BASIC Stamp Support Index

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BS2 family photo <updated 1/8/08>

The Parallax BASIC Stamp micro-controller has generated enthusiasm in the electronics industry, where it has twice been nominated EDN Product of the Year. The family of BASIC Stamps is growing.  It started with the BS2 original with the green mask seen at the right in the bottom row in the middle.   Each new addition to the family adds new features and capabilities for either speed or low power operations. 

The BASIC Stamp is popular among professional engineers, educators and hobbyists alike.  In this index you will find links to notes I have written about the Stamps. I add to and change the material from time to time as I find new ways to do things. I enjoy hearing if you find these pages helpful or, please, if you find bugs I've missed.


          photo To the left, OWL2pe data logger. This is based on the OEM BASIC Stamp 2pe-40 chip, which is the 48 pin chip toward the upper left in the photo. In addition to the functionality of the Stamp 2pe, the data logger also includes a real time clock, battery backed RAM, a 12-bit, 11 channel analog to digital converter, 1/2 megabyte of flash memory for data logging, power supplies and protection for the inputs and outputs. 

eme logo My own collection of links to other stamp sites

Sensor interface to the BASIC Stamp, and OWL2pe data logger

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Some environmental sensors require an Analog to Digital convertor, while other sensors connect directly to the BASIC Stamp II input pins. Both types are represented here. I have endeavored to use a minimum of external hardware, to make best use of the BASIC Stamp capabilities and to optimize the software routines.

The purpose of these document is to provide information about how to connect different kinds of sensors to the OWL2pe data logger, or to the BASIC Stamp generally. Some kinds of sensors such as the LM34 temperature sensor are analog and need to be connected to an analog to digital converter input, such as the TLC2543 found on the OWL2pe. Other kinds of sensors attach directly to the versitile Stamp io pins, to measure time intervals, frequencies, counts, etc.. Examples of this type of sensor are the rain gage, the anemometer or the digital barometer. This document shows how to transform and display the data in the proper units and most economically store it in memory, and give hints about other issues that arise in appication of the sensors.

These techniques have both hardware and software components. I have endevoured to develop techniques that use a minimum of external hardware (such as in the case of the rain gage), and software routines that run efficiently and minimize the required code space. In the BS2 I was always running near the full program capacity of the BS2 and had to prune and prune to minimize the code. Some of the program requirements might seem a bit unusual, but in the context of scientific research, you can run into some pretty odd setups, odd timing and odd data processing.


BASIC Stamp integer math and related topics

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Some of the BASIC Stamp math operators are familiar, but others may seem strange at first. Even simple addition, subtraction and multiplication must be done with care, to avoid overflowing the 16 bit integer word, and simple division can easily lead to bogus results. People expect answers as if from a push-button calculator. Forget it! The BASIC Stamp calls for "work-arounds" and "insight". I enjoy this kind of puzzle, and I hope you will too. At least the results. It is a recipe book, and a tutorial on how to know if the recipe will work in a given situation. Here the application notes are broken into several HTML documents loosely organized by topic.

BASIC Stamp miscellany, tricks and explorations

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Command Central. Here you will find technical notes that describe the operation of Stamp commands in more detail than is to be found in the Parallax manuals. How to avoid pitfalls and bugs. Details of how the commands really work. Application articles. Weird stuff.

Earth Measurements, now retitled and revised "Applied Sensors", Parallax stamps-in-class curriculum


I am proud to have written this curriculum for the Parallax "Stamps-in-Class" program. This series is meant for advanced high school students or college students in science or engineering, who want exposure to how microcontrollers can be used in environmental sciences. The Stamps-in-Class web site describes this and other curricula, all free for download. The following files in PDF format are available from this web site.

Earth Measurements full download (pdf)

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