GPS AdventureBox

Give the gift of adventure

Fun with LCDs

16x2 LCD BlueAfter looking into my LCD text scrolling options, I decided to write my own library to handle it. It seems that most existing libraries scroll all lines or none and have a difficult time with strings of text longer than 40 characters (this has to do with the driver circuit on the LCD).

Though I have specific characteristics in mind for this particular project, I still wanted to make the library generic so it can be used by others with options.

Once this project is launched, I plan on releasing the library freely on this site.

It’s Alive!

I have a working breadboard prototype! Breadboard

My priority with this project is simplicity. The more complicated a project, the more things can go wrong.

I have written the Arduino source code and have all of the required electrical components working as needed. I still need to develop the route planner site and look into my options for scrolling text on the LCD.

Beginning

It was three years ago I first started the GPS AdventureBox project with a breadboard prototype in my garage. I wanted to find a unique way for people to give a gift with a twist. The idea was simple…

arduino_mega_2560

Put a gift inside a locked box and force the recipient to solve an on-screen hint/clue/puzzle to determine the special geographical location that, once the box is taken there, unlocks the next clue. Once all of the designated locations have been visited, the box unlocks. 

Though I was able to make a working prototype, I was not happy with the complexity in creating the route (list of designated locations and clues).

Fast forward to now…

I have re-opened this project armed with newer technology and better tools. I hope to have a working prototype in the next few weeks and a fully functional route planning system online.

My overall goals are simple.

  • Make it simple
  • Make it user friendly
  • Make it affordable
  • Make it fun