Arduino is an open-source single-board microcontroller, descendant of the open-source Wiring platform, designed to make the process of using electronics in multidisciplinary projects more accessible. The hardware consists of a simple open hardware design for the Arduino board with an Atmel AVR processor and on-board input/output support. The software consists of a standard programming language compiler and the boot loader that runs on the board.
Arduino hardware is programmed using a Wiring-based language (syntax and libraries), similar to C++ with some simplifications and modifications, and a Processing-based integrated development environment.
Current versions can be purchased pre-assembled; hardware design information is available for those who would like to assemble an Arduino by hand. Additionally, variations of the Italian-made Arduino—with varying levels of compatibility—have been released by third parties; some of them are programmed using the Arduino software.
The Arduino project received an honorary mention in the Digital Communities category at the 2006 Prix Ars Electronica.