Ever since I’ve built my Solar charging station I really wanted to do another project involving solar cells, didn’t need to build a solar panel again but I very much enjoyed the idea of a project which is powered by green energy. Last month, a friend who enjoyed reading and implementing the water heater project had an idea of measuring the water heater temperature using a thermistor which detects the temperature of the pipes going in/out the water heater and broadcasting it to the web. I was excited about this idea, especially because my water heater is on the roof and it was a good excuse for a project powered by the sun. Long story short, I was working on that project for the last month, with some interesting challenges on the way, hardware and software related. Here’s the final outcome on my water heater, it runs on a very small polymer li-ion battery which is charged by a solar panel.
Here at Adafruit, we sell all of these amazing components, but we couldn’t find a good way to interact with them over the internet. There are certainly a lot of great services out there for datalogging, or communicating with your microcontroller over the web, but these services are either too complicated to get started, or they aren’t particularly fun to use. So, we decided to experiment with our own system, and that is how Adafruit IO got started.
To make it easy for people to get started using Arduino or ESP8266 we have starter packs with just about everything you may want to connect to the internet, with known-working WiFi modules! ESP8266 Huzzah Kit CC3000 Huzzah Kit
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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.