2020-01-17 (F) Weekly Summary

Last week I covered the last of the project work for MIDIGlocken, and I started this week with a final video I made with some help. I didn't have a word-for-word script, and I didn't do more than a couple of takes, but I covered the vital points, and I will do an in-depth video when I automate a full-size glockenspiel.
(2:12) Video for MIDIGlocken

The new project will be a DEFCON badge. I am doing the hardware, so I do not have to get into the aesthetics or programming; I just have to make sure the devices can all talk when I design the circuit. The first step was being able to upload code to a reliable board, but this was not as easy as I had hoped.
New hardware for a new project

My first attempt at uploading code was a bust, and I thought I tried everything. My error was assuming I had a trustworthy board, but when I switched from a board I bought in a crowd-sourced campaign to a cheap Chinese board I received a month ago, I had immediate success.
Getting good data

The badge will read pulse and blood oximetry, so I purchased a well-known module from Sparkfun to ensure their tutorials would be helpful. Their sample code worked after I found the correct data pins on the ESP32 board. I had no trouble reading the raw values, and touching my finger to the sensor showed an immediate result.
Reading a pulse-ox sensor

The next electronics I wanted to integrate were addressable LEDs. I had some more malfunctioning hardware, but I replaced it, and it worked. I programmed the bottom light to turn on the red intensity with how much red light entered the sensor. Up from that, green, indicated the amount of green light, and the blue LED reflected the detected infrared. This pattern repeated up the strip.
Displaying incoming light on LEDs

One of the last pieces of significant hardware will be a color screen. This one proved to be the most difficult, and I am glad I waited until I had some success with the sensor and lights. Raw hardware for screens tends to be inexpensive, but US-supplied modules are prohibitively expensive. I wanted to source the displays as inexpensively as possible, but in this case, those savings will cost time because support for the board I chose was sparse and lousy. On top of that, the pins I needed to run the module were not exposed on the controller board. I will need some new hardware to get the screen working.
Trying to add a screen

The rest of the summary posts have been arranged by date.

First time here?

Completed projects from year 1
Completed projects from year 2
Completed projects from year 3
Completed projects from year 4
Completed projects from year 5
Completed projects from year 6

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