Testing at a local sports bar
takes more care. An early prototype
didn’t have much result, but that
was with only a single LED and a
more conservative design. Follow-up testing is limited as the places
tend to be packed, and risk to life
and limb is an important testing
The number of codes and
percent of TVs impacted is
acceptable for a little good natured
fun. Boosting the transmit power
would allow greater action at a
distance. Perhaps an array of IR LEDs would function at a
tremendous distance like a high power LED flashlight.
Smaller size would also have advantages. A button
version would be possible that would improve stealth and
would open the opportunity for a transmitter plant, maybe
on a magnet. This would be a great troubleshooting
exercise for your friends at the local appliance center.
Collecting the codes could be optional. The circuit
board in a universal remote control is thin with most of
■ FIGURE 12. Parts List.
the area used for button pads. A microcontroller could
piggyback on a universal remote to send codes. This
would allow development of a device with a
microcontroller slower than the Arduino.
On a more constructive avenue, it would be no
problem creating a customized remote control for your
entertainment center. Another opportunity is a
transmitter/receiver pair utilizing your own codes for
control solutions in your next project. NV
February 2011 35