Hot off the wires (needless to say, ArduPilot will be part of this. 32-bit, 100Mhz, yum!):


Atmel and Arduino Collaborate on

AVR and ARM-based Development Platforms


  • See the latest platforms based on Atmel products in the Atmel-sponsored Arduino Pavilion located in Queens, New York, September 17 and 18
  • Listen to Atmel Open Source Community Manager Eric Weddington present “Open Source AVR Toolchain Past, Present and Future” at 2:00 pm PT on September 17 and 18 in the ‘Make Live Stage’ at the Maker Faire

San Jose, CA, September 16, 2011 – Atmel® Corporation (NASDAQ: ATML), a leader in microcontroller and touch solutions, and Arduino, the leading open-source electronics prototyping platform and community, announced they are collaborating on several development boards usingAtmel AVR and ARM-based microcontroller (MCU) products. The new easy-to-use Arduino boards use several Atmel products including the Cortex-M3-based SAM3U MCUATmega32U4 and AVR UC3 MCUs.

Arduino is an open-source, community-based prototyping platform that offers accessible hardware and well-documented software to electronics enthusiasts. The community encompasses artists, designers, students, kids, hobbyists and anyone interested in creating interactive objects or environments. Committed to offering the shortest learning curve, Arduino has developed several boards featuring Atmel’s AVR and ARM-based MCUs leveraging its complete, flexible software and hardware environments.

Atmel and Arduino will be demonstrating several platforms in the Atmel-sponsored Arduino Pavilion including:

  • Arduino Leonardo. Based on the Atmel ATmega32U4, it is a low-cost Arduino board which includes a simpler circuit as the Arduino UNO board. The software on the board includes a USB driver that can simulate a mouse, keyboard and serial port. In addition, the bootloader includes a serial port and USB mass storage driver.
  • Arduino Due. The newest board to Arduino’s collection, the Arduino Due is based on an Atmel Cortex-M3-based microcontroller, also known as the Atmel SAM3U ARM-based MCU. This MCU can run up to 96MHz and will be available to the Arduino community by the end of 2011.
  • Arduino WiFi. This board is for hobbyists interested in WiFi applications. Arduino WiFi includes an add-on module using the Atmel AVR MCU and an H&D Wireless module that provides developers with a powerful WiFi interface.

“Arduino is a grass roots community that has been working with Atmel AVR products since its inception,” said Massimo Banzi, founder of the Arduino Community. “We are thrilled to use Atmel’s ARM-based products for the first time in our latest development platforms. The new boards, based on the Atmel SAM3U ARM-based MCUs, include a complete, flexible eco-system that provides our community of developers with access to the most sophisticated, yet easy-to-use platforms for designing innovative and fun electronics devices,” Banzi concluded.

“We are excited to be a sponsor of the Arduino Pavilion at the Maker Faire,” said Alf Egil-Bogen, chief marketing officer, Atmel Corporation. “The Arduino community reaches a large group of university and hobbyist communities focused on developing new designs. We’ve seen this community grow from grass roots to a well-established organization of true enthusiasts and hobbyists. We are excited to work with Arduino on a variety of different projects in the future.”


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Comment by Michael Pursifull on September 17, 2011 at 10:35pm

Where is it said that open source makes things cheaper, or pushes back constraints? Some generalization are made regarding open source (software) in general, and the costs to businesses with regard to computing, and some statements and observations are made there, but as far as hardware goes (apples to apples) I'm not aware of these concepts as being part of the central benefits envisioned from the start. If anything, they are long-minded predictions, I do not consider them part of the reality or current focus of open source hardware advocates. 


I think, bGatti, you have very valid observations; but the strength of open source is not in the areas you have raised, it can be seen most clearly in this situation. If you have the interest, you can take the work of others, the collective efforts used to create this Ardunio thing, with all the flaws you see, and you can work with the community and developers to improve it. But there is more. As we are human, and as we each have different needs and prejudices, we can never all agree what is ideal. So fork it. You can do either or both, the first, if you chose, and if others accept your contributions, the latter, if you chose, and if they do not. 


But I am not certain that this is the best thread for such a dialog as I have offered in this reply. I value bGatti's input, I think he has a lot of useful perspectives and would make a good engineer on the Arduino (or similar) micro controller development team, as a developer or as a requirements-driver. I think his discussion of the issues are more valid to this thread than my comments here, which I offer only this once, but would be willing to discuss elsewhere. 

Comment by Gustav Kuhn on September 18, 2011 at 8:57am

@bGatti, thanks for sharing you disdain for the whole Arduino scene.

Now, UNLESS you can offer something practical, cheaper, and available, in its place,

and something that can replace our functional, and affordable, autopilots,

kindly ...

(Proudly so) Copy'nPaste

Comment by Todd Hill on September 18, 2011 at 9:37am


Comment by bGatti on September 18, 2011 at 9:57am


Offer something Practical, Cheaper, and Available.

You damn well bet I can:


Start with PicKit2 (which I've mentioned several times).

It's very cheap - and allows for 50 cent marginal project cost. - That nearly 2 order of magnitude CHEAPER

Practical: It provides for Step through debug - Imminently practical,

It's been available for nearly 10 year!


Spyder by Freescale is similarly cost effective and practical as a low barrier to entry. For $25 from freescale I get a real USB connection and onboard SD.


Finally, there's Texas Instruments LaunchPad - at $5 per board, it's the cheapest RTF learning platform.


Now to your conflation of DIYDrones and Arduino - permit me to point to two headline projects on the site; UAVDevBoard, and OttoPilot - both of which are not Arduino-based. I submit respectfully that DIYDrones is not a Sovereign Arduino Territory - admitted bias notwithstanding.



Comment by Gustav Kuhn on September 18, 2011 at 10:18am


Pickit2 is MicroChip dedicated programmer, that you have to buy.

I have three of them, I was desperately waiting for something like what happened on this forum, to happen with Microchip Pics, never did.

Although I have done a number of "Egg Timer" type circuits/code for RC use, using Pics.

Don't know about Spyder, thanks, will follow it up.

LaunchPad, have one of those, but being "Copy'nPaste", not at all as intuitive as Arduino.

Yes, it is very cheap.

As to my conflation of DIYDrones and Arduino, well you elected to post your criticism on this specific forum :-)

Now, since you are here, and obviously a gentleman/lady, please share some positive ideas with us ?



Comment by bGatti on September 18, 2011 at 10:43am


1. Truly, if OpenSource doesn't deliver lower cost and push back constraints then ... OMG - what's the point?

If Stallman is famous for anything - it his assertion that Information wants to be free - as in Beer and Speech. (Cheaper and fewer constraints) These qualities are not collateral consequences - they lie at the heart and soul of a movement.


2. Love it or leave it. (fork it). This particular pseudo-argument is suggestive of an irrational attachment and often marks the boundaries of both religions and deeply religious often discriminatory cultures/regions (without naming names). If I am wrong in my assessment - these concerns should be easily confronted on the merits - not on my right to dare question the threads of the King.


3. Agree on Ideal. There is tremendous value in agreement - but there is a risk that the preference for agreement will lead to accepting inferior technologies because they are traditional whilst rejecting clearly superior options.


To conclude: I have made some small contributions to the Arduino projects (developed and published a single-wire receiver connection years ago, an I2c connection to a Accel, and pushed for Ardopilot to be divided into smaller modules - which ironically was rejected outright - but later implemented in the form of an IMU/Servo/Main boards.)


But that said, the intransigence on basic engineering 101  issues like pin layout and vcomm has left me more disappointed than enthusiastic about the future of all things Arduino. (That said, I've just agreed to co-build a Prusa... so here goes kicking and screaming).



Comment by bGatti on September 18, 2011 at 11:09am


Pics are happening on this forum. The UAVDevBoard - which is essentially the pedigree for the APM/IMU is a Pic project and on this Board. There is a good deal of searchable discussion on Pics generally, and Microchip provides a ton of "Open Source" code.


Yes, the PicKit2 is a separate part, but it's nearly as cheap as a Serial-USB cable, Arduino conflates the programmer and the devboard - raising the marginal cost in the bargain. PicKit is also a logic analyzer - so there's an extra value.


Ok here's my contribution:

Seperate the functions of an Autopilot into modules - which can be of use to Non-Autopilot projects - to increase adoption and lower cost:


1. Servo control / RC (half done - I would move the Servo DRIVERS to this board as well)

2. IMU - half done, I would add a processor and GPS connection to this board as a complete location/orientation solution

3. Main Board. Now simpler and smaller, easier to reconfigure for mission objectives.


These boards can be used in combinations:

1. Simple Quad - Servo & IMU (No Main Board or GPS) this is simply stable flight with RC Control.

2. Ground Rover - Servo and Main (GPS to Main board)

3. Complicated Plane - 2 Servo boards, IMU & Main

4. Redundant Hexacopter. 2 IMU, 2 Main, 2 Servo

5. Robot Hand: Servo Board.


Comment by on September 18, 2011 at 1:23pm
Comment by bGatti on September 18, 2011 at 5:46pm

It Gets Better.


If your're young, or perhaps just new to microcontrollers, and the Arduino is your very first experience;

Take heart - It gets better.


If you've tried to connect an Arduino to the kind of Radio Shack Protoboard sold in every hamlet; I feel your pain, and I promise, It gets better.


If you've spent 3 hours hunting for and updating Virtual Comm Ports only to find there is a conflict between your Arduino Board and your Rep-Rap 3D Printer - We've all been there, and we're here to say - It does get better.


If you've written some code - which does nothing on startup, but you can't tell what the code is ACTUALLY doing - trust me, that's normal - It gets better.


If you've reversed the polarity and smoked your Arduino Board TWICE and you can't afford $60 to replace them; I'm here to assure you; It gets better.


So if you've come to view microcontrollers as an expensive and mysterious hobby where the pieces DON'T fit together. Don't despair; don't join the drama team and leave tech forever; don't write a last will on facebook and jump off a bridge; hang in there - IT GETS BETTER.



Comment by Massimo Banzi on September 19, 2011 at 5:29am

Hello all

The Arduino Team loves DIYDrones even if some of you don't love us, it's fine , life it's like this :)

We're excited to work with you, if you want, on running your code on our new beast. This platform was long overdue and we suffered some delays but we got some help from ATMEL to understand how their processor works and we were back on track.


ATMEL didn't "sponsor" us in the conventional sense, they believed in the project and assigned some engineers from their ARM team to help us.


Having said this any ARM implementation is not easily portable because the core is just a small part of the microcontroller while the peripherals are all different across vendors. Each and every vendor wants to keep them that way to make it hard from people to switch away from them.


We look forward to help everyday people experience the power of ARM but providing a gentle entry point. Then every bit of Arduino is open source and the same people can see exactly what is going on in every point of the code.


The code is being debugged with a 30USD jtag adapter (OSHW itself) and we are working on other ways to simplify debugging. We also have a prototype of a new IDE i've shown at Maker Faire that has support for gdb and all the rest.


The announcement on saturday was the beginning of a process where if you want to work with us you have the chance to shape the platform to better suit your needs.


@bGatti that's impressive the amount of carefully crafted inaccurate statements you make about Arduino.

I never managed to smoke a single Arduino in my life. there is a protection against reverse  polarity on them... if you reverse the polarity after the protection diode then you can smoke any microcontroller...

The rest are equally full of hard to explain acrimony .... did I poke your eye when we were kids? you certainly know how to hold a grudge :) :) :)


Who wants to work with us is more than welcome and I have 4 prototypes with DIYDrones written on them :)


PS: Don't let this community turn into the new Hackaday it would be a pity...









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