I’m somewhat new to using an Arduino, but am a software developer by day, so that’s helped my learning a bit. I have a woodshop in my basement and have made some craftsman style furniture as a hobby. I’ve translated those hobbies into cache container creations.
I still work full-time and have two kids, so I’m lucky to make just a few caches a year. While I was first learning, I used many parts from the Maker Shed Arduino starter kit. My wife got me this for Christmas and is what has led me down the trail. It’s kind of pricey, but if you buy one thing to start learning about micro-controllers, this is a good set of parts and sensors (it includes an Arduino Uno):
I used that kit, and lessons at SparkFun to learn the basics of Arduino programming and how to use sensors:
I went through each mini-experiment and figured what, why, and how each component was doing, and how the program interacted with each. As you can see, Sparkfun’s last experiment is building a Simon Says program. I was able to take their program and add to the “success” method so that a servo motor would spin. With the proof-of-concept done, I was ready to order full scale buttons and lights and try and make a geocache out of it.