Another week has passed for the challengers of the Pi Chef Design Challenge, bringing us up to week seven!  We always have excellent updates from our challengers, but this past week has been exceptional in terms of great updates. So I'm not going to take up any more of your time with this intro, lets get into the update. For those of you who are new to this challenge, take a moment to read the next section to learn more about this challenge and find out what our challengers are competing for. If you want to just get to the meat of it, you know where that section starts.



Pi Chef Design Challenge


About The Challenge


Featured as the first design challenge of 2018, the Pi Chef Design Challenge opened for project idea submissions in October of 2017, which was met with many submissions from community members. As I mentioned earlier, the challenge is based around the Raspberry Pi 3 Model BRaspberry Pi 3 Model B SBC. Challengers have eleven weeks to develop their project, and share their progress in a series of weekly update post. By posting a minimum of ten update post, challengers become eligible to win several awesome prizes, and the chance to become one of our prestigious design challenge winners.



Entering the challenge is not limited to just the ten chosen community members though,  anyone can join the Challenge as a non-sponsored Challenger. Here's how: Simply get buy  a Raspberry Pi 3 model B and integrate it into your project, as well as post 10 blogs chronicling your project’s progress into  the Pi Chef Design Challenge space (tagging your blogs 'IoT on Wheels'). All Challengers must build their projects in accordance with the Challenge's terms and conditions, and all projects must include the Raspberry Pi 3 Model B.



The Official Kit, and The Prizes


On January 10, 2018 Element14 announced the 15 community members that were picked to participate in this challenge, and those challengers received a kit of sponsored components to use in their design which was based around the Raspberry Pi 3. If you would like to purchase the official kit, click here.


Each kit contains the following items:


To learn more about each of these components or to purchase them to use in your own project, visit the official kit announcement at the links above.


Each challenger is competing to win one of three prize packs that feature the following prizes:


Grand Prize

        • Breville Barista Express Espresso Machine
        • $1500 USD Newark element14 / Premier Farnell Cart

Runner Up

        • Whynter Ice-Cream Maker
        • $750 USD Newark element14 / Premier Farnell Cart

Third Place

        • Breville Tea Maker
        • $500 USD Newark element14 / Premier Farnell Cart


A finisher who has completed their project, used the Raspberry Pi, posted 10+ updates in the Pi Chef space and adhered to the requirements in the Terms and Conditions will receive a mystery package of element14/Premier Farnell products valued at $65 USD.



The Past Week In Review


Over the past 7 days, February 25th - March 3rd, we have had a total of eleven updates posted across seven projects. I’m going to pick my three favorite updates from the week and highlight them below, but before we get into that lets take a look at which projects were updated this week!




This Week’s Top Updates


I have written over one hundred of these summaries at this point, and I don’t think that I have ever featured the same project twice in a single week. That changes this week as one project impressed me so much that I had to feature both of its updates. I don’t want this to take up space that I could use to feature two more well deserving project updates, so this week I am highlighting four updates across three projects.



Project: Smart Range Hood - Pi Chef Blog #6 - Can I have a bigger slice of breadboard?



There’s just something about a breadboard packed full of through hole components and with jumper wires spider-webbing in every direction that just puts you in the mood to make something, and that is exactly how I felt when I read James O'Gorman’s (aspork42) sixth update to project Smart Range Hood. In this installment he finally connects all of the electronic components together so that he can begin writing the code that will eventually control his smart range hood. As you can see in the image above, James used just about every single square millimeter of his breadboard to get things hooked up, but it won't always be this messy as he plans on designing a few custom PCBs to replace the breadboard.


With what many would consider a great update already, James decided to knock the ball out of the park by getting NodeRed setup with all of the libraries he will need when he begins code. Head over to the link above to read this full post for a more thorough explanation of how James connected the hardware components together, and to find out which libraries he will be using to get his code up and working.



Project: Smart Range Hood - Pi Chef Blog #7 - Intro to the control system - DHT22 (et al) [Buzzer, Light control]



Posting one great update in the past seven days was apparently not enough for James O'Gorman because just when I thought his project blog could not get any better he releases the seventh update to project Smart Range Hood. With his last post covering the hardware setup, it was only natural that the next update be all about the software. Starting out James gives us a thorough rundown on what data he will be reading, and how he will be reading it. This rolled into what he will be doing with the data the sensors collect, and finishes up on how he will be implementing manual control on top of the automated system.


Anyone who has read a few of my project summaries knows that I put great emphasis on the importance of a well written post that includes not only an explanation of the software being written, but provide the source code as well. When you combine those two parts with well put together media assets such as videos, diagrams, and charts, you have the recipe for a perfect blog post documenting a part of the project. I have often cited Frederick Vandenbosh’s (fvan) project blogs as somewhat of a gold standard, but I think I will be pointing to these two updates from James in the future as well. Even if you only have time to read one project update, please use that time to check out this project’s previous update, and then try to squeeze this one in as well as they are two very well put together project updates.



Project: S.H.E.L.F. - Pi Chef Blog #7 - The one item shelf



After reading the two previous post, I was quite happy to see that Milos Rasic (milosrasic98) had posted an excellent update as well to project S.H.E.L.F. As it turns out, Milos has been working on the code for his project as well, and has managed to get a good portion of the code for the load cell written. “Hi guys, for this blog I managed to connect the whole project to the real world a bit. I added LED indicators, a buzzer, connected the program to work with files which will store all of the data and more excitingly I finally got the load cell up and running,” he wrote. If you want to learn how to integrate a load cell into your next project, or if you are curious to know just how close Milos’ load cell managed to get to the reading of a commercially produced precision kitchen scales you should head over to the link above to check out the full post, and all of the source code he used to make it happen.



Project: Safe Degree - Pi Chef Blog #3 - Raspbian Security Measures



I wouldn’t normally highlight a project blog that is about installing Raspbian onto a Raspberry Pi, but Mark Gitsham’s (mark.gitsham) third update to project SafeDegree caught my attention because it was not the normal Raspbian Installation post. Instead of just walking us through the steps of installing Raspbian to an SD Card, and booting the Raspberry Pi, Mark walks us through the steps he feels is necessary to properly secure the Raspberry Pi, as well as a few things he likes to do to make working with the Pi more efficient. “During this blog I will be going through the installation of Raspbian on the Pi3. Configuring parts of the OS I deem both an improvement in security and person preferences,” he wrote. As a bonus, he also gives a quick tutorial on how to set up the 2.4-inch touch screen.


That is going to wrap up this weekly summary of the Pi Chef Design Challenge. Remember to check back each and every week for the duration of this challenge for a summary post from the previous week’s updates. If you would like to learn more about this challenge, and to see what progress has already been made, head over to the its official challenge page, and if you would like to follow what I am up to these days, follow me on Instagram I will see you next week, and as always, remember to hack the world and make awesome!


Weekly Summaries About This Challenge

  1. Design Challenge Weekly Summary: Intro to the Pi Chef Design Challenge
  2. Design Challenge Weekly Summary: January 14 - January 20, 2018
  3. Design Challenge Weekly Summary: January 21 - January 27, 2018
  4. Design Challenge Weekly Summary: January 28 - February 3, 2018
  5. Design Challenge Weekly Summary: February 4th - February 10th, 2018
  6. Design Challenge Weekly Summary: February 11th - February 17th, 2018
  7. Design Challenge Weekly Summary: February 18th - February 24th, 2018
  8. Design Challenge Weekly Summary: February 25th - March 3rd, 2018
  9. Design Challenge Weekly Summary: March 4th - March 10th, 2018
  10. Design Challenge Weekly Summary: March 11th - March 17th, 2018
  11. Design Challenge Weekly Summary: March 18th - March 24th, 2018
  12. Design Challenge Weekly Summary: March 25th - April 1st, 2018