Monthly Archives: August 2019

Friday Product Post: Flight of the XBees

via SparkFun: Commerce Blog

Welcome back, everyone! It's Friday, and that means more new products to share. This week, we have two brand new Thing Plus boards equipped with the new XBee3 Micro Module. We also have a Qwiic Atmospheric Sensor Breakout that utilizes the reliable BME280 chip, and a new Raspberry Pi Zero W version. We round out the day with three panel-mountable USB cables. Let's jump in and take a closer look!

XBee3 is the best to be!

SparkFun Thing Plus - XBee3 Micro (U.FL)

SparkFun Thing Plus - XBee3 Micro (U.FL)

WRL-15435
$49.95
SparkFun Thing Plus - XBee3 Micro (Chip Antenna)

SparkFun Thing Plus - XBee3 Micro (Chip Antenna)

WRL-15454
$49.95

The XBee3 Thing Plus U.FL and Chip Antenna boards are an ultra capable and easy way for getting into wireless device development. The combination of XBee and Qwiic in a space-conscious design represents a much needed update to our XBee offering. With 20 I/O pins and Lithium Polymer Ion battery management, the XBee3 Thing Plus has all the basics for quickly prototyping or developing a connected device such as a remote sensor. The Qwiic connector and JST connector for the battery make for a solder-less option when working with the board, which shortens setup time.


To the skies!

SparkFun Atmospheric Sensor Breakout - BME280 (Qwiic)

SparkFun Atmospheric Sensor Breakout - BME280 (Qwiic)

SEN-15440
$14.95

The SparkFun BME280 Atmospheric Sensor Breakout is an easy way to measure barometric pressure, humidity and temperature readings, all without taking up too much space. Basically, you can find out anything you need to know about atmospheric conditions from this tiny breakout. The BME280 Breakout has been designed to be used in indoor/outdoor navigation, weather forecasting, home automation, and even personal health and wellness monitoring. Utilizing our handy Qwiic system, no soldering is required to connect it to the rest of your system. However, we still have broken out 0.1"-spaced pins in case you prefer to use a breadboard.


Raspberry Pi Zero W (with Headers)

Raspberry Pi Zero W (with Headers)

DEV-15470
$14.00

The credit card-sized computer has become even smaller! The Raspberry Pi Zero W is still the Pi you know and love, but at a largely reduced size of only 65-by-30 mm, and now includes headers! With the addition of wireless LAN and Bluetooth, the Raspberry Pi Zero W is ideal for making embedded Internet of Things (IoT) projects. The Pi Zero W has been designed to be as flexible and compact as possible with mini connectors and a populated 40-pin GPIO.


Panel Mount USB Micro-B Extension Cable - 6"

Panel Mount USB Micro-B Extension Cable - 6"

CAB-15464
$2.50
Panel Mount USB-B to Micro-B Cable - 6"

Panel Mount USB-B to Micro-B Cable - 6"

CAB-15463
$2.50
Panel Mount USB-C Extension Cable - 6"

Panel Mount USB-C Extension Cable - 6"

CAB-15455
$7.95

Also today, we have three new, panel-mountable USB cables: a micro-B and a USB-C extension cables as well a USB-B to micro-B cable. Each cable is 6 inches in length, and includes two 14-millimeter M3 screws compatible with the cable's 3 mm panel-mount holes.


That's it for this week! As always, we can't wait to see what you make! Shoot us a tweet @sparkfun, or let us know on Instagram or Facebook. We’d love to see what projects you’ve made!

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Build a xylophone-playing robot | HackSpace magazine #22

via Raspberry Pi

HackSpace magazine issue 22 is out now, and our favourite tutorial this month will show you how to make this, a xylophone-playing robot!

Build a glockenspiel-playing robot with HackSpace magazine

Why spend years learning to play a musical instrument when you could program a robot to do it for you? This month HackSpace magazine, we show you how to build a glockenspiel-playing robot. Download the latest issue of HackSpace for free: http://rpf.io/hs22yt Follow HackSpace on Instagram: http://rpf.io/hsinstayt

If programming your own instrument-playing robot isn’t for you, never fear, for HackSpace magazine is packed full of other wonderful makes and ideas, such as:

  • A speaker built into an old wine barrel
  • Free-form LEDs
  • Binary knitwear
  • A Raspberry Pi–powered time machine
  • Mushroom lights
  • A…wait, hold on, did I just say a Raspberry Pi–powered time machine? Hold on…let me just download the FREE PDF and have a closer look. Page 14, a WW2 radio broadcast time machine built by Adam Clark. “I bought a very old, non-working valve radio, and replaced the internals with a Raspberry Pi Zero on a custom 3D-printed chassis.” NICE!

Honestly, this month’s HackSpace is so full of content that it would take me all day to go through everything. But, don’t take my word for it — try it yourself.

HackSpace magazine is out now, available in print from your local newsagent or from the Raspberry Pi Store in Cambridge, online from Raspberry Pi Press, or as a free PDF download. Click here to find out more and, while you’re at it, why not have a look at the subscription offers available, including the 12-month deal that comes with a free Adafruit Circuit Playground!

Author’s note

Yes, I know it’s a glockenspiel in the video.

The post Build a xylophone-playing robot | HackSpace magazine #22 appeared first on Raspberry Pi.

August Artemis Update

via SparkFun: Commerce Blog

We are getting closer and closer to a full release of our FCC Certified version of the SparkFun Artemis Module, but that hasn't stopped us from continuing to update new features to what we have available right now! We want to keep you updated on all the Artemis news, so let's quickly go over the new updates for Artemis!

  • SD Card - We've done a lot of work getting SPI + SD card to work, so all functionality is up and running if you chose to integrate an SD card peripheral into your Artemis project.

  • PDM - We now have examples showing how to use the on-board pulse density microphones (PDM) on the BlackBoard, BlackBoard Nano and BlackBoard ATP.

  • SoftwareSerial - Two hardware serial ports is nice, but there always seem to be a few more serial devices than there are UARTs on a micro. That's why we've designed a custom SoftwareSerial library for Artemis. This allows any pin to be used for software serial transmission or reception up to 115200bps. Do you need 20 serial ports? Oh yes, yes you do.

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You can check out all these features in our newsletter. Feel free to poke at the code as well! We've included examples for all the features of the Artemis in our Arduino Core.

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Back-to-School DIY Projects

via SparkFun: Commerce Blog

With school right around the corner - perhaps you’re reading this in your new dorm - we have some great projects to up your college style. As someone whose five-year reunion is looming, I am definitely a great guide on the latest trends (psych), but some things just never go out of style – and if we’re honest, everything that was once cool, is now cool again.

Step 1:

Spruce up that room. Look around you. What’s missing? Cool decor? Lighting?

Project Idea: LED Cloud Connected Cloud

All you’ll have to do is look up to see if you need your raincoat, snow boots or flip flops (or to see if your slippers will be OK to go outside).

LED Cloud-Connected Cloud

February 22, 2016

Make an RGB colored cloud light! You can also control it from your phone, or hook up to the weather!

Project Idea: Twinkle Zodiac Constellation

I get it, this may not be every zodiac sign’s kind of project, but for those looking for a way to display theirs, this is one for you!

Twinkle Zodiac Constellation

August 15, 2017

Create a quick and easy piece of e-textile art based on a Zodiac sign using a LilyTiny, LilyPad LEDs, battery holder, conductive thread, and coin cell battery.

Project Idea: Origami Paper Circuits

If you’re looking for something cute to create some ambiance, these paper circuits might just do the trick.

Origami Paper Circuits

May 26, 2015

A quick tutorial to get you started in the world of light up origami flowers.

Project Idea: Component Gumball Machine

If you’re here, you’re likely into electronics. Here’s a fun way to store components and ensure easy access to the small pieces you need.

LED Gumball Machine

April 24, 2019

Hacking gumball machines to make the world a happier, blinkier place.

Step 2:

You’re likely (hopefully) going to head outside of that spruced-up room, so here’s how to step out in style:

Project Idea: DIY Light Up Shoes

Seriously, these are so cool and can be worn for a variety of occasions.

DIY Light-Up Shoes

September 28, 2017

This tutorial provides everything you need to know to make your own light up high top sneakers!

Project Idea: Marquee Party Bag

Let your bag do the talking for you – it makes that 8 a.m. class just a bit easier. With some slight tweaks, this project can be adjusted for your backpack or any other bag you’d like to give a voice.

Marquee Party Bag

June 2, 2017

This tutorial provides everything you need to know to make your own Marquee Party Bag!

Project Idea: Sound Reactive Jersey

Head to the homecoming game in style. This jersey helps cheer on your school’s team, and may act as a great icebreaker.


Step 3:

Hang out with friends.

Project Idea: Beer Pong Robots

If you’re looking to up your game before entering the World Series of Beer Pong tournaments, or you’re just looking to make beer pong more challenging, this might just be the thing (build responsibly and only drink if you’re over the legal age). If you are under 21, that cup better be filled with juice!


Step 4:

Don’t forget why you’re there.

School’s important. We’ve got some great guides and tutorials to help you get back into the swing of classes. Forgot what Ohm’s Law is? Boom, covered – and we’ve got a lot more where that came from.

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Friday Product Post: JetBot Double-Up!

via SparkFun: Commerce Blog

Welcome! Today we're revisiting yesterday's news: the shipping of our SparkFun JetBot AI Kit Powered by NVIDIA Jetson Nano – but that's not all! Also released this week we have a version of the SparkFun JetBot Kit without a Jetson Nano (in case you already own one), a kit for you to take NVIDIA's free Deep Learning Institute Course, and a set of four new mecanum wheels that are Lego-compatible. Let's dive in and take a closer look!

JetBot, rolling out!

SparkFun JetBot AI Kit Powered by NVIDIA Jetson Nano

SparkFun JetBot AI Kit Powered by NVIDIA Jetson Nano

KIT-15365
$274.95
SparkFun JetBot AI Kit (Without Jetson Nano)

SparkFun JetBot AI Kit (Without Jetson Nano)

KIT-15437
$174.95

The SparkFun JetBot AI Kit is a robot platform powered by the Jetson Nano Developer Kit by NVIDIA. This SparkFun kit is based on the open-source NVIDIA JetBot! We understand that not everyone has access to multiple 3D printers on each floor and a whole warehouse of electronics, so we wanted to build a kit from ready-to-assemble parts to get you up and running as quickly as possible. The SparkFun JetBot AI Kit is a great launchpad for creating entirely new AI projects for makers, students and enthusiasts who are interested in learning AI and building fun applications. It’s straightforward to set up and use, and is compatible with many popular accessories. Several interactive tutorials show you how to harness the power of AI to teach the SparkFun JetBot to follow objects, avoid collisions and more. The Jetson Nano Developer Kit offers useful tools like the Jetson GPIO Python library, and is compatible with common sensors and peripherals, including Python compatibility with the SparkFun Qwiic ecosystem.

If you already own a Jetson Nano Developer Kit, you're in luck! We also carry a JetBot Kit designed to use your own board instead of buying a whole new one.


SparkFun DLI Kit for Jetson Nano

SparkFun DLI Kit for Jetson Nano

KIT-15495
$164.95

With the release of the Jetson Nano Developer Kit, NVIDIA is empowering developers, researchers, students and hobbyists to explore AI concepts in the most accessible way possible. Reinforcing its commitment to widening accessibility and innovation in the area of deep learning, NVIDIA has created a free, self-paced, online Deep Learning Institute (DLI) course, “Getting Started on AI with Jetson Nano.” The goal of the course is to build foundational skills to enable anyone to get creative with the Jetson Developer Kit.

Included in this kit is everything you will need for “Getting Started on AI with Jetson Nano.”


Mecanum Wheels - 65mm, LEGO Compatible (4 Pack)

Mecanum Wheels - 65mm, LEGO Compatible (4 Pack)

ROB-15536
$39.95

Mecanum wheels allow your robot to not only travel forward and backward, but also sideways! Nine rollers, set on a 45° rotational axis parallel to the main rotational axis of the wheel, enable a broad a range of movement. Rotating all four wheels in the same direction causes forward or backward movement; rotating the wheels on one side in an opposite direction to those on the other side causes the vehicle to rotate, and rotating the wheels on one diagonal in the opposite direction to those on the other diagonal causes side-to-side movement.


That's it for this week! As always, we can't wait to see what you make! Shoot us a tweet @sparkfun, or let us know on Instagram or Facebook. We’d love to see what projects you’ve made!

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Behold: Three New Kits with NVIDIA

via SparkFun: Commerce Blog

Today we are pleased to announce the release of the JetBot AI Kit Powered by the NVIDIA Jetson Nano and the Course Materials Kit for “Getting Started with AI on the Jetson Nano” from NVIDIA’s Deep Learning Institute.

SparkFun’s version of the JetBot merges the industry-leading machine learning capabilities of the NVIDIA Jetson Nano with the vast SparkFun ecosystem of sensors and accessories. Packaged as a ready-to-assemble robotics platform, the SparkFun JetBot Kit requires no additional components or 3D printing to get started - just assemble the robot, boot up the Jetson Nano and start using the JetBot immediately. This combination of advanced technologies in a user-friendly package makes the SparkFun JetBot Kit a standout, delivering one of the strongest robotics platforms on the market.

SparkFun JetBot AI Kit Powered by NVIDIA Jetson Nano

SparkFun JetBot AI Kit Powered by NVIDIA Jetson Nano

KIT-15365
$274.95
SparkFun JetBot AI Kit (Without Jetson Nano)

SparkFun JetBot AI Kit (Without Jetson Nano)

KIT-15437
$174.95

The Jetson Nano Developer Kit offers extensibility through an industry-standard GPIO header and associated programming capabilities like the Jetson GPIO Python library. Building off this capability, the SparkFun kit includes the SparkFun Qwiic pHat for Raspberry Pi, enabling immediate access to the extensive SparkFun Qwiic ecosystem from within the Jetson Nano environment, which makes it easy to integrate more than 30 daisy-chainable sensors without soldering.

Delivered with the advanced functionality of JetBot ROS (Robot Operating System) and AWS RoboMaker, with AWS IoT Greengrass pre-installed, SparkFun’s JetBot AI Kit is the only kit currently on the market ready to move beyond the standard JetBot examples. Many other popular AI frameworks like TensorFlow, PyTorch, Caffe and MXNet are supported, and Jetson Nano is capable of running multiple neural networks in parallel to process data and drive action.

SparkFun DLI Kit for Jetson Nano

SparkFun DLI Kit for Jetson Nano

KIT-15495
$164.95
NVIDIA Jetson Nano Developer Kit

NVIDIA Jetson Nano Developer Kit

DEV-15297
$99.00
11

If you are interested in getting started with AI but don’t know how, an additional kit is available for NVIDIA’s Deep Learning Institute (DLI) course. In the course, students will learn to collect image data and use it to train, optimize and deploy AI models for custom tasks like recognizing hand gestures, or image regression for locating a key point in an image. Everything needed for this course has been included in the SparkFun DLI Kit for Jetson Nano.


We'll go into a little more detail about each of these kits tomorrow in our regular Friday Product Post, but our main goal today is to let you know JetBot orders are now shipping, and tell you about all the new options available to you!

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