It’s time to move any Arduino projects into the virtual realm, push on beyond the tinkering and start ‘making’ properly.
Blynk is a Platform I came across, it works with iOS and Android apps to control Arduino, Raspberry Pi and the like over the Internet. It’s a digital dashboard where you can build a graphic interface for your project by simply dragging and dropping widgets.
I have set up a bog standard Arduino test sketch, a simple LED light being triggered by a button. The idea is to move it online via Blynk so the button becomes virtual on the Blynk app and therefore the LED gets triggered now via the virtual button and not the physical. You set up a project on the app and get sent an authorisation token code via email that is pasted into the Arduino sketch, re-upload the sketch in Arduino and Bob’s your Mothers brother, it should work.
Of course getting the sketch to talk to the app isn’t as easy as it’s made out, and as is often the way with Arduino projects you need to get a new bit of kit and in this instance I need a ‘shield’ of some description to act as an interface between the mac and the app, the shield sits on top of the Arduino UNO board. After a bit of back and forth on their forums and reading some anguished posts from others being hit by similar problems (connection via USB seems to be problematic and it doesn’t help that theres a bug in the Blynk app for the recent iOS 9.02 update ) I decided to go with an Arduino Ethernet shield. I would prefer a WiFi shield but Arduino seem to have discontinued theirs! and the ethernet shield is half the price, it will do for now.
A world of visualised data and virtual control awaits.