LINK2FS_Arduino_Keys.

 

        For the  ARDUINO  MEGA, DUEMILANOVE or NANO Cards. 

                   For  FSX,  FS2004  and  just  about  anything  else?   

 

                                                            New version ,,, See bottom of this page  (Nov 24)

The Arduino Cards ,,,,

Looking around my site you would have noticed I have been using Arduino for some time,, None of what I had done was documented or shared.

After a while I felt quite guilty about this and  put up the “starter” output card in another page. ,,,  Well things have snowballed from there and  I was finally talked into doing an input card for switches etc.

I pondered this for a while and thought, why not, but do one as an input card for just about any program (Not only FS) so people could use their Arduino card as an input for their favorite game or what ever. ,,  Hence here is the BETA version.  

 

Overview.

"Link2FS Adruino_keys" basically sends keystrokes (or groups of keystrokes) to your chosen program.

It sends them whether your chosen program is in focus or not.

At this stage it is a "beta" and still in development. A lot of improvements are still to come but I have released this beta to

give people something to play with and use in the meantime.

 

The interface ,,,

Rather simple and self explanatory ,,

 

                              In normal run mode                                                                               In programming mode

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Requirements,,,

An Arduino card that has a serial USB port. ( Mega, Uno,  Duemilanove or a Nano or ???.)

Some switchs connected to the above card. (Push button, toggle or rotary) ,, (Rotary encoders will come later)

The Arduino software (Free) for inputting the PDE ....  NOTE ... This needs version 0019 or above.

Updated 22-8-12 to include the newer Arduino IDE versions 1 +

You don’t need a power supply,, only the USB cable.

 

The program itself,,,

It has 4 different profile buttons so once they are programmed for your favorite games its just 1 click and its all go.

It saves the profiles to your disk drive.

It has the usual “shift” keys, Shift, Control and Alt. (Hold one down and press another)

You can send multiple letters at once if you like. (You could even send “Hello Jim” to notepad if you get the urge)

 

As it stands at the moment, the Mega card will give you 66 switch inputs , the Uno card, 17 switch inputs.

These can (with my software) send keystrokes to just about any program you like.

Even if the program is not “in focus” or behind another program on your screen.

 

              BUT

I haven’t tested it on any exotic games (I haven’t got any ! )  ,, so I don’t know what it will work on.

It works great on FSX, FS2004, notepad and I’ve tested it thru to Microsoft Office. 

Basically it should work on any program that expects keyboard entry.

I’m a hobby programmer and I’m not trying to sell anything to anyone.

Use at your own risk.

 

The files ,,,,

 

Note … There is a later version at the bottom of this page.

You can download my BETA file here ….. http://www.jimspage.co.nz/link2fs_arduino_keys_beta.zip   

The PDE files for all the cards are included.

Note: While in programming mode this program reads your keyboard input directly (obviously !) but so does some malware (Keyboard loggers).

If you get warnings about this from your UAC or your security program then you will have to over-ride them.

 

Setting it up ,,

It couldn’t be easier,,, 

There is no need for an external power supply.

Load the PDE file (sketch) into the Arduino.(With Arduino’s free software) (See my other page “How to load a PDE file”)

Connect some switches to the Arduino.

Load my program.

Read the instructions !!!!!

Input what program you want it to send to.

Input the keys you want sent for each switch state changes. (‘On close’ or ‘On open’)

Then save that profile for easy loading next time you use that game.

 

 

 

The wiring for the Mega card ,,,, 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The above diagram is included in the download.

 

 

 

The wiring for the Duemilanove or Uno cards ,,,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The above diagram is included in the download.

 

 

 

Hint No.1  ,,,,

I don’t use plugs for the inputs for these boards. What I do is similar to what is on one of my other pages but I just use the wire off some junk small resistors.

Sooo,,,  Find some resistors you have heaps of (or some stiff wire the right size), get some “Heat-shrink” and make your own.

Doing it this way is far more cost effective and versatile.

Putting the card into a high sided box helps this physically. (See my other Arduino page)

Remember,, you don’t have to keep track of what wire goes where,, my program will tell you what switch was switched and to what state.

The only wire you need to know is the GND wire so if it looks the same as the rest ,,, run a felt marker pen along it.

Be careful of old resistors that were ‘taped’ together in a roll ,,, don’t use the first 5mm of these as there is probably old glue still on the wire. (Bad connection in the socket)

 

A picture of the above method, showing the 3 steps and one of my ‘testing’ board ,,,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


UPDATE  Nov 24  2012    New Version.

 

I’ve had a re-look at this and put together a later one using a later language and added more options. (Auto start etc)

It is all in one file (it’s not an install) so it can be used anywhere and not upset the host computers settings.

i.e.  Put it on a pendrive so you can take your Arduino card and the pendrive and use it on a friends computer without upsetting anything.

 

This will work on just about ANY program !!!   (It doesn’t have to be a flight sim)

 

You can set it to connect automatically on start up

You can set it to minimize after connecting

It will find the available ports for you.

 

 

How it looks,,,,

 

Normal view                                                                                                            Programming view

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Using it is pretty much self explanatory but there are full documentation in the download along with demo PDE’s (Arduino programs)

If you are using the early version then your PDE’s will work with this one. (No need to reload the Arduino)

 

Download version 4 here,,,,

http://www.jimspage.co.nz/link2fs_keys_v4.zip

 

 

As usual ,,,

Use at your own risk.

What worked for me,, may not work for you.

If it don’t work for you, then go and try something else.

 

 

Dated   20 April 11

Updated 24 April 11

Updated 12 May 11 to Beta3

Updated 22 Aug 12 for Arduino IDE’s 1+

Update 24 Nov 2012 Added Link2fs_keys_v4

 

Flowchart: Alternate Process:  Back to the simulator main page.