiment with different colors and even UV for some hydrogen producing species.

In overall, the Arduino Strobe Algae Bioreactor could be the finest home décor inside your home and impress the guests!

Der Kapellmeister – Direct Musical Performance through Only Visible Gestures

Have you ever thought that is it possible to direct musical performance by only moving your hands in the air without even get in touch with the musical instrument? Well, it might be sounded crazy, but believe it or not, you can really do it with Der Kapellmeister!

For your information, the project is implemented with a glove. Then, it resembles with a conducting baton that has the ability to analyze visible gestures and interprets them into musical elements.

Der Kapellmeister

Der Kapellmeister is a very simple device that can be used to test a user’s ability in basic conducting, by using a real conducting baton. Let’s take an example. When a user performs a gesture, the device is automatically display the tempo, time signature and beat number on the LCD screen. It will then output a tick sound through the speaker.

The system can analyze up to four different time signatures at one time! Honestly, Der Kapellmeister is a very suitable device, especially for the beginners of conducting.

Der Kapellmeister is a compact mobile set that consist of a baton and a glove. Furthermore, an accelerometer is attached to the user’s middle finger, while the microcontroller, LCD and speaker are stitched to the wrist area of the glove.