Horses Get Blinky Rainbow Tails #WearableWednesday
I know the National Park Rangers in Philadelphia will be fighting to get their hands on this fun little device–Tail Lights. Yes, it’s for horses, and it brings to light (literally) the issue of them being on the road in the evening. Founder Sami Gros witnessed a hit and run which left one of her horses seriously injured–luckily her good friend that was riding actually was unharmed. She lives in an area with plenty of equestrian trails, but she says the problem is out there.
I was lucky. Each year thousands of horses and riders are injured and with some killed from automobile encounters. Another horse or rider should never be injured again because of lack of visibility.
Sami created a bundle of LED strips that wrap-mount to a horse’s tail and provide different lights and patterns for visibility. Tail Lights are currently used by some mounted patrol groups, and they often use the red/blue lights for law enforcement or yellow/SOS that can be easily recognized by airships in an emergency situation. The battery back is pretty hefty, and can run for close to 24 hours. Everything fits nicely into a Cantle Bag, which gives easy access to the controller, no matter the saddle style.
Of course, with LED strips there are plenty of other uses for fun color combos, like holiday themes, club colors, and even rainbow for gay pride. You never know when you’ll be needed in a parade, and I can tell you that my friends trotting near the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia will be loving the red, white and blue trio. Check out this mounted patrol showing off Christmas colors.
What I like about this story is that the solution was geared to visibility in an unexpected way. I know farmers would find this device useful because their properties are now often split by highways or other fast roads. So, getting their horses to the barn late at night might be risky. So, for those of you that are entrepreneurs, look to other groups that may also need visibility, like a workplace, or even turtles crossing a street. What solutions can you think of? If LEDs are the answer, you should take a look at our NeoPixel Über Guide. You can learn about the different types, including stitchable and solderable. You can make almost anything rainbow blinky and safe at night. Have fun inventing!
Adafruit publishes a wide range of writing and video content, including interviews and reporting on the maker market and the wider technology world. Our standards page is intended as a guide to best practices that Adafruit uses, as well as an outline of the ethical standards Adafruit aspires to. While Adafruit is not an independent journalistic institution, Adafruit strives to be a fair, informative, and positive voice within the community – check it out here: adafruit.com/editorialstandards
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.
Have an amazing project to share? The Electronics Show and Tell is every Wednesday at 7pm ET! To join, head over to YouTube and check out the show’s live chat – we’ll post the link there.