With a few simple components your Arduino or compatible board can send commands via infra-red – to mimic existing remote controls and give you interest automation options. However determining the codes to be sent for a particular device can be difficult if not published, and thus an infra-red sniffer is required.
This is a device that can receive signals from an infra-red remote control, determine the particular codes received when a button is pressed on the remote – and also send the codes off to a device if required. However by noting the codes you can use them in your projects to allow your Arduino to control these devices.
Thanks to Alan Zucconi you can easily make your own version, with a protoshield, an IR receiver and a transmitter. Alan’s sketch lets you see the IR codes in the serial monitor, so they can then be used in your own IR control sketches.
For complete details on how to make your own IR sniffer, visit Alan’s project page.