Friday, December 20, 2013

The Yún is an Arduino Powerhouse

When I think Arduino, I usually think small AVR base micro developing board.  When I saw the specs for the Yún, I thought holly crap, this is a PC with an Arduino soldered to it.  The Yùn is a hybrid system consisting of a large, powerful 400mhz CPU running Linux, and a Arduino Leonardo (running your sketches).  You basically get the best of both worlds.  

The Linux portion of the system is based on a  MIPS Atheros AR 9331 running at 400MHz.  This CPU is connected to 64Mb of DDR2 RAM and 16Mb of onboard flash.  Also connected is an wired Ethernet port (100Mb), Wifi (802.11b/g/n), USB host port and micro SD card slot.  The Linux CPU runs a version of Linux called OpenWRT.  The Arduino code communicates with the Linux CPU with a "Bridge API".  You can even write your own shell and python scripts. 

The Arduino side of things has its own micro USB port to upload the sketches.  The micro is a ATMega32u4 (basically a Leonardo, but some of the IO is used for the Bridge API).  If you are used to high level programming, you can roll your own Linux distro and I bet you can even run your own apps.

The Bridge API allows you to access:

  • The command line console.
  • The file system (reads and writes to the SD card or connected USB drive).
  • Allows you to do HTTP requests.
  • Allows you to run a server.
  • You can spawn processes.
  • Much More!

This would be a cool option to use for home automation or maybe even some sort of web based monitoring tool.

Check out the Arduino web page:

This board is usually around $72-$80 and is sold at multiple sites.
SeeedStudio for example:Ún-p-1616.html?cPath=6_7

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