…There is a notion that when I buy a book, it’s mine to do with what I want. I can give it to a friend, sell it in a second-hand shop; I can tear pages out, scribble on it, use it as a doorstop or a bug-smashing instrument. I can even photocopy pages for my personal use. Since I was a child, I had applied this intuitive definition of ownership to hardware. I’ve always felt empowered to take apart hardware and rip-mix-and-sometimes-burn, much to my parent’s chagrin. Hardware to me is like a book: in fact, much of the technology used to make hardware relies on similar lithographic and printing processes. A PCB isn’t a “Printed Circuit Board” for nothing. You can open and read hardware like a book; to me a schematic and a circuit board or IC layout are expressing the same idea, just translated in different languages.
…when I first punctured the warranty seal on the Xbox with my screwdriver, I had no idea I was about to embark on a journey to become a pioneer. But as they say, ‘you can tell the pioneers — they have the arrows coming out of their back’. But really, all I’ve done since then is just stand my ground and defend my little log cabin, built out of simple notions that are as old as the first trade of eggs for grain.
I believe you have the right to tinker and take things apart, which is an essential prerequisite to owning something; and I believe that ideas are most powerful when they are set free and shared openly. While the lines that define the electronic frontier are constantly changing, we need not be victims of circumstance: take a stand, and be a pioneer.
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.