There are two ways to write PC software to control a Simple Motor Controller: the native USB interface and the virtual serial port. The native USB interface provides more features than the serial port, such as the ability to change configuration parameters and select the Simple Motor Controller by its serial number. Also, the USB interface allows you to recover more easily from temporary disconnections. The virtual serial port interface is easier to use if you are not familiar with programming, and it can work with existing software programs that use serial ports, such as LabView.
Native USB Interface
The Pololu USB Software Development Kit supports Windows and Linux, and includes the source code for:
You can modify the applications in the SDK to suit your needs or you can use the class library to integrate the Simple Motor Controller in to your own applications.
Virtual Serial Port
Almost any programming language is capable of accessing the Simple Motor Controller’s virtual COM port. We recommend the Microsoft .NET framework, which is free to use and contains a SerialPort class that makes it easy to read and write bytes from a serial port. You can download Visual Studio Express (for either C#, C++, or Visual Basic) and write programs that use the SerialPort class to communicate with the Simple Motor Controller. You will need to set the Simple Motor Controller’s serial mode to be either “Binary” or “ASCII” depending on which command set you want to use. See Section 6.7 for example code that uses the virtual COM port.
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