It Seems that Every Time I Fix Something, Something Else is Still Broken

It’s been an interesting lab today. I got a working microphone from a classmate, and hooked that up with one of the led strips that my professor told me was fixed, only to have a lot of trouble getting the led strip to work. It turns out the jumper cables I was using to connect the led strip to the Arduino were pretty unreliable, so I soldered wires onto the strip that would more easily plug into the Arduino, and tried to move forward from there. When I plugged everything into the board to do a finall test before building the suspenders I had intended to build last week, neither my laptop nor the mac I’d been using in the lab would upload the code. They both even rejected the simplest Blink sample code for a few minutes, but after waiting a bit, I was able to upload code eventually, though both computers will just spontaneously quit. I sat working with one of my TAs, Nikki, trying to figure this out, but we got nowhere. I’m still not able to get the leds to light up from my sample code. I think I will begin building the suspenders themselves and schedule a meeting with my professor to sort out the code. 

Code is All About the Details

Went to TA hours with Nikki and we discovered that the reason the Serial monitor on Arduino wasn’t working was that we forgot to write Serial.begin(); into the setup. This means we never launched the serial monitor. I then went through the serial monitor, and printed out the sound sensed. Initially, the amount of sound sensed from the microphone varied slightly, and now it is constant, and doesn’t change no matter how loudly I scream at the microphone. I fear my microphone may have died. I’ve put in another hour and half, with little tangible progress…

Frustrations

I spent at least 2 hours today working with my code when I finally got my hands on a led strip I borrowed from a friend. Initially, I thought my code worked, but it doesn’t seem to have much response to any input from the microphone. When I tried to switch my code and microphone over to the Arduino Uno so I could run the serial monitor, I ran into serious problems. I wanted to use the serial monitor to analyze the input received from the microphone, but whenever I try to run it, nothing happens. I’m not sure if this is a problem with my code or my computer settings. My professor and I suspect it has do do with my computer settings, but I don’t know, and there’s not much I can do to progress from here until I figure it out, especially since I still don’t have a working led strip. I may have to use the small individual flora neopixels that I bought for my second project, and order more later. I think if I can’t make much progress with the code, I will at least move forward with building, since I finally got my hands on a pair of suspenders.