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February 14, 2017 AT 1:53 pm

Last Week’s Featured Products


Last Week’s Featured Products


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1. 38 Piece Screwdriver Set

Look, over there at that thing! Take it apart! You can now attack just about every kind of box or enclosure that needs undoing with this 38-bit screwdriver set. This set is fine quality and excels at disassembling games, phones, cameras, and other small portable electronic goodies.

What drew us to this tool box is its small compact size, the big grippy rubber handle (not a thin or slippery metal grip), the magnetic bit holder (which is not hollow so you don’t have to get annoyed when bits fall through into the handle), tough CR-V alloy steel bits, the very nice box to hold it all and of course the fine selection of bits! Each bit is also stamped with the name/size. Also comes with a 60mm extension so you can get into nooks & crannies.


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2. 13.56MHz RFID/NFC Clear Tag – 1KB

This is a blank 13.56MHz Classic ‘laundry’ tag – often used for laundry or identification but also found in other systems where a small proximity card is desired. This one is clear! The tag contains a small RFID chip and an antenna, and is passively powered by the reader/writer when placed a couple inches away.

These can be read by almost any 13.56MHz RFID/NFC reader but make sure it can handle ISO/IEC 14443 Type A cards as there are a few other encoding standards (like FeLica) They are tested and work great with both our PN532 NFC/RFID breakout board and Adafruit NFC/RFID Shield for Arduino!

These chips can be written to & store up to 1 KB of data in writable EEPROM divided into banks, and can handle over 100,000 re-writes. You can use our PN532 NFC/RFID breakout board or Adafruit NFC/RFID Shield for Arduino to read and write data to the EEPROM inside the tag. There is also a permanent 4-byte ID burned into the chip that you can use to identify one tag from another – the ID number cannot be changed.

These use a ISO/IEC 14443 Type A chipset, which used to be the ‘classic’ NFC chipset. In ~2014, the NFC forum decided not to support this chipset anymore, so newer phones do not support it. This only matters if you’re trying to use this tag with a phone/tablet.


1425 Mini Work Tool

3. Mini Work Tool

A little tool-box in your wallet – good for every-day use, travel, or when you’re on a camping trip. Handy credit card sized multitool packed with useful features. Comes with 11 tools:

  • Can Opener
  • Knife Edge
  • Screwdriver
  • Ruler
  • Cap opener
  • 4 Position wrench
  • Butterfly screw wrench
  • Saw blade
  • Direction ancillary indication
  • 2 Position wrench
  • Lanyard/key chain hole

Made from high quality stainless steel. Comes with a leatherette protection sleeve.


1128 Instagram 02 ORIG

4. Copper Foil Tape with Conductive Adhesive – 6mm x 15 meter roll

Copper tape can be an interesting addition to your toolbox. The tape itself is made of thin pure copper so its extremely flexible and can take on nearly any shape. You can easily solder to it, and the tape itself can carry current just like a wire. On the back is an electrically conductive adhesive. The adhesive can’t carry significant current but it is very handy for sensing applications where you don’t want to solder the copper tape.

We’ve seen such tape used for EMI shielding, working with EL, making capacitive touch pads, ultra-thin wiring needs, etc.

Comes in a roll 15 meters long, this tape is 3mils/0.07mm thick, 1/4″/6mm wide and has conductive adhesive on one side and a protective paper backing over the adhesive.


5. Adafruit Animated Eyes Bonnet for Raspberry Pi Mini Kit – Without Displays

The Snake Eyes Bonnet is a Raspberry Pi accessory for driving two 128×128 pixel OLED or TFT LCD displays, and also provides four analog inputs for sensors. It’s perfect for making cosplay masks, props, spooky sculptures for halloween, animatronics, robots…anything where you want to add a pair of animated eyes!

This product is just the Pi Bonnet itself, and some headers so you can plug it into a Pi. While it will work with any Raspberry Pi with a 2×20 Header (Pi B+, Pi 2, Pi 3, Pi Zero, etc) you’ll get best performance from a Pi 3 since we do some heavy duty OpenGL rendering!

This product doesn’t include two displays or connector cables! You’ll want 1 or 2 of either the Adafruit 1.44″ TFT Breakout or the Adafruit 1.5″ OLED Breakout. The OLED looks better with higher contrast and viewing angle, but is more expensive. You’ll also want a bunch of 12″ F-F jumper cables to connect your displays. Soldering is required to attach headers onto the Bonnet and displays, so make sure you have a soldering iron, solder and some basic hand tools.

For all the details on how to use this Bonnet, check out the tutorial which has code, diagrams and some creative ideas for usage!

It’s a follow-on of sorts to another project: Electronic Animated Eyes Using Teensy 3.2. The Teensy 3.2 is a very capable microcontroller, and the code for that project squeezed every bit of space and performance from it. We had been experimenting with the Raspberry Pi as an alternative…while it’s still very experimental, why not make that work available to others?

The Raspberry Pi offers some potential benefits:

Hardware-accelerated 3D graphics (OpenGL), including antialiasing.
A faster CPU, ample RAM and dual SPI buses could yield faster frame rates.
Standard graphics formats like JPEG, PNG and SVG can be decoded on the fly; no preprocessing step.
The eye rendering code is written in a high-level language — Python — making it easier to customize.
If you want a smaller, if less powerful version, check out the original Teensy Eyes! They are more “Arduino-like” to build and customize, or other guides like Animating Multiple LED Backpacks provide a more approachable introduction to code and electronics with less of an investment.

Raspberry Pi, displays, and jumper wire not included!


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