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Electronics All-in-One For Dummies, UK Edition by Doug Lowe, Dickon Ross

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Chapter 4

Interfacing to Your Computer’s Parallel Port

In This Chapter

arrow Getting to know the parallel port

arrow Programming the parallel port

arrow Displaying numbers

arrow Increasing the current

Electronics by itself can do some pretty amazing things, but when you combine it with the power of your computer you can start to dream big: complicated toys such as remote-controlled automatons, useful equipment such as watering routines for the garden and special lighting schemes for your living room.

Just imagine: you can entertain the children by giving them a fright on Halloween; or rig up some simple home automation to let potential burglars believe that someone’s at home when you’re out; or create something more often found in a Bond villain’s lair. Almost anything is possible – the only limit is your imagination (though devising over-complicated ways of disposing of spies is way beyond the scope of this book!)

Building such systems may take you some time, depending on how complex you want them to be, but it needn’t cost you loads of money. To start with all you need is an old computer – the sort you ...

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