We often think that less is more, but what can you do with a device that has only a single button? [Danko Bertović] wondered the same thing and he built an Arduino with a single button and a display. After doing some obvious things (like a counter or stopwatch) he decided to make a calculator for his latest Volos Projects video.
You can find the source code online and he used a library from GitHub to handle the reaction to single presses, double presses, and long presses. Is it ideal? Probably not. But if you only have a limited amount of space or pins, it can make the difference between a feasible project and one you can’t finish.
His original projects also included a Flappy Bird clone. The OLED display is only 64×48 so that’s not a lot of room. The packaging of the tiny Arduino, the battery, and the display in a good looking case, was pretty impressive. So the device might be usable for something.
Of course, the library will work with any program and there’s no reason you can’t have more than one button and simply multiply their functions with the same strategy. There’s a sample on GitHub that shows how you can create two OneButton objects connected to different hardware devices.
By the way, the little box may have only one button, but it also has a power switch. Turns out, you can use it as an input in certain circumstances. If the OLED display strikes you as too luxurious, try the DUO BINARY.