VFD Clock Connects to the Internet

Here is, finally, one week later than planned, the sequel to my initial Ice Tube VFD clock .

It is able to :

  1. get the time from the internet and automatically synchronise itself (why have to set the time and use a battery to keep it running when disconnected, if we have Internet access ?)
  2. periodically fetch some weather data and display it
  3. do searches on Twitter and display the 1st result

So rather than “simply” displaying the time, every 15secs it alternates between the time, the weather and a Twitter message.

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Tiger 1 BB airsoft RC Tank – V2

It’s all about the same project as here, BUT with a different technology: instead of using the FEZ Domino (.NET micro framework based) board, I’ll be using the Lego NXT controller and an Arduino board for low level interaction with the electronics.

NXT + Arduino internals

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IR Remote (Syma s026) dedicated board

Syma s026 Remote IR protocol decryptor

I’ve talked in at least 1 other post about how to use the Infra Red remote control of a toy helicopter (Syma s026) for other projects : once the protocol reverse engineered, it’s very easy to program a micro controller to listen to it and I find it very useful to integrate this into any project that needs some wireless remote controlling.

It’s also quite cheap, all you need is an IR receiver and the microcontroller that you alreay use in the given project…

BUT, the more I used it the more I hit one problem : it uses far too much of the MCU ressources, because the remote keeps sending 29 bytes signals all the time and you have to try to intercep them all to check if anything has changed in the commands sent !

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