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November 1, 2013 AT 4:00 am

Interactive Persistence of Vision Globe @raspberry_pi #piday #raspberrypi

This is a fun project from a mechanical engineering group at the University of Leeds. They even have a Nintendo simulator that can run through it! Very cool.

Four of us spent 15 weeks building an interactive globe from the ground up based around a Raspberry Pi dev board and a Xilinx Spartan 6 FPGA. The globe was build from entirely surface mount components and all the electronics (apart from the RasPi) were designed by us as part of the project. The Raspberry Pi is mounted at the centre of the display. It is then connected to the FPGA chip via its HDMI output, which is then decoded and converted into RGB data. The image is then scaled down to fit on the display.

The Raspberry Pi is controlled via an iPhone application that we wrote which connects via a Wi-Pi module. The Pi is setup as a router allowing multiple iOS devices to connect at the same time. There is a second Wi-Pi module which connects to eduroam for internet access.

We setup EmulationStation to run on the pi allowing games such as Mario to be played. We also created several applications our own, such as a photo builder app which allows photo collages to be put together and displayed. There is also a weather application.

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