New Product Friday: What’s Coming on Cyber Monday?

via SparkFun Electronics Blog Posts

Welcome back every one! Things are working a little differently today. Instead of a video about our new products we are bringing you one to help you get the most bang for your buck on the day of days, Cyber Monday, 12/1/2014!

Want the full run-down on what’s on the flash sales for Cyber Monday? You can see everything here. How big will the discounts be? Well…you won’t know specifics until day of, but we’re looking at 30-50% off. Plan your day accordingly.

All Nick wants for the holidays is for us to stop saying “classic Nick' - let’s see how long that lasts. Even though we don’t have a New Product video for you today we still have plenty of new and revised pieces of electronic goodness for you to peruse! Let’s check them out.

MiP Robotic Platform - White/Black

In stock ROB-13222

The MiP Robotic Platform is the first self-balancing robot that you get to control and play games with. The MiP can drive, da…

$ 99.95

Remember this little robot from a few months ago? We are now offering the MiP in the White/Black color variant! The MiP Robotic Platform is the first self-balancing robot that you get to control and play games with. The MiP can drive, dance, plays games, battle with other MiPs, respond to simple hand motions and can be remotely controlled by a compatible iOS or Android device. Check out the teardown of the Black/Silver MiP as well as a look at other self-balancers on one of our previous SparkFun Live.

There Are No Electrons: Electronics for Earthlings

In stock BOK-13221

_There Are No Electrons: Electronics for Earthlings_ is an astounding book that provides the clearest and most entertaining i…

$ 12.95

There Are No Electrons: Electronics for Earthlings may be a new product for us, but it has actually been around for over 20 years. This book isn’t afraid to present complicated concepts in easy to remember ways while still being entertaining. It’s wacky, yet factual, and brings a refreshing perspective into the world of electronics.

SparkFun XBee Wireless Kit

In stock KIT-13197

This it the SparkFun XBee Wireless Kit, the perfect box full of goodies to get you started using XBees. Inside this kit you w…

$ 95.95

The XBee Wireless Kit was one of our most popular retail kits to date. Well, we’ve done away with the annoying clam shell and put it into one of our SparkFun red boxes. This is the same XBee kit you know and love and still offers two XBee Modules, one XBee Explorer, one Xbee Shield and a set of R3 headers to solder onto the shield.

SparkFun Mini Inventor's Kit for Redboard

In stock DEV-13160

The SparkFun Mini Inventor's Kit (SMIK) is a great way to get started with programming and hardware interaction with the Ardu…

$ 49.95

The SparkFun Mini Inventor’s Kit for Redboard, is actually the new version of our RedBoard Starter kit. With this new starter kit you actually get the first 8 experiments from our full-sized SIK. With half the kit and half the price, go check it out!

Tool Kit - Beginner

In stock TOL-13086

This assortment of tools is great for those of you who are new to soldering. We've found our favorite, low-cost tools, and cr…

$ 29.95

The Beginner Tool Kit is back and has been given another update! This newest version finally includes our Basic Digital Multimeter, Wire Strippers, and all-new Flush Cutters.

Tool Kit - Intermediate

17 available TOL-13087

This box of tools is a happy medium between the beginner and deluxe tool kits. Most of the tools necessary to assemble, solde…

$ 74.95

We don’t have just one but two tool kits this week! Like the beginner kit, the Intermediate Tool Kit has been given quite a big upgrade. With a new Variable Temperature Soldering Iron and all metal Pocket Screwdriver Set, this kit will provide you with a new set of durable tools.

SHARP Memory Display Breakout - Silver Monochrome (1.3", 96x96)

In stock LCD-13192

Our friends over at Adafruit have made this nifty, little breakout using one of SHARP's silver monochrome memory displays. Th…

$ 39.95

The SHARP Memory Display Breakout brings you the low power usage of an e-paper display with the fast refresh rates of an LCD. Equipped with a 1.3", 96x96 screen, it can be a great addition to your next project that needs a small screen with a lot of versatility.

RS485 Shield V2

In stock DEV-12965

Our friends over at LinkSprite have made this nifty little RS485 Shield, now you will be able to have a communication port fo…

$ 11.95

The new version of the RS485 Shield is now out. This board works the same way as its previous version but now removes the optional DB9 connector bay, adds a second 2-pin screw terminal, and adds the ability to choose two pins from your Arduino’s D0 to D7 as Software Serial Ports to communicate with the shield.

That’s all for this week folks! Even though next week is Thanksgiving, we’ll be back next Friday with another awesome New Product video with tons of new stuff to show off. See you then!

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Global emotional light with Arduino

via Arduino Blog

luz

Based on open source technology and programming, LUZ is a lighting project that product designer Marina Mellado designed and targeted to those people who are physically and psychologically affected by the lack of sun or daylight.

Luz is a one meter diameter ring of light. It connects two LED stripes RGB SMD5050 to an Adafruit TCS34725 sensor ( which I use to get the temperature of colour (K) and the light intensity (Lux) Values ) and an Arduino Uno.

The electronic system is programmed to modify gradually the light-color sensibility of the lamp depending on the weather conditions when the sensor is positioned by the window.

Check the video below to see the lamp in action:

Parkinson’s disease body illusion

via Raspberry Pi

Transports is an interactive installation from Analogue, a theatre/art group, sponsored by the Wellcome Trust, which creates the illusion that the viewer is experiencing Parkinson’s symptoms. As in the rubber hand illusion, the mind is tricked into believing that the user’s hand is the hand shown in some point-of-view video; while a glove with motors makes them feel the tremors associated with the disease.

The whole setup is controlled by a Raspberry Pi. The installation takes the user through a number of everyday tasks from the perspective of Andrew, a man in his thirties with Parkinson’s, who is about to give a speech at a friend’s wedding. Andrew’s experience is informed by a body of first-person data that Analogue collected from the blogs of people dealing with Parkinson’s, and interviews with patients.

This installation isn’t being exhibited as public art at the moment; instead, it’s being used to raise awareness and promote empathy among health professionals and carers. Psychology students are also using it; and there are plans to refine the whole thing by using Oculus Rift or a similar VR headset, and by shrinking the apparatus on the glove.

You can read more about Transports at Analogue’s site, or at the New Scientist.

ElectriCute – Conductive Ink with Circuit Scribe

via SparkFun Electronics Blog Posts

Using wires to design your circuits is just so 2013. With the Circuit Scribe Lite Kit you can use a conductive ink pen to draw basic circuits! In today’s episode of “ElectriCute,” Dia and Nick are taking a look at this new kit.

This kit makes a great entry way into exploring basic circuits - and its great for a stocking stuffer or to make some really awesome holiday cards! Check out the product page for more info and to buy your kit!

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Northern Ireland’s first Raspberry Jams

via Raspberry Pi

Liz: Andrew Mulholland is a first-year undergraduate student at Queen’s College Belfast, and the overall winner of 2014’s Talk Talk Digital Hero award. We’ve known him for a few years (he did work experience with us this summer – he created the Grandpa Scarer learning resource for us with Matt Timmons-Brown).

Andrew’s been setting up events to introduce other young people to computing for some years now. He‘s recently been running the very first Raspberry Jams in Northern Ireland, and is doing a lot of computing outreach with local schools. I asked him how the kids who’d attended the Jams had found the experience, and he sent me the blog post below. Well done Andrew – it’s brilliant to see how much fun an introduction to computing can be. You’re doing an amazing job.

Northern Ireland November Raspberry Jam

September, NI Raspberry Jam 5.

On Saturday 8th November 20+ soon-to-be Raspberry Pi enthusiasts arrived at Farset Labs for the 6th Northern Ireland Raspberry Jam.

farsettjam

This months main activities? Sonic Pi 2 and Minecraft Pi!

At the Jam we also have all the previous months’ activities printed out, so that if the kids want to try something else out, they are more than welcome to.

There are activities ranging from Sonic Pi, to Minecraft Pi, to physical computing projects like creating a reaction timer game in Scratch GPIO, along with quite a few others.

asd

Lots of cool stuff to play with!

I asked a few of the kids at the jam to write down what they though.

haley

Haley (11) having way too much fun hacking someone else’s Minecraft Pi game!

Haley:

“It was my first Raspberry Jam and I was quite nervous when I walked in but one of the mentors came over and introduced himself to me and explained what we would be getting up to. He found me a chair and showed me how to connect all the wires together and by the end of the Jam I was laughing my head off! I really enjoyed learning how to make music using Sonic Pi. I made the tune Frère Jacques. My favourite part was learning how to code while playing Minecraft. Andrew told me I should learn how to code because I had never done it before. I used a programming language called Python to hack others Minecraft games and to teleport them to a random place. I heard another kid start exclaiming after teleporting her several times, initially she had no idea it was me! Andrew and Libby were very supportive the whole day and I learnt a massive amount thanks to them. It was great fun!”

Apparently Haley enjoyed her first Raspberry Jam.

Apparently Haley enjoyed her first Raspberry Jam.

 Katie:

“I heard about the Raspberry Jam because one of the mentors volunteers at my school and the Jam was announced in Assembly as part of EU Coding Week. My friend Rachel and I decided to give it a go. I didn’t know anything about a Raspberry Pi and had no idea what to expect before I went but Andrew and the mentors have taught me loads and are very encouraging. I have just done my second Raspberry Jam and I loved it! I created a piece of music using Sonic Pi, played/hacked Minecraft and played with an LEDBorg in Scratch GPIO! Also we got doughnuts and got to make use of Farset Lab’s huge blackboard! It is the biggest blackboard I’ve ever seen. I don’t have a favorite part because everything I did was great fun and everybody was helpful. I definitely suggest anyone my age giving it a go!”

Rachel and Katie creating music with Sonic-Pi 2

Rachel and Katie creating music with Sonic-Pi 2

Rachel

“I had a great time at my second Raspberry Jam at the weekend. The thing I enjoyed the most was learning with Scratch with the GPIO pins. This is something my school doesn’t teach so I don’t get the chance to do anything like this normally. It was great fun programming the LEDs to change different colours using a program I wrote.

The Raspberry Jam is such an amazing workshop and I am very grateful to Andrew and Libby for running it! I can’t wait till the December Jam!!”

We didn’t just have young people at the NI Raspberry Jam this month! The Jam is open to people of all ages, coding knowledge and backgrounds.

Never to old to play Minecraft! John (70) getting taught how to play Minecraft Pi by Isaac (10)

Never to old to play Minecraft! John (70) getting taught how to play Minecraft Pi by Isaac (10)

A parent:

“These events are really great. It lets the kids experiment with technology that they wouldn’t otherwise have got the opportunity to use in school. Most schools in Northern Ireland don’t seem to offer any coding opportunities for the kids so stuff like this is essential. And Andrew and Libby are great, giving up their Saturdays to come and teach these kids and my son!”

Next month is the Christmas special Jam! We have some secret new activities planned and of course, lots of food!

Some awesome cupcakes baked by @baker_geek for last months Jam.

Some awesome cupcakes baked by @baker_geek for last months Jam.

Want to come along to the next NI Raspberry Jam?

Northern Ireland Raspberry Jam is on the 2nd Saturday of every month with NI Raspberry Jam 7 (Christmas special) being on the 12th December at Farset Labs, Belfast.

Tickets are free! (Although we ask for a £3 donation towards the venue if able to).

The event is especially aimed at complete beginners to the Raspberry Pi or people just starting out, but we do have some more complex projects and challenges for you if you are an expert.

Special thanks to Libby (16) for helping me with this months Jam, and to Farset Labs for basically letting us take over the building for a Saturday afternoon!

You know when you are onto something good when you overhear one of the kids on their way out saying: “Daddy, daddy, can I borrow your phone to book next month’s tickets before they all go?”

Interested in finding a Raspberry Jam near you? Check out our Jams page!