Consider an electrical circuit involving multiple electrical components (resistors, capacitors, etc..). Using a digital circuit you can simulate the working of the circuit without building it physically!
There are many platforms which are available offline such as proteus and to some extent MATLAB. But frankly speaking, you might get bored of them, because It lacks the efficient User Interface (UI) that is very much needed by a beginner.
Now, let’s go out and explore those available online. Fritzing is one such platform which is an open-source circuit design tool. But my personal favorite - “TinkerCad”
Tinkercad is a platform developed by Autodesk and it is absolutely Free!
You can create 3D designs, circuits, code blocks and it even contains Lessons for beginners and some ready-made projects which just makes you love this platform!
How to use Tinkercad?
First things first- Go to TinkerCAD Official Website and Create your free Autodesk account
Once you sign in to your account you will be redirected to your dashboard. Here you will be introduced to various options for creating 3D designs, Circuits, etc.
Select the Circuits section
You will find an option to create a new circuit. As soon as you are in the workspace, it is better to rename the file to avoid confusion.
At the right end of the workspace, you find the device palette. Many options are available in the dropdown window for various devices. By default, Basic Components will be displayed. In basic components, you get to choose devices like potentiometers, push button, LED, etc. I recommend you explore the different sensors and actuators that are available.
You can quickly do a simulation by selecting some pre-built circuits. Select Arduino under Starters which will give you results with basic circuit assemblies. Let us consider the Blink circuit. You can see that it just contains an LED connected to one of the digital pins of the Arduino board. Drag and drop the Blink circuit onto the workspace.
Now that we have the circuit ready it is time to code !!
Click on the Code tab. By default, you will be presented with the code in blocks. Since it is a pre-built circuit, it comes ready with code. People not comfortable with block mode, no worries. Just click on the drop-down and select Text.
Now you can see your basic code ready for the circuit. You can go ahead and click on the Start Simulation.
Once the simulation starts you can observe the LED blink for every 1 sec. For beginners, it is recommended you learn more about Arduino programming, the basic structure of a program and more. You can find the required information here. It is also possible to make out the main things using the comments provided too. Play around with the code for better understanding.
So that’s it !! You are ready to go !!
Wasn’t that simple? Now it’s time for you to explore Tinkercad in depth. It’s best if you start to check out all the circuits in lessons and understand the code associated with it!