John wants to know how to control serial ports from python in linux. He's going to bring in some test hardware and see if we can get hardware flow control working over the serial port.
Knowing how to control the serial port is important to anybody interested in working with microcontrollers through your PC. Even though the Arduino (for example) hooks up to your PC with USB, it is still seen by your python app as a full-blown 100% died-in-the-wool serial port (even if there is no real serial port hardware whatsoever on your PC).
The python library we'll be looking at can also be used to crank up the baud rate. I've run 500,000 baud to my Arduino from my linux laptop without any hitches. Kind of fun to interact that fast with your little 8-bit buddy!