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Author Archives: Cooking Hacks

  • Introducing some New Kits

    As you probably know by now, we released a new version of our website a few weeks ago. Apart from the visual aspect (we hope you're enjoying it), we have seized the opportunity to focus on technical education. Read about it here.

    This means a lot of new kits and tutorials for Arduino, Raspberry Pi, Waspmote and Intel Galileo. Now we would like to tell you a little bit more in detail about our new kits.

    Our best shields and modules for Arduino, Raspberry Pi and Galileo have now their own kit. For instance, there's a Bluetooth Kit for the Bluetooth module Pro, a Tracking Kit for the GPRS+GPS Quadband Module or the Extreme Range Connectivity Kit for the LoRa module (868MHz/900MHz).

    3G+GPS Mobile Kit

    new_starter_kit_ir_remote_small

    3G+GPS Mobile Kit (left) & HVAC & TV Infrared Control Kit (right)

    We have completely rearranged our idea of kits and included everything you need in a kit to develop full applications. Apart from the shield itself and some components, every kit contains a few accessories to be used with the shield: as you can see in the image above, the 3G+GPS Mobile Kit comes with GPS and 4G antennas, a thin speaker, an internal speaker, a microphone and a 2MP videocamera.

    In addition to all these new kits we have classified them by Platform, User Level and Category, so you can quickly find the right kit according to your experience, and depending on the field you want to work in.

    Customize Your Kit: Choose Your Platform

    Apart from having put together all these new kits, we also give you the chance to choose the platform you want to work with: Arduino, Raspberry Pi or Intel Galileo. Obviously, if you already have any of these boards and you just want to buy a kit with no platform it's fine.

    As you can see, we tried to supply in this platforms everything you need to program and power these boards, so you can start working right away without having to buy additional items.

    Arduino Platform

    Raspberry Pi Platform

    Arduino (left) & Raspberry Pi (right) Platforms. Include one of them in your Kit

    Starter Kit

    The Starter Kit has been upgraded and now has a few more components than it used to. Apart from a bunch of resistors and jumper cables, you can find some other basic components like push buttons (4x), potentiometers (2x),a piezo speaker or a breadboard.

    There's also some LEDs (red, green and RGB), sensors (LDR and Temperature), a transistor and a 9V to barrel jack adapter.

    New Starter Kit

    Additionally, we have included a Micro Servo, a Hobby Motor and an LCD screen. These items open a whole new world of applications for your projects: the LCD will allow you to visualize any data from the sensors, and the Motor and Micro Servo, along with the accessories, will provide you with tools for controlling any moving part of your project.

    You can buy this kit separately, but we thought it would be a good idea to have all the items of the Starter Kit in the rest of the kits. This way, if you buy any of them, like the Smart Cards Kit (NFC/RFID 13.56MHz), you will find everything from the Starter Kit in it, so you can make a specific application but with all these common and useful items.

    If you want to check everything you can accomplish with these new kits take a look at the tutorials we have prepared.

    Learning Kit

    The Learning kit is the first step for beginners in the Arduino world. Just like the rest of the kits you can buy it with or without the Arduino platform.

    Similar to the Starter Kit, it contains fairly common components like resistors, LEDs, an LCD display or some push buttons. The difference is that the shield comes unassembled, so you have to place and solder every component yourself (you will need extra tools).

    Learning Kit

    The idea is that you can learn step by step the basics of the through-hole soldering, and once the kit is assembled, you can program several applications to get started with Arduino, like controlling the LEDs with the buttons, displaying the temperature in the LCD or making a real life alarm clock.

    You can follow this detailed tutorial where we tell you how to prepare and solder the shield, download the libraries and complete every example.

    Robot Kit

    This one is also a brand new kit, and, as the Learning Kit, it is supposed to help you improve your soldering and programming skills. The Robot Kit contains everything you need to assemble your own tracked robot, small enough to qualify for Mini Sumo. It has two micro gear motors and a pair of silicone tracks. For detecting impacts and tracking orientation it has a 3-axis accelerometer, and an array of six infrared reflectance sensors enables line following and edge detection.

    Robot Kit

    The Robot is powered by 4 AA batteries and controlled with an Arduino Uno and a motor driver Zumo shield. This kit has its own tutorial where we explain what you need and how to solder and configure the robot. You can find libraries that will make it a little bit easier to control the robot and a few examples to get started, like a border detector, RC robot or a line follower.

    And there's more to come!

    We hope you like our new or upgraded Kits, and find them useful. Stay tuned to know more about our new kits: more to come in this blog. In the meantime, you can check a complete list of all our Kits here.

  • Weekly Recap - GPS Hacks

    This week is time for GPS hacks, whether you are trying to make a security project to track stolen goods or help your pet to exercise you will find some very interesting stuff here.

    Arduino GeoSteamPunk

    Here's a good example of how to make your own customized geocaching application. Folkert wanted a cost-effective GPS device so he decided to make one himself and gave it a personal steam punk look.

    He bought a GPS module and an Arduino nano to control it. He's using as well some switches, a beeper, a LiPo charger, a couple of analog meters and place everything in an antique wooden box.

    GeoSteamPunk

    After a lot of programming he managed to reuse the meters for indicating direction (the one in the left) and distance (the one in the right). A rotary encoder allows to show the current longitude and latitude and to set a new target, an the beeper increases frequency when approaching the target.

    Check our GPS module for Arduino, Raspberry Pi and Intel Galileo

    Read about this project and see some more pictures on Folkert's website.

    Posted on Hackaday.

    GPS Tracked Bike Lock

    This is a very common application for GPS modules: tracking stolen goods, in this case a bicycle. Stbennett could reuse some old parts for this project and built everything around an Arduino Uno.

    The tracker is composed by a GSM shield (with SIM card) and a GPS module mounted on a prototyping board. He included a LiPo battery to power the device and make it autonomous.

    GPS Tracked Bike Lock

    The retractable lock has been modified to be an electrical part of the circuit, this way whenever the lock is disengaged or cut the Arduino turns on and the tracker starts working. When this happens, after a short delay, it will send a text message that reads "Your bike has been stolen" and when the GPS module gets signal you should start receiving GPS location coordinates. So paste that data into Google maps and see where your bike is.

    Take a look at our own vehicle tracking project, using the GPRS+GPS Quadband Module.

    Posted on Instructables. Via Hackaday.

    GPS Dog Collar

    Becky Stern at Adafruit was worried her dog wasn't exercising as much as she should so she built a little GPS collar that tracks your dog and calculates the total distance.

    She used a Atmega32u4 Breakout Board and a GPS module to do the tracking, and a OLED graphic display. The code detects when you are moving and adds the distance to the running total.

    Besides, the OLED displays the walked distance in miles (easily convertible to km) and a little bar with the progress towards a set goal, so you can quickly check if you keep up the daily exercise.

    Posted on Adafruit.

    Tracking project by CH: Geocaching Santa here.

  • Weekly Recap - PIR Sensors

    A couple of weeks ago we were talking about Infrared projects with Arduino. Today we bring you some IR related hacks, this time with PIR Motion Sensors: a couple of security applications and an energy-saving project.

    Motion Sensing Water Gun

    Now this is not the usual home security system. Ashish made a motion detector that sprays water on the intruder, and after that, to embarrass him/her a little bit more it takes a picture and uploads it to twitter.

    First thing he needed was a motorized water gun. He opened it and soldered two long pieces of wire. It has a motorized pump and he's using a MOSFET to drive it. A Lightblue Bean, an Arduino-compatible microcontroller board that is wirelessly programmed over Bluetooth Low Energy, controls the water gun and reads the signal from a PIR motion sensor.

    BLE_water_gun

    When the PIR sensor detects an intruder it sends a signal to the Bean, then the Bean switches on the MOSFET to turn on the water gun. The Bean is connected via Bluetooth with a computer, then with Node-RED it monitors the Bean serial and, if the PIR sends the signal, a Python script takes a picture and a second script uploads the photo to the twitter account.

    Don't forget to check their Twitter account.

    Posted on Instructables, via Hackaday.

    RPi_Camera2

    Raspberry Pi Motion Sensitive Camera
    This is another security camera project, but this time is built around a Raspberry Pi. Bruce made this camera to keep track of what his cats are up to when he's not home. To do so, he used, apart from the Raspberry Pi, a Raspberry camera module, a PIR motion sensor and a USB WiFi adapter, and he made a wooden case himself with a laser cutter.

    When the Raspberry Pi is switched on it runs a Python program that checks the PIR sensor signal to detect motion.

    If the PIR detects something moving the camera takes a photo or records a short video, then it is uploaded to a DropBox account, so the user can see it in any device.

    Another Python program monitors a shutdown switch on the camera and controls an LED that indicates when the camera is running.

    Also, it blinks and stops the software when the switch is pressed and after that the LED turns off to indicate you can unplug the camera. The camera is mounted on a tripod and powered with a USB AC adapter.

    Check the complete project on Instructables.

    PIR Motion Sensor Lighting

    After all this security projects, here's one that might be helpful to save energy. Steve used an Arduino and a PIR sensor to detect motion. The idea is that the lights turn on automatically when you walk into a room, and when you leave they turn off after a little while.

    Apart from the PIR sensor, he used a solid state relay. This SSR is needed to control the power of the lighting appliance and isolate the AC load from the Arduino.

    9212_pir_sensor

    He also included a manual switch to override the PIR sensor. A SPTD switch is connected to 5V, and to the Arduino pins 11 and 12 so it can manually turn on and off the light.

    The program is continuously reading the PIR sensor and, depending on the SPTD switch, it turns on or off the lights. This is a clever yet simple way to hack a home appliance that makes use of some common and cheap components.

    Check the complete project on Instructables.

    Visit Steve's blog: Arduinotronics.

  • Weekly Recap - Watering Hacks

    So summer is here and we all have a lot of things to do but not the time. Here are some hacks that will surely help you to take some time off your daily tasks, this projects will automatically take care of your plants for you.

    e-Waste Watering Can

    This hack started as a project to teach a group of students about electronic waste and reusing technology. First thing they did was taking the CD drive out of a desktop computer. The idea was to control the amount of water by opening or closing the CD drive. They also recycled a plastic bottle to store the water and used a tube to irrigate the plant and a 12-16V power supply.

    WaterCan

    After that, they soldered the leads of the drive to a relay, and connected it to an Arduino Uno to be able to control it. They included a sensor to measure soil moisture with the Arduino board and, depending on this value, they used the CD drive to clamp the water of the bottle.

    As you can see the components for this project are cheap and mostly reused and recycled, so it's easy to make one yourself!

    Check our solutions for taking care of your plants here.

    Read about this project on Instructables. Via Adafruit.

    Automated Plant Watering System

    Shane built another system to water your plants. He used a car door actuator with a small DC motor to activate a water bottle pump. This up and down movement of the electronic actuator, which transforms a rotary motion into a linear motion, rises the pressure in the jug.

    When the pressure is high enough, a servo, mounted on the same wooden structure, activates a lever that sprays the water through a hose. Watch it in the video below.

    The servo activating the lever is connected to a dsPIC microcontroller, which also controls the door lock actuator with a DC motor driver. Just a few components and reused equipment!

    Take a look at Open Garden Indoor, our alternative to remotely control your indoor plants.

    Find all about this hack here. Via Hackaday.

    Watering Garden with Arduino

    OK, now we're getting serious. This project is a complete watering system for your garden. It is build around an Arduino Uno and a soil moisture detector. It is planned to use up to 8 electrovalves, but as he explains you can adapt it to your needs and use as many as you like.

    The watering system is composed of flexible water pipe, connectors, splitters, electrovalves and a sprinkler. He is using an 8 relay shield (9V or 12V) to control the electrovalves and an AC adapter to power everything but the Arduino Board, which is connected to a USB power adapter.

    WateringGarden

    The Arduino monitors the soil moisture with the sensor, and depending on this value it activates the relays and waters the garden. It is a simple way to automatically take care of your plants.

    Check our kit for garden watering: Open Garden Outdoor.

    Posted on Instructables.

  • Cooking Hacks at the Sónar 2015

    Cooking Hacks was part of the recent Sónar Festival 2015 in Barcelona. Sónar is a three-day long electronic music festival that was founded in 1994, and has since evolved into a multi-themed event that includes all kind of artistic performances and multimedia exhibitions, enhancing creativity and technology.

    It is divided into Sónar by Day and Sónar by Night and, unlike most summer festivals, it does not take place in a field. Sónar by Day is located in the city centre (Fira Montjuïc), and apart from concerts and dj's it hosts showcases and expositions, and the Sónar+D, an international conference focused on creativity and technology, and the digital transformation of the cultural industries involved. It gathers not only artists but entrepreneurs, researchers and companies seeking to integrate music, technology and business.

    Watch below the intro video for the Sónar+D.

    Sónar by Night is located at Fira Gran Via de L'Hospitalet, far away from the city centre, with most part of the live shows and dj sets until late at night.

    Libelium attended Sónar with "Sensors for the Next Generation of Artists", a demo of some of our products and the projects explained below, and participated in the "European Commission: Open Digital Science and Art Workshop", which featured representatives from principal institutions involved in research, art, technology and culture.

    Zero Calories Can Dispenser

    So this is what we brought to the table. This project is a mind controlled fridge, so you can get a cool drink without physical interaction. A mindwave sensor measures brainwave signals and monitors the attention level of the user. This sensor uses the Bluetooth module PRO from CH to send the data to an Arduino Uno board.

    Zero Calories Can Dispenser 1

    Zero Calories Can Dispenser 2

    Zero Calories Can Dispenser

    The Can Dispenser is controlled with the Arduino Uno, which collects the data from the Mindwave and displays your concentration levels in an LCD screen and an analogic gauge meter. So all this means that when you concentrate hard enough you get your drink: Inside the covering there is a thermoelectric cooling that uses the Peltier effect together with a fan to create a flow of fresh air.

    Partymeter

    This application could turn out to be really useful in a festival like this one. Build once again around an Arduino Uno, it is actually a portable medical station for measuring Galvanic Skin Response (sweating) and Pulse and Oxygen in Blood (SPO2):

    • Galvanic Skin Response Sensor (GSR - Sweating): Skin conductance, also known as Galvanic Skin Response (GSR) is a method of measuring the electrical conductance of the skin, which varies with its moisture level. Skin conductance is used as an indicator of psychological or physiological arousal.
    • Pulse and Oxygen in Blood Sensor (SPO2): Pulse oximetry is a noninvasive method of indicating the arterial saturation of functional hemoglobin. Oxygen saturation is defined as the measurement of the amount of Oxygen dissolved in blood, based on the detection of Hemoglobin and Deoxyhemoglobin.

    The Arduino Board reads the data from the sensors and sends it to the printer with our RS-232 Serial/Modbus Module. This module allows to connect console ports and special purpose equipment. So, in the end you will get a ticket from the printer with the measured levels and depending on them it automatically assigns you a party level: relaxed, normal, semi-altered, altered or super-altered.

    Partymeter 1

    Partymeter 2

    Partymeter

    The Partymeter makes use of the e-Health Sensor Shield, a board by Cooking Hacks that allows Arduino and Raspberry Pi users to perform biometric and medical applications where body monitoring is needed by using 9 different sensors.

    Radioactive Percussion

    Radioactive Percussion

    This project was developed by Cooking Hacks and it converts ambient radioactivity in a musical rhythm.

    It detects radiation with a Geiger-Müller tube, a type of particle detector that measures ionizing radiation. It is able to detect the emission of nuclear radiation, including alpha particles, beta particles and gamma rays.

    The Geiger Counter is integrated in the Radiation Sensor Board. This board is compatible with any tube that works in the range of 400V - 1000V and, in this case, is mounted on an Arduino Uno, but it is also compatible with Raspberry Pi and Intel Galileo.

    It has 5 LEDs and an LCD to indicate radiation levels and a piezo speaker that allows to hear the typical "chirp" in radioactivity counters.

    To quickly detect increases in radiation levels we use a Vaseline glass bead. This is a safe way to test your Geiger Counter: Vaseline glass contains a small amount of Uranium (less than 0.2%) so it is slightly radioactive but completely safe to handle.

    The Arduino and the Radiation Sensor Board are placed inside a covering, so put some Vaseline glass bead next to it and the music starts to play.

    We are very much looking forward to the next edition of this festival. We'll see you there!

  • Infrared Hacks - Weekly Recap

    Infrared Remote Control Tester

    Surely you had this problem. You tried to change the channel on your TV and nothing happened, but you are not sure if it's the batteries or the remote. Rui built a circuit for testing infrared remote controls.

    The circuit is pretty simple but it can turn out to be really useful. To record the IR commands he included a Vishay V34836 IR receiver. He made the PCB with a CNC machine and used a 12F683 microcontroller from Microchip.

    The circuit is powered by a couple of AAA batteries and is glued to the battery holder. As you can see in the video above, a red LED lights up when the circuit is switched on and not receiving any IR signal. If it's receiving continuous data the green LED indicates that the remote is fine, and the yellow LED will indicate that the data stream is broken, so the remote is not working properly.

    Take a look at our own IR Remote Module.

    Check this helpful project here. Via Hackaday.

    Infrared Tachometer using Arduino

    This project is again simple but very resourceful. [Pinodisco] made a tachometer out of some basic components: a couple of resistors, a motor and wheel assembly and an infrared LED and Phototransistor.

    He placed the IR LED and Phototransistor (receiver) facing each other and close, so the receiver can read the signal through the window in the wheel.

    tachometer

    He is using an Arduino Due to read the signal from the Phototransistor: the IR receiver is connected to the analog pin A0 in the board, and the IR LED is connected to 5V through a limiting resistor.

    Then the code counts the time between two signals from the receiver, it converts the value to rps/rpm and prints it in the Arduino IDE serial monitor.

    Read more on Instructables.

    Infrared Pulse Sensor

    Obviously, this isn't a medical device, but it's pretty amazing. Just like in the projects above it is built around an infrared emitter and detector which are placed close to each other.

    This time they are used to detect your pulse. As they explain, when the heart pumps, blood pressure rises and the amount of IR light that gets reflected back to the receiver increases when you press your fingertip against the sensor. So with an amplifier circuitry they can output a signal to the Arduino board.

    The signal is taken to the analog pin A0 and then the data can be viewed through the Arduino serial monitor. Finally they even prepared a sketch so you can visualize the data on your computer with Processing.

    Check our own medical platform: e-Health Sensor Platform.

    Find out more about this step by step tutorial on MAKE

  • Do you have any problem adding products to your cart or logging into Cooking Hacks?

    Some users have reported occasional problems adding products to their carts or loging into our website. As you know, as we are reorienting Cooking Hacks towards education, we have just launched a new version of the website.

    During these very first days, we are still fixing some minor details and little bugs, and we have detected some problems due to the existing Cooking Hacks cookies in your browser.

    If you can not add products to your cart, or log into the website,
    try to refresh your browser (Ctrl+F5 or Ctrl+R, Command+R for Mac Users). If the problem persists try to remove Cooking Hacks Cookies from your browser (you have to make this step just once and the problem is solved!)

    Please, find below some screenshots and directions of how to remove Cooking Hacks Cookies from Firefox, Chrome, Internet Explorer and Safari.

    How to remove Cooking Hacks Cookies from Firefox

    First of all, click in the "Preferences" button of the menu displayed in the top right corner of Firefox.

    Click Preferences

    After that, select the "Privacy" tab, and click in "remove individual cookies".

    Select Privacy Tab

    Last, search for www.cooking-hacks.com cookies, select all of them, and click in "Remove cookies" button.

    Remove cookies

    And that's all. You shouldn't have any more problems.

    How to remove Cooking Hacks Cookies from Chrome

    First click on the menu button on the top right corner to display the menu and go to "Settings".

    Menu -> Settings

    Then scroll down and click "Show advanced settings" and then on "Privacy" go to "Content settings..."

    Privacy -> Content Settings

    After that click on "All cookies and site data".

    All cookies and site data

    Finally type "www.cooking-hacks.com cookies" next to "Locally stored" data and click "Remove all shown".

    Remove all shown

    How to remove Cooking Hacks Cookies from Internet Explorer

    First click on the settings button and then select "Internet options".

    Select Internet Options

    Then under "Browsing history" click "Settings".

    Browsing History -> Settings

    On the "Temporary Internet Files" tab click "View files".

    View Files

    Finally type and search for "www.cooking-hacks.com" and delete all the files.

    Search for www.cooking-hacks.com

    How to remove Cooking Hacks Cookies from Safari

    First go to the Safari Menu on the top right corner and click on “Preferences”.

    Go to Safari Menu -> Preferences

    In the Preference window go to “Privacy” and click on “Details...”

    Go to Privacy -> Details

    Finally search for “www.cooking-hacks.com” and click “Remove” to delete the files.

    Search for www.cooking-hacks.com and remove

    If you continue having problems, or you can't remove your cookies, please email us at info@cooking-hacks.com. We will be happy to help you!

  • Cooking Hacks Reorients towards Education

    Cooking Hacks, Libelium's DIY open source hardware division, is reorienting towards technical education. This is made as a response to the increasing number of connected things: it is predicted that by 2020 around 25 billion devices will be connected to the Internet, resulting in a need for companies to look for more than 4 million developers.

    More than 40 education Kits available

    This is a huge step for us, and it is something more than a website redesign to give it a modern look. Cooking Hacks seeks to place greater emphasis on teaching, so we have prepared 20 new kits to be added to our existing kits portfolio: that makes more than 40 education kits.

    These new kits range from WiFi or Bluetooth to GPS and GPRS, and all of them include extra components like LEDs, resistors, servo motors or an LCD display that will allow you to make lots of projects.

    We have also redesigned our Starter Kit. We have included in it some very interesting new products, like an LCD 16x2 Display, a 9G Micro Servo or a Hobby Motor that will surely expand the capabilities and applications of your projects.

    Total customization

    Besides, you can purchase all the new kits with Arduino, Raspberry Pi or Intel Galileo Platforms. Just select the platform you are interested in, and fully customize your kit. You can purchase the Starter Kit even including our Waspmote Starter Kit.

    New Starter Kit

    Waspmote Starter Kit

    In the pictures above, the new 3G+GPS Mobile Kit and our Waspmote Starter Kit

    New Organization

    Our kits can now be sorted by platform, category or user level (beginner, intermediate and expert). This way you can select the right tutorial for the platform you are using and according to your experience.

    Since we attempt to get everybody interested in electronics and DIY, we have classified our kits by User Level so beginners and advanced users can find the most suitable kit.

    We have also reorganized our Kits around "Skills" and "Applications". For example, you can improve your programming skills with our Programming oriented Kits, or develop Wireless projects with our Wireless Kits. Don't forget to check our Long range Sensors Kits, where you will find some of our best-sellers.

    New Tutorials and documentation

    We have now over 100 step-by-step tutorials to easily learn to use our kits. You can work on any platform (Arduino, Raspberry Pi, Waspmote and Intel Galileo), and start making applications with sensors and wireless networks, regardless of your skills on electronics and programming.

    To make really easy to find the tutorial you need, we have developed a specific Tutorial Search Tool. You can select the platform you are interested in, the category you want to look into, and even your knowledge level, and the tool will give you back the tutorials that best match your preferences.

    This new improved search tool will help you to find what you're looking for in just a few seconds. We have detected in the past that some of our customers had difficulties to find products in our shop, so our IT department put a lot of effort developing this new tool.

    Tutorial Search Tool

    Not only new design, also 100% secure

    Thus, Cooking Hacks has been redesigned! As you can see it is a much more simple design, we've said goodbye to the red background, and now you can enjoy lots of white and clear spaces so you can read comfortably and navigate smoothly.

    And in addition to that, the entire site works now with SSL certificates signed by a third party Official Security Authority. All the transactions are encrypted, signed and 100% secure.

    We are using secure Paypal and Credit Card (VISA - MasterCard) payment method. You can pay also via wire transfer - we will prepare your order after the payment reception. Remember we never store your card information on our site.

    Payment Methods

    We really appreciate your feedback

    We have made a big effort to get all this things together for you, but we think it will worth it. We are interested in your comments and questions and look forward to hearing from you. We encourage you, all our fellow users, to give us some feedback through our contact page, or directly in our mail info (@) cooking-hacks (.) com

    iot_spartans_logo

    IoT Spartans

    Libelium, along with Cooking Hacks, is focusing on meeting the demand for developers for the Internet of Things, and is offering training courses for teachers on Waspmote, our own open source wireless platform for the IoT.

    This new approach will include the IoT Spartans initiative, a challenge to rank the best IoT and Waspmote developers that will be launched in the next few months. More coming soon, stay tuned.

  • Cooking Hacks will be at Maker Faire Bay Area 2015

    Once again, we will be at Maker Faire Bay Area 2015, May 15, 16 & 17. (Yes, this time starts on Friday, one more day to enjoy!). Come and join us! To take a look at our products, don't forget to search for us on the Maker Faire APP. Jorge and Andrea will be showcasing our e-Health Sensor Platform, Open Aquarium and Open Garden, among other products that we will bring to the table.

    You can read more about our participation last year in this links.

    Open Garden

    We are presenting Open Garden. It is an open source platform to remotely control your indoor and outdoor plants. We provide three different kits, each one for a specific kind of growing plant scenario: indoor (houses and greenhouses), outdoor (gardens and fields) and hydroponics (plants in water installations).

    To control the state of the plants, this platform allows to measure several parameters:

    • Soil Moisture (Indoor and Outdoor Kits)
    • Temperature, Light and Humidity (All kits)
    • pH, Conductivity and Temperature (Hydroponics Kit)

    On the other hand, it includes several actuators to modify the condition of the plants:

    • Water Pump and Droppers for Irrigation (Indoor kit)
    • Electro valve and Sprinkler for Sprinkling (Outdoor kit)
    • Oxygen Pump and Growing Light (Hydroponics kit)

    You can also upload plant status data to a web server by using any of the available wireless interfaces (WiFi, GPRS, 3G) to see the information on a mobile device.

    Cooking Hacks Open Garden

    Open Aquarium

    We are also showcasing our Open Aquarium platform. It's designed to automate the maintenance tasks in aquariums, fish tanks and ponds so you can take a better care of your fish. It is based on Arduino and consists of two different but complementary kits: Basic and Aquaponics.

    The platform includes 5 different sensors to measure key parameters such as temperature, pH and Conductivity and to control the state of the aquarium: water level and leakage. Besides, it can automate several tasks, such as heating and cooling the water or feeding the fish, controlling the intensity of light to simulate day and night cycles and activating pumps for water change or medicines administration with 4 actuators.

    Open Aquarium Project -  Aquarium Monitoring for Arduino

    We have developed an Open Source API to control the platform with Arduino and a web application to store all the information from the sensors in a data base and visualize it from iPhone / Android devices.

    Read more about Open Aquarium here.

    e-Health Sensor Platform

    e-Health Sensor Platform

    Another of our products that we are sure you will be thrilled to check is the e-Health Sensor Platform. It is a shield designed for Arduino, Raspberry Pi and Intel Galileo that allows you to perform biometric and medical applications where body monitoring is needed with 10 different sensors: pulse, oxygen in blood (SPO2), airflow (breathing), body temperature, electrocardiogram (ECG), glucometer, galvanic skin response (GSR – sweating), blood pressure (sphygmomanometer), patient position (accelerometer) and muscle/electromyography sensor (EMG).

    Six different wireless connectivity options are available to send all the biometric information gathered by the sensors so you can store it or visualize it in real time (Wi-Fi, 3G, GPRS, Bluetooth, 802.15.4 and ZigBee). Don't miss the chance to try our e-Health Platform.

    Read about some real applications of the e-Health Sensor Platform:

  • May Maker Events Schedule

    MakerFaireParis2

    As you surely know, we are very much looking forward to the Maker Faire Bay Area 2015. We wrote about it a few days ago, we will be attending and presenting some of our main products.

    Everybody would like to go to a huge event like this one, but it's a long trip and, in case you can't make it, here's a little recap with every Maker Faire event in the month of May.

    Mini Maker Faires in May

    Mini Maker Faires are obviously smaller in scale than the rest but they keep the spirit and vision of the larger events: it's open to anybody, covers from technical to art and performance issues and encourages people to participate. It is a place where makers come to show their work and learn new things from other makers.

    These events vary in size too, the smaller ones can have just 300 people and around 10 makers attending and the larger Faires over 150 makers and up to 6000 attendees. They last for around 8 hours in a single day, and most of them take place during spring and summer to take advantage of the nice weather.

    Despite being independently organized, you have to apply for and receive a license from Maker Faire to organize one yourself. They provide a set of guidelines and resources that might be quite helpful if you are considering to arrange a Mini Maker Faire. Find out more here.

    Week by week: every Mini Maker Faire

    But for the time being here's every Mini Maker Faire in May: in the US three events will be held on May 2, Cedar Rapids (IA), North Little Rock (AK) and Chicago Northside (IL), and that very same day we have Jinqiao (Shanghai, China). Trossen Robotics (video below) will be in Chicago Northside:

    Next weekend, May 9, Rockford Auburn (IL) will held its first Faire along with Orange County (Irvine, California) and Honolulu (HI). Over Europe, Trieste in Italy and Stockholm in Sweden are facing their second edition.

    You can enjoy a two day event in Austin (TX) on May 16 & 17. We have a first timer in Wilson County (TX) and another one in the Institute of Imagination (London, UK). And yet another two day long Faire in Jerusalem (Israel, May 24 & 25).

    To finish the month we have a pretty busy weekend. Four cities will be joining with a first edition event on May 30: Minneapolis / St. Paul (MN), Jackson Hole (WY), Meridian (MS) and Southwest Michigan (MI). In America you could also attend Reno (NV), Piedmont(CA), Cape Cod (MA), and Sunshine Coast (BC, Canada). And, finally, Halifax (UK).

    Featured Maker Faires in May

    As we just told you before, one of the two Flagship Faires (Bay Area) is in May. Apart from this massive event, two more Featured Faires will be held this month. Featured Faires are organized in collaboration with Maker Faire and and are larger in attendance and duration than Mini Faires. They last for a couple of days and usually have over 10,000 attendees and more than 200 maker exhibits.

    The first one in this month is Paris Maker Faire, on May 2 & 3. It will take place in the Foire de Paris exposition (Paris Fair), and it will have more than 6,000 m2 available and over 250 makers are expected. Apart from the usual hacks and projects regarding electronics, drones and DIY, there will be art and interactive performances, like Les Machines de l'île in the video below:

    At the end of the month, during the very last weekend, May 30 & 31, we have the other featured Faire in Taipei (Taiwan). Already facing its third edition, is one of the Maker Faire veterans in Asia.

    Check every event in this map

    Make sure you find some time to attend to one of this events, you won't regret it!

    We will keep you informed about every upcoming Faire, we have some really busy months ahead.

    Read about other events here.

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