Skip to content

Mates Controller Interface


Mates Studio's Commander and Architect Environment program the BBM modules with a simple serial command protocol. This protocol can be followed by any chosen host microcontroller to control and interact with the module easily, as long as the host controller features UART interface.

For an added convenience, both Commander and Architect offers a simple controller interface that serves as a simulation tool for any host controller. This is useful when testing the capabilities and functionalities opened to the host controller before the actual deployment or host-side development. This manual discusses how to use the tool.

Opening the Tool


In a Commander project, the tool is accessible by simple clicking the Control tab.

Commander: Control Tab


In an Architect project, the tool is accessible by simple clicking the Control button. This will open a separate window.

Architect: Control Button

User Interface

The Mates Controller tool can be divided into three separate areas.

Mates Controller Areas

  1. Page Navigation

    This provides a simple way to change between the pages present in the project

  2. Main Control Area

    This area displays all widgets that can be interacted with

  3. Command Viewer Area

    This shows all the commands sent by during the simulation

Controlling a Module

After uploading a Commander or Architect project, the Controller interface can be used to control the connected display module. This effectively provides a demonstration of what a host controller can do together with a Breadboard Mates display module.

Establishing Connection

To communicate and control the display, the application needs to first connect to the module. After confirming the selected port, click the Connect button to establish connection.

Connect Module

The status indicator will display a bright color after successfully establishing connection.

Status Indicator

It is IMPORTANT to ensure that the module sends the ready signal before using the controls. This can be checked from the Command Viewer area as shown:

Module is Ready


Connecting to the display can be used to ensure that the port is not busy and is safe for reprogramming. If an error occurs when trying to connect, the port is being used by another software or another Mates Studio window.

The display will always show the first page, Page0, initially. Other pages included in the project can easily be activated by using clicking the corresponding item in the Page Navigation area.

Navigate the Pages

After activating another page, the Main Control area will show the widgets present in the active form and the Command Viewer area will show the data exchanged that happened to change the active page.

Navigate Command

Controlling the Widgets

Different control interfaces are provided for different type of widgets. Here are some of the control interfaces for the available widgets.

Led Digits Control

  1. GET

    Retrieves the current value of the widget.


    Starts and ends widget animation.

  3. SET

    Sends the value specified by the input box.

Print Area Control

  1. CLR

    Clears the printed values

  2. COLOR

    Sets the font color to use in next print.

  3. ADD

    Appends the value in the input box.

Led Spectrum Control


    Starts and ends widget animation.

  2. SET

    Sends the value specified by the input box.

Text Area Control

  1. SET

    Sends the value specified by the input box

Resetting the Module

The controller interface includes an option to reset a connected display. Resetting the display involves disconnecting to the display and reconnecting.

Reset Module