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Want to get better at coding Elixir? Write a hardware project with Nerves. As you build this binary clock, you’ll build in resiliency using OTP, the same libraries powering many commercial phone switches. You’ll attack complexity the way the experts do, using a layered approach. You’ll sharpen your debugging skills by taking small, easily verified steps toward your goal. When you’re done, you’ll have a working binary clock and a good appreciation of the work that goes into a hardware system. You’ll also be able to apply that understanding to every new line of Elixir you write.

Combining software with hardware can be frustrating, but you can become proficient in no time by taking a simple, logical approach. Blinking a single LED is the traditional «Hello-World» of embedded systems. Building your own binary clock is the logical next step. It blinks groupings of LEDs based on the system time. This guide walks you through a working project using the techniques used by exper …