Involvement:Expert (understands the inner workings) - Ownership:1 day to 1 week
For the price of a bit more than a relay, you get a relay installed on a board, with the standard support circuit (flyback diode, transistor to amplify the current from the microcontroller, an LED to indicate it's on, and a resistor.) Google "arduino relay" for more info. The relay will switch AC or DC current.
None, this is very handy to have.
All you need to do is make up a 3-wire connector that goes to V+, GND, and the signal pin from your microcontroller. Drive the pin HIGH to turn the relay on. Power this from your microcontroller, but if you use batteries, make sure they're fresh...if they are too low, the LED will light on the relay but it won't activate (you won't hear it click).
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