Check out this brand new Educational BoosterPack for the MSP-EXP430G2 LaunchPad from our friends at CircuitCo!


TI worked in conjunction with CircuitCo to design an affordable, easy-to-use and highly-integrated BoosterPack for MSP430 LaunchPad users! CircuitCo knocked it out of the park with this brand new BoosterPack, which has been dubbed the "Educational BoosterPack". It's available today for order at Digikey for just $24.95.

It's a great first BoosterPack for MSP430 LaunchPad users who are looking to create innovative solutions and projects. The BoosterPack is highly integrated with the following components:

  • Back-lit Character LCD Display
  • Dial analog potentiometer
  • 3-Axis analog accelerometer
  • RGB LED
  • Buzzer
  • Microphone

Also, this Educational BoosterPack was created with Energia in mind! Energia is a great open-source code editing tool/compiler that the online community has developed! It comes with very intuitive APIs and function calls for reading analog signals, sending and receiving serial communication, toggling I/O & more to help make microcontroller development even easier. So be sure to download this awesome software at www.energia.nu to get up and running on this new BoosterPack quickly!

Get the BoosterPack at Digikey

Learn more about the BoosterPack on CircuitCo’s wiki

Download Energia

  • I haven't looked at the schematics, but I'm assuming this will also be compatible with the Stellaris Launchpad, since their headers are compatible.

    Any info on this?

    I'll check it out myself later on.

    Looks like very nice.

  • Example software?

    it would have been nice if they had included an MSP430 ready to plug with useful examples. Today at Kidbot.org we had our show-and-tell, and a friend had these Atmel shields that he was able to show off, even though his package had arrived today(and my Educational shield in 2012): they had included demo software.

    This Educational is actually pretty ridiculous in that sense, if no ready-to-run MSP430, at least an .elf file somewhere. Nope, nada. Embarrassing!

    Your link for Energia is not for anything to run this, or is it?

  • Hi Yama

    Energia works very well with this BoosterPack! Energia comes with many code examples integrated into the IDE itself, which will enable you to control the RGB LED, display characters on the display, make noise with the buzzer, etc straight out of the box!

    Adrian

  • Exactly which LCD example works. Hello world doesn't. So far I'm not impressed. Do not buy this until examples are posted first.

  • I found this example code on another blog today. Thank you Danny! This example worked on my setup tonight. I simply pasted it into a new project. It displays an incrementing character set in a loop. After Energia code download I had to power cycle the MSP430 to get the LCD going. So, there may be some initialization issues...

    /*

       Educational BoosterPack LCD test using Newhaven Display example SW

       Danny Whitson,  2013-01-25

    */

    const int whiteledPin = 13;                 // LED connected to digital pin 13

    const int RS = 11;                          // Register Select

    const int SI = 15;                          // Serial data Input

    const int SCL = 7;                          // Serial data CLock

    int serialcounter = 0;

    int charcounter = 0;

    void setup() {                        // initialize the LCD

     pinMode(whiteledPin, OUTPUT);

     pinMode(RS, OUTPUT);

     pinMode(SI, OUTPUT);

     pinMode(SCL, OUTPUT);

     delay(10);

     writecom(0x30);                     // wake up

     // delay(1);

     writecom(0x30);                     // wake up

     writecom(0x30);                     // wake up

     writecom(0x39);                     // function set

     writecom(0x14);                     // internal osc frequency

     writecom(0x70);                     // contrast  

     writecom(0x56);                     // power control

     writecom(0x6D);                     // follower control

     delay(10);

     writecom(0x0C);                     // display on

     writecom(0x01);                     // clear

     delay(5);  

     writecom(0x06);                     // entry mode

     delay(10);

    }

    void loop() {

     for(charcounter = 16; charcounter <= 256; charcounter++) {

     digitalWrite(whiteledPin, HIGH);    // set the LED on

     delay(1);                           // wait 1%

     writedata(charcounter);             // print the char

     digitalWrite(whiteledPin, LOW);     // set the LED on

     delay(99);                          // wait 99%

     }

    }

    void writecom(int d) {

     digitalWrite(RS, LOW);              // A0 = Command

     for(serialcounter = 1; serialcounter <= 8; serialcounter++) {  // send 8 bits

     if((d&0x80)==0x80)                  // get only the Most Significant Bit (MSB)

       digitalWrite(SI, HIGH);           // if 1, then SI=1

     else

       digitalWrite(SI, LOW);            // if 0, then SI=0

       d=(d<<1);                         // shift data byte left

       digitalWrite(SCL, LOW);

       digitalWrite(SCL, HIGH);

       digitalWrite(SCL, LOW);           // SCL

     }

    }

    void writedata(int d) {

     digitalWrite(RS, HIGH);             // A0 = Data

     for(serialcounter = 1; serialcounter <= 8; serialcounter++) {  // send 8 bits

     if((d&0x80)==0x80)                  // get only the Most Significant Bit (MSB)

       digitalWrite(SI, HIGH);           // if 1, then SI=1

     else

       digitalWrite(SI, LOW);            // if 0, then SI=0

       d=(d<<1);                         // shift data byte left

       digitalWrite(SCL, LOW);

       digitalWrite(SCL, HIGH);

       digitalWrite(SCL, LOW);           // SCL

     }

    }

  • Go to this ti blog for active thread on LCD.

    e2e.ti.com/.../237170.aspx

  • As I wrote in my in-depth review at embeddedcomputing.weebly.com/educational-boosterpack.html

    I really like the educational challenge for the users.

    They'll have to look for the specification sheets, read and understand them.

    They'll also have to write their libraries from scratch or adapt existing ones to the Educational BoosterPack.

  • So anything device ever sold with no basic sample applications is an educational device.

    Sounds like a rehash of undocumented feature to me.

    A user newbie or pro cannot even tell if the device is functional until they decode and program an accelerometer and serial lcd using the data sheets

    Also no mention that it is plugin compatible with latest version of launchpad not ver 1.4.

    Cost of the booster and launchpad approaching that of usb compatible pic 2550 with on board color lcd on ebay or high end arduino system.

    Appears to be well constructed and very useful once initial hurdles overcome.  A few questionable looking solder joints.

    Not a fan YET!!

  • Hi Tim,

    Check out Rei VILO's write-up here: embeddedcomputing.weebly.com/educational-boosterpack.html

    He's got links to code examples & libraries for the various components on the BoosterPack.

  • Thanks AdrianFer for the update on the file.

    I looked at that review three or four times and downloaded it for reference. The zip file was not posted when I looked before.  Also the lcd library link said it still needed to be adapted.

    I just downloaded the educational booster pack zip file  and will give it a look.  

    I got the booster pack to work with the older ver 1.4 launchpad and a 2231chip by  rerouting the RS and Led pins to other pins on  

    the ver1.4 using the program provided by Danny (forgot last name). I posted that info at e2e.ti.com/.../237170.aspx.

    I was unable to get a 2553 chip to work in any of my older launchpads with energia.  I will be posted some questions on that when I get back to it.

    I really am interested in getting proficient with the 430 and producing some 430 educational materials.  Now that I have the lcd working maybe I can make some progress on that goal.

    Thanks again

    Tim Mathis

    Technology Trainers

  • The library for the Educational BoosterPack is available from embeddedcomputing.weebly.com/.../educationalboosterpack_library.zip

    Enjoy!