Knitic can best be described as an open source project designed to improve control of electronic knitting machines via an Arduino-based platform. Essentially, it facilitates the easy creation and modification of complex patterns on the fly.
According to the Arduino blog, the Knitic kit comprises an Arduino Due along with a DIY printed circuit board connected to the electronic parts of the original machine. As expected, software is used to regulate needle operation.
“Arduino is A and B in our work. It means we use Arduino for many purposes, and to be honest, we [can’t] imagine our lives without it. We applied Arduino already in our first hack of knitting machines, when floppy emulation script didn’t work for us, since we had 940 and not the 930 machine, ” explained Varvara & Mar, the duo who developed Knitic.
“Hence, we connected all buttons of knitting machine keypad to Arduino and were able to program knitting machine automatically. [Clearly], Arduino [plays] a key role, because it [processes] the sensor output, energizes the [correct] solenoids according to the pattern and communicates with [our] Knitic program written in Processing.”
As previously discussed on Bits & Pieces, the Arduino Due is a microcontroller board based on Atmel’s SAM3X8E ARM Cortex-M3 CPU. The board boasts 54 digital input/output pins (of which 12 can be used as PWM outputs), 12 analog inputs, 4 UARTs (hardware serial ports), a 84 MHz clock, an USB OTG capable connection, 2 DAC (digital to analog), 2 TWI, a power jack, an SPI header, a JTAG header, a reset button and an erase button.
Additional information about the open source Knitic can be found here.