A New Year...New Projects

So it's been quite a while since I have posted anything here. I've been quite busy with "life" things, and also a side project or two. For Christmas, I got new lights for my aquarium. So that has spun up a new project of restocking the aquarium and breathing life back into my love of saltwater tanks.

For a really long time, I have wanted to get an aquarium controller. These are things that can control whatever aspect of the aquarium you need. Things like lighting and temperature are simple ones, but you can get even more complicated with wave generators, pH metering, dosing, top off, etc. In my system administrator mind, anything that can do the work for me is that much better.

Basic controllers cost around $100 and go up to many hundreds of dollars, and then that doesn't include the additional probes or devices you need to buy. So it can get really expensive really quickly. So I thought "hey! I can program stuff, I just need some way to interact with the hardware". And that brings me to my new project.

The Beaglebone

beaglebone

Why did I choose this over arduino, or rasberry pi, or any of the other similar controllers on the market? Price was a factor, I got this for $40 at my friendly neighborhood Microcenter. It is also built with the open source mentality at heart. The biggest factor is that, out of the box, this just runs linux. Adafruit provides some python libraries that make interacting with the pins through Python pretty easy too. So I am looking forward to getting going with this. So far I have only booted the thing. I still need to acquire some basic breadboard tools and random electronics to start experimenting with it. Definitely looking forward to posting more stuff as I discover it.


Written by kellya in aquarium on 2015-01-08. Tags: beaglebone, programming, aquarium,

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