The controller software has come far enough along that I’ve opened up a sourceforge account for it and will start accepting other developers that want to help out with the project.
It’s officially open-source at this point and is being released under the GPL license.
The current version of the software uses the Velleman K8000’3 for I/O and is capable of controlling a two-layout table which includes one shutter and light sensor for each layout.
If you’re intersted in the project, check out the project pages and roadmap and let me know if you’d like to help out.
As far as the local efforts go, I added software control of my copy laser this morning. What this means is that I’ve got a switch on my processing table and when I close it, an input line on the K8000 goes high. When that happens, a software check opens an output port to turn on the laser. The laser is driven with a power supply that requires a TTL signal to turn on.
This is nice because I’ve got control of the laser power near the table as well as through software which means I can turn the laser on/off through programmed events.
On the downside it means that I can’t turn the laser on unless the computer is running but since it’s on all the time anyway that’s hardly a problem.