What do you need to start using Blocktinu?
This is a short guide about getting started with Blocktinu.
1/ You need HARDWARE (a microcontroller board) to upload your programs, using a USB programmer:
- Tinusaur or similar board with an ATtiny85 microcontroller on it.
- USBasp Programmer to upload the programs.
2/ You need 2 SOFTWARE packages that will help you transfer your code from the web browser to the board.
- Blocktinu Tools for Windows.
- Drivers for the USBasp programmer.
NOTE: You also need a computer running Microsoft Windows with a web browser and Internet connection.
Quick Guide: How to Install the Software
You need to install two software packages.
(1) Blocktinu Tools for Windows
- Download the ZIP file from this address:
- Extract the ZIP file content and run the install EXE file;
(or just open the ZIP file and run the EXE from there)
- Follow the instructions on the screen to finish the setup;
(2) Drivers for the USBasp Programmer
- Download to your computer the latest version of the Zadig:
- Link: https://github.com/pbatard/libwdi/releases/download/v1.4.1/zadig-2.7.exe
- If, for some reason, the above link did not work, go to the Zadig website at https://zadig.akeo.ie and look for the download section for the latest installation package.
- Insert the USBasp programmer into the USB of your computer;
- Run the Zadig application;
- Make sure the USBasp device is selected in the main drop-down.
If it is not try to select from the menu Options / List All Devices and then select USBasp manually.
- Choose the type of driver to install.
THIS IS A VERY IMPORTANT STEP
- “libusbK” will work on most 64-bit systems.
- “libusb-win32” will work on most 32-bit systems.
- Press the “Install Diver” button.
(NOTE: This might take up to several minutes)
- Check with the “Device Manager” that the driver is installed correctly and the programmer appears as a USBasp device.
Testing the installation
- Connect everything together:
- Insert the flat 10-wire cable into the USBasp programmer.
- Connect the other end of the cable to the Tinusaur (or another) board.
- Insert the USBasp programmer into the USB port of your computer.
- Optional: Put on a shield board (such as Shield LEDx2) on the Tinusaur main board.
- Start the Blocktinu application on Windows;
(it should appear somewhere in the Start menu)
- Locate the “Upload 0” button and press it.
This should upload a program that does not do anything but it is good for testing the connection between your computer and the microcontroller board.
That should upload the testing program into the microcontroller of your board.
Using the Blocktinu
- Open the Blocktinu web interface:
- Put some blocks on the screen.
- When ready, press the “Build” buttons.
- This will compile and build your code.
If there are no errors in your code, the web browser will offer you to save the binary code as a file named “main.bthex“.
- Locate the file and simply open it.
The Blocktinu Application for Windows (that we have previously installed) will take over and will upload the binary file “main.bthex” onto your microcontroller board via the USBasp programmer. Your program will start running immediately.
How was it?
Your feedback is greatly appreciated.
NOTE: A detailed User Guide on how to setup Blocktinu is available for download as a PDF file here: Blocktinu_Tools_for_Windows_Setup_Guide.pdf