Dale Dougherty will be overseeing the annual Maker Faire in San Francisco this coming weekend. If you haven’t heard of this event, think about a typical fairground but with robots and giant mousetraps. Also, instead of traditional balloons that you tie to your wrist, some of the balloons at Maker Faire travel into space and take pictures of the earth.
In a recent blog post, Mr. Dougherty wrote about a growing group of “makers” who are creating new “DIY indie innovations.” This maker community is near and dear to my heart as I spent a lot of time tinkering with robotics and electronics last year — although most of my robots are collecting dust and still haven’t mastered world domination. Here is an edited version of my conversation with Mr. Dougherty.
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, or even use Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for MakeCode, CircuitPython, 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.