LabVIEW (short for Laboratory Virtual Instrumentation Engineering Workbench) is a platform and development environment for a visual programming language from National Instruments. The programming language used in LabVIEW also referred to as G, is a dataflow programming language. LabVIEW is radically different from most other coding languages, and the learning process can seem daunting to new users that don’t know where to start. In this post, I will talk about some of the ways you can go about getting more familiar with LabVIEW.
National Instruments provides a lot of resources to help you learn the fundamental building blocks of programming in LabVIEW. But if you’re someone that likes to learn by doing then I suggest checking out LabVIEW MakerHub. LabVIEW MakerHub is a community designed to inspire, enable, challenge, and support makers using LabVIEW. LabVIEW MakerHub is also the home of LINX, LINX provides easy to use LabVIEW VI’s for interacting with common embedded platforms like Arduino, chipKIT, and myRIO. With LINX 3.0, the software has been expanded to support the Raspberry Pi and the BeagleBone Black, enabling the boards to run LabVIEW code. You will be able to find basic LabVIEW tutorials along with specific LINX tutorials and a ton of LabVIEW projects and example code.
Another great place to look for example projects is Hackster.io. Hackster’s community of experienced developers and makers is a great resource for learning any type of software. My Hackster profile contains 16 beginner LabVIEW projects. Many of my projects use cheap microprocessors like the Raspberry Pi or the Beaglebone Black. Hackster is great because you are able to communicate with the person that created the project, this is very very helpful when you get stuck or confused.
The Digilent Blog is another great resource while you are trying to get the hang of LabVIEW. I have written blog posts for all of my LabVIEW projects and on all of the LabVIEW concepts that I used in each project. You can even go back to my first LabVIEW project (where I control a fan using a chipKIT WF32) and work forward from there. As my projects got more complicated I made sure to write posts to explain the elements of my code in greater depth. You can also post questions you have in the LabVIEW section of the Digilent Forum.
If you want to learn more about LabVIEW, I highly recommend checking out these resources. Interested in trying out LabVIEW for yourself? You can purchase a copy of LabVIEW 2014 home edition which includes everything you will need to run LINX 3.0. Thank you for reading my blog post, Please comment below with any questions or comments you may have.