Whilst a large number of people are massive fans of the Arduino platform, some newcomers (and even some old-hacks) to the platform are being taken in by some fairly large myths which surround the platform.
Arduino requires you to learn a new language
This myth is not helped due to the fact that on the platform’s very own homepage, users are informed that the Arduino microcontroller is programmed by using the “Arduino programming language,” this is in fact a slight misnomer. To the untrained eye, Arduino’s code looks somewhat unique, but digging down into the coding itself reveals the language to be C++, with some Arduino specific formatting. Although this can put some off, it shouldn’t be too difficult for someone versed in C++ to learn the quirks of the Arduino’s language.
There is a resistor on Pin 13
Unfortunately for many new users of Arduino, a lot of basic tutorials for the platform wrongly suggest that there is a resistor attached to Pin 13 on the circuit board. Although this was true on the first ever Arduino board produced, of which there were about 200 made, it has not been present on any board produced since.
Real products aren’t created using Arduino
Whilst most commercial products don’t come to market with Arduino parts on the inside, it is certainly not the case that they were not developed at some stage using the platform. This is due to the fact that Arduino was set up for prototyping. When developing an idea, you are likely to want to create a prototype at some stage, and using the Arduino platform to do so can be a cheap and straightforward way to do this, before seeking investment to develop the product and bring it to market.
This approach is exactly what the Albion Bakery did when trying to create a device that let their customers know when fresh scones and other baked goods came out of the oven. Named BakerTweet, the device sends a message via Twitter as soon as a batch comes out of the oven, informing customers immediately. Of course at the heart of the device is an Arduino micro controller. This has led to a number of businesses contacting the bakery in order to procure such a device.
There was a mistake in the header spacing
The design of the pinout of an Arduino board is such that there is a space between pins 7 and 8 that is not standard across the rest of the board. This space was previously put down to a ‘mistake’ on the Arduino website, but it is now suggested by the company that this slight change is to ensure that a user cannot accidentally install a shield backwards.
If you are looking to purchase Arduino boards or compatible components, arduino stockists like RS Components will be a great place to begin. You can find more details on practical uses of the kit on RS Components website.
These myths have caused pain to many uninformed newbies to the Arduino platform, hopefully you will not have the same problems!