As parallel ports are getting more rare each day, computers start losing parallel ports and electronics will have to move on to a new interface. LCD Smartie is a relatively old project but because of its’ popularity among computer enthusiasts, it still lives till today. To give you an idea on how old it is, the latest stable release was on March 2007. That’s almost five years ago!
In the electronic prototyping world, Arduinos are very popular hence there are many people who tried to use it as a bridge between the computer and the LCD. Not only that, the older Arduinos had FTDI USB to Serial chips built-in and it allowed the Arduino to receive instructions from LCD Smartie. Though newer Arduinos like my Uno R3 doesn’t use FTDI chips anymore, the ATmega 16U2/8U2 still allowed seamless serial communication to and from the computer so LCD Smartie should work fine too, or at least in my mind. Well, doesn’t matter, I’m here to find out.
I’ve tried some LCD Smartie sketches available online and I found that this worked the best.
This is how I connected the LCD to the Arduino.
And finally, configure LCD Smartie to use the matrix.dll plugin and set it to the correct port.
That’s about it and the LCD on the Arduino should receive instructions from the LCD Smartie software.
This is a video to show that the LCD works flawlessly, just like when it was connected through the parallel port.
Thanks for reading 😉