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    Congratulations to ipv1  for Holiday Lights and Music Festival With Love and Cheerdesigner2k2 for 2D xmas tree pcb art (components INSIDE the pcb) , and dubbie  for  JackBox #6 : The Completed Article!  You are First Place Winners of the $100 Shopping Cart!


    Congratulations to neuromodulator for  Caustic XMAS!  You are the winner of the Home LabTool Lab Kit!

    “The most truly generous persons are those who give silently without hope of praise or reward.” ~ Carol Ryrie Brink, American author of over thirty juvenile and adult books. Her novel Caddie Woodlawn won the 1936 Newbery Medal and a Lewis Carroll Shelf Award in 1958.

    “You can give without loving, but you can never love without giving.” ~ Robert Louis Stevenson, a Scottish novelist and travel writer, most noted for Treasure Island, Kidnapped, Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, and A Child's Garden of Verses.


    Last year, we gave out gift to gives on Valentine's Day in Project14 | Winners Announcement:  Get in the Lovin' Mood with Gifts to Give! This year, when we held our second Holiday Special, Merry Boxes & LEDs , we decided to make a tradition of the winners offering gift prizes to projects that they felt were deserving but didn't win.  The Grand Prize Winner was picked after counting points from original judges and back up picks of first place winners.  Each of the first place winners get to pick 3 projects that they felt were deserving but didn't win and give them a $100 shopping cart (the usual prize for first place finishers.

    This was a tough choice.  Opinions varied but all the projects in the doc received strong support from the judges.


    The winners chose projects from the following list:


    Project14 | Meet the Projects: Heart Trophy Candidates for Valentine's Day Gift to Gives!


    After all, love is a gift:





    Without further adieu here are your winners.....


    Grand Prize



    Caustic XMAS  by neuromodulator:


    The way that light interacts with the environment is an amazing thing.  For this project the plan was to play with some of these interactions to create an interesting XMAS light show. The inspiration to develop this project was the observation of caustics generated by the surface of the water at the bottom of the swimming pool.


    Caustic XMAS

    "The effects produced in this project were truly fascinating and mesmerising to watch. The build blog was well laid out and the process thoroughly explained." - Community Member Judge





    3 First Place Winners



    Holiday Lights and Music Festival With Love and Cheer by ipv1


    Christmas is a very special time of year for this member and he family. Every year, they celebrate the holidays by making a project together and it becomes a memory for him and his wife. Having moved across the continent, this year's project is one that is on a budget. He started by procuring items from the dollar store and with a handful of components that he brought with him, they set out to build a mini Christmas festival. Their project consists of 2 parts which are intended to serve two different purposes. The first part is designed with the Raspberry Pi at the centre and Texas Instruments BLE lights as the end devices along with a sense hat for good measure. Python based web app allows for the control of colours for the budget tree as well as the jolly snowman. The second part employs two BBC:Micro bits talking to each other wirelessly and are allow for the control of a string of lights and a musical house.


    Holiday Lights and Music Festival With Love and Cheer

    "I would give this to ipv1 for his Holiday Lights and Music Festival with Love and Cheer. This was a whole family project that showed a fun build with plenty of aspects to it. I liked the mixture of the electronics with the creative visual elements using a variety of materials. The build was extensive with a lot of effort put into it and well demonstrated within the video." - Community Member Judge




    2D xmas tree pcb art (components INSIDE the pcb) by designer2k2


    2D xmas tree pcb art (components INSIDE the PCB)



    JackBox by dubbie:


    Dubbie has been looking forward to Christmas for some time and to making something electronicy with LEDs and Arduino. He loves a few LEDs and bits of tinsel. So he decided to have a go at the Merry Boxes and LEDS project. He started a while ago collecting bits to use anticipating a quick start, but Christmas preparations have intervened and he has only just been able to find some spare time. He's collected a few bits and a small wooden box and his intention is to make something relatively small that resides inside the box and then 'pops up'!  Having completed adding the sound he decided to improve the LED part a little bit. He took three of the LEDs white wooden snowflakes shapes and fixed them to the front and sides of the box. Rather than just these three LEDS on and off he decided to fade them on and off. To do this he just connected the three LEDs in parallel and then the positive (the anode) to the +5V from the Nano and the negative (the cathode) to the D5 output of the Nano. The LEDs will all come on when D5 is driven low. To create the fade on and off effect he used pulse width modulation implemented as next for loops, as illustrated in the code fragment below. He used a function just to make it tidier. The value input into the function controls the maximum brightness achieved by the LED, which also controls the frequency of the LED slowly pulsing.






    Runners Up


    Flashy LED Picture Frame by tonydbeck:

    This member has always been fascinated by LED displays and the effects that can be produced.  Over the last few years multi colour programmable LED's such as Neopixels, WS2812B LEDs etc seem to have become very popular and with the ever increasing amount of cheap development kits on the market it has become a lot more reachable for a hobbyist to create some pretty cool projects with LED's!  So he decided to build an LED matrix picture frame with an mbed LPC1768 board and 10m of WS2812B LED strip.  He programmed the LPC1768 board to use Art-Net so that I can send data to the matrix from his laptop using Madrix or Glediator software.  Although this is not the most creative LED project, He is still pretty pleased with it!


    Flashy LED Picture Frame

    "LED Picture Frame, great description, circuit and software." - Community Member Judge



    "Super-comprehensive project, well documented, and it looks awesome!!  This was another really cool project that many would love to build.." - Community Member Judge




    The Christmas Joy Spreading Machine by balearicdynamics:

    This machine represents Enrico’s virtual Best Wishes for the holidays to all the community members.  The design idea was to make a complete scenario representing - inside a box  - a metaphor of the most popular Christmas symbols. Maybe it is a bit distopyc but it moves, lights and reacts to music. The other not easy aspect of the building was just to use the cardboard as the primary material. The central moving parts have been inspired by the incredible quantity of DIY Marble Machines you can find on YouTube (just put the two terms for searching videos and you remain speechless).


    The Christmas Joy Spreading Machine

    "As always, the quality of Enrico’s work is superb. This cleverly build machine truly brings fun and joy to the spectators, and also shows that any build material is good when used with ingenuity." - Community Member Judge



    "Beautiful project, it left me almost speechless! I can't imagine a more fun project to make and also watch in action, at Christmas time." - Community Member Judge



    ESP8266 Magic Star Mirror with Alexa by jquest :


    This member’s eldest daughter loves all things space and is constantly looking skyward at night wondering what planet she can see.  One night he taught her about constellations and she became obsessed with Scorpio so he made a small little display stand for her using some scrap outdoor solar LEDs. This quickly escalated to whether he could build something that had all 12 zodiac signs...and Orion...and the Little Dipper...and Alexa...and EVERYTHING! Thus, the Magic Star Mirror was born.


    ESP8266 Magic Star Mirror with Alexa