• We launch Open Aquarium! - Fish tank Monitoring and Aquaponics platform for ArduinoOctober 14, 2014

    We are very excited this week: we are pleased to present you Open Aquarium, our new sensor platform that automate control and maintenance tasks in aquariums through wireless connectivity and yes, it comes with an open source API.

    This new Makers solution is based on Arduino, and includes specialized sensors to measure vital parameters to aquatic life. Open Aquarium has been designed to help you to take care of your fish by automating the control and maintenance tasks that take place in fish tanks, ponds and aquaponic installations.

    Open Aquarium Project -  Aquariums Monitoring for Arduino

    Open Aquarium allows to remotely control your aquarium and include sensors to monitor factors in water such as temperature, pH, conductivity; it measures water levels and leakage, and deploys actuators that can feed the fish, regulate water heating / cooling, activate pumps to change water or administer medicine, and control light intensity to simulate day and night cycles. The sensors send information using wireless interfaces such as Wi-Fi, GPRS and 3G, for a perfect solution to monitor complex Aquaponic installations.

    Open Aquarium comes with a complete open source API and a web application that allows collected information to be stored in a database and visualized from a browser or from iPhone or Android smartphone devices.

    Designed specifically for Makers, our aim is to design connected technology using open source code to help makers discover, improve, and scale new sensor-based solutions for the Internet of Things.

    The Kits

    Open Aquarium consists of two different and complementary kits:

    and many several extra accessories.

    You can check all Open Aquarium kits and accesories here.

    Documentation and support

    You can check our complete tutorial here: Open Aquarium - Aquaponics and Fish Tank Monitoring for Arduino – Step by Step Guide. Remember you can also check our forum where you can get support for Open Aquarium.

    And do not forget to check also the Open Garden Platform!

    Open Garden allows you to remotely control your indoor, outdoor and hydroponics plants starting at just 199€. Check the complete tutorial here.

  • Some photos from Maker Faire Roma 2014October 10, 2014

    After some intense days setting up our new office - surely you have been scouting our Instagram Channel - and after putting together all the photos we took last weekend in Italy, we are happy to share with you some pics and comments about Maker Faire Rome 2014.

    Rome is awesome at fall

    But of course, we were incredibly busy these days. We were in the Innovation Week - - it lasted several days, prior Maker Faire Rome 2014, and in the Maker Faire weekend itself.

    After travelling to NY, it was a piece of cake to take a plane and fly to Rome - it's just three hours from Spain.

    David and Luis in MakerFaire Rome 2014
    The Guys

    Our team mate David arrived there on Monday 29th, and spent an entire week in Rome, enjoying incredible talks and meetings in the "Open Hardware Summit" and the "Social Innovation Cities" events. You recognized Becky Stern in our Instagram Channel for sure!

    Luis arrived on Friday, ready for the challenging weekend.

    Don't miss their twitter accounts! You can follow them in @D0omY and @LuisMartinNuez!

    And the photos

    In Maker Faire Rome we found lots of 3D printers and special spaces for robotics. As is increasingly the custom, children occupied a prominent place, and several booths had special activities for the youngest.

    We enjoyed three amazing days and received tens of visits in our booth. We tried to satisfy the curiosity of our visitors with some small demos of our projects.

    Cooking Hacks in MakerFaire Rome 2014
    Cooking Hacks in MakerFaire Rome 2014
    Cooking Hacks in MakerFaire Rome 2014
    Cooking Hacks in MakerFaire Rome 2014
    Cooking Hacks in MakerFaire Rome 2014
    Cooking Hacks in MakerFaire Rome 2014
    Cooking Hacks in MakerFaire Rome 2014
    Cooking Hacks in MakerFaire Rome 2014
    Cooking Hacks in MakerFaire Rome 2014
    Cooking Hacks in MakerFaire Rome 2014
    Cooking Hacks in MakerFaire Rome 2014
    Cooking Hacks in MakerFaire Rome 2014

    Thank you all guys! See you next year in Rome!

  • We have redefined the Open Garden kits. Now at 199€!October 6, 2014

    Five months after the launch of Open Garden and thanks to the Community feedback, we have decided to redefine the kits in terms of complexity and price. We are very excited about the direction is taking the project and we want to explain you why.

    Open Garden New Prices

    The Open Garden Platform in a brief

    As you surely remember Open Garden is an open source hardware alternative to commercial home automation to remotely control your indoor, outdoor and hydroponic plants. The platform allows to monitor the state of the plants by sensing several parameters such as Temperature, Humidity, Light, Soil moisture and Water sensors (pH, Conductivity, Temperature). At the same time it is possible also to use different types of actuators to modify the state of the plants - for example, irrigating them or activating lights and oxygen pumps. Examples of the actuators are: Water pump + Droppers for Drip Irrigation, Electro valve + Sprinkler for Sprinkling, or Oxygen Pump + Growing Light.

    The nodes send periodically the information to the Gateway that uploads the data to a web server by using any of the available wireless interfaces (WiFi, GPRS, 3G).

    We prepared three different kits, each ready for a specific kind of growing plant scenario: Indoor (houses and greenhouses), Outdoor (gardens and fields) and Hydroponics (plants in water installations). This part hasn't changed: we still think the three kits are useful and answer your current needs. Actually, we have revised the elements that make up every Kit.

    So, what's new?

    Listening to the rising Open Garden community - we receive regular emails of the users providing feedback, and we answer their questions in our forum (many thanks to all of you folks) -, we have decided to focus in utility and simplicity and at a lower cost per kit than the initial ones. We realized that sometimes less is more!

    That's the reason why we have chosen just the most demanded accessories and prepare three new Kits including them. That's why now, for example, the Open Garden Indoor Kit "just" includes the following accessories: LDR - Light sensor, DHT22 - Temperature + Humidity sensor, Soil moisture sensor, Water Pump and Real Time Clock (RTC) - DS1307 + Water Proof IP67 Enclosure. And that's why we have also revised the accessories included in Outdoor and Hydroponics Kits. All of them at 199€ each!

    We are very happy to share this new vision with all of you, and we strongly believe that with this change the Open Garden community will grow faster.

    Of course, rest of previously included accessories in the kits are still available, and can be purchased individually. Access to the complete list of kits and accessories of Open Garden here.

    Documentation and support

    You can check our Open Garden - Hydroponics & Garden Plants Monitoring step-by-step tutorial. Remember you can also check our forum where you can get support for Open Garden.

    The Kits

    You can purchase the kits here:

    Indoor Kit
    Outdoor Kit
    Hydroponics Kit

  • Testing our Raspberry Pi to Arduino Shields Connection Bridge with the new Raspberry Model B+September 9, 2014

    Raspberry Pi to Arduino Shields Connection Bridge is compatible with Raspberry Pi 2 Model B
    We have been testing our Raspberry Pi to Arduino shields connection bridge with the new Raspberry Pi 2 Model B to ensure its full compatibility. Check the specific article here.

    As you surely know Raspberry released his Model B+ board last July. We have been testing it with our Raspberry Pi to Arduino Shields Connection Bridge during last week, to ensure its full compatibility.

    Just in case you didn't know this product, the idea behind our bridge is to allow to use different shields, boards and modules designed for Arduino in Raspberry Pi. It allows also to connect digital and analog sensors, using the same pinout of Arduino but with the power and capabilities of Raspberry.

    RaspBerry Pi B+

    We created also the arduPi library which allows to use Raspberry with the same code used in Arduino. In this library you can find conversion functions to control all the I/O interfaces in the same way as in Arduino.

    As we can see in Raspberry official website (check the link, the upper block is exactly the same as in model A/B. You may remember some changes were made in this part in the past. We are working with revision 2, as we guess the vast majority of you. Accordingly, the main change is Raspberry B+ includes more GPIO (14 pins more). See picture below.

    Raspberry Pi GPIO Pinouts

    As the former pins remains unchanged, and the GPIOs are the same, our shield connects with the board with no problems. At the end, we are very happy with the testings we have made. We have tested many of the eHealth sensors (the patient Position Sensor - Accelerometer, and the body Temperature Sensor, for example, and we do not foresee any problem for this side) and also with interruptions.

    More changes we love: the new Micro SD (the old card socket broke easy and frequently), the video onto the 3.5mm jack (one jack for audio and video), the lower power consumption and the extra USB ports.

    You can still install Raspbian - it is the default operating system, and we usually choose it. Model B+ is recommended for use in schools: it has more flexibility for learners and more USB ports than any other model.

    Our Raspberry Pi to Arduino Shields Connection Bridge works perfect with the new board (you can get the new Raspberry Model B+ board here).

    Why don't you give the Connection Bridge a try?

  • More Open Garden real project photosAugust 21, 2014

    We are very happy to show you more pics of our Open Garden projects. As you may know, Open Garden is an Open Source hardware alternative to commercial home automation to remotely control your indoor, outdoor and hydroponic plants. We strongly believe it has huge potential due to its flexibility: its made of many separate sensors and actuators - it's a very modular and flexible environment.

    As you surely remember, you can find three different Open Garden kits: indoor, outdoor and hydroponics. These kits will help you to use the solution in greenhouses or houses, external gardens or fields, or even plants in water installations, respectively.

    In the photos you can see a three node Open Garden indoor installation:

    1.- One street monitoring node - no pics, it's allocated in the balcony - which monitors temperature, humidity and external light.

    2.- A second node controlling the soil moisture of a big plant in the dining room. If you look closely at the pictures, you could appreciate the sensor: is the black wire in the left side of the Gateway, it gets into the ground on the left of the plant.

    More Open Garden Pics in Flickr
    More Open Garden Pics in Flickr

    3.- A third node is also controlling the soil moisture of a third space, composed by a tomatoe plant, a mint plant and a basil one. This third node is also monitoring air temperature and humidity and ground temperature. You can notice the gateway by his side - it's connected to the water pump for drip irrigation. You can see the droppers in the last of the photos.

    More Open Garden Pics in Flickr
    More Open Garden Pics in Flickr

    Open Garden Droppers

    In this case, we are not using the Open Garden and XBee shields, or the Wifi module.

    Bonus tip: the gateway is connected to a RaspBerry Pi (USB Connection). We are stablishing an UART communication to save all the data in a database.

    We hope you have enjoyed the photos, and we encourage you to develop your own Open Garden projects following our step-by-step tutorial. We will be very happy to receive your project photos, and to share them in Twitter or Instagram, or RT your posts around Open Garden.

    You can also purchase the kits here:

  • One year since the successful space launch of ArduSatJuly 28, 2014

    The Project

    One year has passed since the successful space launch of ArduSat aboard a H-IIB rocket. As you surely remember, Ardusat is the first open satellite platform that allows private citizens to design and run their own applications in space. It was launched on 4th August 2013.

    Our Radiation Sensor Boards

    We adapted our Radiation Sensors, wich were developed originally to measure radioactivity levels on Earth, to meet the satellite’s restrictions in terms of weight, size and power control, so it could be full operative in outer space conditions.

    Our Radiation Sensor Boards monitor radiation levels generated by space phenomena such as sun storms and background activity. This sensing technology acts as a Geiger counter measuring gamma particles produced anywhere in space.

    The ArduSat project currently consists in two identical satellites: ArduSat-1 and ArduSat-X. The experiments for ArduSat are developed in C/C++ for AVR/Arduino, using the ArduSatSDK.

    Ardusat and Geiger Sensors

    Tanegashima Space Center, Japan

    In this video, you can see how we live the 5 previous days and the launch exciting moment. In the video we explained the general difficulties we faced in the project, how difficult was to find the sensors, the challenge the project supposed for us, the helpful our previous Fukushima experience were and of course, the incredible size decrease we achieve with the board and sensors - when we talk about launching things to the space, it has to be minimum in size and weight.

    Don't miss the succesful full separation final moment, where the teams involved both in Spain and Japan, hugged one another.

    We were really proud to be part of this project and we enjoyed it a lot. Please stay tuned to know more information about the current status of the project soon.

  • Becoming a Maker - The 12 Maker Hacks ChallengeJune 27, 2014

    The Question

    This morning in Cooking Hacks office, Luis and Jorge were discussing if anyone following our Project Hacks and Tutorials could be able to become a Maker. The question was:

    Could a newbie - somebody with no electronic knowledge, starting from scratch - become a good Maker following 12 easy step by step Maker Hacks Tutorials?

    The 12 Maker Hacks Challenge!

    After googling for a while they found this Instructables Tutorial explaining How to Become a Maker and this other 4 Steps to Becoming A Maker, but instead or explaining what should include the normal Maker Workshop or which are the skills a Maker should have, they decided to prepare 12 detailed and useful practical examples (some kind of mini projects) that a newbie could try...

    After deciding that, they started to think who can be the ideal candidate to test it! Jorge had a cool idea...

    The Candidate

    The 12 Maker Hacks Challenge

    From now on...

    Javier, our Digital Marketing Manager, will be following Luis and Jorge's tutorials, and posting regular updates about his experience becoming a Maker.

    First of all, Javier will get used to Arduino IDE and environment, and will know the main components you can find in complete Arduino Starter Kit.

    Stay tuned and follow the Challenge!!

  • New Industrial Protocols modules: RS-232, RS-485, CAN Bus, Modbus, 4-20 mA for Arduino, Raspberry Pi and Intel GalileoJune 23, 2014

    Cooking Hacks has released new industrial protocol modules and API that allow sensor information from industrial devices to connect to the Cloud. The new modules support the most widely used industrial communication network protocols such as RS-485, RS-232, CAN Bus, and Modbus, used for process or industrial automation, building automation, military and automobile applications, for sensor network capability in remote or factory floor environments.

    Cooking Hacks new family of modules modules connect with general development platforms such as Arduino, Intel Galileo, and Raspberry Pi, to help developers design industrial Internet of Things (IoT) solutions. In conjunction with the new modules, Cooking Hacks has released a special 4-20 mA sensor board (current loop), to connect the most commonly deployed sensors in industrial environments.

    In order to use the Industrial Protocols modules and the wireless radio at the same time we have created the Multiprotocol Radio Shield. This way we can make a bridge between the bus and the wireless link. Available radios are: WiFi, RFID, NFC, Bluetooth, ZigBee, and 802.15.4. Other interesting radio protocols such as 3G and GPRS can be used directly without the need of this board.

    Waspmote Industrial Protocols



    • Standard:EIA RS-485
    • Physical Media:Twisted pair
    • Connector:DB9
    • Network Topology:Point-to-point, Multi-dropped, Multi-point
    • Maximum Devices:32 drivers or receivers
    • Mode of Operation:Differential signaling
    • Maximum Speed:460800 bps
    • Voltage Levels:-7 V to +12 V
    • Mark(1):Positive Voltages (B-A > +200 mV)
    • Space(0):Negative voltages (B-A < -200 mV)
    • Available Signals:Tx+/Rx+, Tx-/Rx-(Half Duplex)Tx+,Tx-,Rx+,Rx-(Full Duplex)

    • Industrial Equipment
    • Machine to Machine (M2M) communications
    • Industrial Control Systems, including the most common versions of Modbus and Profibus
    • Programmable logic controllers
    • RS485 is also used in building automation
    • Interconnect security control panels and devices



    • Standard:TIA-232-F
    • Cabling:Single ended
    • Connector:DB9
    • Network Topology:Point-to-point
    • Maximum Speed:115200 bps
    • Signaling:unbalanced
    • Voltage Levels:-25...+25
    • Mark(1):-5...-15
    • Space(0):+5...+15
    • Signals:Full Duplex (Rx, TX)

    • Bar code scanners and other point of sale devices
    • LED and LCD text displays
    • Satellite phones, low­ speed satellite modems and other satellite based transceiver devices
    • Updating Firmware on various consumer devices
    • Uninterruptible power supply
    • Stenography or Stenotype machines
    • Software debuggers that run on a 2nd computer
    • Industrial field buses

    CAN Bus

    CAN Bus

    • Standard: ISO 11898
    • Cabling: Twisted Pair
    • Connector: DB9
    • Network Topology: Multimaster
    • Speed: 125 to 1000 Kbps
    • Signaling: Differential
    • Voltage Levels: 0-5V
    • Signals: Half Duplex

    • Automotive applications
    • Home automation
    • Industrial Networking
    • Factory automation
    • Marine electronics
    • Medical equipment
    • Military uses



    The Modbus is a software library that can be operated physically on the RS-485 and RS-232 modules.

    • Standard: ISO 11898
    • Data area: Up to 255 bytes per job
    • Interface: Layer 7 of the ISO-OSI reference model
    • Connector: DB9 (RS-485 / RS-232 modules)
    • Number of possible connections: up to 32 in multi point systems
    • Frame format: RTU

    • Multiple master-slave applications
    • Sensors and Instruments
    • Industrial Networking
    • Building and infrastructure
    • Transportation and energy applications

    4-20 mA (Current Loop)

    4-20 mA (Current Loop)

    • Standard: ISO 11898
    • Type:  Analog
    • Media: Twisted Pair
    • No. of devices: 1
    • Distance: 900m
    • Supply: 5-24V

    • Sensors and Instruments
    • Remote Transducers
    • Monitoring Processes
    • Data transmission in industrial scenarios


    We have created specific tutorials explaining how to use step by step each of the modules in Arduino, Raspberry Pi and Intel Galileo.

  • First complete Open Garden projects photos May 27, 2014

    We are pretty excited to show you some photos of our Open Garden projects we have taken. This project has huge potential and its appeal lies in the fact that it is made up of many separate sensors and actuators: it's a very modular and flexible project.

    As you may know, the Open Garden platform consist of three different kits: indoor, outdoor and hydroponics. These three kits will allow you to use it in houses and greenhouses, or gardens and fields, or even plants in water installations, respectively. We have tried with these kits to cover all possible growing plant scenarios.

    In the first photos (check below) you can see an Open Garden indoor installation. We are monitoring a cactus. Check in the left pic the bare soil moisture and the temperature & humidity sensors. As can be noted in the picture, the Open Garden Shield is accompanied by an XBee Shield and a Wifi module that sends data to the web application. The Open Garden Gateway is composed of the Arduino UNO board (of course), the Open Garden and XBee shields, and the Wifi module. You can see the web app in detail in the right pic. You can check the parameters measured by the sensors remotely: the app stores the information gathered in a data base and let you visualize it from an iPhone or Android device. In this case, there's no actuators implemented in the cactus.

    Indoor Open Garden installation

    In the next pair of photos you can see an Hydroponics installation and an entirely enclosured Outdoor kit. In the left pic you can see in detail the pH water sensor being allocated in the installation. If you look closely at the picture, you could appreciate the water temperature sensor: is the black wire in the right side of the Gateway, it gets into the water on the left of the box. In the right picture you can see an enclosured outdoor kit. In the left side of the shoot you can see an outdoor node. It can be fixed to the garden soil and send the data to the gateway via RF. The node also includes a solar energy supply system, and RF bidirectional communication (node - gateway) via transceivers. Note the enclosure, both gateway and nodes, prevents the entire system to be damaged by adverse environment conditions.

    Hydroponics installation and an entirely enclosured outdoor kit

    In the last photo you can see Víctor, one of our teammates, preparing the system in an outdoor garden, next to our office.

    We hope you enjoy the photos, and we encourage you to develop your own projects following our step-by-step tutorial. We will be happy to receive your photos, and to share them in our social networks, or RT your posts around Open Garden.

    You can purchase the kits here:

  • Take the most of the Galileo board by using on it the shields and modules designed by Cooking HacksMay 15, 2014

    We are happy to announce we have just released step-by-step tutorials that show how to connect Arduino and Raspberry Pi shields and modules to the Intel Galileo development board. Unlock the full potential of the Intel board - Galileo - using our shields, boards and modules designed for Arduino and Raspberry Pi!

    You can connect digital and analog sensors, and integrate different communication protocols, using the same pinout of Arduino but with the power and capabilities of Intel core. Galileo comes with a single-core 32-bit, 400MHz Quark SoC X1000 processor, supports 3.3 or 5 volt shields and has an Ethernet and USB port. Don't forget the software of Galileo includes support for the Arduino shield ecosystem. You will be able to connect any Arduino Wireless module (WiFi, GPRS, 3G), sensor or actuator which works over i2C, SPI or UART.

    Take the most of the Galileo board

    We have created a full pool of examples! You can read how to get started with the board and the processor features in our complete tutorial. Don't forget to check the complete list of modules and shields available for Intel Galileo.

    In detail, you can read about each of them:

    Don't miss our complete Galileo tutorial where you will find how to connect any Arduino Wireless module (RFID, NFC, Bluetooth, Bluetooth Pro, Wifi, GPRS,3G), any sensor or actuator, specific shields or any electronic modules or actuators which works over i2C, SPI, UART...

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