My buddy Rob works over at Brocade in the IT department. He is not an engineer, but he loves technology. So I was delighted when he asked me if I had ever heard of Arduino. I gleefully told him that the Arduino Uno was built around an Atmel AVR chip and was loved by Makers and Hobbyists and Engineers the world over.
What Rob is interested in is hacking on his dishwasher so he can control it with an Arduino.
Rob’s source has a great story. The controller on his dishwasher failed. The repairman wanted $150 just the board. So in the true Maker spirit, the “Unaclocker” decided it would be easier, cheaper, and more satisfying to build his own controller using an Arduino. The best part is that now he can control water times to insure that the temperature in the dishwasher gets high enough to really clean and disinfect the dishes.
So Rob went out and bought and Arduino kit, and is starting to play with it. Being a curious fellow, it didn’t take Rob long to find another whitegoods application, this time with the Arduino controlling a washing machine (pdf). This is courtesy of the fine folks at the Gokaraju Rangaraju Institute of Engineering and Technology over in Hyderabad.
You can easily see that the whole world is embracing using the Arduino as a control system building block. You can also see that many companies are using the Arduino as a component in their products, like this commercial printer.