In the original Star Trek series, there are a couple of episodes that feature a severely disabled Captain Pike (former captain of the Enterprise) who is immobilized and can not speak. He can only communicate via a little light on the front of his wheel chair. It blinks (and beeps) once for “yes”, and twice for “no”.
We can create a similar yes/no functionality using our Circuit Playground. We can use the buttons to select “yes” or “no”. The speaker can provide the characteristic monotonic “beep”, and the NeoPixels can act like the light. In fact, the resulting program is pretty simple. However, it serves as a good way to introduce a fairly advanced coding topic – refactoring.
We will start with a fully functional program and then incrementally go through it and show how it can be “improved” by applying various refactoring techniques.
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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.