Introduction: How to Download and Use the Arduino IDE

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Hello everybody! Today I will show you how to download the Arduino IDE and, more importantly, I will help familiarize you with all of the features and tools it offers.

Step 1: What You Need

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In order to get the IDE up and running, you need Mac OSX 10.7 or later or Windows 10. There's a Linux version too, but you need to select your system (32 bit, 64 bot or ARM) first. The current version of the IDE is 1.8.3, and I'll update this page when the newer version comes out.

Step 2: Download

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Alrighty, so you need to download the Arduino IDE, but first, what is an IDE? An IDE is an "environment" where you can develop and edit code. IDEs also have extra feature to help make writing code easier, such s being able to include commands without typing them or being able to debug code without having to open another software program. Anyway, go to Arduino.cc and go to the download tab. Click download for your particular system and donate money if you'd like. Now you have the Arduino IDE!

Step 3: Features of the IDE

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In the top left corner of the IDE homescreen, there is a little bar of icons. From left to right, those icons: Verify Code; Upload Code; New File; Open File and Save File. There is a smaller bar above the icons that has more options. Some of those options are repeats from the icons, but others are new.

The tools bar is one of ten more important option bars. Its sub-options include port selection, for connecting to your Arduino; board selection; the option to burn a bootloader to your board; and the option to select your preferred programmer. These functions all help improve communication between the board and your computer.

The Sketch tab is also quite important. It has 3 unique options that make it easier for you to write quality code. This options include Add file, open sketch folder, and add library. Add library adds the #include library command in your code, which include s a specified library of commands. Add file just opens a new sketch in the same window as the current sketch you are working and sketch folder shows you the folder where your code is saved.

The other tabs have basic commands like copy and paste, and a few others that should also be fairly self-explanatory. Well, that's pretty much it. If you have any questions leave a comment below and as always, Happy Making!

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