Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Education: Meet the Megaprocessor: A 20kHz behemoth CPU you can actually see in action via Extreme Tech

Education: Meet the Megaprocessor: A 20kHz behemoth CPU you can actually see in action via Extreme Tech

Ever wanted to climb inside a computer and watch all the parts to their thing? The Megaprocessor might be one way to do just that.

James Newman looked at all the computerized miniaturization around him and thought differently. He wanted to see how the computer worked at the transistor level so he blew up the computer by 100 times so he (and, thankfully, we) can see the sweet goodness of every bit, every byte, every ad, every register and more as it runs programs.

Megaprocessor panorama 640x207

You can get a tour of the Megaprocessor in this video where Newman explains how it all works — and even plays a game of Tetris on the computer while you watch the blinking lights.

Read the entire article

Megaprocessor

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Project: Door Iris Porthole is the Perfect Fix for Detroit Hackerspace via Evan's Techie-Blog

Here is a cool project for your private or public makerspace/hackerspace. This porthole was originally designed to solve a specific problem, but it would look cool almost anywhere. Motion sensors detect when someone approaches the door and opens the porthole, then close it again when the person has passed.

While the porthole is cool, you can probably think of a hundred other shapes, uses, and designs that would be just as cool -- or even cooler!



Door Iris Porthole is the Perfect Fix for Detroit Hackerspace via Evan's Techie-Blog
At i3Detroit we had a door (as seen it the scrolling, scaling web 2.0 bliss that is i3’s main page [just go to the wiki for important stuff]) that frequently got opened into groups of people standing by the front door.  The groups stand there because despite this door always having existed someone decided that a good bottleneck for people is right there, in the way.  Other hackerspaces have paperwork filled out elsewhere in their space, places where you can sit down even, but not us.  I chose not to solve the problem of people congregating because it didn’t seem interesting.  Instead, the problem to be solved was that the door was a bit too opaque.  We could, of course, put a window in the door.  The issue was that the door worked fine most of the time as its old opaque self, and we really only needed a window then there were people on the other side of the door.  An on-demand window.  A mechanical iris for the door of course.
Read the entire article

Click through to watch a video of the porthole in operation




Saturday, July 09, 2016

Project: Raspberry Pi based weather forecast display from caternuson

I have been thinking of just such a display (or something similar using Neopixels) and this gives me a great starting point. I love passive information delivery and this makes the upcoming weather so clear. I also had thoughts of building something similar for commute times, as my wife and son drive over an hour to college each day. (She is  a professor and he is an incoming freshman at the same school) Knowing the current commute conditions can help them be aware of those days they need to leave earlier.

I would probably be building my project with Arduino and not Raspberry Pi, but a lot of the logic and design could be quite similar. 

The creator has some nicely designed icons and also provides the API links to access the NOAA resources he used for the weather data. There’s even some great info on how he created the cabinet and mounted the LED Matrices. Very nice.

Raspberry Pi based weather forecast display from caternuson

Project: Raspberry Pi based weather forecast display from caternuson

Displays the weather forecast for the next four days as icons on 8x8 LED matrices. Based on a Raspberry Pi using LED matrices from Adafruit. Housed in a custom built wood enclosure with a glass front panel.

View this project on GitHub

Thursday, July 07, 2016

CANCELLED - Kids Event: What is an Arduino? What can it do? -- at Meltdown Comics, Hollywood - Sat. July 9 @ 1 pm

Update (July 8, 2016): CANCELLED due to scheduling conflict. So sorry, but we will reschedule this event in the next month or 2. -- Douglas


I’ll be presenting this kid-friendly Arduino session this Saturday, July 9, 2016 @ 1 pm at Meltdown Comics.

Meltdown Comics
7522 Sunset Blvd.
LA, CALIF 90046 USA
323.851.7223
[Map

 


What is an Arduino? What can it do?

Arduino Microcontrollers are tiny, palm-of-your-hand-sized customizable computers that you can make do amazing things -- but how do they work?
At this session children will learn how Arduinos perform their technological "magic" by becoming part of one.

ArduinoUnoSmd

Oled screen

Dive inside the Arduino as you become the individual components of the board and act as various sensors and displays.

Run a program processing data, inputs, outputs, writing to displays and more. Move bits and bytes around the room and develop a deeper understanding of what happens at the microscopic level of the Arduino. You'll make the Arduino come alive and learn how you can make it do almost anything you wish.

Douglas E. Welch becomes your Master Control Program and leads you through your day as part of a real-life Arduino Microcontroller.

 

Education: "Soldering is Easy" Complete Comic Book available for download from MightyOhm

I came across the “Soldering is Easy” comic book in my internet travels and learned quite a bit in a very short time. My soldering skills have never been the best, so it's great to have an easily accessible resource in such a fun format. What a friendly way, too. to introduce kids to soldering concepts and help them jumpstart their own electronics projects.

Even better — it’s available in 22 languages, so everyone can get i on the fun.

Check it out!

Education:

Download “Soldering is Easy” in PDF format from MightyOhm

 

Monday, July 04, 2016

Hardware: 1Sheeld (Android shield for Arduino)

This shield has me quite interested and it might just drive me to pick up and Arduino Uno so I can play around with it. As I have mentioned before, I love connecting my projects to the outside world and this shield does that and more. I think it is a great idea to make use of the sensors we already have in our smartphones to expand what out Arduinos can do. This could be a great way to repurpose an older Android phone.

Click through to the iSheeld web site for more information, including a video to get your started. 

1Sheeld (Android shield for Arduino)

Imagine an Arduino Shield that can be configred to be an LCD, GPS, Wuifi, or any shield you may think of!

1Sheeld is a new easily configured shield for Arduino. It is connected to a mobile app that allow the usage of all of Android smartphones' capabilities such as LCD Screen, Gyroscope, Switches, LEDs, Accelerometer, Magnetometer, GSM, Wi-Fi, GPS …etc. into your Arduino sketch.

Hardware: 1Sheeld (Android shield for Arduino)

Basically, our product consists of two parts. The first part is a shield that is physically connected to your Arduino board and acts as a wireless middle-man, piping data between Arduino and any Android smartphone via Bluetooth. The second part is a software platform and app on Android smartphones that manages the communication between our shield and your smartphone and let your choose between different available shields. 

By doing that, you can use 1Sheeld as input or output from Arduino and make use of all of the sensors and peripherals already available on your Android smartphone instead of buying the actual shields. You can use it to control an RC car using the phone's gyroscope, or even tweet when someone enters the room!

Find out more!

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Hardware: NextThingCo’s Pocket C.H.I.P. Review via CNXSoft – Embedded Systems News

Hardware: NextThingCo’s Pocket C.H.I.P. Review via CNXSoft – Embedded Systems News

New hardware has been coming fast and furious lately - with new Raspberry Pi 3, New Arduino and Arduino Compatible Boards many more permutations of shields, add-ons and more. I hadn't heard much about the Pocket C.H.I.P before, but it sounds like quite a little powerhouse.
"It’s not that easy to describe PocketC.H.I.P in a couple of words, as it’s so versatile. It’s a Debian based portable Linux computer with a resistive touchscreen and battery, but also a retro gaming console thanks to PICO-8, as well as a hardware development platform for IoT application with expansion header providing access to I/Os including GPIOs, I2C, SPI, UART…, and WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity. Furthermore you can easily dismantle the device, in order to use the CHIP board, based on Allwinner R8 Cortex A8 processor, for a different project."
You can find a ton of screenshots and this video on the CNXSoft site to give you more information on this hardware,






Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Education: What Shape of LED Should I Use for My Project? via Make

What Shape of LED Should I Use for My Project? via Make

There are so many components you can use in your electronics projects, so a good overview of the pros and cons of each can be a great jumpstart for your technology education.

This Make article give a great overview of the wide variety of LEDs available along with the pros and cons of each. Looking for a tiny LED for a miniature project? How about an ultra-bright pinpoint of light or a diffuse glow? Check out the article and keep it on hand for the next time you are adding LEDs to your project.

Education: What Shape of LED Should I Use for My Project? via Make

 

I’ve tested many LEDs and have found that there are limitations and advantages to each of them. In this post, I’ll share what I learned while making my paper LED creations. No matter what you build your projects with, I hope this post will help you choose not just any LED, but the perfect LED for your next project!

*I will focus on the physicality of the LED, not the power requirements or electrical capabilities. Remember to also refer to the LED’s data sheet to make sure it fulfills the needs of your circuit!

Read the entire article

An amazing variety of LEDs are available on eBay

Monday, June 27, 2016

Education: Raspberry Pi Releases Free "Learn To Code With Scratch" e-Book

I’ve often messed about with the visual Scratch programming language and similar apps like Hopscotch (mentioned earlier in TechnologyIQ and Scratch: Multimedia programming kit for kids) and love how it can help introduce anyone, of any age, to the concept of programming. It offer immediate gratification to the user as they can see interactive and animated results of their coding from the very beginning.

With an end to spreading the word about Scratch and giving people yet another reason to buy a Raspberry Pi, the Raspberry Pi foundation has released a new ebook, Learn to Code with Scratch.

Raspberry Pi Releases Free Learn To Code With Scratch

If you are looking to get started coding then a new free e-book which has been released by the Raspberry Pi Foundation as part of their MagPi Essentials selection might be worth more investigation and downloading.

The PDF eBook has been created to teach you the basics of learning to code with Scratch the world’s leading visual programming language that is used throughout schools worldwide to teach children the basics of how to think and program almost anything.

Scratch is the world-leading visual programming language, created by the boffins at MIT. It’s designed to help kids of all ages learn about computer science within minutes. We think it’s rather cool, and it’s been a core part of Raspberry Pi’s software offering since day one for very obvious reasons. We’ve been working for a while now to dedicate a new Essentials book to it, and we’re ultra-chuffed to let you know that it’s out now!
Jump over to the official Raspberry Pi Foundation website to download it and start learning more about Scratch.

Get your free PDF copy of Learn to Code with Scratch here

Direct Download Link to Learn to Code with Scratch

More about Raspberry Pi:

Get Raspberry Pi Boards and Components from Amazon
Get Raspberry Pi Boards and Components from eBay

Join us for A Summer of STEM at Hackerspace LA - Wed, June 29 @ 7pm

Summer of Stem

With summer in full swing you are going to need all the help you can have trying to keep your kids active and interested in activities that will spark an interest in science.  

This free meetup/workshop is for those of you looking for ideas and programs that will help your kids spark an interest in science or at the very least keep them active during the summer. 

You will be presented with free resources that you can use to best fit your kids level of skills and interest in science stuff. 

Wednesday, June 29, 20167:00 PM to 9:00 PM

6262 Van Nuys Blvd.

2nd Floor - Room 2A, Van Nuys, CA

RSVP HERE

Hackerspacela banner

 

Friday, June 24, 2016

Utility: Razzmaster Configures Raspberry Pi Over the Network (And It’s Free!)

Razzmaster Configures Raspberry Pi Over the Network (And It’s Free!)

 Here is a nice little, useful utility that helps you configure a number of Raspberry Pi boards quickly, say in an educational or hackerspace environment. No need to hook up keyboards and monitors one at a time to get them running.

Utilities like this are always quite useful as someone else has gone through the trouble of automating the process. All you have to do is use it. Sometimes, we can all go "down the rabbit hole" of taking so much time to create a utility it actually takes more time than it saves. No worries here.


PubNub is a startup, and like many startups we use a lot of open source software. We are also huge fans of the Raspberry Pi. We’ve even built a Pi workshop because it’s so flexible and easy to get started with. Setting up Raspberry Pis for workshops and projects can be a pain, though, especially if you have a lot of them to set up. To address this I created a small open source tool called Razzmaster which lets you find and configure Raspberry Pis over a local network, even if you don’t know the IP address. 
Read the entire article
Get Raspberry Pi Boards and Components from Amazon
Get Raspberry Pi Boards and Components from eBay

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Project: Otto - build you own robot in two hours! (Advanced/3-D Printing)

Here’s a more advanced tech project for those of you with access to a 3-D printer and looking to stretch their skills a bit. Making your projects move is another great step to both fun and learning, just like the use of seniors and lights I mentioned in previous projects.

Otto

Otto iso

Who is Otto?
An interactive robot that anyone can make!

What can Otto do?
Otto walks, dances, makes sounds and avoids obstacles.

Why Is Otto special?
Otto is completely open source, Arduino compatible, 3D printable, and with a social impact mission to create an inclusive environment for all kids.
Otto was inspired by another robot instructable BoB the BiPed and programmed using code from another open source biped robot called Zowi.

Read and Watch More

Friday, June 17, 2016

Reuse/Recycle: Connecting a Garmin eTrex GPS to Your Arduino Projects

I have an old Garmin eTrex GPS device sitting around, left over from my early Geocaching days. As I started learning more about Arduino projects, I had the thought of using the eTrex as a GPS input for some project instead of using one of the neat, tiny, GPS modules already out there. I thought this might be a great way to recycle this unit back into something useful and fun.

Turning to the internet, of course, I found several articles on doing just this, including this one (Interfacing RS-232 GPS to Arduino) from Bot Thoughts. One of the first things I learned, thank goodness, was that RS-232 uses a 12v logic and not the 5V used in most Arduino project. Just connecting the 2 together via serial would probably have shorted out my Arduino board. That said, there are ways of stepping down the serial voltage and making it more compatible with Arduino.

In the article linked about, the author decided to build his own circuit to accomplish this, although they also mention an IC that could make the process simpler for those of us who don't want to delve into creating our own electronics from scratch.

I am going to look into this further and see how I might get my Arduino Yun and my eTrex talking to each other and how I might use that data in a project. A great learning project in any case.

From Bot Thoughts...
Interfacing RS-232 GPS to Arduino 
If you missed prior posts, I have entered the 2011 Sparkfun Autonomous Vehicle Competition (AVC). 
For reliable navigation around the Sparkfun building in Boulder, CO, I plan to equip the RC truck I purchased with a GPS, interfacing it to a microcontroller.

Garmin eTrex Legend 
It so happens I have a Garmin eTrex Legend that I can use for prototyping until I buy a much better GPS module  for the robot. Like most GPS units, the Legend outputs NMEA 0183 serial data using RS-232 protocol. RS-232 uses +/-12V signals that will burn your average microcontroller's input pins to a crisp. 
Read the entire article
Get your own Arduino Gear via Amazon
Get your own Arduino Gear via eBay


Monday, June 13, 2016

Education: Computerphile on YouTube: Technology History and More!


I have found YouTube recommendations to be a great source of new videos on all sorts of topics and this week I started to see a selection of videos from the channel Computerphile out of the School of Computer Science in Nottingham, UK. The first I saw had to do with the early days of computer science including teleprinters, 5-bit paper tape codes, Enigma machines, Bletchley Park code breaking and more.


Learning about the technology that preceded our current day is greatly enlightening and can give a deeper understanding of modern technology than you might expect. Along with the technological education comes great stories from history on how technology was discovered and the effect it had on society.

My favorite videos so far have been those with Professor David Brailsford. He gives clear explanations of early technologies and how they functioned and how they affected the technology that followed. Here are a couple videos on early programming and data storage technologies to get you started. You'll find more great videos like these on the channel.

Friday, June 10, 2016

Project: Hotspot Poet via Adafruit

I love when you can combine technology and art and this project highlighted over at Adafruit is a great example. Using a little Arduino tech, important poems and a big dose of creativity, this project turns the ubiquitous WiFi SSID into a poetry delivery platform. If you have your Wifi selection screen open, you’ll see a new line of the poem every few seconds.  What a great repurposing of existing technology in the service of art!

You can see a great demonstration in this video.

Project: Hotspot Poet via Adafruit

::vtol:: hotspot poet from ::vtol:: on Vimeo.

Autonomous micro-device which distributes wi-fi masked as wireless network, visible at any gadget such as a smartphone or a laptop. The device is automatically renaming its network every 10 seconds, taking as its name various lines of poems by famous poets. The device is using an information channel which is accessible and visible to everyone through mobile devices, thus being a non-standard transmitter of poetry. There is no possibility to connect to this network (which is actually a dummy disconnected from Internet) - the message being the name of the network. If one would leave the wi-fi settings menu open, then gradually, line by line, all the poems programmed into the object will be revealed.

There are 4 objects in the set, each of them contains poems of one of the poets: Basho, Goethe, Pasternak and Petrarka. In fact, the apparatus is an ironic device in the spirit of hacktivism, searching for alternative ways of distribution of information in the public spaces. Theoretically, these devices can be programmed to transmit messages with any content, they will be visible in a certain space and will be refreshed even if the whole country is disconnected from Internet. These devices can be also called generators of network/information noise which displaces the real network by a fake one, but with a certain aesthetic aim.

Radius of action of the module is a few dozens meters. The names of networks are shown in a bit different ways on different gadgets: for example, on certain modern android devices, poetic lines are visible only as one network, which is continuously and quickly refreshed; on ios devices there appears a new one, while a few previous ones are still visible, but gradually the new ones replace the old ones; and on mac computers, all names are appearing line after line, and they stay there until the arrow is removed from the network selection menu.

more info - http://vtol.cc/hotspot-poet

Monday, June 06, 2016

Education: Hobby Servo Tutorial via Sparkfun

Education: Hobby Servo Tutorial via Sparkfun

Here is some more information on building some movement into your projects using Hobby Servos, like those used in remote control airplanes and vehicles. Learn how servos work, how they can be modified and how you can use them in your projects with this excellent tutorial.

Servo samples

Get Hobby Servos at Amazon

Get Hobby Servos at eBay

Introduction

Servo motors are an easy way to add motion to your electronics projects. Originally used in remote-controlled cars and airplanes, they now crop up in all sorts of other applications. They’re useful because you can instruct these small motors how far to turn, and they do it for you.

A typical hobby servo

You ordinary, small DC motor has two hookup wires and simply turns continuously when power is applied. If you want it to spin in the opposite direction, you reverse the power. If you want to know how far it has turned, you’ll need to devise a way to measure that.

Read the entire tutorial on Sparkfun

Servo guts 1

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Saturday, June 04, 2016

Join us for Arduino NIght at Hackerspace LA! - Wed, June 8, 2016

I'll be at this upcoming Hackerspace LA meetup showing off what I've learned about Arduino in the last few months. Join me for demos and discussion. Bring your own projects to share!



Join this free meetup as we learn about more and tinker with the Arduino electronic microcontrollers and learn about building all types of circuits. Arduinos are small electronics boards that can be used to create easy to sophisticated circuits with wires and sensors. Bring your own laptop, Arduino and bread board.  This is for anyone, at any level, to come and have some fun tinkering, learning, and showing off your own projects.

RSVP for Arduino Night via Meetup
RSVP for Arduino Night via Eventbrite




Thursday, June 02, 2016

Project: Voice-Activated Patrol Lamp via Hackster.io

Project: Voice-Activated Patrol Lamp via Hackster.io

This is a great little project using a number of components including Arduino board, motor driver, LEDs, microphones and more. I am going to take a lot away from this one. One idea is to have it drive an 8x8 LED matrix to create a variety of designs when responding to the ambient sounds around it. There are a lot of ways that this can be adapted to any number of projects of your own. I’m not looking to animate anything with a motor, but just seeing how they detect the ambient sound and turn it into an action was useful for me.

Voice activated light anim

Project: Voice-Activated Patrol Lamp via Hackster.io

Components used in this project:

Get your own Arduino Gear via Amazon

Get your own Arduino Gear via eBay

Wednesday, June 01, 2016

Education: Interfacing Motors with Arduino by Flavian Pegado via Instructables

Interfacing Motors with Arduino by Flavian Pegado via Instructables

It is only a matter of time before you want to start using motors in your Arduino projects and Flavian has a great overview, including parts and code on how to connect all sorts of motors and make them do you bidding,

Each type of motor has a unique way of being controlled and some, like DC motors, require a little extra hardware, too. Learn about all of this in this Instructable.



Get your own Arduino Gear via Amazon
Get your own Arduino Gear via eBay



Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Arduino Life 5: Arduino Yun and ftp client/server

One of the main reasons I purchased an Arduino Yun as my first Arduino board was it’s inclusion of WiFi right out of the box. This means you can start making Internet of Things projects immediately. As I have introduced myself to Arduino, I have also looked to learn more about the Linux side of the Yun, how it bridges to the Arduino side and how I can interact with it using standard Internet tools, like SSH and FTP.

Arduino yun

An Arduino with SSH

Once the Arduino Yun is connected to a network, it is possible to use the Macintosh Terminal or other SSH client to log into the Yun and use it as you would any Linux computer.

You’ll need an SD Card on the Arduino Yun to do much with SSH or ftp access, though, as you need a place to store the files you will be uploading or creating.

Arduino ssh 1

This is fine if you just want to view files on the SD Card or other basic terminal operations, but as I was playing around, I realized i wanted to do more than use the built-in vi editor. I use a Mac OS X text editor program called, TextWrangler for a lot of things, including coding. My first thought was to use an ftp client on the Yun to connect to my local computer, so that I could push data over to the Mac from projects like my temperature, humidity and light level sensor. After many searches, it looked like there wasn’t an ftp client for the Yun, but you could install an ftp server and then access that from the Mac. I also had another user for this ftp server, which I’ll show in a moment,

Textwrangler icon

TextWrangler for Mac OS X

An ftp server for the Arduino Yun

Installing an ftp server on the Arduino Yun is actually quite simple. SSH into the Yun and execute these two commands:

opkg update
opkg install openssh-sftp-server

You may need to reset the Yun using the reset button or by cycling the power in order to get the server started. After that, it will be automatically started on each boot. You’’ll now be able to use your favorite ftp client to connect to the Yun. 

Here’s a view of the Yun’s ftp server using Cyberduck on the Mac.

Ftp screen 1

One of the reasons I was so keen to have direct file access to the Yun was that I was trying to develop a short Python program to run on the Yun, but using my ancient (i.e. 30+ year old) knowledge of vi was quite limiting. TextWrangler supports direct reading and writing of text files to any FTP server, and I have used that when editing files on my web server, so I figured there had to be a way to install an ftp server on the Yun and then use Textwrangler to write code directly onto the Arduino.

Textwrangler 1

I can read and write directly to the server using TextWrangler. This means I can write my code, click Save and then immediately switch to my Terminal window and execute the code to test it. That makes it very convenient.

Going Further - Pushing files to ftp server using Python

Of course, once you find one use for the ftp server, more are sure to follow. One of the common beginner projects for the Arduino Yun is a motion-activated security camera. You an find complete instructions in this post from Adafruit.

Wireless Security Camera with the Arduino Yun
Build your own wireless security camera using the Arduino Yun & a USB webcam!

This example using the Temboo service to forward the photos and stream video from the Yun directly to the Internet. When I was looking at the project, though, I was thinking that, since I have my own web server available, I would rather forward the photos to a directory on the server where I could view them at my leisure. This, in fact, is what sent me on the original search for an ftp client for the Yun. While I didn’t find a full-blown client, though, I did find a programatic way to ftp files to the server of your choice using a Python program. This was a little more manual, but it got the job done.

Here is my test code — with no error checking or any other niceties — but I figured you might find the example useful. Many thanks for the folks at EFFBot that provided the great — and easily modified — code which I could build on.

import datetime
import ftplib
import os
# Function to provide easy uploads of appropriate type (Text/Binary)
# Taken from http://effbot.org/librarybook/ftplib.htm
def upload(ftp, file):
ext = os.path.splitext(file)[1]
if ext in (".txt", ".htm", ".html"):
ftp.storlines("STOR " + file, open(file))
else:
ftp.storbinary("STOR " + file, open(file, "rb"), 1024)
# Get Date
today = datetime.date.today()
# Get Time
now = datetime.datetime.now()
# Build webcam capture filename in YYYYMMDDHHMMSS format
fname="cam-"+now.strftime("%Y%m%d%H%M%S")+".jpg"
# Call fswebcam capture with resolution parameter
from subprocess import call
call(["fswebcam","-r 1280x720",fname])
# Open FTP session and change directory
ftp = ftplib.FTP(“yourserver.com")
ftp.login(“user", “password")
ftp.cwd(“/yourserver.com/cam/")
# Upload picture file
upload(ftp, fname)
# End FTP session
ftp.quit()

You might have noticed in the ftp screen shot above, this code does work. It snaps a picture from the webcam, stores it locally on the SD Card with a unique date and time--stamped name and  then uploads it to my web site. I plan on setting up this security camera as a test in one of my upcoming learning sessions and replacing the Temboo calls with this ftp script (or perhaps an improved version of it.) I’ll report back on how well it works in an upcoming post.

There is so much to learn about the Arduino world and the Arduino Yun especially. It’s obvious now that many people have wanted a board like the Yun, as Arduino has now introduced a shield that can turn an Arduino Uno — one of the most popular boards — into a functionally equivalent Arduino Yun.

Arduino Yun Shield on eBay

Arduino Yun Shield on Amazon.com

I hope you’ve found this edition of Arduino Life useful. Please send along your questions and comments.

Monday, May 30, 2016

Project: Arduino and OLED based Cellular Automata via Hackster.io

Arduino and OLED based Cellular Automata via Hackster.io




This is a great near-instant gratification project if you have one of the OLED screens I mentioned earlier here on TechnologyIQ. I don't think I had to alter the code at all to get it working with my screen and away it went.

Now I can start digging into the code and see how it creates the game and learn a bit about game logic as well as ways of managing the screen.



Parts:

Blue 0.96" I2C IIC 128X64 OLED LCD Display Module For Arduino UNO R3 Breadboard

Arduino Yun via eBay

You can easily purchase your own via AmazoneBay and other sources.


Get your own Arduino Gear via Amazon
Get your own Arduino Gear via eBay

Saturday, May 28, 2016

More Readable Arduino Project Display from TechnologyIQ

Working and learning with my Arduino Yun (also via eBay)and a new OLED 128x64 pixel display. This is such a tiny display that I needed to bump up the font size to make it a bit more readable and scroll through the data instead of trying to present it on one screen, like I had before.

I am using the Adafruit SSD1306 library as the u8glib library was hanging after a few minutes of the running. The program would continue running in the background but the screen would stop updating. Frustrating and I found no easy answers to what it was happening.

 More Readable Arduino Project Display from TechnologyIQ

 

You can read about this project in previous posts here on TechnologyIQ for a bit more detail.

Blue 0.96" I2C IIC 128X64 OLED LCD Display Module For Arduino UNO R3 Breadboard

Arduino Yun via eBay

You can easily purchase your own via AmazoneBay and other sources.

Get your own Arduino Gear via Amazon

Get your own Arduino Gear via eBay

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Project: Easy Arduino Laser Tripwire Security System via Instructables

A great little learning project to use some of the components that might have come as part of your sensor starter pack.

I wonder if you need the specific laser light detector or could use a photoresistor or phototransistor on the detecting end of the system, especially since my set didn't come with the former.





Links:

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Project: Arduino Musical Weather Station via Adafruit

Arduino Musical Weather Station

This is a very cool project using a wide variety of sensors and input to create something fun for the garden or yard. I have toyed with similar ideas for wind chimes driven by environmental conditions like sunlight and wind, but this takes my ideas to an entirely different level. 

It sounds the creator has tied the Arduino into a music synthesizer, which allows the Arduino to control a wide range of sounds and effects.

Here is a demonstration video showing it in action.





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Get your own Arduino Gear via eBay

Monday, May 23, 2016

Make With: Blue 0.96" I2C IIC 128X64 OLED LCD Display Module for Arduino

Make With focuses on a collection of parts that can be used with Arduino, Raspberry Pi and more!


Blue 0.96" I2C IIC 128X64 OLED LCD Display Module For Arduino UNO R3 Breadboard

You can easily purchase your own via Amazon, eBay and other sources.

Thl with oled

My Temperature, Humidity and Light Level Sensor Project with OLED Screen.

 
Blue oled

A cool, tiny, OLED display for your Arduino and Raspberry Pi projects. While I often like to send my data to “the cloud”, sometimes having a display on your project works well. With the u8glib, you can draw graphics and text in a large number of different fonts.

See the setup and display at work in this video from Julien Ilett, one of my favorite channels on YouTube.



Get your own Arduino Gear via Amazon

Get your own Arduino Gear via eBay

Project: Tiny Arduino Music Visualizer: Maximum blinkenlights, minimum effort! via Adafruit

Get your own Arduino Gear via Amazon

This looks like something I might try to adapt to my own monochrome Led Matrix. It was an idea I was already thinking about and I hope I can draw some example from their code to develop my own. I love projects that interact with the real world, whether they are art pieces passively delivering information of some sort. It is a fairly complex project, but that often means there is a lot to learn within.

Arduino music viz

Project: Tiny Arduino Music Visualizer: Maximum blinkenlights, minimum effort! via Adafruit

Here’s an easy-to-build project that really packs a lot of blinkenlight for the effort: a little pocket-size music visualizer we call “Piccolo.”

Set Piccolo next to the telly or some speakers and you’ll see the lights respond to music and sound — lowest notes toward the left end of the graph, highest notes toward the right.

Technically this would be called a “spectrum analyzer,” but as this is not a precision scientific instrument, we’re more comfortable labeling it a “visualizer.” It’s strictly for show.

Check out the entire project on Adafruit

 

Arduino Components from Amazon: