External sensor level + clodBIT?

Hello everybody,

first: sorry my english.
second: I usually do not talk in forums…

I wonder if I can connect this sensor to ‘LittleBits’ and send the information (via cloudBIT?) to a smartphone and activate another function (already solved) with ‘LittleBits’ using the app.


This sensor is capacitive and it measures liquid levels.
It has a USB connection … so I guess … Can we connect by USB Little bits and send that data?

There is a fluid level sensor ‘littlebits’? Ultrasonic sensor? :smile:

Thank you so much. Any information is welcome.


Hi Lois (@kokotxanel),

The cloudBit should be able to work in the manner you want, (although you may need to program it with the API rather than with IFTTT in order to relay information from the sensor.) I don’t believe there is an off the shelf device in the littleBits collection that works the way this one does. I remember a moisture sensor in the bitLab several months ago. Also a member named Shai (@shaiss) has developed a prototype ultrasonic sensor for littleBits.

The Molex device that you linked to is unique and interesting. In addition to usb, it also can communicate by ‘I2C’ and ‘discrete signals’. With all that connectivity, it seems as if it could be built into a ‘bit’ in a fairly straight-forward manner.

Connecting the device directly to a littleBits circuit with the usb module, would require some investigation. The usb module is designed to handle audio, but it could possibility work with the capacitive fluid sensor. Contact Molex about how the usb interface works with that device. Both I2C and their ‘discrete signals’ would require some additional circuitry to work with littleBits.

This is a very cool idea!

Sounds like an interesting module bht the datasheet is sparse to say the least. We really need to know more detail about the i2c and discrete signals. While the USB could be used, I believe that would at least require an Arduino with USB host shield or breakout. It’s also possible the USB acts as a serial to USB in which case the sensor would be UART.

I can think of a few uses for this but don’t see a buy now link. If I can find a way to get one, I’d give it a try to connect it to my Littlebits.

Fwiw, I have used I2C but not with a littleBits arduino module. The connections for pins 2 & 3 (SDA & SCL) are tiny solder pads and places to attach resistors on the top of the bit - obviously meant to be messed with, but not too friendly!

Hey @JackANDJude and @alexpikkert, how easy do you ‘smd’ guys think it would be to make a ‘user attachable’ I2C I/O device for this? So many devices are showing up that use I2C now. This really expands the range of user developed bits!


[quote=“shaiss, post:3, topic:22780, full:true”]
… the datasheet is sparse to say the least …[/quote]

Reads like a sales flyer to me. I got the impression that this is not (yet?) a commercial product, but perhaps can be preordered Molex? They are a big company, known for their medium-sized plastic connectors. It may be an experimental foray into sensor technology. I run a large chemistry laboratory - this device could be VERY useful! I’d buy a bunch of them.

Hi Chris @chris101,

This forum thread shows a lot of details about connecting i2c on the Arduino:
(including a lot of answers from Jude @JackANDJude)

To use i2c controlled components with the littlebits Arduino, the easiest road to go would be via a miniature connector soldered to SDA and SCL…
But most of the time you will also need GND, VCC and sometimes also a different supply voltage (3.3 V) for the electronics you want to connect…
GND and VCC could be connected via a protobit on a normal bitsnap, I could not find a 3.3 V connection on the board at first glance…
I have been thinking about using serial data and serial clock information in the littlebits design philosophy, but that would need bitsnaps with more than one SIG connection, which would not be compatible with the existing design…
I have more questions than answers for now…
I recently purchased a starters kit on RFID for my Arduino Duemilanove, so regarding i2c I am a newbie at the moment, but learning ! :cold_sweat:

Hey @alexpikkert!

I can’t believe that I missed that thread! :grimacing: Todd’s solution is quite elegant, a female header would be even better, cause then I2C devices could be stacked right on top of the arduino bit (keeping the wires short.)

@JackANDJude, any chance you could show off your I2C solution? I think this is a needed addition to the arduino bit - the wireless bit has recently been improved, as was the number bit some time ago. @rory_littleBits implied this was in the works …

ps, I’m an I2C noob as well -the chronodot used in my atomic clock is my first experience with it. It’s easier to use than I imagined. The Wire library is GREAT!

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Yes @JackANDJude and @chris101,
Jude, I see you are way ahead of us concerning i2c,
can you please throw some links upon us for a step by step tutorial on using i2c on the littlebits Arduino ?
I know there is a lot info on the internet, but our friend Leonardo from Littlebits might need special attention…

I only used the i2c for one project. That involved some hardware from Adafruit, which has handy dandy tutorials and code to go along with all their i2c stuff. I fiddled with their code to make it do what I want, but left the i2c parts of the code alone (if it aint broke…).

I really like @toddkurtz pictorial soldering guide:


Yeah, Todd’s mini-tutorial makes it look like a piece of cake! (and his soldering looks very professional.) I tried soldering one of those headers (to a radio receiver board, about 1/2 inch wide) and solder just did NOT want to stick to it! I guess I should buy a jar of rosin flux.

I completely agree about not messing with code if it works. Adafruit’s Chronodot™ tutorial sketch works like a charm, as does the Wire library.

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