Proposal: Arduino

The last iteration of this proposal was closed as a duplicate of https://electronics.stackexchange.com/, where Arduino is a pretty popular topic. If there are aspects to this topic that aren't currently on-topic there, it would be a really good idea to make sure they're well-represented among the top examples.

Just sayin'...

  • 2
    @AshRj: as I hint at above, getting this proposal through to commitment will mean nothing if the final proposal is a clear subset of EE. Rather than worrying about folks "wasting" their votes, focus on getting the best possible examples posted, discussed, and ranked.
    – Shog9
    Feb 14, 2013 at 15:53

4 Answers 4


Quite a few of the top questions would be considered as off-topic on EE. A few of the proposed questions even have similar questions on EE that were closed:

Is there a way to replace or fix a burnt pin ?
Fried Arduino uno pins. yet I can blink led 13. anything plugged in does nothing [closed]

How can I use an Arduino to toggle power to 110v devices such as a lamp?
What would be the necessary components to have a standard light (AC power) controlled by an arduino board? [closed]

How do I work out which Arduino variant is best suited for my project?
Which Arduino should i buy? [closed]

Could I use Arduino with WiFi to inteligent house installation? (turn on lights from website etc.)
Wireless light switch [closed]

There are also many Arduino questions on EE that get closed for having "nothing to do with EE". Examples of this sort of discouragement: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7. The Arduino proposal has plenty of questions that would be closed under similar reasoning:

Is there a way to simulate a program run before burning it to the board ?
How to use other IDEs than Blink to program my Arduino?
What precautions must I take for washing my T-shirt with a LiliPad Arduino sewn into it?
Can I program my Arduino in a programming language other than the default
What guidelines should I follow while designing a library for an Arduino ?

It is certain from these examples that this proposal is not a clear subset of EE.

  • 4
    Get better examples. Regarding (1), it was closed because it was unclear. (2) was a shopping question. It could have been edited to the form in the proposed question (as per meta.stackoverflow.com/a/174286/178438), but it's not the obligation of the community to do that (they should though) The same goes for (3). There are too many questions in (4). All these questions in their current form would be closed on any SE site, present and future. Apr 1, 2013 at 18:28
  • Note: the numbers above refer to your non-numbered list of 4 questions with EE counterparts Apr 1, 2013 at 18:35
  • Regarding your numbered ones. Yes, some of the code ones are OT on EE. But they already have a great home on SO. (3) is NC because it is phrased in a discussion-y manner. (4) is rather localized (5) is for SuperUser. (6) -- I agree , it shouldn't have been closed. (7) is shopping/robotics and would be OT on Arduino.SE as well. Apr 1, 2013 at 18:39
  • However, I do disagree that comments such as these are not warranted, electronics (not consumer electronics) questions are also fine on EE. Apr 1, 2013 at 18:40

I don't really believe Arduino is duplicate with electronics. Arduino itself is combination of both electronics and programming, which makes users happen to post arduino questions randomly along stackoverflow.com, electronics.stackexchange.com and diy.stackexchange.com.
This signals that arduino questions deserve separate board, so they are not split along multiple forums anymore.

  • 4
    Electronics.SE supports programming on micros, we do not banish programming questions.
    – Kortuk
    Feb 19, 2013 at 18:01
  • Though arduino may be programmed in Assembler, usually C++ is used. By purpose, this is not microcontroler language and use of such language may produce non-electronic questions. Not banishing does not prevent creating Arduino questions in wrong board, and absence of Arduino board makes the questions being closed instead of migrated. So we may well see that arduino questions eften spread through different boards and should be grouped. Feb 19, 2013 at 20:48
  • 1
    We might be miscommunicating. I never mentioned assembly. C is the most common language for programming, but we have C++ questions(which is not really that different) and assembly questions also. I think we have some pearl and other things also, but C/C++/java/assembler are my forte.
    – Kortuk
    Feb 19, 2013 at 21:48
  • This was problem on my receiver - when I hear programming micros I automatically hear Assembler. But Assembler or not wasn't my point. Feb 19, 2013 at 22:26
  • It seemed to be your point. We support programming on micros, we support programming on arduino, even if it does not directly interface with hardware we support it. We generally only have arduino questions closed that are poorly defined, I disagree that programming has to be somewhere else.
    – Kortuk
    Feb 19, 2013 at 22:36
  • Then make other forums migrate arduino questions on Elecronical engineering bord. Feb 20, 2013 at 14:17
  • 1
    You can suggest it, sorry, I am not active on those forums neither is it my job.
    – Kortuk
    Feb 20, 2013 at 15:02
  • I'm doing my best, but because this is not easy and it is almost impossible for an individual, I insist on Arduino having its own board. Feb 20, 2013 at 15:08
  • Why do they have to have their own board? Their questions will still almost all be on topic on EE, even with arduino having its own board, the software still fits on SO. Just because their is an arduino board will not cause me to migrate arduino questions, sites are supposed to be jealous of their content, if it fits on your site you should keep it regardless of what other sites exist.
    – Kortuk
    Feb 20, 2013 at 15:23
  • I didn't get that point of view :) There is no "my" site - therefore I feel jealous of no content and my only interest is organization. Feb 20, 2013 at 15:55
  • let us continue this discussion in chat
    – Kortuk
    Feb 20, 2013 at 16:19

Yes Arduino is at its heart an electronic device, but I think it's much more than just an Electronics or Programming sub-group. It's a hybrid of electronics, programming, hacking and whatever else people decide to create. For that reason alone it needs its own Stack Exchange site. You can never have too many resources when you're building.

  • 2
    So... You're saying... It's... a way of life? That's definitely not evident from the example questions.
    – Shog9
    Mar 29, 2013 at 16:09
  • 1
    Shouldn't this proposal be changed then to a Microcontroller-site with Arduino, Netduino, pic tags Apr 4, 2013 at 7:39
  • @ChrisWesseling not really, imho, Microcontroller has a more professional and less hacker-friendly appeal. Honestly, "Arduino" to entry level microntrollers is like "Kleenex" is to facial tissues.
    – Krista K
    Feb 6, 2014 at 11:26

The real crux of why Arduino isn't EE-SE is because Arduino (and chipKIT, Raspberry PI, Netduino) as a concept are bringing novices into the discipline of embedded design. Many people exploring this new genre of embedded devices are coders. And not necessarily software engineers or programmers.

So to take the above and put in terms more people might relate to: it's like someone whose only "programming" experience is styling mySpace going onto Stack Overflow and asking about php for WordPress.

I have a BSEE cum laude with distinction in my degree, so I can appreciate how painfully newb some of the Arduino questions are on EE-SE. I'd suggest that once a QA on Arduino.SE was beyond the scope of the community's electronics experience, the question could be migrated to EE for better attention "worthy" of the EE-SE's time.

In no way am I looking down at the Arduino questions as I'm not equipped to answer some of the really EE based questions. My degree was focused on embedded programming, not fundamentals of EE design. :D

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