eDay – Gateshead Library 29th September 2012

September 30, 2012

I’ve just about recovered from helping Newcastle Maker Space put on a great makers event at Gateshead Central Libraries eDay

We had a really great day. Thanks to all the makers for helping out and to  Gateshead Libraries for asking Maker Space to get involved.

We had not one, not two but three 3D printers on the day. A big thanks to Paddy, Cay and James for bringing them along. They spent the entire day printing out glyphs and minecraft blocks for the kids who thought the 3D printers for great.

Ed and Iain were doing Arduino stuff in the other corner and Brian, Chris and myself were manning the Raspberry Pi tables.

We had a nice crowd, over a 150 by my estimation. At most times during the day all the 7 Raspberry Pi’s we had set up were being used by people. The kids liked to program in Scratch no doubt showing off to their parents  and were happy to play the retro games we’re had the RPi’s emulating.

We were busy from the start, right up to about 2.0pm when things started to trail off. Every thing went well, even the youngsters braying the crap out the raspberry pi’s and their keyboards and mice didn’t stop the show. Hoorah for the plastic cases 😉 The big screen
projection worked a treat. We had the 3D printers and RPi media playing on it for all the day.

I spend my entire time talking to ICT teachers who were really, really interested in getting the RPi into their schools.

We had big Maker Space banners on the walls which made a great impression and there was talk of making eDay a regular event.

Only thing I forgot to do was take some pics, so I hope someone can post some pic’s on the Maker Space’s wiki for us all to see.


ARDvance-Pi v0.1

December 31, 2011

The ARDvance-Pi is an advance Arduino training board. You can use it together with any of the Ardunio Uno or Duemilanove style of boards. The Arduino is plugged into the ARDvance-Pi and DIL switches allow the user to select which interfaces or circuits they want to connect to the Ardunio.

The training board has a number of interfaces

  • 6 x Rotary Potentiometers
  • 2 x Linear Potentiometers
  • 4-Digit, 7-segment LED display
  • Temperature Sensor
  • Light Sensor
  • Buzzer Output
  • 5V/3.3V switchable PSU
  • Prototyping area
  • 8 x LEDs
  • 8 x tactile switches
  • 1-ch Relay (Change Over)
  • RS232 interface with 9-W D connector
  • H-Bridge Motor Controller (based on L298)
  • XBee socket
  • 16-way keypad*
  • LCD interface*
  • 5V to 3.3V logic conversion for Raspberry-Pi

* Note: if space allows

It was originally going to be called the ARDvance-10 but its name changed when I decided to add an interface port for the Raspberry Pi board, hence its new name ARDvance-Pi. Port Expanders, either MCP23008 or PCF8573 and a 8-ch ADC will also be added to allow I2C or SPI interfaces to be used from the Raspberry-Pi. When its finished, its hoped that the Raspberry-Pi can use the Arduino as a sort of slave I/O processor.

The schematic is here: Ardvance Pi Schematic 0v10