This project started in summer. It was just an idea. I (Astu) though that it would be very cool. So, I, started learning about Arduino, ordered the smallest I could, along with some tools in order to fulfill this dream.
It was my second project with programmation, last year we did some robots in class but that was way easier than this, as I had a teacher who could help me. So I was there, without knowing C at all, with the Arduino IDE. I had a lot of problems in order to get it ready, I lost some weeks there.
After seeing different codes and examples, with a very ugly code, I was able to go to "program 1" and turn on a LED. I had rewritten the source code twice since them, as I have been improving it, as the months were passing and I was learning more about C. I also, meanwhile, tried some MSP430. Through this time, I and Firefly have been getting everything we could, like the bottle, we ordered the batteries, dissembled a laser which seems to be broken, bought some transistors and resistors, etc.
So last week, I was checking up Hackaday as usual, when I saw a entry about Doctor Who and the Sci-fi Contest. I have used up almost all of my free time to work in the project. I have spent many hours reading about ir codes in order to get that part of my code functional. After checking the mess of the "program selector", I redid it.
Right now, I'm still working on it. I want to use it to turn on/off the projector from our class, as we haven't got a controller, we have to turn it by hand and as it's in the ceiling, it isn't usually straight. So I got a controller from another class, and copied the codes like I did with the remote of my TV. But while the ir library told me that the TV was Sony, this remote is "Unknown", so I'm not sure about how to make it work. I'll bring my laptop tomorrow to class in order to test it, I hope to work.
There are two functions more remaining, the TV-B-Gone, which I'll start working on it after I can turn on/off the projector, and the sound mode only. That's just decorative and will be the last.
We are trying already to guess how to get everything inside our little bottle. And this summer, we plan to introduce too a 433Mhz function... if it fits. We can't solder SMD, so our PCB is a little big. And we would like it to be dissamblable, in order to be able to update it. Too much things in too little place for beginners!