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John Alexander's Blog

May 2012 Previous month Next month

We'll be there with Raspberry Pi and Cases and a load of our 3D printer kit,

which should include a Makerbot and iModella+ hopefully one of Chris's creations

the "HexRap". it's on at the Derby Silk Mill 3rd of June 11am-4pm.


sign up here:

I'm a big Linux fan, I play Linux, talk Linux and even get paid to work with Linux

now I can even get the Linux T-Shirt with the Linux Foundation's 2012 T-Shirt contest

themed "Inspired by Linux". If you are inspired to contribute to open source because of

Linux and have 1337 D351GN Sk1lz then you may want  to have ago at this:


This little one was sent to the Edinburgh HackerLab's  disscussion list.

EMF is going to be a 3 Day Camping festival with subjects like 3D printing,DIYBio,electronics etc.

It's on 31 August to 2nd September in Pineham Park,Milton Keynes.


Sign up here:

A friend of mine from Edinburgh Hacklab Tom Larkworthy has done an excellent article on

optical feedback for cheap robotic systems. Details on the Software and hardware been 

used may well be of interest to those interested in Cheap robotics and or Vision systems.
































Good luck with the project Tom.

The Piduino thing has temporarily gone rather quiet whilst I start a new job but in the mean time

a friend of mine has borrowed the Raspberry Pi and finished off the case we've been playing with

for ages and only now have a RPi to check the dimensions. We've done a few test runs and

tried a small rainbow of colours but the simple clear seems to be the most popular by far.



Here's the mostly silent howto for building the case




You can always do the deed and purchase one here:

No pain no gain they keep saying and may be it's true !

Raspberry Pi Org had me up all night wiating for a chance to order my new toy.

Ironically I'd only just closed the Farnell webpage down when I read the news that they

were going to process the orders. Frantically I hit reload and the site slowly came to  life

after already reciving a batering from the likes of me 2 hours latter I got my order in .





Now after a long wait my RPi as arrived and now the work begins to make it a usefull bit

of kit ... Watch this space.... John

Before I moved to the Idea of incorporating an AT Mega 328 on the board and basicly providing an integrated

Arduino system I was looking at a  prototype pad board  bare and uncommited except for the 2 A 5V DCDC

converted to "Juice Up" the Pi.

We've subsequently tidied up the design and can make a batch of  PCBs available if people express an interest.


The original Article has more information.



We decided that Shropshire Linux User group needed a more practical focus and one of the

talks given in this vein was February's "Etch PCBs @home"  given by  Richard Wilkinson

of Miles Ahead Developments of Telford. We wanted to demonstrate that doing your own

PCBs although awkward initially can help the development of your projects and allows you

to delevelop in a true homebrew manner.


Thought I'd start the new Blog here on Element14 with a few posts of the older stuff that I've been working on.

The Piduino was from an idea that both the Arduino and Rapberry Pi could complement one another  where

the RPi supplied the brains and the Piduino as I called it would supply the I/O. The Piduino would talk to the

RPi via the serial port on the edge connector not unlike the very early pre-usb Arduinos.





I'm hoping to revisit this as soon as work comitments allow. Assuming some one else

hasn't rebuilt the Arduino IDE in the mean time this will have to be done as well...


Any way onwards and upwards