mtXControl - a Rainbowduino Editor By Tobi

Arduino, Seeeduino Serials and mutants. Share your problems and experence on arduino compatible board such as seeeduino/stalker, etc.

Re: mtXControl - a Rainbowduino Editor By Tobi

by boerner » Fri Nov 06, 2009 9:19 am

Just throwing my two cents in...

First of all, thanks to Tobi for creating this application. After discovering it via the contest, it inspired me to order a Rainbowduino so that I could program it as a birthday present for my wife. Although the parts showed up a little late, I was able to successfully get everything going. That being said, I do have some thoughts/observations/questions in no particular order: (not a total newbie to Arduino or Processing, but still learning :-)

1. I tried to follow the directions to change the speed of the animation between frames, but nothing seemed to have any effect. What mode should the application be in so that I may change the speed, and what are the relevant keystrokes? I tried ALT + -, which I took to mean the minus sign, then I thought better of it and tried ALT + a number. Nothing seemed to have any effect. Am I just missing something obvious?

2. As seen in the comments on your blog post, I too fell victim to the fact that I was not able to use the precompiled binary of the app. I downloaded the source and ran it through the Processing environment and was then able to communicate with the Rainbowduino. If there is anyway I can help debug this, let me know. Also, did I again miss something simple in terms of downloading all the relevant source? I had to manually add each file to my sketch to make everything work. I know there should have been an easier way. Do I just not know how to download properly from the git repository?

3. I was a little confused as to the proper procedure as to getting the Arduino ready to program the Rainbowduino. To clarify the steps:
a. Load the latest Arduino environment on the PC
b. Confirm the ability to upload a simple sketch to the Arduino, making sure to select the correct processor type
c. Upload the "blank" sketch to the Arduino so that it acts like a pass-through connection
d. connect the Rainbowduino to the Arduino as indicated in your blog picture (which is actually a little blurry and hard to read, maybe annotate the pin numbers/)
e. Using the Arduino IDE, load the firmware.pde sketch and then transfer it. The Arduino serves as the middle-man so that the microcontroller on the Rainbowduino can be reprogrammed. Important note is to change the processor type to 168 if you have a 328 Arduino.
f. A brand new Rainbowduino should now go from displaying the multi-colored test pattern to all white LEDs.
g. Close the Arduino IDE. Load the latest Processing IDE (although similar in appearance, they are not the same). Remember to leave everything connected as displayed in the blog photo.
h. Load the mtXControl application and compile and run it. The display should go blank.
i. Use the application to design your animation and then Save it to the Matrix.
j. Close the Processing IDE. Disconnect the USB cable from your PC to the Arduino and undo the connections between the Arduino and the Rainbowduino.
k. Power the Rainbowduino up by itself (either with an AC adaptor or a battery) and the animation should display.

Does this seem like I have everything right? With a little guidance I could write something a little more detailed or perhaps make a screencast (at least for the Mac platform).

I think that is it for now. Thanks again for a great app. I hope you continue to improve it. Let me know if I can help or if anyone wants to help me put together a detailed tutorial or screencast.

Thanks,

Bob
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Re: mtXControl - a Rainbowduino Editor By Tobi

by cksa361 » Tue Nov 10, 2009 12:36 pm

Can't get it to compile :(

Code: Select all
E:\DOCUME~1\Carson\LOCALS~1\Temp\build58991.tmp\/Rainbowduino.h:1: error: expected constructor, destructor, or type conversion before '/' token

e:/arduino/arduino-0017/hardware/tools/avr/lib/gcc/../../avr/include/stdlib.h:143: error: 'size_t' has not been declared



...and a whole bunch of 'size_t' has not been declared errors. :(

Thanks.
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Re: mtXControl - a Rainbowduino Editor By Tobi

by rngtng » Wed Nov 11, 2009 6:47 am

Hey Bob thanks for you feedback here quick answers:

boerner wrote:1. I tried to follow the directions to change the speed of the animation between frames, but nothing seemed to have any effect. What mode should the application be in so that I may change the speed, and what are the relevant keystrokes? I tried ALT + -, which I took to mean the minus sign, then I thought better of it and tried ALT + a number. Nothing seemed to have any effect. Am I just missing something obvious?


ALT and + key or ALT and - key change the speed on the arduino. Maybe hold the keys longer to take effect. Maybe I should add some visual feedback on processing side as well.

boerner wrote:2. As seen in the comments on your blog post, I too fell victim to the fact that I was not able to use the precompiled binary of the app. I downloaded the source and ran it through the Processing environment and was then able to communicate with the Rainbowduino. If there is anyway I can help debug this, let me know.


I still had not any time to debug this. Although non working precompiles seems to be only a problem for snow leopard macs? Would be great if anyone can report success stories on other system, by now I don't hav any other to test with.

boerner wrote:Also, did I again miss something simple in terms of downloading all the relevant source? I had to manually add each file to my sketch to make everything work. I know there should have been an easier way. Do I just not know how to download properly from the git repository?


well I do have all file in structure like the repository is. The top mtXcontrol folder is within my sktechfolder directory, set up in processing preferences. I open mtXcontrol.pde with processing, and firmware.pde with arduino IDE. works allright.

boerner wrote:3. I was a little confused as to the proper procedure as to getting the Arduino ready to program the Rainbowduino. To clarify the steps:


wow right, looks all okay for my. After step i) I would only add one more step: switch to 'Arduino: Slave' mode (alt + ENTER) or second button form top) which allows you to display your drawing in processing in realdtime on rainbowduino to test it.
If it's ok I'll add those steps to the documentation, with mention your name, of course.

A proper setup screencast is indeed a good idea. I'll see if I have time. If you or sthoneelse is interested, feel free to go for it, of course! ;-)

Thank you again.. Cheers Tobi
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Re: mtXControl - a Rainbowduino Editor By Tobi

by rngtng » Wed Nov 11, 2009 6:50 am

cksa361 wrote:Can't get it to compile :( ...and a whole bunch of 'size_t' has not been declared errors. :


Hm strange, I never saw this error before. Does other sketches compile well? try some 'bigger' examples usering libraries as well, maybe your library path isn't correctly set up?
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Re: mtXControl - a Rainbowduino Editor By Tobi

by boerner » Wed Nov 11, 2009 6:55 am

Hi Tobi,

Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. Please feel free to use my text on your site. Hopefully someone will find it useful.

I may try to do a proper screencast this weekend.

Thanks again for the app and the guides.

P.S. You going to show off all your Rainbowduinos that you won any time soon?
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Re: mtXControl - a Rainbowduino Editor By Tobi

by rngtng » Thu Nov 12, 2009 6:34 pm

boerner wrote:I may try to do a proper screencast this weekend.

cool, thanks, i just updated the documentation...

boerner wrote:You going to show off all your Rainbowduinos that you won any time soon?

hehe, sure ;-) - but they havn't arrived yet - they are still one the way...
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Re: mtXControl - a Rainbowduino Editor By Tobi

by Miles » Sat Nov 14, 2009 5:52 am

From what I gather, download the "firmware" zip.. Drop raindbowduino into the libraries folder...

Create a directory in your Arduino sketches directory (windows it's documents\arduino) Something like RainbowduinoMXControl. Rename firmware.pde to RainbowduinoMXControl.pde... Then fire up Arduino 17... Sketches > RainbowduinoMXControl .. Upload that


He's hardcoded the serial port (?!) so you need to download the mxcontrol software to your desktop. Throw all the files in a directory called "mtXcontrol". Download and unzip processing somewhere and upload up mtXcontrol.pde within processing.

Click on the tab named Arduino and look for the lines

Arduino(PApplet app) {
try {
port = new Serial(app, Serial.list()[0], BAUD_RATE);
}
catch(Exception e) {
port = null;
}
standalone = true;
}


Change serial.list()[0] to what ever com port your using... on my machine it was "COM7" (in quotes). On 'nix it may be something like /dev/usb0
Many Thanks,
Miles
---------------
Software Engineering meets Physical Computing. Fantastic, I wish we had this good 20 years ago.
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Re: mtXControl - a Rainbowduino Editor By Tobi

by Miles » Sat Nov 14, 2009 8:10 am

At the author of this project.


is there any chance you could write a simple Arduino to Raindbowduino demo on how your "protocol" works. I'm trying to decipher your code but there's no comments and I'm not sure how your client and server code mesh up.

Cheers, I'd appreciate it :)
Many Thanks,
Miles
---------------
Software Engineering meets Physical Computing. Fantastic, I wish we had this good 20 years ago.
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Re: mtXControl - a Rainbowduino Editor By Tobi

by rngtng » Tue Nov 24, 2009 9:04 am

Hey Miles

I've just updated the SOURCE (not the binaries yet) to have an autodetection for the Rainbowduino port (only tested on Mac OS X yet) and Bitmap save and loading support. I cleaned up the code a bit and prepared quite a lot for more color support in futur. So check it out and stay tuned!

A screen cast is comming as well, hoepfully soon..

Cheers Tobi
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Re: mtXControl - a Rainbowduino Editor By Tobi

by rngtng » Sat Jan 02, 2010 12:35 am

Happy new Year to all of you!
Good news right from the beginning: I've just pushed a new version of mtXcontrol!

On big thing is support for Novation Launchpad, but maybe way more interesting bit for you is, I've move the complete rainbwoduino communication into a separate library which can include into your Processing programs easily. Check:
http://rngtng.github.com/rainbowduino
It now follows a proper API (likely to change) with extended functionality, including handshake and ok/error response Codes. Now, you updating the Buffer, loading/saving from EEPROM, setting the brightness or pinging the device works like charm!

As of that mtXcontrol is now way more stable, autodetects your Rainbowduino, im/exports BMP files, improved color chooser and many more. Download the latets version here:

http://github.com/rngtng/mtXcontrol/downloads

Pls. updated your Rainbowduion firmware (included with the binaries) as well!
Looking forward to your feedback and suggestion, enjoy 2010!

Cheers Tobi
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