A new wave of DIY

See you at Maker Faire!

What if there was some kind of apocalypse?” a friend fretted over dinner. “What if we had to survive in Stone Age conditions? Do we have any skills any more? What could any of us practically contribute to rebuilding civilisation?” A circuit of the table revealed that, indeed, almost all of us surround ourselves with products that we would not be able to make, repair or even properly explain.

But there is a new movement afoot designed to remedy this technical impotence. Just as the self-build trend is gathering pace, so too is a new wave in do-it-yourself (DIY) projects for the home – embracing everything from plumbing, woodcarving and pottery to robotics, electronics and recycling.

Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.

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  1. While I definitely DIY is a useful and empowering, I would gladly trade knowing how to build a circuit for knowing how to farm if there was an apocalypse.

    Are there many DIY farmers out there? I hope so.

  2. The trick is to learn everything. I don’t really know much about electronics (but learning),
    but growing stuff is nothing compared to finding the missing { in a bunch of code.
    I try to spend time doing lots of different things each week. And yes almost all of the people I am friends with grow stuff at home. I have one friend who can make his Arduino
    send and receive text from a cell phone to update the state of a load sensor that he will attach to his remote beehive. How’s that for crossover DIY.

  3. Learn as much as you can about everything!

    Speaking as a writer of survivalist and preparedness non-fiction for the past 19 years, I suspect the much vaunted “apocalypse” is not coming.

    What has occurred are various natural disasters and a general slow decline in the vein of “Atlas Shrugged”.

    DIY-types can very well suited to handle these sorts of things.

    Learn and practice!

    ‘Nuff Said. -T

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