Cooking Hacks Blog

  • Friday 13 is coming, look behind you... We are announcing terrifying discounts!June 11, 2014

    13 is coming, look behind you...

    You are Doomed!

    We are preparing some terrifying discounts for next Friday 13th! We have selected from our most demanded products list one of our star products: the 3D Printer Complete Kit!

    But why 13-13-13? Keep on reading to know more!

    Bloody Printers

    Bloody 3D Printers!

    13 3D Printers, 13% OFF, from Friday 13th and within a week (or until stock lasts)!

    You can print your projects in terrifying stormy nights in the darkness of your home... ;)

    Don't miss this opportunity! Remember, 13 3D Printers, 13%, Friday 13th!!!

  • New High Resolution Camera 2MP (1600 x 1200) for the 3G Shield June 9, 2014

    We are happy to announce that we have modified the 3G Shield to make it work with a much higher resolution camera. Instead of using the old 0'3MP Camera, now the 3G Shield supports a 2MP Camera, improving considerably the resolution: from 640 x 480 (VGA) to 1600 x 1200 (UXGA)!

    This allow us to take impressive photos and send them via Email, FTP or HTTP to any web server on the Internet. The 3G shield is compatible with Arduino, Raspberry Pi and Galileo, so you can choose your favourite platform to make your projects.

    The new 2MP Camera is included in the Audio / Video 3G Kit. You can also get directly the 2MP Camera here.

    Apart form the new 2MP UXGA resolution camera, there are many other interesting accessories which can be connected to the 3G module: microphones, speakers, hands free and headphones sets, SD socket to save directly all the data coming from the 3G network or recorded from the video camera...

    You can check all the components included in the kit in this photo:

    Comparative between both cameras:

    Old Camera New Camera
    Resolution: 0'3 MP
    Sensor: OV7725
    Max. resolution: 640 x 480 (VGA)
    Image area: 3984 μm x 2952 μm
    Sensitivity: 3800 mV/lux-sec
    Optical format: 1/4"
    Power: 120 mW
    Resolution: 2MP
    Sensor: OV2640
    Max. resolution: 1600 x 1200 (UXGA)
    Image area: 3590 μm x 2684 μm
    Sensitivity: 0.6 V/Lux-sec
    Optical format: 1/4"
    Power: 140 mW

    Check both resolution images. Left Click to enlarge!

    Old photo

    Old Camera Example

    New photo

    New Camera Example

    The 3G Shield for Arduino (now also compatible with Raspberry Pi and Intel Galileo boards) enables the connectivity to high speed WCDMA and HSPA cellular networks and makes possible the creation of worldwide interactivity projects inside the "Internet of Things" era. This module counts also with an internal GPS what enables the location of the device outdoors and indoors combining standard NMEA frames with mobile cell ID triangulation using both assisted-mobile (A-GPS) and mobile-based (S-GPS) modes. As an additional benefit, you can also use it as a standard 3G modem at full speed just connecting it through its specific mini-USB socket to your laptop (Linux, Windows, MacOS supported).

    NOTE: The new 2MP Camera can be used only in the last version of the 3G Shield. For more information go to the Camera section in the tutorials below:

    There are three step by step complete tutorials:

  • Cooking Hacks will be at Mini Maker Faire Barcelona 2014, June 22June 6, 2014

    Call for Makers!

    We will be at Mini Maker Faire Barcelona 2014, June 22! Come and meet us and see our products first-hand!

    We will be in Barcelona to demonstrate some of our new products. We are sure you'll enjoy with our team! Mini Maker Faire Barcelona is becoming one of the reference meeting points for the Maker community in Europe.

    See you in MOB (Makers of Barcelona) facilities!

  • More photos of our Maker Faire Bay Area experience!June 5, 2014

    As you may remember, we posted a few days ago our first impressions and photos from Maker Faire Bay Area 2014, you can check them here. Now, more photos and thoughts...

    We enjoyed three unforgettable and fascinating days, setting up the booth, talking with all the people who came to our stand to ask about our projects, showing them our latest developments and, in short, keeping our finger on the Maker Culture's pulse to collect information about how the Maker Movement is doing!

    Friday

    The adventure started after a 20 hours exhausting but exciting trip, from our headquarters in Zaragoza to San Francisco, with a fairly demanding time change. Friday 16th, early in the morning, tired but full loaded with illusion, we packed all our stuff in a rented pick-up (we, european people, love this kind of cars - we have no such vehicles in our countries...) and drove all the way from our hotel to Maker Faire Bay Area space. We found quickly our booth, and started to set up all our demo projects, in order to be ready to make the best impression in you, our beloved visitors..

    PickUp Maker Faire 14
    Setting Up the booth

    In a glimpse we got a quick first picture of the space available and started to distribute all the stuff we had brought with us from Spain. The best way to measure the space we have to deal with is, as you surely know, to make a selfie - see shoot below ;) After that, we got down to work and the booth started to take shape.

    Cooking Hacks Selfie
    Setting up the Booth Friday

    Saturday

    On Saturday we started to talk with all the visitors interested in our projects or company, answering all their questions. People were specially curious about our name, and its relationship with kitchen, home cooking or "cuisine". We kindly recommended them (and you) to read our Company Manifesto, to understand our special conception about relationship between electronics and cooking!

    Talking in deep about the projects we showcased in the fair, we would like to emphasise three of them: our eHealth kit, the Mental Beer Machine, and the Cooking Hacks dog (yes, it's a robot!). It was pretty funny to see people trying to open "mentally" the beer machine, to obtain their beer can... (shoot below). Our cute Cooking Hacks robot dog, as usual, delighted the youngest of the household with its tricks, movements and barks.

    Cooking Hacks Beer Machine
    Our cute robot dog

    Sunday

    On Sunday we gave ourselves a break to take a closer look at the new projects of other makers and companies. We were pleasantly surprised of the latest news in the maker sector: the expansion of the 3DPrinters (specially talking about prices and R&D investment), and the boom of wearables (althought all we could see were some kind of lightning necklaces..). In adition to all of that, we can see as usual some robot fights!

    Robot Fight!
    Lightning Necklaces - wearables

    We made the most of the opportunity to greet all our friends of Dreamforce, SeeedStudio and DFRobot, among many others. It's always a pleasure to meet all of you guys in this kind of events!

    We will meet you again soon!

    We will meet you again soon
  • First complete Open Garden projects photos May 27, 2014

    We are pretty excited to show you some photos of our Open Garden projects we have taken. This project has huge potential and its appeal lies in the fact that it is made up of many separate sensors and actuators: it's a very modular and flexible project.

    As you may know, the Open Garden platform consist of three different kits: indoor, outdoor and hydroponics. These three kits will allow you to use it in houses and greenhouses, or gardens and fields, or even plants in water installations, respectively. We have tried with these kits to cover all possible growing plant scenarios.

    In the first photos (check below) you can see an Open Garden indoor installation. We are monitoring a cactus. Check in the left pic the bare soil moisture and the temperature & humidity sensors. As can be noted in the picture, the Open Garden Shield is accompanied by an XBee Shield and a Wifi module that sends data to the web application. The Open Garden Gateway is composed of the Arduino UNO board (of course), the Open Garden and XBee shields, and the Wifi module. You can see the web app in detail in the right pic. You can check the parameters measured by the sensors remotely: the app stores the information gathered in a data base and let you visualize it from an iPhone or Android device. In this case, there's no actuators implemented in the cactus.

    Indoor Open Garden installation

    In the next pair of photos you can see an Hydroponics installation and an entirely enclosured Outdoor kit. In the left pic you can see in detail the pH water sensor being allocated in the installation. If you look closely at the picture, you could appreciate the water temperature sensor: is the black wire in the right side of the Gateway, it gets into the water on the left of the box. In the right picture you can see an enclosured outdoor kit. In the left side of the shoot you can see an outdoor node. It can be fixed to the garden soil and send the data to the gateway via RF. The node also includes a solar energy supply system, and RF bidirectional communication (node - gateway) via transceivers. Note the enclosure, both gateway and nodes, prevents the entire system to be damaged by adverse environment conditions.

    Hydroponics installation and an entirely enclosured outdoor kit

    In the last photo you can see Víctor, one of our teammates, preparing the system in an outdoor garden, next to our office.

    We hope you enjoy the photos, and we encourage you to develop your own projects following our step-by-step tutorial. We will be happy to receive your photos, and to share them in our social networks, or RT your posts around Open Garden.

    You can purchase the kits here:

  • The e-Wheelchair: a project powered by NeuroSky and Cooking Hacks e-Health v2May 22, 2014

    Today, we are glad to present you Philip Case, aka Cap, e-Wheelchair project. We started talking with Cap a couple of weeks ago, via Twitter, and he surprised us with his really incredible idea: an all purpose e-Wheelchair controlled by mind using Neurosky products only!

    PhilipFirst of all, lets introduce Philip and his story: he is a 42 year old english maker, who has been disabled after injuring his C Spine in an accident. He has a good mind but not the body to do the things he wants: he has his left hand amputated after his accident as nerves had been damaged. He has also RSD (Reflex Sympathetic Nerve Dystrophy) caused by the accident which led to his health condition.

    He has an implant from Medtronic fitted over 20 years ago as an experiment: a Spinal Cord Stimulator implanted across his C spine directly on him... The other implant is a painful needle that sits under his skin, wich constantly monitor his diabetes and regularly sends info from a small transmitter. The e-Health V2 implemented in the e-Wheelchair is very important for remove this implant and will help so many people now and in the future. But it's only the first step...

    He might have only one hand and be wheelchair dependent but the hand and thumb he has work perfect, as does his mind. He his fighting hard everyday in order to use EEG signals to control an special wheelchair (he cannot use a normal chair due to his injuries and he is not permitted to use a conventional electric wheelchair as he got spasms in his right arm and it could be a hazard).

    His idea and the work he has done so far is based around the NeuroSky Mindwave Mobile and the Mindflex EEG. He has managed to control forward and reverse, and steering will use 2 low level lasers with a beam that will work as steering and a deadman switch.

    He is also working in the implementation of the e-Health system by Cooking Hacks to monitor vital body parameters such as ECG or Blood Glucose.

    The other sensors will also be part of the e-Wheelchair, as he has named it (Cap told us it is his "baby project" ;). In adition, it will also incorporate a GSM/GPRS module along with a body position sensor. He is thinking also in the conection with a tablet or phone using both Bluetooth and USB. His idea is to give independence to the user, as everything can be monitored remotely!

    He is using the Arduino based system as he thinks is the easiest way to put all the parts together, all code is available and he can focus on the chair setup. The main effort now is to control it over the EEG mind control. He is improving this part right now.

    Cooking Hacks is giving technical support to Cap, helping him promoting his project and following his story closely! NeuroSky is providing him the equipment and development software free of charge to help people live better lives with the e-Wheelchair.

    We feel this project has a lot of potential and is relatively cheap compared to wheelchairs without such advances and tech!

    We will post more info as the project move forward!

  • Some quick notes about Maker Faire 2014...May 20, 2014

    The Trip

    Our adventure started early in the mornig in Spain on Thursday 15 May. We travelled by train from Zaragoza to Madrid Atocha. After that, we took a plane to Philadelphia, and after 7 hours flying and 3 waiting in the airport, we took another flight to San Francisco. We arrived California really tired, after an almost 20 hours trip, and althought we were trying to sleep during the journey, the local time asked us to continue sleeping... In order to fight against jet lag, we forced ourselves to rest for a while in the hotel, before going to the fair centre to start preparing our booth. We spent the entire Friday ensuring all our projects were working properly, placing all the merchandising and promotional material, etc.

    Trip to Maker Faire 14

    The Weekend

    The war started on Saturday, and a lot of people came to our stand, making us difficult to have a breath to visit other companies booths that day... In our stand, we prepared small demos for the Makers like:

    • Mind-controlled Beer Machine: It is very popular among the people. Once they concentrate, the beer appears.
    • Nacho, our e-Health patient: He was wearing all the sensors to be monitored with our e-Health Sensor platform.
    • Radiation shield: Using the test beads, people can measure the radioactivity and read the values in the display.
    • SPO2 Ledbar: You can use it to know the Pulse and Oxygen in blood.

    We handed out a lot of our e-Health hearts, various stickers and lanyards, as they are very popular among the makers. People learnt from us to know the wireless communications used in Arduino, Raspberry Pi and Intel Galileo as well as our solutions for e-Health (Biometric sensors) and Open Garden. We also showed our devices from Libelium like Waspmote and Meshlium, offering strong solutions to the makers.

    We took the opportunity to show the makers how to exploit the full potential of using the new Intel Galileo board with our Shields. As you may remember we launched last week a complete step-by-step tutorial explaining how to took the most of the board with our shields and modules! Use our devides is really easy in any platform: Arduino, Raspberry Pi, and now Intel Galileo..

    Booth Cooking Hacks Maker Faire - eHealth and Open Garden

    Taking a walk around... some quick notes...

    The Expo Hall contained the most of the booths for electronics. Most of them were CNC and 3D PRinters, using Cube, Makerbots and Ultimakers 3D Printers for making models. Makers were showing their projects, most of them based in Arduino, Raspberry Pi and ARM boards. Raspberry Pi was very popular in this edition.

    You were able to see some exhibitions of Drones, making amazing flights. Arduino had a big booth, showing the upcoming releases like Arduino Zero or Arduino TRE.

    We met people from well-know companies like SeeedStudio and DFRobot (both are big friends of CH, thank you guys!!) and also people from Digilent, Freescale, UDOO, Texas Instruments... very nice people.

    Every year we can meet big companies in Maker Faire Bay Area like Autodesk, TechShop, Oracle, SONY or Microsoft. In their booths, they were showing big projects and solutions for the market.

    Next to the Expo Hall you found some big pavillions with amazing projects made with lights and robotics. One entire pavillion only for LEDs, digital art, sounds... and another one for robot cups and robots like R2D2. Out of the pavillions, you were able to see Craft projects and exhibitions in outdoors with fires, dragons... Children were very funny with that, asking their parents how to make them... They're the future... ;)

    Maker Faire 2014

    We will post more photos and comments in a couple of days! We have seen a lot of things this weekend and it's not possible to include all our experiences in just one post!!

  • Take the most of the Galileo board by using on it the shields and modules designed by Cooking HacksMay 15, 2014

    We are happy to announce we have just released step-by-step tutorials that show how to connect Arduino and Raspberry Pi shields and modules to the Intel Galileo development board. Unlock the full potential of the Intel board - Galileo - using our shields, boards and modules designed for Arduino and Raspberry Pi!

    You can connect digital and analog sensors, and integrate different communication protocols, using the same pinout of Arduino but with the power and capabilities of Intel core. Galileo comes with a single-core 32-bit, 400MHz Quark SoC X1000 processor, supports 3.3 or 5 volt shields and has an Ethernet and USB port. Don't forget the software of Galileo includes support for the Arduino shield ecosystem. You will be able to connect any Arduino Wireless module (WiFi, GPRS, 3G), sensor or actuator which works over i2C, SPI or UART.

    Take the most of the Galileo board

    We have created a full pool of examples! You can read how to get started with the board and the processor features in our complete tutorial. Don't forget to check the complete list of modules and shields available for Intel Galileo.

    In detail, you can read about each of them:

    Don't miss our complete Galileo tutorial where you will find how to connect any Arduino Wireless module (RFID, NFC, Bluetooth, Bluetooth Pro, Wifi, GPRS,3G), any sensor or actuator, specific shields or any electronic modules or actuators which works over i2C, SPI, UART...

  • We launch Open Garden Project - Hydroponics & Garden Plants Monitoring for ArduinoMay 13, 2014

    Care for the environment has become very important in recent years and there is an increasing demand for "green" applications that can help reduce CO2 emissions, detect forest fires or make a more efficient management of energy consumed.

    In addition, there is a lot of interest in urban or terraces vertical gardens that allow grow vegetables in the city centers controlling firsthand the level of fertilizer used. This week, we are happy to announce our newest product: Open Garden. We put our knowledge of electronics and sensors at the service of gardening and hydroponics, trying to help all of you interested in gardening and plants.

    Open Garden is a platform for garden control using sensors oriented both exterior and interior gardening or even hydroponic farming. The aim of the platform is to measure parameters such as Soil moisture (Indoor & Outdoor kits), Water sensors: pH, Conductivity, Temperature (Hydroponics kit), and Temperature, Humidity and Light (All kits) and later control remotely your garden using different actuators like Water pump and Droppers for Drip Irrigation (Indoor kit), Electro valve and Sprinkler for Sprinkling (Outdoor kit), Oxygen Pump and Growing Light (Hydroponics kit).

    OpenGarden - Hydroponics and Garden Plants Monitoring for Arduino

    The platform also sends periodic status information of the system to a Web server using wireless communication technologies (WiFi, GPRS, 3G). These data can be viewed from a mobile device, and the owner may even act on the garden remotely.

    Open Garden programming has been developed as Open Source so that users can access the source code to customize and adapt to their needs.

    We are eager to hear of your projects using this product! Send us your comments about them!!

    Check out our Open Garden Kits

  • Spring Cyber Weekend!! ALL KITS 15% OFF!!May 12, 2014

    We are very excited about this weekend event: Maker Faire Bay Area 2014!

    To celebrate our participation in this important event we are preparing an amazing offer only this weekend (16 to 19 May, Friday to Monday):

    ALL of our KITS in Cooking Hacks will be this weekend 15% OFF!!

    Spring Cyber Weekend!! ALL KITS 15% OFF!!

    You can check the complete list of kits here:

    Arduino Kits

    RaspberryPi Kits

    Waspmote Kits

    Open Garden Kits

    3D Printers Kits

    Don't miss this amazing opportunity!!

    You can stay up to date to all our promotions, offers and discounts, subscribing to our newsletter. You can sign up for our newsletter in the bottom of this website, we will send you no more than two emails a month. Give it a try and don't miss a mail!

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