Just like the open source software that has taken the computing by storm Arduino has introduced the concept of open source electronics hardware. This little device opens up whole new worlds and has reinvigorated my interest in hobby electronics. Through the following pages and tutorials I introduce the world of electronic circuit design and include some projects using electronic circuits. The projects and examples include some based around the Arduino and some using discrete components.
The examples and descriptions on this site focus on the practical side of electronic circuit design. The descriptions of how the individual components has been kept to a simple level describing the function of the components rather than the details of how they work at an atomic layer. The maths kept to the minimum required to design the circuit.
Most of the designs focus on digital electronics. This is the field of electronics that interests me most and is easy to implement and interface with a computer. In the real world there is often a necessity to interface to the outside which often involves provide an analog output to drive a device or measuring an analog input which I have of course included. I have particularly chosen to avoid op-amp circuits and such like. There are many other sources of information for building your own amplifiers or analog feedback loops if that is what interests you.
I have taken a modular approach to designing some of these projects so whilst they can be reproduced in their entirety the real flexibility comes from taking the modules and connecting them in different ways, or in the case of the Arduino, by experimenting with programming the Arduino to change its behaviour.
Of course being PenguinTutor where possible these are all designed with the Linux user in mind, from the use of Open Source tools (including OpenOffice.org, Inkscape and Processing) in the design to the use of Linux / multi-operating system programming languages in the computer to hardware interaction. The electronic circuits are licensed under the Creative Commons license and the source code under GPL2. Important - copyright information