Introduction to IOT / microcontroller programming

Do you want to understand the details of how your IOT lightbulb / smart outlet works or setup a remote monitoring system? This 3-session program will introduce you to microcontroller programming, IOT / Wi-Fi concepts, and communication to a web layer or cloud service via the MQTT messaging technology.

In this first session, we will cover basic micro controller concepts, setup our development environment and do some simple programming to get comfortable. The IOT device we are using is an ESP8266 NodeMCU. This is a development board version of the module that is found in many IOT lightbulbs and smart outlets. We will program using the Platform-IO development system with VS Code editor. This robust multiplatform system allows for development on a range of microcontroller platforms including the ever-popular Arduino.

Session 2 will cover Wifi features of the ESP-8266 and introduce the use of external libraries to control RGB led strips.

Session 3 will cover implementation of MQTT messaging between the ESP and external system for communications and control.

Note: sessions 2 & 3 will be separate meetups to be scheduled 2 weeks apart on Tuesday around the same time of day


Please bring a laptop with a recent version of Linux, Mac or Windows. Some programming knowledge is also good but not necessary. The class kit is available for $15; This is the ESP8266 NodeMCU dev board, solderless breadboard, WS2812 “smart” LED, micro USB cable and assorted hookup wires. Lab will open around 7:15 please be there by 7:30