Universal Programmable Remote Control

Cornell University, ECE 476


Our remote actually turned out fairly operational. We could accurately program a signal into the microcontroller memory and play it out. When we were testing we used two oscilloscopes to measure first the signal coming out of the IR receiver when the real remote was being played and secondly the signal from the same receiver when we were playing our generated signal and the two measured out nearly the same. The signals were powerful, as they were amplified by a transistor, but they caused no interference with any of the other projects, namely because IR signals do not travel very far and have relatively directional propagation and few other groups were doing stuff with IR. There were little other safety considerations. Our prototype remote control has a lot of exposed wires and open connectors but the voltage throughout the entire circuit is very low. In any case, in an end product, everything would be packaged much nicer.

The remote was fairly easy to use and understand, we thought. The user interface on the LCD guides the user through whatever he or she needs to do. It was a bit awkward to handle, but that was mostly because of the design limits of the breadboard and all the connections to the STK500. Aside from that, the only real inconvenience to the user is when continuous button pressing is desired, since our remote is not capable of that. If the user wanted to scroll up 50 channels, he would need to press the programmed button 50 times.