Klout Klok tracks your popularity, time

[Fabien Royer] has been playing around with Netduinos and he just came up with a really awesome project that will display the time and social media popularity. It’s a very nice build, and we’d guess that his social media influence is going to go up very shortly.

Klout is a service that connects to your Facebook or Twitter profile and tells you how much influence you have on a scale of 1 to 100 (possibly 10 to 100. see this). To build the Klout Klock [Fabian] used a Netduino Plus, a good choice because of the integrated ethernet port. The Netduino connects to the Klout API to either satiate vanity or admit prestige. The display is an adafruit TFT screen.

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Interfacing an Arduino with a TFT LCD

tft_lcd

Seven-segment displays and monochrome LCDs are fine for most projects, but some things simply look better in color. [John] over at the Little Bird Electronics blog recently wrote up a tutorial demonstrating the use of a TFT LCD panel with an Arduino. The specific panel he chose was a 4D Systems 1.44” TFT LCD that happened to feature a dedicated graphics processor, which should allow for some fantastic visuals when used to its fullest potential.

The LCD takes its commands over a serial interface, making it a simple five-wire display solution for your projects. The display can be programmed manually by sending hex commands over the serial interface, but there are also some user-developed libraries available that will allow you to use the majority of the most popular functions without the learning curve. One thing to note is that the LCD must be flashed with a particular flavor of firmware before it can communicate over the serial interface, a process for which [John] provides a walk through.

The LCD panel can be used with any Arduino-compatible board, so it can be useful in a whole host of projects.

Stick around to see a simple demo of the board in use.

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SmartLCD makes video for microcontrollers easy

[Rossum] developed a host board that makes it easy to drive a TFT screen using an inexpensive microcontroller. He’s looked around at a bunch of LCD’s that are easy to get your hands on and decided that the iPod Nano 2G screens are the right balance of performance (176×132 TFT) and low cost ($1-$5). They’re not particularly difficult to talk to, but with 22 pins they’re a bit hardware hungry.

He takes us through the signal sniffing he used to figure out the communications process. From there he harness the power of an ARM Cortex M0 processor, which he’s worked with in the past, to drive the screen. His implementation results in a driver board called the SmartLCD that takes care of the screen’s parallel protocol, power, and backlight. From there it’s just four connections and you can use a small microcontroller like the Arduino seen above with ease. See what it can do after the break.

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