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Making Etch-a-Sketch Art With Python #piday #raspberrypi @Raspberry_Pi

Use a Raspberry Pi to create incredible Etch-a-Sketch art! From the blog Sunny Days:

The etch-a-sketch is one of the most frustrating drawing toys from childhood. Can we combine some code and motors to make this toy produce nice pictures?

The Etch-A-Sketch was released by The Ohio Art Company in 1960. Ever since then, it’s been a staple toy in homes, daycares, waiting rooms and schools – over 100 million have been sold worldwide. It was even a big enough deal to be a character in Toy Story 1 and 2!

The popularity of the device is sort of interesting because it has lots of annoying problems:

  • knobs only move the cursor up/down/left/right. Diagonals and curves require a steady precision that most children 3+ simply don’t have.
  • you can’t draw two objects that are not connected.
  • No ability to undo small mistakes. If you want to undo something you’ll have to redo your whole masterpiece.

Etch wave

The Plan
Write a program that uses some motors to draw nice pictures on an etch-a-sketch. For the reasons above, recreating pictures by hand is tedious and extremely difficult. My hope was to get to a point where my program could draw things better than I could. I’ve always wanted to learn more about how to use hardware with python so I was pretty excited to start this one.

Learn more!


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