Episode 2: MEGA, please talk to me!

The manual writes a few pages about the commands to control the arm, the syringes, the pumps, the valves. The control program allows to issue them one by one to the machine or to set up some sort of tests and dilution series. But that’s not what I want. I want to define methods and assays more freely. I want to control the MEGA, not vice versa. Thus, my plan is to write a small (?) application (!) that allows me to be the boss.

This task will require some brain work first:

  • Which OS should the program run in? any (at least: Windows and Linux).
  • Which programming platform could I use? wxWidgets and CodeLite.
  • How is the low level communication via the serial port done? Will listen and analyze…

I’ll do my first attempts in a Windows  environment, as the original control program runs there and I assume, it might be easier to learn and understand serial port programming in Windows than in Linux. The GUI Library (wxWindows) and the programming environment (CodeLite) are available for both Windows and Linux, thus,  porting the app later should not be difficult.

But first, a serial port analyzer is needed, a tool that can listen on the port and record the data traffic.

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