Physical Computing Paperback – 28 May 2004
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Introduction PART I - The Basics Chapter 1: Electricity Chapter 2: Shopping Chapter 3: Building Circuits Chapter 4: The Microcontroller Chapter 5: Programming Chapter 6: The Big Four Schematics, Programs, and Transducers Chapter 7: Communicating between Computers PART II - Advanced Methods Chapter 8: Physical Interaction Design, or Techniques for Polite Conversation Chapter 9: Sensing Movement Chapter 10: Making Movement Chapter 11: Touch Me Chapter 12: More Communication between Devices Chapter 13: Controlling Sound and Light Chapter 14: Managing Multiple Inputs and Outputs Appendix A: Choosing a Microcontroller Appendix B: Recommended Suppliers Appendix C: Schematic Glossary
About the Author
Tom Igoe is a professor of physical computing at the Interactive Telecommunications Program in the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University. He teaches courses in physical computing and networking, exploring ways to integrate the Internet more fully in everyday activity. Coming from a background in theater, his work centers on physical interaction related to live performance and public space. His consulting work and collaborations include work with orchestras, architects, dancers, musicians, and social activists. He hopes someday to work with monkeys, as well. Dan O'Sullivan is a professor at the Interactive Telecommunications Program at New York University. His work centers around the connection between virtual and physical spaces. On the virtual side he was the creator of QuicktimeVR as a member of the original Quicktime team at Apple Computer. He went on to developed such interactive enviroments as "Dan's Apartment," "YORB" and "Space of Faces." His physical installations range from musical instruments to carnival games to psychology experiements. Some of his work has found its way into art exhibitions in the United States and Europe. Dan lives in New York City with his wife and daughter.
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Part 1: The Basics
Chapter 1. Electricity
Transduction: Electrical Basics; Electricity versus Electronics How Electricity Flows;
Chapter 2. Shopping
Solderless Breadboard; Microcontrollers; Common Components; Wires; Power Supply; Power Connector; Voltage Regulator; RC Servomotor; Serial Connector; Serial Cable; Clock Crystals; Headers; Project Box; Cable Ties; USB-to-Serial Adaptor; Tools ;Shopping List Bringing It All Back Home;
Chapter 3. Building Circuits
Schematics; Connection Symbols; Power Symbols; Finding Schematics; Breadboards; Where Does the Microcontroller Fit In?; Translating Schematics into Circuits; Using a Multimeter; Soldering; Powering the Breadboard; Be Neat;
Chapter 4. The Microcontroller
"Hello World!" Is the Hard Part; Where Does the Microcontroller Fit In?; Routing Inputs to Outputs; Identifying the Pins of the Microcontroller; Lower-Level Microcontrollers: External Clock; Your First Microcontroller-Based Circuit; Getting Your Program to the Chip; Programming Stamp-Like Modules; Programming Lower-Level Chips ;Debugging;
Chapter 5. Programming
The Good News; Flow Control: How a Computer "Reads" a Program; Loops; If Statements; Variables; Built-In Routines: Subroutines and Functions; Homemade Routines; Advanced Loops: While-Wend and For-Next; Pseudocode; Comments; Debugging; Good Debugging Habits; The Bad News;
Chapter 6. The "Big Four" Schematics, Programs, and Transducers
Digital Input; Digital Output; Analog Output; From Analog in to Analog Out: Scaling Functions; Conclusion;
Chapter 7. Communicating between Computers
Physical Agreement; Timing Agreement; Electrical Agreement; Package Size; Numbers or Letters: Using ASCII; Software for the Microcontroller; Serial Output from a Microcontroller; Testing with an LED; Testing with Terminal Software; Serial Input to a Microcontroller; Serial Freeze and Blocking Functions; Your Private Protocol; Sending Bigger Numbers; Serial Communication on a Multimedia Computer; Conclusion;
In part two, the book demonstrates more advanced methods for accomplishing specific tasks. Most of these methods in part two are just special cases of the basic ideas in part one, and the book makes frequent reference to the circuits and code discussed in part one. There's really nothing here in the realm of specific projects. The book mainly talks about all of the various aspects of hardware and programming that are needed to interface a computer to the physical world. There is quite a bit of code and building-block circuitry shown for simple tasks that you can reuse in any larger project you decide to build.
Chapter 8. Physical Interaction Design, or Techniques for Polite Conversation
The Conversation: Listening, Speaking, and Thinking; Complex Responses; Techniques for Effective Interaction; Conclusion;
Chapter 9. Sensing Movement
Assessing the Problem; How Ranging Sensors Work; Detecting Presence; Determining Position ;Determining Rotation; Speed of Rotation; Video Tracking; Identity;Conclusion;
Chapter 10. Making Movement
Types of Motion, Types of Motors; Characteristics of Motors; Special Electrical Needs of Motors; Controlling Motors; Controlling Stepper Motors; Controlling Solenoids; Basic Mechanics: Converting Motor Motion to Usable Motion; Construction; Conclusion;
Chapter 11. Touch Me
Force-Sensitive Resistors; Flex Sensors; Pressure Sensors; Sensing Touch Using Capacitance Sensors; Off-the-Shelf Touch Interfaces; Sensing Vibrations Using Piezoelectric Sensors; Creating Vibrations; Taking Your Temperature; Cooling Things Off and Heating Them Up; Getting Under Your Skin; Force Feedback; Conclusion;
Chapter 12. More Communication between Devices
Synchronous and Asynchronous Communication; Asynchronous Serial Protocols; Learning a Protocol; RS-232 Boxes; Global Positioning System Data; MIDI; Connecting to the Internet; Connecting over Telephone Lines Using Modems; Special-Function ICs and Modules; Synchronous Serial Protocols; Wireless Serial Communication; Infrared Serial Communication; RF Serial Communication; Conclusion;
Chapter 13. Controlling Sound and Light
Sound; Light; Screen Graphics; Linear Media on a Multimedia Computer; Linear Media on a Microcontroller; Single-Board Computers; Conclusion;
Chapter 14. Managing Multiple Inputs and Outputs
Setting Groups of Pins in Parallel; Bitwise Operations; Running Out of Pins; Resistor Ladders as Analog Input; Row-Column Scanning; Shift Registers; Multiplexers; Latches; Conclusion;
I would say this is a good first book for anyone who is thinking about getting started with adding physical interfaces to their computer.
Something to consider is the fact that the programming samples are all in the Basic language. If you want to learn to program microcontrollers in assembly then this book does not cover that.
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