IN THIS CHAPTER
The reason that Mindstorms and Arduino can work so well together is that both systems are based on standard electronics components and concepts. In this chapter, you will learn all about basic electronic theory in a practical, project-oriented way. We start with a quick introduction to the basic electronic components like resistors and capacitors. After that we’ll introduce a variety of interesting sensors you might want to use in your own Lego and Arduino projects.
Let’s learn a bit about some basic electricity concepts such as voltage and current. Electricity is the physical phenomenon of moving electric charges (electrons), but for most of the things we’ll do, it’s simply the flow of electrons through metal wires and circuit components. The three most important properties of the flow of electricity in a circuit are the voltage, the current, and resistance.
Sometimes called “electric potential,” this is a measurement of how much the electrons want to move from one location to another. The way it works is that the higher the voltage, the stronger the “pressure” for the electrons to move from one ...