“Human beings live not on bread alone…” Matthew 4,4
Jesus Christ overcame a temptation and with majesty I affirm “Human beings live not on bread alone”. Today in the world of electronics we find in development a dangerous trend that shows: all electronic, engineer or maker can not live without Arduino.
Arduino has become the epicenter of fashion within the maker movement, but has gone further, today it is possible to notice its ramification in all sectors, and for example we have many Startup that market or launch a product to the market whose hardware is centered on some Arduino model. My capacity for amazement has grown even more when I see that many institutions or innovation projects do not dare to use hardware other than Arduino. For this point it would seem that he hated the platform, but it is not like that, I recognize his great contributions and I value his low cost to realize electronic prototypes quickly.
Source: Luminary Labs
Designing electrical hardware is a task or trade that will get us many gray hairs, yes or yes. It is not easy to design the electrical hardware that will give life to an electronic prototype, we do not know if our initial investment will pay off as the months go by. This problem was solved by Arduino and I added a fantastic added value: a simple interface to program or create the firmware. With this resolved they managed to get half the world to surrender at their feet, but with consequences that most do not see or understand.
What are these consequences?
- Lost of warm in the teaching of electronics in schools, institutes or even universities that base part of their assignments in the electronic developments in Arduino and all its suite of shield and sensors. Example: teach the use of DC motors. Arduino + shield motors + code lines = problem solved (maybe in a few hours). This type of events stagnates knowledge and today we find many people who do not even know how to design a bridge H.
- Not everything in life is so easy to implement. Part of the philosophy of the platform is that anyone is able to implement their circuits easily and quickly. The community embraces this with open arms, but they are sending their brain wrong ideas, believe that all electrical hardware design should be built in a matter of hours. This is where the BIG problem comes in: thousands of customers arrive and tell you “I want this development and if possible in less than a week” if you say that you can not be seen as a little capable professional.
- Absolute and total forgetting of all the evaluation boards of manufacturers such as: Texas Instrument, Analog Devices and ST Microelectronics, etc. Most electronics have become like that person who falls madly in love with someone and without that person by his side is not possible to live. It seems ironic, but it is not. I have seen the great difficulty for many daring to create hardware with other chip than the popular ATMEGA328.
I could write more consequences, but these 3 synthesize the great edge of the problem that I have tried to graph and of which I would like to have opinions based on the correct reasoning and not on the blind vision of the brand lover.
The most worrying case is observable in the Startup that base the hardware of their products on Arduino, even this is happening a barbarism: They sell you a product based on Arduino and that uses artificial intelligence, this in my opinion is the great scam of the century. But marketing is like politics: dirty and a liar. It takes a great hardware to equip an artificial intelligence device, a platform reduced in RAM can not allow an algorithm is constantly learning through interaction with the user. Let us be cautious and before we feel surprised by a supposed innovative device let’s devote ourselves to dissecting the electrical hardware that makes up the body of that team (I do not speak of the software because it is not my specialty).
If you learn with Arduino, dare to go further, explore other chip to design your electronic circuits. There is a whole range of opportunities in the datasheet and evaluation boards of large companies, let’s take advantage of the opening of these hardware structures and dedicate ourselves to innovate in earnest.
Note: my points of appreciation are not absolute truths. They are part of my years in the area.
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