Tag Archives: Lunar Clock

Cost-Reducing the Lunar Clock: IOT Really is Here

I have to confess that sometimes I need a push to make the right design choice.

It’s been a long time – way too long – since I worked on my Lunar Clock project. In the meantime, Sparkfun has introduced new, inexpensive microcontrollers aimed at Internet-of-Things applications. I knew one of those new microcontrollers would be perfect for the Lunar Clock, but I dragged my feet.

Then one day, a Github user pointed out that one of the boards I was using has been obsoleted.

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WiFi and Steppers and Slots! Oh, My!

Lunar Clock project is starting to feel real!

After having no luck making the ESP8266 work with an Arduino Mega, I switched back to the wonderful Sparkfun CC3000 WiFi Shield. It is playing nice with the Mega now – with an interposed Sparkfun TransmogriShield to convert the Mega SPI pins to the Uno pins that many Shields expect. Update: I replaced both these retired boards in a later post.

I happened to have an old, inexpensive unipolar stepper motor lying around, so I’ve hooked it up and am able to precisely turn it using the Arduino Stepper library. I should probably write a Post about that.  The upshot is that after reading the comments in the Stepper library source that said the pin order the library uses, it was pretty easy.

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Started Work on a Lunar Clock

Last night I’ve started in earnest on a Lunar Clock project: a gizmo to physically display the current phase of the moon.

I say “in earnest” because I’ve created a GitHub repo for it, and a repo for the main library it uses. I wrote a (since obsoleted) library to filter out ESP8266 WiFi Shield messages from the text returned in an HTTP Response.

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