The Arduino Yún is a curious addition to the Arduino family. There is a fairly widespread community surrounding the Arduino concept, platform and software. There's another popular community dedicated to hacking and improving inexpensive wireless routers, which often run Linux. The Yún combines the two...it's basically an Arduino Leonardo housed on the same PCB as an Atheros AR9331 wireless router (commonly found in TP-Link and other popular hackable routers). They're connected through a serial port and run independently, but the Linino team has developed a few ways to make them team up on some tasks.
Recently, we created our first Kickstarter campaign (RGB LED Shades). It's very exciting to see the "New Backer Alert!" emails roll in, and the notifications pop up on a smartphone. But we wanted to see our Kickstarter stats at a glance, and be notified whenever we have a new backer. The Linux side of the Yún can run scripting languages such as Python to scrape website data and control an LED marquee sign, and the Arduino side can control some I/O for an impossible-to-ignore new backer alert.
The following is a fairly complete guide to getting a Kickstarter tracking system up and running, as well as some details on using Python with the Arduino Yun.
We wanted to see the current total pledge amount, the current number of backers, and the percent our project was funded, so we needed some kind of display. We already had a Pro-Lite PL-M2014R LED Marquee display, a flea-market score with no remote, cables, or manual. It isn't made anymore (this one was likely made around 1992) but with some cable hacking and an old Playstation 2 power brick, it works great. It has an RJ12 jack that is NOT a phone jack, it is an RS232 access port. Fortunately the communication protocol is well documented by people on the internet (what isn't?). We built a DB9 to RJ12 adapter cable based on these instructions.