Friday, May 17, 2013

Modkit @ Maker Faire (featuring Modkit for VEX, TI Launchpad, and Wiring++)

It's Maker Faire time again! This is the first year since we started working on Modkit that we do not have a booth at the Bay Area Maker Faire. But that's not because Modkit won't have a presence at the event that runs all day tomorrow and Sunday at the San Mateo Fairgrounds in San Mateo California. We actually have our hands in three different booths:  VEX Robotics, Texas Instruments, and the Wiring Project! Here's what we're up to booth-by-booth:

  • At the VEX Robotics booth, we'll be demoing Modkit for VEX, our new programming environment for the amazing new VEX IQ robotics system.  Stop by the VEX Robotitcs booth to see how Modkit and VEX are changing the STEM education equation together!




  • Next, the Texas Instruments booth will feature Modkit and its new support for the Launchpad family of boards.   Support for the MSP430 Launchpad has been under testing for the last few months and we're finalizing some initial support for the Tiva-C launchpad (formally Stellaris.) Stop by the TI booth to try out Modkit support for your new favorite microcontroller platform! If you're itching to try this at home, we're planning to add these boards to our publicly available Modkit Micro preview this weekend. Stay tuned via our Google+ page for updates on when this goes public!

  • And last but certainly not least, we'll be at the Wiring Project booth  showing off Wiring++, a project we've been collaborating on for some time.  Wiring ++ brings important computing concepts including multi-threading and event-driven-programming to the world of Microcontrollers.  If you don't know the Wiring Project, it is the basis for everything Arduino and is celebrating its 10th birthday this summer.  Wiring++ is an important next step for what has proved to be an important project over the last 10 years.  Come meet Wiring's creator, Hernando Barragán and try out the amazing new Wiring++ APIs!





Friday, February 1, 2013

New Release

We're excited to release a new version of Modkit Micro and Modkit Link for all platforms (Web, Linux, Mac, Windows).  This release is nicknamed RC5 (for Release Candidate 5.) 

For Alpha Club members you can get the download links at http://modk.it/alpha and the public preview of Modkit Micro is at http://modk.it/micro/editor/

For the public preview, we're hosting Modkit Link downloads here until we update our homepage: Modkit Link for OSX 10.5+ | Modkit Link for Windows XP+ | Modkit Link for Linux

For the most part, you can follow the tutorial we posted back in December: http://blog.modk.it/2012/12/happy-holidays-modkit-micro-open-for-all.html  But we do want to highlight an important improvement to the board auto-detection.  In the previous tutorial we assumed you were using an Arduino Mega 2560 or Arduino Uno which should be autodetected right out of the box (assuming you preinstalled the drivers).  But what if you're using a different board?  In this example let's assume you're using a Lilypad sewable electronics kit and that you installed the FTDI driver from http://modk.it/download.


The first time you connect the board, it won't auto-detect so you'll need to "choose board from list." 


You can then pick your particular board from the growing list of supported boards.

You could then skip into the editor just to play around, but we'll choose "Setup Board Now." 

You'll be asked to unplug the board (including the FTDI cable since we're using a Lilypad.)

You'll then plug your board back in.  This helps Modkit determine which board you're configuring. 

You'll need to wait a bit for your board to be detected and stored on your computer. 

You may need to repeat these steps but if all goes well, you can launch into the Modkit Micro editor. 

The next time you open the editor, Modkit should auto-detect your board.  For further instructions please see our previous post: http://blog.modk.it/2012/12/happy-holidays-modkit-micro-open-for-all.html and as always, please leave us any feedback in the comments below.  If nothing else, just leave us a quick note with the board you're testing and how it all worked.