So, I ordered some parts for the LCD board tonight. Here's my anticipated design:
- 4-Wire drive- most LCDs need at least 7 wires for control.
- Input- four small push buttons
- LED output- four small LEDs
- Backlight control- both for LED backlighting and EL backlighting
- Encoder input- knob to turn for input control, backlight dimming, or whatever.
The end goal is to provide a smart LCD that the user can write to and read from with minimal fuss- two bytes of command (say, address and contents) to place a character anywhere on the screen. No waiting for the display to update- the on-board micro will have a map of the screen contents and check for characters that need to be changed every 100 ms or so. LEDs can be turned on or off, maybe a few other fun things. We'll see how it plays out.
Other items I'm going to work on this week:Magic square wave generator
- an 8-pin IC that generates square waves up to a couple hundred kHz, with variable duty cycle, all set by grounding pins or connecting resistor dividers to them. Much easier than figuring out values for 555 timers. I need this for my laser-gun project.Encoder decoder
- translates the quadrature output from an encoder to pulse/direction or pulse/pulse. Actually, I already made this, for free-turning steering wheels to go on a buddy's MAME cabinet (Ironman Ivan Stewart's Super Off-road FTW!).Remote mini-joystick control panel for the Arduino
- not necessary for the laser-gun project, but it might make it more fun if a second user can move the target around. I bought some teeny little joysticks from Mouser- should be really cool!