I try to keep up with the plethora of DIY electronic projects on YouTube and recently caught another FLORAbrella. This one is by Paul Cooper and has been given some slight improvements, including some flashy cool coding. First off, the Random Raindrop pattern is just gorgeous. It really draws attention to single drops in a beautiful way. The Spirals and Random Spot and Fill patterns are other faves. Seeing the lights spark upward like dueling LED strips is awesome. I feel like Paul has really turned this brella into a club lighting feature, with many options. I also like the way he mounted the FLORA lower on the umbrella, making it easier to access the button to change patterns. It does make it more susceptible to wetness, but with today’s cool waterproof coatings, there’s not much to fear. Paul was really happy with our tutorial describing it as “great and so easy to follow”. He’s got future plans of including an accelerometer, which could really lead to some cool displays. Want in? Here’s the FLORAbrella Learning Guide. What is your hack of choice—a different sensor or new code? Do it and don’t forget to shoot some video! Thanks for the awesome mods, Paul!!
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.