The Arduino “constructor” is used all over the world to work with electronics, circuitry, robotics, and automation. A convenient programming language, you can assemble the boards yourself or take ready-made ones. The idea is implemented quickly and easily.
But consumables are not cheap. Whether you're just getting started with circuitry or just want to practice, it's impractical to use them. You can create Arduino projects without buying the constructor itself through simulators, for example, the Wokwi online service.
- You can work on microcontroller projects directly from the browser, no hardware components are needed.
- Wokwi simulates major prototyping boards: Arduino, ESP32 DevKit, Raspberry Pi Pico and more.
- The simulated project can be connected to the Internet via MQTT, HTTP, NTP and other protocols.
- Through the built-in visual logic analyzer, you can capture the digital signals in the simulation (e.g., UART, I2C, SPI) and analyze them on your computer.
- For advanced users, there is an advanced debugging feature via GDB and the ability to simulate an SD card. The code can be run immediately or edited.
- The service has a huge database of ready-made start-up projects where you can see everything—up to the code with comments and descriptions of developers.
Another cool feature of the project is the community. On the main page there is a link to the Facebook community and discord: members can share projects, ask questions and network. The site also has a wiki page with various guides and answers to common questions.
The interface of the program is understandable even for a beginner. On the left is a text editor, on the right is the board. To add elements to it, you need to click “+”. Each element has a page with documentation and a description of the characteristics.
Who will suit?
First, for beginners: thanks to Wokwi, you can fill the “bumps” as much as you like before working with real boards. Professionals can test ideas without worrying about the precious chip going up in smoke at the most inopportune moment. And in the most suitable one, too, it will not smoke.
Educators can use Wokwi for distance learning with students by sharing a link to rate a project.
Wokwi is a free service, and most of the functionality is available to absolutely everyone. For $7 per month, you can become a member of the Wokwi Club: upload binary files (such as images) and get a private gateway to connect to LAN devices. And club members can also influence the fate of the project by voting with the help of 14 VotePowers (a local analogue of shares).
Wokwi is a handy online Arduino simulator for learning and testing even the wildest ideas. The service is easy to use, the most pleasant in terms of networking, saves money on details and inspires you to start prototyping “here and now”.