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I previously wrote about using the 8x8 LED matrix with the BeagleBone Black and visualizing Facebook notifications on the matrix.  Adafruit has an interesting tutorial about using multiple 8x8 LED matrix displays together:


Animating Multiple LED Backpacks



The above tutorial was written for the ArduinoArduino, but I wanted to control multiple Adafruit 8x8 LED matrix displaysAdafruit 8x8 LED matrix displays with the BeagleBone BlackBeagleBone Black.  I lucked out when I found Matt Hassel's LED Stock Ticker project for the Raspberry PiRaspberry Pi.  He built upon the Adafruit Python library for the 8x8 matrix and wrote new code to handle scrolling text across multiple displays.  I was able to get Matt Hassel's Python code to run on the BeagleBone Black, and I reworked bi-color matrix code to work with the single color 8x8 matrix displays like my red model.  Here is my GitHub repo for all of my Adafruit LED backpack (8x8 matrix & 7-segment) projects for the BBB:


GitHub: pdp7 / beaglebackpack


A Python program, ticker.py, will scroll a message across the matrix displays.  Before running it, follow Adafruit's instructions to install their Adafruit-BeagleBone-IO-Python library:

Installation on Angstrom | Setting up IO Python Library on BeagleBone Black | Adafruit Learning System



Next follow these instructions on the BeagleBone:

cd $HOME

git clone git://github.com/adafruit/Adafruit-Raspberry-Pi-Python-Code.git

git clone git://github.com/pdp7/beaglebackpack.git

cd beaglebackpack

bash ./ticker.sh -r "Happy Holidays 2013"


The message should then scroll across the two displays:


Happy Holidays: BeagleBone Black LED ticker