plcLib (Arduino): Frequently Asked Questions

Q1

I've installed the software. What next?.
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If you have successfully installed the plcLib library then a set of example programs should be available by selecting File > Examples > plcLib > ... from the pull-down menu of the Arduino IDE. Examples are arranged into folders which are related to the different sections of the User Guide. (If not, then see the Installing the Software page.)

Q2

Is there a graphical front end?.
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A graphical front end is not supplied with the library, but a ladder logic GUI (Graphical User Interface) is currently under development by Costantino Pipero. Source code is available through GitHub. It is hoped that an overview of the application and its use will be published here in the near future. Sample screenshots are shown below.

Q3

Is the software free?.
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Yes, the software is released under the terms of the GNU General Public Licence, as described in the comments section at the top of the plcLib.h and plcLib.cpp source files.

Q4

What are the future development plans?.
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New features will be progressively introduced, with further development potentially including: -

  • Versions for other microcontroller-based products.
  • PC-based monitoring, debugging, animation, and IO control.
  • Graphical front end (see also Q2 above).

Tests are planned to explore the capabilities of the freely available Processing language and IDE, related to the latter options above. (A range of possibilities for communication between Processing and Arduino are already demonstrated by the example files of both systems.)

Q5

My program doesn't work. Can you help?.
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Unfortunately, direct support is not possible. The author's time is limited, and is devoted to further development of the E&M site and its range of free resources.

If you are struggling, begin by reading the manual and studying the example files carefully. Test your hardware connections using the simplest possible test application (something like the plcLib version of the BareMinimum sketch works well). It is generally better to start with a simple working system, and progressively add to it, rather than 'dive straight in' with a complex combination of software and hardware.

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