Arduino microcontrollers are showing up everywhere, because they are inexpensive and very, very useful in many electronics and robotic builds. Plus, they are open-source, which means you can take other people's ideas, modify them, and make them your own.
For us, these little boards are great. You can build cool electronics projects like those we saw in class, plus you can use them as the "brains" in robots. And they serve as a great introduction to physical programming. You will program them to listen to sensors and, based on that feedback from the environment, they will do something by controlling actuators.
These are used often at the university level, so getting used to them now not only gives you creative geniuses the ability to invent now, but it also gives you an advantage over others when you start your post-secondary careers.
To help you remember what you learned last year, reference my cheat sheets, try tracing through these Arduino sketches, and follow this lab. You can also watch my video introduction to programming Arduino.
Major Learning Goals
For most of you, this is the second course in the engineeringCentral program, while for some it is the first. Altogether, the grade 10, 11, and 12 courses will prepare you to study Engineering (especially Computer Engineering, Electrical Engineering, and Mechatronics) and Computer Science at the university and college levels. It will prepare you for the very lucrative and in-demand ICT and Engineering industries. We will hopefully have lots of fun this semester while learning crucial skills that every employer is looking for. And in an era where everyone seems to be concerned about the weak job market, wouldn't it be nice to know you're facing the future with the skills to enter industries where there is HUGE demand? In fact, there currently aren't enough trained people to fill the jobs in these industries!
Computer Science and Engineering are very, very wise career choices.
This semester, we will try to answer this Essential Question: HOW CAN I TAKE CONTROL OF THE DEVICES WE RELY ON AND UPON WHICH WE ARE BUILDING THE FUTURE?