Nearly every home-built project we cover uses Arduino somewhere, and the open-source microcontroller system is now out of the beta stage, having reached the version 1.0 milestone. The system's gained massive popularity amongst the developer and hobbyist community over the past few years, being powerful enough to make ideas such as the YouTube Microwave and Star Trek door a reality. The boards have a processor and memory, along with an array of interface ports for data to be sent and received. The boards are programmed within a specialist developer environment, using a simple language loosely based on C++. The company also offers "Shields," which allow developers to add extra functionality or ports to their board including MIDI, Ethernet, and Touchscreens.

Version 1.0 is more than a new number, though, bringing along a range of new features for existing users. Aside from the new color scheme in the developer environment, several of the software libraries have also been improved. The Ethernet library now has DNS and DHCP support, which should make networking with the devices far easier, and the SD storage library can now open multiple files at once, allowing for more complex projects with a standalone device. There are a host of other changes too, which are listed in the release notes. The update's free to download now.