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3. Arduino Interlude > The Arduino Ecosystem

The Arduino Ecosystem

The Arduino is awesome, no doubt about it. But what really makes the system great is its ecosystem. You don’t just buy the board and have to fend for yourself after that. No, you have multiple varieties of Arduino, great add-on boards called shields, and tons of code other people hacked together. By promoting a culture of sharing and support, the Arduino has become the default prototyping and tinkering system for thousands of students, hobbyists, and engineers. The following is just a broad overview of all the options available for you—there is a lot more!

Uno Alternatives

As we’ve seen from the “ATmega328” sidebar, the heart of the Arduino is its microcontroller chip. Because of that, many different configurations of Arduino can be and have been created. Need a smaller Arduino? Or a bigger one? Chances are it’s out there already.


  

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