codebender is an online development and collaboration platform for all Arduino users, makers, and engineers out there. It makes it easy for anyone, no matter how novice they are, to program their favorite microcontroller.

codebender takes away all the frustration of setting up and maintaining your computer when developing applications for Arduino related hardware.

It offers an advanced editor with highlighting, autoformating, and autocompletion. It has an extensive repository of libraries that you can access directly from the editor, as well as a handy compiler with very descriptive output that will help you quickly debug your programs.

Your projects are stored on the cloud, so you can access them anytime, from anywhere, and share them with your friends and colleagues. You can even embed your code anywhere on the Internet... on your favorite forum, or your personal blog.
codebender supports an ever-growing collection of Arduino platforms. And now, one of those platforms is FLORA, Adafruit’s wearable electronics platform.
In order to be able to program your FLORA, you need two pieces of software on your computer. The first is a driver that will allow your computer to recognize the FLORA. The other is a browser plugin that will allow codebender to communicate with the FLORA.

Thankfully, codebender’s Getting Started guide will help you set these up, and have you programming your FLORA in just minutes. Let's check it out!
For starters, in order to use codebender, you have to create an account. You can visit codebender, click on the big "Try It Now!" button and take a quick tour of the editor.

Follow the steps that will get you familiar with the development environment and project properties. When you finish exploring, click "Sign Up" at the title bar to move on.
To create an account, you can either type in a username, an email, and a password, or sign up with your Google or Github account (no more passwords to remember).

If you typed in your own credentials, you will receive an email with an activation link. Just click on the "Confirm Account" button.

If you chose to sign up with Google or Github, you may need to login and authorize codebender.

After sign up, you will be redirected to your homepage. A message will appear to inform you that you will have to follow the Getting Started Guide. Just click on the "Let's Go!" button.
As the guide suggests, it will help you set everything up and start programming your FLORA. Let's begin.

The first step is to install the codebender plugin.

Firefox

If you are using Firefox, click on the "Add to Firefox" link. A popup message will appear… just click "Allow" to continue.

Firefox will download the plugin, and then a window will open. Click "Install Now" to continue.
Finally, restart Firefox. When Firefox opens again, you will be automatically directed to the next page.

Chrome

If you are using Chrome on Windows 8/8.1, click on the "Add to Windows" link to download the plugin. A Codebendercc.msi file will appear in your Downloads folder. Double click on the file to install the plugin. After you’ve installed the plugin, you'll need to restart Chrome, and you will be redirected to the next page.
If you are using Chrome on Linux, Mac OS X, or other Windows editions, click on the "Add to Chrome" link to get to the chrome web store. There, click on the "+ FREE" button to install the plugin. After installation, go back to the guide where you will be redirected to the next page.

Windows

On Windows, you have to install the Arduino drivers. Click on the "Download Drivers" button. A windows-driver-installer.zip file will appear in your Downloads folder. Extract the zip file and double click on the windows-driver-installer.exe to install the driver. If you get any security warnings, click "Install" to continue.
The drivers installation might take a while, so please be patient.
After the drivers installation, the following window will appear. Click "OK". Then, go back to the guide, and you will be redirected to the next page.

Linux

On Linux, you don’t have to install any drivers, but you need to set the correct permissions. Click on the "Show Manual Fix" button, and follow the directions there.

Mac OS X

On OS X, you don't need to install any driver for FLORA. You can click on the "I've done this. Next" button to move on.

On the other hand, if you're using other Arduino boards like Duemilanove, and other Arduinos that use an FTDI chip, you'll need to install the drivers at some point. So, if you think that you are going to use Arduino boards like that in the future, you can install the drivers now and have your computer ready.
You're all set up, and it’s time to test your FLORA.

Connect the FLORA to your computer with a USB cable.
On the left drop-down menu select "Adafruit FLORA". On the right menu, choose the port. If the FLORA is the only board connected on your computer, the right port should appear by default.
On Windows, the name of that port should be COMxx. On Linux or Mac OS X, it should be /dev/ttyxxx.
Then click on the "Run on Arduino" button and watch FLORA’s onboard LED blink!
That's it! Your FLORA works and you are ready to start programming it.
On the final page of the guide, you can get some hints on where to go next.

If you are just starting out with embedded electronics, give the blink example another try. Play with the on/off times of the LED and see what you can come up with.

If you feel more adventurous, try creating your own project. Navigate to your homepage where you can create a new project. Type a name in the box and click on the “Create” button.
You'll be brought to the editor page. On the left you have the control panel, and on the right is the editor.
Write your program in the editor. Then, on the control panel, select your device (Adafruit FLORA), choose the right port, and click "Run on Arduino". The program uploads to your device, and then you can test how it performs.

Have fun creating new and exciting projects.

This guide was first published on May 25, 2014. It was last updated on May 25, 2014.