1-The Traffic Light Controller
This super simple project is a great introduction to Arduino programming. This traffic light controller uses a red, yellow, and green LED to re-create a traffic light on your breadboard, and give you the opportunity to hack the code in order to adjust the output, timing or even the sequence itself. It’s a wonderfully easy way to get your hands wet with simple coding, and learn to modify it to fit your goals for a particular project.
2-Arduino-Powered Temperature Controller
On the Pacific Coast of Mexico, where I live, the average year-’round temperature hovers at a pleasant 70-degrees, making central air or heat a relatively rare occurrence. I’m not complaining, and generally the temperature doesn’t warrant any sort of need for control, but certain instances (growing plants indoors, cooling items in a mini-fridge to a set temperature, controlling surface temperature of a reptile cage, etc.) could require the need for a more constant temperature. With an Arduino, and a few parts, you’ll be well on your way to creating your own instead temperature control device instead of forking over two or three times as much (or more) on a pre-built model.
3-Re-Create the Arcade Classic “Pong”
For retro game lovers, former Atari 2600 owners, or just someone looking for a cool project that utilizes exactly none of the resolution of your new 4k tv, you can re-create the classic Atarti game Pong using just a few easy-to-find parts, and an Arduino. This project uses a lot of the parts found in most Arduino starter kits, and uses them to make two controllers as well as a fully-functioning Pong game that you’ll output to your television screen through a standard composite cable.
4-Pulsating LED Cube
This little 4 x 4 x 4 cube uses super bright LEDs as well as some mutliplexing to control the lighting from a single Arduino Uno board. If you haven’t quite mastered soldering, this is good practice, and it’ll prove especially useful as you foray into building projects that are a little more permanent than the starter projects you’ve most likely been building to this point. In addition, you can program the cube to do some really cool stuff once you’re finished.
5-Companion Cube Mood Lamp
This Portal-themed mood lamp uses a square glass jar to create a color-shifting display that looks incredible in any dark room. The project itself is ideal for an Arduino beginner and most of the parts are included in your Arduino starter kit. Creating the lamp is a great starting point for beginners as the wiring, build and the code are relatively simple and a great way to slowly build into more advanced projects by learning some essential beginner’s electronics skills that you can call on later.