Empty

Total: 0,00 €

h:D

Planet adafruit-industries

  • Wednesday, April 23, 2014 - 08:00
    Neopixel altimeter in action! #WearableWednesday



    We’ve posted about aonsquared‘s neopixel project before but it’s super cool to see it in action!


    Flora breadboard is Every Wednesday is Wearable Wednesday here at Adafruit! We’re bringing you the blinkiest, most fashionable, innovative, and useful wearables from around the web and in our own original projects featuring our wearable Arduino-compatible platform, FLORA. Be sure to post up your wearables projects in the forums or send us a link and you might be featured here on Wearable Wednesday!

  • Wednesday, April 23, 2014 - 07:00
    LED Bike Helmet Gets Shouts #WearableWednesday


    LED Helmet On

    K-Fai Steele started to get concerned about riding her bike without a helmet as she heard more stories about head injuries. However, the thought of having the typical helmet just seemed like a downer. Luckily she stumbled across our LED Helmet tutorial that fit her fashion needs.

    I feel like when you put a helmet on, you lose the cool factor, but with this helmet, I get a lot of shouts from people when I’m riding.

    K-Fai is no stranger to technology, as she heads up a program with the Philadelphia Library called Maker Jawn — an initiative which is turning teens into makers at local library branches. So, needless to say, she is comfortable with a soldering iron and programming. In fact, the helmet is another example project she can show off and everyone loves LEDs. She feels the helmet, which uses a FLORA microcontroller and a NeoPixel strip,  is still a work in progress.

    I didn’t use the GPS module like in the tutorial, but I did add an accelerometer. I’m interested in finding out whether I can affect the lights with how fast I’m going.

    LED Helmet Guts

    She hasn’t done the coding yet for the accelerometer, but it is in the works. In the meantime, she is famous for being the rainbow bright rider on the streets of Philly. Our thoughts — why leave the LED fun just for the helmet?  Why not get to work on bike bling with our LED Handlebar tutorial. Biking never looked so good, and it is preventative medicine for crashes. So, light up the night.

    leds_LED-handlebars-adafruit-11


    Flora breadboard is Every Wednesday is Wearable Wednesday here at Adafruit! We’re bringing you the blinkiest, most fashionable, innovative, and useful wearables from around the web and in our own original projects featuring our wearable Arduino-compatible platform, FLORA. Be sure to post up your wearables projects in the forums or send us a link and you might be featured here on Wearable Wednesday!

  • Wednesday, April 23, 2014 - 06:00
    Bionics pioneer Hugh Herr’s prosthetic ankle mimics the power and control of its biological counterpart #WearableWednesday


    NewImage

    MIT News has a great profile on Hugh Herr and his incredible work on bionics.

    These days, Hugh Herr, an associate professor of media arts and sciences at MIT, gets about 100 emails daily from people across the world interested in his bionic limbs.

    Messages pour in from amputees seeking prostheses and from media outlets pursuing interviews. Then there are students looking to join Herr’s research group. “The technology inspires young people to get into the field, which is wonderful,” Herr says.

    It’s a mark of the groundbreaking work Herr has done at the MIT Media Lab over the past two decades. An amputee himself, Herr has been designing (and wearing) bionic leg prostheses that, he says, “emulate nature” — mimicking the functions and power of biological knees, ankles, and calves.

    Last month, Herr’s TED talk made headlines, as Adrianne Haslet-Davis, a professional dancer whose leg was partially amputated after the 2013 Boston Marathon bombings, used one of his prostheses to rumba on stage.

    Most of these prostheses have reached the world through Herr’s startup, BiOM (originally called iWalk). Since 2010, the company has brought the world’s first bionic foot-and-calf system to more than 900 patients worldwide, including some 400 war veterans.

    “It’s always good to design something people will use. It’s great to do the science, yes, but it’s also great to see humanity using something that one has invented,” Herr says, adding: “Translating technology out of the lab keeps engineers honest.”

    NewImage

    Initially developed by Herr’s research group, BiOM’s prosthesis, dubbed the BiOM T2 System, simulates a biological ankle (and connected calf muscle), delivering a “natural ankle function” during strides.

    Using battery-powered “bionic propulsion,” two microprocessors and six environmental sensors adjust ankle stiffness, power, position, and damping thousands of times per second, at two major positions: First, at heel strike, the system controls the ankle’s stiffness to absorb shock and thrust the tibia forward. Then, algorithms generate fluctuating power, depending on terrain, to propel a wearer up and forward.

    When fitting the prosthesis to patients, prosthetists can program appropriate stiffness and power throughout all the stages of a gait, using software created by Herr’s group — a process the company calls “Personal Bionic Tuning.”

    Among other things, the system restores natural gait, balance, and speed; lowers joint stress; and drastically lowers the time required to acclimate to the prosthesis (which can take weeks or months with conventional models). “Often, within minutes, a patient is walking around, even running around,” says Herr, BiOM’s chief technology officer.

    The system, Herr says, could also help prevent osteoarthritis, a joint condition caused by age and leg strain, by providing calf and ankle power and support even in old age. 


    Read more.


    Flora breadboard is Every Wednesday is Wearable Wednesday here at Adafruit! We’re bringing you the blinkiest, most fashionable, innovative, and useful wearables from around the web and in our own original projects featuring our wearable Arduino-compatible platform, FLORA. Be sure to post up your wearables projects in the forums or send us a link and you might be featured here on Wearable Wednesday!

  • Wednesday, April 23, 2014 - 00:00
    Pro Trinket 5V final proto testing!





    From the desk of Ladyada – Pro Trinket 5V final proto testing!

  • Tuesday, April 22, 2014 - 23:00
    Make Your Own Battlestar Galactica Sidearm Replica


    bsg gun

    Even though I look at tons of cosplay stuff, I sometimes forget that anything can be fashioned from PVC foam (Sintra is one option). Instructables user Goombah Squad used the material to make some cool Battlestar Galactica guns to go with his costume. After he purchased blueprints from another builder, he used the foam to piece together the gun. After that it was all abut the shaping. Here’s the steps he took to get the gun just right:

    I use a Dremel with a sanding bit for 80% of the work. The remaining 20% is a variety of needle files, various grits of sandpaper, or the occasional grinding and engraving bit. I started by shaping and gluing the main frame of the gun. Once everything was how it needed to be, other pieces were added: grips, various rails along the side of the barrel. The two halves of the slide action were each crafted separately. So was the grenade launcher attachment.

    Once everything’s shaped, break out your Bondo. Bondo is an automotive filler typically used to fill in car dents and dings but as you’ll find, it’s widely used in propmaking. Anywhere you see unsightly seems or low areas, mix up some Bondo. Wait about 20 mins for it to cure when it becomes unworkable.

    gun pattern

    Read more at Instructables.

  • Tuesday, April 22, 2014 - 21:39
    Adafruit and Solve for X Present: Moonshot Meet Up with Ayah Bdeir from littleBits on Google+ Friday, April 25 at 11 am PT/2 pm ET



    Adafruit and Solve for X Present: Moonshot Meet Up with Ayah Bdeir from littleBits on Google+ Friday, April 25 at 11 am PT/2 pm ET.

    +Solve For X is a place to hear about and discuss radical technology ideas for solving global problems. Created by Google, +Solve for X embraces moonshot pioneers with a Huge Problem to solve, a Radical Solution for solving it, and Breakthrough Technology to make it happen. The ‘Moonshot Meet Up’ Hangout on Air series was created by +Solve for X to connect community members with engaging, hands-on discussions with Moonshot Pioneers and to further the discussion of technology moonshots.

    Limor “Ladyada” Fried from Adafruit will be interviewing Ayah Bdeir from littleBits and Catherine Wong.

    Ayah Bdeir is the founder and CEO of littleBits, an award-winning library of Electronics dubbed “LEGOs for the iPad generation.” Bdeir is an engineer, interactive artist and one of the leaders of the open hardware movement. Bdeir’s career and education have centered on advancing open source hardware to make education and innovation more accessible to people around the world. She is a co-founder of the Open Hardware Summit, a TED Senior Fellow and an alumna of the MIT Media Lab. Bdeir was named one of Fast Company’s 1000 Most Creative People in Business and one of Popular Mechanics’ 25 Makers Who Are Reinventing the American Dream. littleBits was named as one of CNN’s top 10 Emerging Startups to watch. In two short years, littleBits has garnered praise as the most extensive, versatile and easy to use hardware platform out there and partnered with leading science, art and technology organizations such as MoMA and KORG. Originally from Lebanon and Canada, Ayah now lives in New York City.

    littleBits is an opensource library of electronic modules that snap together with tiny magnets for prototyping, learning, and fun.

    littleBits (spelled lower case L, upper case B, all one word) consists of tiny circuit-boards with specific functions engineered to snap together with magnets. No soldering, no wiring, no programming, just snap together for prototyping, learning and fun. Each bit has a specific function (light, sound, sensors, buttons, thresholds, pulse, motors, etc), and modules snap to make larger circuits. Just as LEGO™ allows you to create complex structures with very little engineering knowledge, littleBits are small, simple, intuitive, blocks that make creating with sophisticated electronics a matter of snapping small magnets together.

    With a growing number of available modules, littleBits aims to move electronics from late stages of the design process to its earliest ones, and from the hands of experts, to those of artists, makers, students and designers.

    Catherine Wong is a previous Google Science Fair Finalist and she is working on building hackerspaces for schools Specifically, aiming to bring hackerspaces – filled with relatively inexpensive but awesome equipment ranging from 3D printers to soldering stations, as well as stations for CS and engineering classes – to the high schools or communities of students in disadvantaged neighborhoods; our mission is to reignite the excitement of learning in students who might otherwise be struggling by giving them access to the tools to build and make.

    Limor “Ladyada” is a MIT engineer, open source hardware and software pioneer and entrepreneur. She is the founder of the educational electronics company, Adafruit. Her goal was to create the best place online for learning electronics and making the best designed products for makers of all ages and skill levels. Limor was the first female engineer on the cover of WIRED magazine, an EFF Pioneer Award recipient for open-source software & hardware and was recently awarded Entrepreneur magazine’s Entrepreneur of the year.

    See you there!

  • Tuesday, April 22, 2014 - 21:00
    3D Paper Artwork by Maud Vantours #ArtTuesday


    Pasted Image 4 21 14 11 20 PM

    3D Paper Artwork by Maud Vantours:

    Maud Vantours was born in 1985 in France. Designer and artist, she lives and works in Paris. A graduate from the parisian school Duperré, Maud follows a Design training with a specialisation in textiles and materials research.

     

    Color, material and patterns have an important place in her work, like paper, which became her favorite material. She sculpts it in 3D layer after layer, by superimposing paper and colors to create inspired patterns in volume.

     

    Maud’s work transcending a simple material and transforming it into a work of art. Her design creations are original graphics of multicolored and dreamlike landscapes….

    Read More.

    Pasted Image 4 21 14 11 23 PM

    Pasted Image 4 21 14 11 24 PM

  • Tuesday, April 22, 2014 - 20:52
    Earth Day 3d Printing Project #3dprinting


    Happy Earth Day! Help raise neighborhood recycling rates with this cool 3d printing project:

    3D printed recycle bins for bottles and cans

    3D printed recycle bins for bottles and cans. They connect together with a modular design which allows you to use them in sets or one at a time. This project connects two communities: the locals and the makers. Urban Hubs act as exchange points for local residents to drop off empty bottles and cans so that neighbors can collect them and redeem them for cash.

    You can download the files from UrbanHubs

    connect together design

  • Tuesday, April 22, 2014 - 20:37
    Knit Glitch throw rug


    Adafruit 2955

    Knit Glitch throw rug @ Fairgoods.

    Phillip Stearns’ glitch textiles are the result of “transcoding glitches in the cold, hard logic of digital circuits into soft, warm textiles. I wanted to find ways to give digital and computer-generated images life beyond the screen.” The design for this cotton throw was created by manually short circuiting a low-resolution digital camera, then made using computerized weaving and knitting machinery.

    Learn more.

  • Tuesday, April 22, 2014 - 20:00
    A Collection of Comic Maps #arttuesday


    IsabelGreenberg

    Last week, Hyperallergic highlighted the great work being done on the blog Comic Cartography, which has an extensive catalogue of graphics and maps taken from comics. Hyperallergic’s Jillian Steinhauer writes about the importance of these maps in the fictional world building of the comic book genre:

    Comics are an especially apt medium for this type of construction, since, well, they’re visual. Diagrams and maps in comics can do different kinds of work: they can be used as exposition, to help readers get their bearings in a story, or to create a mood or feeling, or simply as a prop. They’re not even necessarily made-up — Jason Lutes’s Berlin is a series of fictional stories set in a historical place.

    Comic Cartography, a lovely blog that I discovered today, collects images of maps from all different kinds of comics, from Lutes’s Weimar-Era Berlin to the office layout of the Daily Bugle, the fictional newspaper featured in the Spider-Man comics. The wide range of work makes the blog engrossing, as it highlights the many forms and shapes that maps can take but also their underlying commonality: we use them to make sense of the world, even if that world exists only in our heads. To that end, there’s also something wonderfully meta about seeing these images within images — they seem to simultaneously represent a homing in and a zooming out.

    DarwynCooke

    Read more.

  • Tuesday, April 22, 2014 - 19:30
    #Z4 + #BeagleBoneBlack + #Arduino + #Neopixels = Shift Lights! #beagleboneblack @TXInstruments @beagleboardorg



    Cool project from Twitter user Owen McAree!


    BeagleBone Adafruit Industries Unique fun DIY electronics and kits

    Each Tuesday is BeagleBone Black Day here at Adafruit! What is the BeagleBone? The BeagleBones are a line of affordable single-board Linux computers (SBCs) created by Texas Instruments. New to the Bone? Grab one of our Adafruit BeagleBone Black Starter Packs and check out our extensive resources available on the Adafruit Learning System including a guide to setting up the Adafruit BeagleBone IO Python Library. We have a number of Bone accessories including add-on shields (called “capes”) and USB devices to help you do even more with your SBC. Need a nice display to go along with your Bone? Check out our fine selection of HDMI displays, we’ve tested all of them with the Beagle Bone Black!

  • Tuesday, April 22, 2014 - 19:00
    Paper Dreams: How one maker’s paper model building hobby landed him a job with a formula one racing team #ArtTuesday



    Check out this inspirational mini documentary that Siemens posted on their YouTube channel- just goes to show that sharing your projects with the world can lead to great things! We encourage all makers out there to keep building and sharing with the community – you never know where it could land you.

    Paul used to build race cars out of paper. Today, he designs the real thing with sophisticated software, as part of the Infiniti Red Bull Racing team.

    Read more.

  • Tuesday, April 22, 2014 - 18:32
    Happy Earth Day 2014! Here’s some giant images of the Earth via NASA #earthday2014


    NewImage

    Today is Earth Day! Every year we celebrate by posting some of our favorite images of the earth. These are from the NASA catalog called visible earth. You can view more images here. Here’s a little background on the history of earth day:

    Earth Day is an annual event, celebrated on April 22, on which events are held worldwide to demonstrate support for environmental protection. It was first celebrated in 1970, and is now coordinated globally by the Earth Day Network, and celebrated in more than 192 countries each year.

    In 1969 at a UNESCO Conference in San Francisco, peace activist John McConnell proposed a day to honor the Earth and the concept of peace, to first be celebrated on March 21, 1970, the first day of spring in the northern hemisphere. This day of nature’s equipoise was later sanctioned in a Proclamation written by McConnell and signed by Secretary General U Thant at the United Nations. A month later a separate Earth Day was founded by United States Senator Gaylord Nelson as an environmental teach-in first held on April 22, 1970. Nelson was later awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom Award in recognition of his work. While this April 22 Earth Day was focused on the United States, an organization launched by Denis Hayes, who was the original national coordinator in 1970, took it international in 1990 and organized events in 141 nations. Numerous communities celebrate Earth Week, an entire week of activities focused on environmental issues.

    Read more.

    NewImage

    NewImage

  • Tuesday, April 22, 2014 - 18:00
    STEM Apps Beyond the Classroom #makereducation


    Tumblr n48ecvLM6a1saghkzo1 400

    Einstein in a Box has compiled a list of great educational STEM apps for kids, including “Rube Works: The Official Rube Goldberg Invention Game”, which we blogged about here, and more!

    STEM Apps Beyond the Classroom

    Are you concerned that your child spends too much time playing meaningless games on the smartphone or tablet? Don’t fret! Apple features over 65,000 educational apps, designed specifically for the iOS platform that reaches all levels of education. But, with so many apps to choose from, parents may find it challenging to know which apps are best for their children. Here are a few apps that teach STEM-related (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) material that are educational, but fun and entertaining.

    Rube Works: The Official Rube Goldberg Invention Game by Electric Eggplant in partnership with Kalani Games and the Heirs of Rube Goldberg and published by Unity Games

    Age: 8+

    Where to download: iTunes App Store; Google Play

    This app combines puzzles, humor and creative problem solving in a whimsical environment. Users enter the wacky world of Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist Rube Goldberg (1883-1970) to learn the logic of physics through the connection of oddball items, inventing machines that solve problems.

    Read more.


    Adafruit_Learning_SystemEach Tuesday is EducationTuesday here at Adafruit! Be sure to check out our posts about educators and all things STEM. Adafruit supports our educators and loves to spread the good word about educational STEM innovations!

  • Tuesday, April 22, 2014 - 17:00
    Build A BeagleBone Black Linux Music Server #BeagleBoneBlack @TXInstruments @BeagleBoardOrg


    NewImage

    Computer Audiophile shows us how to build a Linux music server using a BeagleBone Black.

    Warning the following article contains some geeky stuff. What follows is a step by step guide to building a tiny 2.4″ x 0.82″ x 3.54″ Linux music server. It’s not rocket science and the instructions make the process fairly easy, but the article isn’t for everybody. Thanks to CA readers K-man and Richard Dale for additional information and tweaks for setting up the BeagleBone Black so it runs great. Please note there are many ways to setup and configure the BBB. This is just one way using either Mac OS X or Windows. Readers are encouraged to leave comments with additional tips, tricks, and tweaks. I will update this article accordingly.

    Read more.


    BeagleBone Adafruit Industries Unique fun DIY electronics and kitsEach Tuesday is BeagleBone Black Day here Adafruit! What is the BeagleBone? The BeagleBones are a line of affordable single-board Linux computers (SBCs) created by Texas Instruments. New to the Bone? Grab one of our Adafruit BeagleBone Black Starter Packs and check out our extensive resources available on the Adafruit Learning System including a guide to setting up the Adafruit BeagleBone IO Python Library. We have a number of Bone accessories including add-on shields (called “capes”) and USB devices to help you do even more with your SBC. Need a nice display to go along with your Bone? Check out our fine selection of HDMI displays, we’ve tested all of them with the Beagle Bone Black!

  • Tuesday, April 22, 2014 - 16:00
    Autodesk Updates 123D Design for Desktop #3DPrinting


    Autodesk 123D Design Update 1.4 for Desktop

    Just when we weren’t sure if Autodesk was ever going to update 123D Design for Desktop, a brand new 1.4 update comes out and surprises us. The details from their history update from their website looks very promising.

    Get Autodesk 123D Design 1.4 Update[for Desktop]

    • A new UI introduces similar look and feel with other products from the 123D family, like Tinkercad.
    • Easier access to all of your models and projects, regardless of the app you made them in. MyProjects provides access to models created in 123D Catch, 123D Make and 123D Creature.
    • Support for opening, inserting, and saving meshes in STL and OBJ formats.
    • Perform Combine, Subtract and Intersect operations between meshes and solids.
    • New option for combining objects on STL export in order to support printers that read first body only.
    • Import SVG files and use them as sketches or as simple extrusions.
    • Drop selected objects to the grid with a simple key (F10).
    • Added option for hiding grid.
    • New toggle for enabling or disabling implicit grouping when snapping between parts.
    • New option for defining snapping increments for different operations.
    • 3D Print now sends model to Meshmixer for processing before 3D printing.
    • Premium members can now download unlimited models from 123D Content Library.
    • Free members can now download up to 10 models a month.
    • A brand new car! (Just kidding)
    • Stability fixes on Copy-Paste.
    • Performance and stability bug fixes.
    • Support for 3dconnexion devices.
    • Shortcut Keys on F1.
    • Feedback Survey directly in app under Help.
    • Also includes updates for 123D Premium members, and bug fixes.

    123D Design 1.4 Tools

    Autodesk 123D 1.4 New UI

    We think this is a really big update. Our first impressions with the UI redesign are really good. Things did not move around, it’s mostly a graphical refresh, which looks very sharp and clean.

    123D Snapping Units

    Objects have a nice lime green outline when its selected, making it more distinct. Features that might get overlooked that seem minor are actually handy in use. Hover over the bottom right to quickly change snapping increments and measuring units. Toggling on/off groups when snapping is a time saver and turning the grid off allows you to project sketches from irregular surfaces.

    123D Adafruit Logo SVG Import

    123D SVG Import Adafruit Font

    The biggest feature update is SVG import. This is great for making solids from outline sketches made from a vector drawling app like Adobe Illustrator or Inkscape. In our tests, the feature worked best on simple paths. It did an OK job at importing our Adafruit font, but crapped out on our icon. Importing SVG option is available in either a Sketch or Solid. Doesn’t seem like there’s an option (yet) to set the height of an extruded object when importing as an object. You can’t apply construct operations to extruded SVGs which is a bummer but expected from a new feature.

    123D Autodesk 1.4 STL Import

    Importing STL is also very welcomed feature that we feel was probably the most requested feature. Tinkercad did this really well and now 123D Design can too. It also gives you a ability to apply basic combine operations like merge, subtract and intersect to solids and other meshes. The best uses of this feature could be for anyone who is looking to make remixes/fixes/customizations/upgrades to STL models like scanned data. You also can’t apply construct operations to imported meshes.

    Overall it’s a great update and we really recommend upgrading if you’re already a user. If you’re thinking about learning some CAD for 3D Printing, now is a great time! Special thanks goes out to 123D Design team from Autodesk for making kick ass free CAD software!

  • Tuesday, April 22, 2014 - 16:00
    New Film Shows Hunter Thompson and Ralph Steadman on Wild and Crazy Ride #ArtTuesday


    NewImage

    (1995 caricature of Hunter S. Thompson by Steadman, Sony Pictures Classics)

    For No Good Reason, which will hit theaters on April 25, is a film that documents the wild collaboration between writer Hunter S. Thompson and illustrator Ralph Steadman. via ARTnews:

    Over the course of several decades, writer Hunter S. Thompson and illustrator Ralph Steadman, partners in work (and sometimes in mischief), traveled together to report from Kentucky to Zaire to Honolulu. Why? “For no good reason,” the famed gonzo journalist often sardonically told Steadman, who recounts their adventures in a new documentary of the same title.

    While the pair’s antics launched Steadman to international success, For No Good Reason centers on the art-making practices of this rather reclusive British artist. Unlike his late collaborator, Steadman has led a disciplined and drug-fee life in Kent, England. “We were like chalk and cheese,” the artist says in the film.

    His caricatures, cartoons, and drawings depict human suffering and dread, always punctuated with sickly ink splatters. Such images provided the perfect complement to Thompson’s maniacal, self-sabotaging stories for Rolling Stone, Scanlan’s, and Running, and illuminated the novel Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. Of his partnership with Thompson, Steadman notes, “I met up with the one man I needed to meet.”

    The two were introduced on assignment in 1970—Steadman’s first trip to the United States—when Thompson was reporting from Louisville to write “The Kentucky Derby is Decadent and Depraved” for Scanlan’s. Steadman provided grotesque illustrations of racers and audience members alike, and the story garnered widespread attention for both men.

    For No Good Reason, hitting theaters April 25, features interviews with friends and associates, including Rolling Stone publisher Jann Wenner and actor Johnny Depp, as they unpack how Steadman’s anarchic pictures gave a visual record of this celebrated collaboration.

    Read more.

  • Tuesday, April 22, 2014 - 15:36
    Pimoroni stats #makerbusiness


    Adafruit 2954
    Pimoroni Shop stats.

    The past twenty months have been an absolute whirlwind for Paul, Jon, and our growing team of stellar individuals Here’s a run-down by the numbers of how that time has passed…

    Read more and congrats Pimoroni, nicely done. Check out all the Pimoroni products here and here.

  • Tuesday, April 22, 2014 - 15:00
    This is Why Kids Need to Learn to Code #makereducation


    Dougbelshaw16 600

    Doug Belshaw emphasizes some of the key reasons why coding is an important skill for kids to learn, from DMLcentral.

    Why Is Coding Important?

    Now that we’ve defined coding as the ability to read and write a machine language and think computationally, it’s worth turning to the ‘so what?’ question. Why do we need the general population to be able to do this? Why not leave it to a subset of very highly-specialised individuals and teams who can do this on our behalf? After all, we need roads and buildings but we don’t require kids to learn civil engineering and architecture.

    Leaving to one side the top-down argument that it’s ‘good for the economy’, I’d argue that there’s at least three important reasons why kids should learn to code: They are: problem-solving, (digital) confidence, and understanding the world around them. I should re-emphasise that by ‘learning to code’ we’re talking about skills and competencies that people can be better or worse. The important thing here is the attitude and approach of the individual, not necessarily how polished their outputs are.

    1. Problem-solving

    Writing, debugging and remixing your own and other people’s code are fundamentally problem-solving activities. Whether it’s code that won’t run because of syntax errors, something working differently than you expected, or figuring out how to do something cool, these are all things that involve lateral thinking. And often this problem-solving involves working with other people – either in real-time or following tutorials, blog posts and howtos (and then sharing back).

    2. (Digital) confidence

    Literacy often leads to an increased sense of confidence. Not only confidence in terms of social interaction but also a sense of agency in shaping the environments in which people find themselves. In digital (or blended) environments, this means people not only being able to decode what they see, but encode it too: reading, writing and thinking computationally instead of merely elegantly consuming what others have produced.

    3. Understanding the world

    There’s a wonderful segment from a video interview with Steve Jobs in which he talks about the importance of realising that everything around you has “been made up by someone who was no smarter than you.” Realising that you can not only change and influence things, but build things that other people can use is, he says, “perhaps the most important thing.” In a world where almost everything has either a digital component or is somehow digitally mediated, being able to both read and write our environment is more important than ever.

    Read more.

    Adafruit_Learning_SystemEach Tuesday is EducationTuesday here at Adafruit! Be sure to check out our posts about educators and all things STEM. Adafruit supports our educators and loves to spread the good word about educational STEM innovations!

  • Tuesday, April 22, 2014 - 15:00
    Adorable Pixar Lamp Costume


    Pixar Lamp costume

    The Pixar lamp is iconic. Most of us have seen the little guy hopping into place before several of their films. Instructables user darcy3529 made the lamp outfit for her granddaughter from a coverall and mat board with dowels. The build looks rather affordable and straightforward. Here’s how she completed the frame:

    The frame/cage for the costume is made from mat board that I covered with fabric. There are fabric covered dowels that go between the 2 matching side frames. The pieces were all glued together using a strong silicone glue. Then furniture slides were added to look like nuts. The frame slides over the head and rests on the shoulders.

    The base is a dollar store platter that has a hole cut in the bottom. I flipped the platter bottom side up and covered with fabric. There is a fabric collar glued ro the opening of the platter.

    Read more at Instructables.

Pages