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I have a system that uses two Arduino boards. One is used to control several different functions, and the other is dedicated to driving a 45 second countdown display (comprised of two large 7 segment displays.) All this second Arduino needs is a single signal to tell it when to start. I would like to simply connect an output pin (on #1) to an input pin (on #2) and and send a single pulse to get the clock started. Fo something this simple, I wanted to avoid using I2C. Can I do this? If so, is there anything else I need to be aware of (like connecting ground to ground?)

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Yes, you can. That is indeed the most easy way of communication.

And like you said, you have to connect the grounds of both arduino's.

Optionally you could add a pull-up of pull-down resistor, so the countdown doesn't accidentally start if the first arduino is still starting up, or is disconnected.

| improve this answer | |
  • Doe the pull-up (or pull-down) ensure that the base state for the input is high (or low)? – Hoytman Mar 8 '15 at 20:32
  • Yes. That's what it's for. – Gerben Mar 9 '15 at 11:24

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