NeoPixel Ring – 16 x WS2812 5050 RGB LED with Integrated Drivers: Round and round and round they go! 16 ultra bright smart LED NeoPixels are arranged in a circle with 1.75″ (44.5mm) outer diameter. The rings are ‘chainable’ – connect the output pin of one to the input pin of another. Use only one microcontroller pin to control as many as you can chain together! Each LED is addressable as the driver chip is inside the LED. Each one has ~18mA constant current drive so the color will be very consistent even if the voltage varies, and no external choke resistors are required making the design slim. Power the whole thing with 5VDC (4-7V works) and you’re ready to rock. (read more)
Every Thursday is #3dthursday here at Adafruit! The DIY 3D printing community has passion and dedication for making solid objects from digital models. Recently, we have noticed electronics projects integrated with 3D printed enclosures, brackets, and sculptures, so each Thursday we celebrate and highlight these bold pioneers!
Have you considered building a 3D project around an Arduino or other microcontroller? How about printing a bracket to mount your Raspberry Pi to the back of your HD monitor? And don’t forget the countless LED projects that are possible when you are modeling your projects in 3D!
The Adafruit Learning System has dozens of great tools to get you well on your way to creating incredible works of engineering, interactive art, and design with your 3D printer! If you’ve made a cool project that combines 3D printing and electronics, be sure to let us know, and we’ll feature it here!
Make your own glowing spike fashion accessory using 3D printing with NinjaFlex flexible filament to diffuse a strip of NeoPixel LEDs, controlled by GEMMA inside a flexible stitch- or pin-on enclosure. Check out our full tutorial with 3D files and example code!
Join Becky Stern and friends every week as we delve into the wonderful world of wearables, live on YouTube. We’ll answer your questions, announce a discount code for the Adafruit store, and explore wearable components, techniques, special materials, and projects you can build at home! Ask your wearables questions in the comments, and if your question is featured on a future episode, you’ll be entered to win the show giveaway!
With Intel’s announcement of a collaboration with Opening Ceremony and Fitbit partnering with Tory Burch, the tech industry has been reaching out to the fashion industry to help transform their wearable gadgets into something a bit more fashionable. Outside of Cute Circuit, who debuted their first haute tech collection at NYFW this year, most of the fashion industry has yet to embrace — even explore — wearable technology.
The exception this year was Swiss fashion house Akris, led by designer Albert Kriemler, who sent an illuminated coat, pants and three dresses down the runway.
The collection itself was inspired by German artist Thomas Ruff’s work “Stars,” “Nights” and “ma.r.s.”
The embroidered LEDs played nicely with the space motif. The e-boridery (or electronic embroidery) was a collaboration between Forster Rohner and AKRIS.
Wearable electronics don’t always have to be complex sensors for the purpose of improving your health or displaying communication. Sometimes they can just look nice.
Marcus Olssen has done a fantastic job designing this bracelet. You can check out the actual model files at thingiverse and see that he didn’t just create a hollow toriod in which to cram some LEDs. He actually designed this in a way that, when assembled, the LEDs are safely enclosed within the bracelet. There is a removable section that holds the Adafruit Trinket and the battery, held into place with neodymium magnets. This removable section serves to make the bracelet easier to put on as well as easier to charge/reprogram.
The fashion show at the 2014 New York 3D Printshow featured a performance of Purple Knights gymnastics team wearing ThreeForm armor-like designs. This collaborative project involves creating high-quality body scans of the gymnasts to create five unique, perfectly fit outfits.
Working with the champion athletes of the Purple Knights has been a great opportunity to apply the ThreeForm design process.
We “heart” Adafruit. Just like there are legions of iblers that are fans of instructables, for the loyal fans of Adafruit (gee, what do you call them, adafruits?) make your own Adafruit Adabot Robot Heart Plushie. Everyone needs a hug. This derivative of the IKEA FAMNIG HJÄRTA red heart cushion was Inspired by Adafruit’s own robot Adabot, star of Circuit Playground. Of course, we also have the Instructables Robot Robo-Heart Plushie too.
I have just finished my binary wrist watch project (well, the new revision anyway). I was surprised at how small I was able to make it compared to last time.
Unfortunately I used the wrong footprint for the PIC when laying out the PCB. The PIC comes in a SSOP-20 package and the footprint marked “SSOP-20″ in the KiCAD library is actually a TSSOP-20. Ridiculously enough there’s also a separate TSSOP-20 footprint in KiCAD.
I was able to get away with bending the pins of the SSOP inward and then reflow soldering it to the TSSOP footprint. It’s a bit of butchery but I couldn’t give this one to Mr. Murphy.
After getting all the hardware wrapped up, I could start coding. The watch can be woken up from sleep mode (display off, only RTC running) by holding the right button for one second. It can be put back into sleep mode by holding the right button for one second again.
In sleep mode the watch consumes about 150µW when powered from a CR2032. I don’t know how accurate my meter is at the µA range, I might measure the consumption again after receiving one of Dave Jones’ µCurrent measurement adapters.
Somewhere in the PIC datasheet it is mentioned that floating pins should be pulled to VDD or GND when not used to prevent excess power consumption because of switching currents. I haven’t done this in this revision of the board and I don’t know how big the impact on power consumption would be.
Hannah Perner-Wilson is completing a residency at Subnet in Salzburg, Austria, and writes:
Traces with Origin imagines a parallel universe in Which 200 years ago, around 1800 When electricity what being Discovered and the first electronic devices were being invented, communities made a point of Developing Their Own electronics. Search local electronics relied on regional resources and production methods, and Their design and function were ‘strongly Influenced by cultural tradition and ritual. As cultural goods, the electronic devices in this parallel universe Often have quaint functionality or no utilitarian function at all, much unlike the deices we find ourselves surrounded by.
You will be covering forgettable sensors as part of your talk – without giving away too much of your presentation, can you tell us what role do sensors play in the garment as a technology hub concept?
Garments serve as the perfect base to integrate technology into. People are in contact with textiles virtually 24/7 in clothing, furniture and bed linen. Its touch is natural to our skin and thus a perfect medium to interface our biosignals.
You have been a long standing participant of the Smart Fabrics (now Smart Fabrics and Wearable Technology) – can you share with new comers to the event why you come back every year and what makes the event such a unique networking and learning opportunity?
Smart Fabrics and Wearable Technology has long been a great marketing and even sales medium for Clothing+ for the audience it gathers. This is where we as a supplier and manufacturer meet and address potential customers, present our company and products and convey the message that textile-integrated sensors are available in mass-production right now.
We’ve got our Fitbits, and now Fido can have his version, Whistle, as seen on CNet. Whistle attaches to a dog’s collar and can monitor movement and who the dog is spending time with. It then transmits this information and makes sense of it in its own app. By the way, the dog in the pic is named Kona, and his owner, Tina Haskins, is able to keep tabs on him throughout the day in New Jersey, even when she is thousands of miles away in Antarctica. It’s pretty impressive stuff.
It’s one of the more colorful instances among Whistle’s users and while it illustrates how Whistle is effective when helping owners feel connected to their pets, it doesn’t show the real magic behind Whistle. Haskins said the big value for her is in the data Whistle gathers. It’s the key to establishing a baseline of data for Kona’s health, something that would be difficult to determine otherwise, given that she doesn’t know everything about Kona’s past.
“Kona’s a rescue. I don’t have any real knowledge of what his life was like before I had him, and I don’t know what his parents were like,” Haskins said.
The app can help its owner see different activities like walking, playtime and rest. The info leads to an understanding of what is typical for that dog. Check out this log of a walk.
There is an even bigger picture with this information gathering. Researchers at the Veterinary Clinical Investigations Center at University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine have been using Whistle to look at chronic pain.
These are cases involving ailment like arthritis or bone cancer. The animals wear the device on their collars for 7 to 10 days and then researchers have them try out various activities, like sitting, walking or running. Understanding how active an animal is — even at night when pain can cause a dog with bone cancer to move around a lot — could understanding how to make an animal most comfortable when dealing with ailments.
In the same way we have seen customized formulas in dog foods, such as puppy chow and senior diet, this data gathering can lead to customized care for breeds. There is the potential to look at epilepsy and asthma in dogs, and offer specific care and products based on those issues. Since people often miss the chance of seeing their dog’s habits throughout the day, Whistle will offer them a chance to be proactive in their dog’s care. This product has just hit the market, but if you want to DIY a collar that helps your pooch stay fit, check out our GPS collar tutorial.
Fashioning tech has a great piece on Adaptive Survival Clothing by Jacqueline Nanne.
One of the primary functions of clothing is the regulation of body temperature. Traditionally we layer on clothes as the temperature drops but the acting of dressing and undressing as we move from outdoors to indoors is quite cumbersome.
We’ve mastered garments that keep our bodies warm but wearables that keep us cool are more difficult to come by. Do sweat-wicking performance wear actually work?
Adaptive Survival Clothing by Jacqueline Nanne is early stage smart textile experiments that aim at creating clothing that adapts body temperature. The textiles are designed with kinetic pores that open and close. Nitinol, a smart memory alloy, is used to actuate the textiles.