# IR Remote Control Fun

#### Visitor

##### Well-Known Member
I'm still hiding out in Mexico. Warmth, sunlight and many places to eat outdoors is a nice change from a dark, dizzily Seattle winter

I did bring my laptop and a Seeed Xiao "Seeeduino" board with me and recently went to a couple electronics stores here*. Among other things I bought a couple IR remotes (one from each store). These two controls, obviously from the same Chinese factory, have different overlays and one has 4 less buttons.

* see below

The first order of business was mapping out the button codes. Surprise, surprise, surprise. Both controls have the same address (device) code, and the command codes are the same for the physical button locations. The chart below shows the screwy arrangement of the command codes.

What this means is that pressing "1" on the two remotes gives different results, since the number keys are on the top of one remote and the bottom of the other. Fun, fun, fun. This probably explains why the IR remotes for LED bulbs and strips have strange results when used with different units.

* Electronics stores in Merida, Mx on the Yucatan Peninsula:

The population of Merida is nearly 900,000. It's about 30 miles inland, and is a smart college town. As far as we have determined, it's impossible to get a bad meal here. Steren Electronics is a chain electronics store, with a number of locations in Merida. It's kind of a consumer electronics store, but with a huge component and maker selection, with deep stock levels and good prices. Nothing like Radio Shack of recent years, with 5 values of half-watt resistors, with at most two packages of 2, hanging on a peg for a buck each. Steren has many custom products, as well as a range of modules and parts from China. Few cities in the US have electronics stores that come close to this anymore.

Electrónica 60 Norte is more focused on makers, and is a family run business. Many different parts, components and tools of interest to makers. Good stock levels, knowledgeable, friendly people. Again, few cities in the US have anything comparable. Both stores have comprehensive websites showing most of what they have.

As far as maker-spaces, I got excited when I saw a big sign on building not far from where we're staying that said it was a maker space. After coming up empty with a number of searches, I finally found a listing on Facebook. Permanently closed 2 years ago.

#### Visitor

##### Well-Known Member
I guess COVID hit them early...
Just beating the rush!

They were doing pretty well with Covid here when we came in November, but recently the numbers have gone way up.

They take Covid very seriously here - everyone wears masks outdoors and if you go into a business or restaurant, you will have your temperature taken and be given a shot of hand sanitizer. Mask compliance is virtually 100%.

They have recently been enforcing the 11pm Covid curfew. When I was having stomach trouble, and we determined it was giardia after all else had failed, my partner agreed to go to the farmacia at midnight to get the needed mediation. He came back much later, having found it at the 6th all-night pharmacy he went to....and being stopped at 4 Covid checkpoints along the way! Husband of the year!

Interestingly, most farmacias are open all night here. Also, giardia has a one dose, 3 pill anti-parasites cure now. I seem to recall that "beaver fever" was something to be avoided at all costs; it was something you had to live with if you got it.

#### Mike - K8LH

##### Well-Known Member
Merida sounds heavenly...

#### JimB

##### Super Moderator
One thing I don't know if I could ever adjust to.... sunrise is about 6am year round, and sunset 6pm, with virtually no twilight. It's almost like a switch is flipped to turn the sun on or off.
That is something which was very noticeable to me on my trips to equatorial places like Malaysia and Singapore, the day/night transition is very quick compared with northern Scotland.

JimB

#### Nigel Goodwin

##### Super Moderator
That is something which was very noticeable to me on my trips to equatorial places like Malaysia and Singapore, the day/night transition is very quick compared with northern Scotland.

JimB

Do you get daylight in Northern Scotland?

I've only been to Scotland once, in January - and the weather was absolutely lovely - while we were there for work, we did a bit of sight seeing, and went to visit the Kelpies, it was a beautiful sunny day. Mind you, in the same few days we did have heavy snow over night.

#### Visitor

##### Well-Known Member
I'm starting to envision a lot of possibilities for the Seeed Xiao as an HID keyboard device.

I can add shortcuts to launch apps remotely, so the IR remote could enable full media player functionality. If you use the remote to launch the various media apps, you could then customize what pressing each button sends to match the app in use.

Using a keypad instead, it could be used to launch design apps and send a series of keystrokes for some of those operations you have to do all the time. Say, create a new schematic, set the desired page size, place some standard text and set some custom parameters.

Nothing earth-shattering or new, but pretty awesome for less than ten bucks of hardware.

#### Visitor

##### Well-Known Member
I went to the one other electronics store in Merida today that I hadn't visited yet. Unlike the other two, this store doesn't have their entire inventory listed on their web page, so I just went to look with nothing particular in mind. They had many things in a display case, and much more to ask for if language wasn't a barrier.

One thing I did get was a remote control for an LED strip; the remote is in the identical package to the other two I got and I wanted to see if the IR codes were the same. Remember, this was in a display case, in an antistatic bag, so I didn't notice all the important details.

I loaded the IR reader program and verified it was working with one of the original remotes. But pressing the button on the new control did nothing. Maybe the battery was dead I thought, so I swapped the pullout battery trays between controls (identically the same part, supporting the conclusion they come out of one factory). Still nothing.

I used the camera on my phone to see the IR pulses from the first control; yep, I could see pale blue flashes. Pointed the new remote at the camera....and the LED is RED. Yes, it's an RF remote, not IR. Oops. It did come with a control module for an LED strip, so it will find some use.

And yes, you probably noticed the "RF Remote" label on the control

#### billybob

##### Active Member
This reminds me off a time when I created a little infrared jammer to mess with my brothers remote controlled LED multicolor lamp. It was hilarious! The look of pure frustration!

#### Visitor

##### Well-Known Member
Way before your time, the movie "Grumpy Old Men" was about two curmudgeonly next door neighbor frienemies. Whenever the one saw his neighbor turn on the TV, he'd rush to the window with his remote and mess with the TV.

#### billybob

##### Active Member
Way before your time, the movie "Grumpy Old Men" was about two curmudgeonly next door neighbor frienemies. Whenever the one saw his neighbor turn on the TV, he'd rush to the window with his remote and mess with the TV.
I love that movie! XD

##### Well-Known Member
Re-branding ?
Grumpy-Electro-Tech-Old-Men-Online.com

( Can I be president )

#### gophert

##### Well-Known Member
Re-branding ?
Grumpy-Electro-Tech-Old-Men-Online.com

( Can I be president )
I can't imagine any of the other grumpy old men just letting you call dibs on president. As Chairman of the Board, I'll advise you to hold a vote on the president role.

#### Musicmanager

##### Active Member
On a slightly different note .. .. .. .

Some years ago, early 80s I think, my best friend at the time, having inherited a significant sum from an elderly relative, had decided on a new car. He was not married and still lived with his parents, so having little commitments he splashed out on one of the first Renault 5 Turbo's, which I think was the car for any self-respecting hip to be seen in at the time. He went the whole hog with leather upholstery, Mother of Pearl white paintwork, a worthy sound system and a top of the range alarm security system.
He had made a prior arrangement to come to us for his dinner, which not surprisingly was on the day he collected the vehicle, having waited some months for delivery, so that he could show off his new toy.
His dismay was profound, boisterous in fact, when he discovered that the number '3' button on our TV remote activated or de-activated his new car alarm .. ..

MM