[all variants] suggest me a first timer's hardware hobby project

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http://ubuntuforums.org – Hello everyone, I have never worked on a hardware project earlier, but would like start-off with something very elementary. I bought this book on embedded systems, and as much as I love the things I'm reading, I feel that it will be easier if I get my hands dirty with something. Clearly, I'm not understanding everything I'm reading. Can you tell me how I should approach a project like this I want to build a circuit which has like 4-5 buttons and a display to enter a number. When I enter a value and click on one of the buttons, it should send both these values to a text file on my computer. (Hardware)