Get Started with the Arduino - A Hands-On Introductory Workshop

Philip Lindsay (
Open Hardware
Location: E145/146 Level: Novice
Average rating: ****.
(4.45, 20 ratings)


Leave the virtual behind and create something tangible!

Have you always wanted to create hardware devices that can interact with the real world?

Have you heard about the Arduino electronics prototyping platform but been unsure how to get started?

When you attend this workshop you will:

  • set up an Arduino board & software;
  • learn how the Arduino fits into the field of physical computing;
  • make your Arduino respond to button presses and blink lights.

Most important of all, you’ll learn hardware is fun!

Previous attendees have made this sell-out workshop one of the highest rated at OSCON for three years in a row! Their post-workshop feedback included:

Over the past three years nearly one hundred people have learned to get started with electronics and make things blink at this workshop! You can join them and gain this knowledge this year.

This course has been so popular and successful at teaching people to start with the Arduino that there’s even a spin-off Get Started with Arduino: A Hands-On Introductory Workshop video!

The success of the Arduino electronic prototyping toolkit has lead to a surge of interest in the world of hardware from both software developers and non-technical people. Attend this workshop to learn how you can use the Arduino to add an interactive element to your projects.

No hardware or coding experience necessary! Philip-the workshop tutor-will guide you through the process of getting started and show you projects he and others have created with the Arduino. Once you know the basics you too could be on your way to creating anything from a build monitoring tool to a cuddly navigation deviceā€¦

Learn how physical computing can change the way you think about the electronic devices you interact with, the software you write and even the problems you can solve and the way you solve them.

Participate in this hands-on workshop and you will learn how to install the Arduino IDE, connect the Arduino board, connect buttons & LEDs, use an electronics breadboard and program the Arduino to respond to external stimuli.

A workshop like this provides an ideal environment in which to learn because:

  • you can get answers to your questions right away;
  • you actually take the time to learn in a concentrated block of time; and,
  • you have the reassurance that if you get stuck Philip’s there to help you out.
    (Don’t tell anyone but the big secret is that many beginners from previous years found it much easier to get started than they expected and found themselves succeeding with more than just blinking & button pressing.)


* A laptop (with the ability to install software and drivers)
* USB cable
* A Getting Started with Arduino Kit v3.0 is required in order to participate. The cost of this kit (USD $57) is included in the registration price for this tutorial. You will be provided with the kit onsite at the conference with proof of registration.
* In the interest of easing network congestion it would be helpful if
you could download the installer for your OS before attending the
workshop. The files are available from the “Download” section of — download version “Arduino
* You may also like to get a head start on installation by following the
guide for your OS here:
* Arriving early on the day will also help ease the distribution of the kits.

The number of participants is limited and last year this workshop sold out, so don’t let someone take your place!

QUESTIONS for the speaker?: Use the “Leave a Comment or Question” section at the bottom to address them.

Photo of Philip Lindsay

Philip Lindsay

Philip Lindsay (also known as follower from ) creates tools to encapsulate the knowledge he gains from exploring and understanding technology in order to help others do their jobs more effectively. He translates technology.

In addition to teaching introductory Arduino workshops Philip has contributed SD, USB and networking code to the Arduino eco-system.

When not exploring technology for the fun of it, Philip creates documentation, code libraries and example projects for SparkFun Electronics, the Arduino development team, Pebble Technology and other clients.

Tim O’Reilly once called Philip a “troublemaker” for his early Google Maps reverse engineering efforts.

Philip has a particular interest in the areas where design, art, craft and technology intersect.

Follow my project logs at Labradoc.

Comments on this page are now closed.


Justin Stander
07/21/2013 2:25pm PDT

The requirement for a “USB Cable” (type unspecified) is most likely moot/redundant as the Kit link lists “(1) USB Cable” as part of its contents.

Picture of Shirley Bailes
Shirley Bailes
06/10/2013 7:26am PDT

Hi Douglas… We do have a maximum capacity set for the two tutorials you mention due to the hands-on nature of what is being presented, and because of that these do tend to fill up rather quickly. We appreciate your position, however registration has been open for about 2 months now and these are on a first-come, first-signup basis. As much as we would want to hold a 2nd session, time and space just do not permit this to happen. I’d be happy to work with you in case someone does cancel and there would be room for you to sign-up. I’ll message you directly on that.

Douglas Howard
06/07/2013 6:01pm PDT

I tried to register for this tutorial and it was full. Your tutorial and the Distributed Sensor Network Tutorial are key reasons for my OSCON attendance -both are full. Help! Maybe you instructors can both get a 2nd session (If not, OSCON has paying customers they are not serving)


Sponsorship Opportunities

For information on exhibition and sponsorship opportunities at the conference, contact Sharon Cordesse at (707) 827-7065 or

Contact Us

View a complete list of OSCON contacts