I absolutely love this video posted by Jessica Wolpert. It’s (3) eleven-year-old girls working on an Arduino project. It looks like the final project is a “mouse alert system” that blinks the eyes of the cat when the mouse gets too close. I am so happy to see kids experimenting with electronics and micro-controllers…
ReMake America! These challenging times have presented us with a rare chance to try out new ways of doing things. The opportunities for makers are terrific — we can start at home to remake manufacturing, education, food production, transportation, and recreation. In this volume you’ll learn how to make an automatic garden, heat your water with the sun, monitor and share your home energy usage, and more in MAKE Vol 18.
…the Tweet-a-Watt, monitors and reports energy consumed by appliances and electronics plugged into it. As reported in “Show of Power” in Mechanical Engineering Magazine, electricity from a capacitor runs an embedded XBee wireless module within the Tweet-a-Watt just long enough to send daily data through a computer to the Internet. There a social messaging service like Twitter displays the results.
In his 2005 book “FAB: The Coming Revolution on Your Desktop – From Personal Computers to Personal Fabrication” Neil Gershenfeld describes the future of engineering design as moving away from mass production to personal fabrication. According to Gershenfeld, driven by the desire for personalized products, people will begin modifying technology by adapting commercial products for unique personal applications. A look at the Adafruit Industries Web site suggests the first wave of Gershenfeld’s personal fabrication future is already here.
For most people, the only time they are aware of their power consumption is when the utility bill arrives. Then, it’s tidily totaled for the month. But a gadget that would enable users to publish their daily electricity usage won a green industrial design competition in February…
While work continues full steam ahead at .:oomlout:. HQ last week we reached a point where all of our pre-existing projects were on hold. We were either waiting on packages to arrive or searching for the much more elusive delivery of inspiration. To deal with this we, of course, started a new project.
What is it?
Its a Breadboard Based Arduino Compatible (BBAC). Using a breadboard, layout sheet and pile of components you can have yourself a fun time putting it together (as simple as popping in each component), and when your finished have a completely functional Arduino Compatible board for experimenting with. (a photo with all the parts explained )
It may have come about as a tool of procrastination, but now finished it has loads of great uses (here are some we thought up).
The simple layout makes understanding (or explaining) how a micro-controller works easy.
Comes with loads of wire and a breadboard so you can start experimenting without the need for purchasing additional components.
Great for educational settings. (inexpensive enough that you can send everyone home with one at the end).
No need to solder (soldering is good fun but does present a slight barrier).
Great for permanent installations (prototype on a USB board then throw one of these into the final version)
If you’re in the Bay Area May 30th and 31st and want to win a free pass to Maker Faire, here’s your chance! Phil is a judge in this CNET contest so go enter! Adafruit will be at Maker Faire this year as usual, hope to see you there!
During the past few years, the world has rediscovered the joys of do-it-yourself (or DIY) projects, and everywhere you look these days, you can see people building things themselves rather than buying them from others.
A big part of this revolution has been Make magazine, and its Maker Faires, festivals–which celebrate the DIY spirit in all its manifestations–which take place each year in San Mateo, Calif…
The event’s organizers have given me 20 passes to award CNET News readers. And all you have to do to win one is tell me, in 150 words or less, how you would use DIY to remake America (the event’s theme).
It’s a broad topic, I admit, and I’m sure there are an infinite number of ideas that could win. But in order to pick the best 20, I’m going to turn to my celebrity judge, Make magazine senior editor Phil Torrone.
So, send your 150-words-max ideas to me at daniel(dot)terdiman-*at*-cnet(dot)com by May 8 (please include the words “Maker Faire contest” in your e-mail subject line, as well as your full name in your e-mail), and maybe I’ll be seeing you at Maker Faire.
Big news! The Arduino starter pack kits from Adafruit have new wires included! These wires are an improvement from the previously included 2 feet of solid core wire. The new wires are flexible stranded core, come in 7 colors and various lengths. The ends have molded tips so they are easy to grip and strong points – perfect for breadboarding and other jumpering needs. We include a bundle of 75 wires with 50 short (100mm/6″), 5 medium, 5 long and 5 xtra long jumpers. Pick up an Arduino starter pack kit today!
I was playing around with some AR markers the other day and came up with this idea. taking just a plain old vinyl record and attaching an AR marker to the label you can track the record in 3D space. The next question was, can you scratch the record?
So by figuring out the velocity of the records rotation and applying it to the payback of the audio you can scratch. There is some digital noise that needs to bee worked out, but sounds pretty good. Its still really hard to scratch, it takes some practice but is super fun. The next step is to figure out some nice triggers for different modes. I like the idea of not needing a turntable but the actual spinning of the record helps with the scratching and playback. I made a couple modes, one where the record is paused and you can just scratch through the song. The other looks for zero velocity for x time and then continues on with the song. If there is velocity you then are scratching and the audio is affected. I think that this project has some legs can’t wait to play more.
“…think about new and creative ways to engage young people in science and engineering, like science festivals, robotics competitions, and fairs that encourage young people to create, build, and invent — to be makers of things, not just consumers of things.”
Photos of an amazing project – We visited Peter Sand and his robotic garden + camera rig + plus a lot more at the W/——— project space in Chinatown, NYC. The giant robot creates a garden, plants seeds, waters them and lovingly tends to it – the operator can control the robotics with a game controller and for the Arduino fans, it has an Adafruit protoshield and Arduinos that help the gardening. To top it all off (literally) one the best camera rig set ups we’ve ever seen – Peter will be posting videos soon, but check out some of past projects to get an idea of what it can do. You can see some of Peter’s previous work here and here…
Meggy Jr RGB is a new kit from the talented scientists at Evil Mad Scientists (who are actually quite nice and friendly) designed as a platform to develop handheld pixel games. It’s based around a fully addressable 8×8 RGB LED matrix display, and features six big fat buttons for comfy game play. The kit is driven by an ATmega168 microcontroller, and you can write your own games or otherwise control it through the Arduino development environment by simply plugging in an FTDI cable. Meggy Jr is fast, programmable, open source and hackable. And fun! Get one today!
I used a spare Motor port on the Motor Shield to directly drive a 6 Volt Relay that fires the “Pyro ” electronics – this was a pretty neat trick for the shield to do this (meant less electronics to drive relay).