As we’ve seen in the previous tutorial, it’s pretty easy to display a single digit number on a seven segment display. If you want to display two digits though, you’ll quickly see it’s a bit more complicated. Today we’ll learn how to multiplex two 7-segment displays in order to display a 2-digit number.
One of the key elements in embedded systems is the user interface. A good user interface will feature visual elements to communicate with the user, such as LEDs or a screen for example. Seven segment displays are widely used in electronic devices, as they can display information in an easy way. We find 7 segment displays everywhere in our homes: our alarm clocks, microwave ovens or even the screens of some devices. Let’s see how to use this component in an embedded system! We’ll start simple, with a single 7 segment display.
When I build a circuit on a breadboard, the first problem I always have is to create the 5V that will power the components. Of course there are a lot of pre-made power-supplies that you fit perfectly on the power rails of the breadboard, but I wanted something that I built myself and I can use with all my circuits. In this article I will present the power supply I came up with, as well as a step by step explanation of the circuit.
So we’ve completed the first part of this tutorial, and are now ready to start doing interesting things. It’s time to build a simple circuit and put some life in it with a program. We’ll start with something very basic, and program our microcontroller to blink a LED blink.