NEW PRODUCT – Blinky Grid – Programmable LED matrix kit
NEW PRODUCT – Blinky Grid – Programmable LED matrix kit. Blinky Grid is a 7×8 LED grid kit from Wayne&Layne that has an ingenious method of programming. Instead of connecting it directly to your computer using old fashioned ‘wires’ – the board is held up directly to your computer screen, and an easy-to-use web page will ‘blink’ in the text or image you want. Its a fun and simple kit but with the bonus that you get to make it look the way you want when done, without a microcontroller programmer!
This is a great beginner kit, easy to make even if you are have never soldered before. You will need basic hand tools such as a soldering iron, solder and diagonal cutters. Then to program, use any computer with a FireFox or Chrome web browser. You’ll have a finished custom blinky in under an hour!
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VERY cool method of programming! although it’s slow with no verification… still awesome
@moser While the transmission is only uni-directional (device can’t tell the computer to retry transmission) and kind of slow (depending on display, browser, and graphics card you can turn it up to only 20 ms between state changes), we do "package" the data to transmit into chunks that are each protected by a checksum, so it’s very unlikely that invalid data is programmed into the chip. If a bad checksum is detected, the blinky bootloader will alternately flash two leds and require a power cycle to try again.
I had a Timex watch that programmed like this once, but doing this with a LED matrix and open sourcing it? Awesomeness. This is a great project! What an outstanding project to get someone started in microcontrollers! And nice checksum error prevention. 🙂