I am starting to look at micro controllers, I have no idea how to read diagrams or schematics yet because before I spend time learning that I want to ask if it is actually doable. Right now I am looking into the feasibility of using the launchpad for a garden watering project. I am trying to figure out how many analog inputs are available for a launchpad and how extendable it would be down the road. My goal is to measure the soil moisture and figure out if watering is actually needed in my raised beds. However, down the road I would like to add other sensors. I could see I would want to collect other information from sensors such as temperature, humidity and rain amounts in addition to the moisture level in the soil. It would be nice at some point to manually control the watering schedule based upon upcoming weather forecasts over a WIFI type connection. However, these last items are down the road and not planned anytime soon, my priority is soil moisture sensor but I am trying to keep in mind upgrade ability because I will want to add other sensors and functionality over time. Making a long story short, if this is not the best tool for the job I need to look elsewhere and not spend time on something that cannot do the job long term.
I am considering the use of controls in an outdoor watering project now that I would start testing next spring. I would like to use it to manage watering my garden as needed. I have seen several DIY soil moisture sensors but they are analog based using current between two poles in order to determine how much water is in the ground. I imagine it might also work as digital input but how it would work right now is not very clear so I am sticking with analog and figure it out as I go. I would like to do several in each bed say 6 samples but I don't want a controller for each bed. I would like to use several controllers with one being the master and the others as slaves that report back moisture values in the soil that the master will use to determine if watering is needed. The master would need to be able to turn on the water (output) using a valve control much like what you see in the link below. I have a total of 7 raised beds in my garden that are 4' X 12' in size.http://www.amazon.com/Orbit-58874N-Extra-Complete-Watering/dp/B003LY4I2I/ref=sr_1_5?ie=UTF8&qid=1373257181&sr=8-5&keywords=hose+valve+timer
1. Is it fair to say this controller could do the job? It might mean I need more controllers but that might not be unreasonable. However if this controller is better suited for other types of input that is understandable. I understand that hardware/software is not be a one size fits all solution.