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Issue 16 — HackSpace magazine – Can I hack it? A smart pixel purse #NeoPixels #Making @HackSpaceMag @Biglesp

Issue 16 — HackSpace magazine – Can I hack it? A smart pixel purse

This Project Mc2 Smart Pixel Purse, looks like a handbag (known as a purse in American parlance) but, in reality, it houses lots of very hackable electronics. The purse was made as part of the Project Mc2 Netflix series, which involves a team of girls working for government organisation NOV8 as spies, using their STEM skills to protect the world.

The smart pixel purse is a vital piece of equipment, but can we hack it? Let’s find out! The purse is held together with a mixture of friction-fit plastic and six cross-head screws, and so taking the purse apart is relatively simple. The LED matrix screen has a clear plastic screen to protect it, and to separate the pixels, so that our image/text is clear.

If you ish to use the matrix with a Pi, then purchase an Adafruit RGB Matrix Bonnet for Raspberry Pi, or the Adafruit RGB Matrix HAT – these both come with on-board level shifters and an IDC cable, so no messy jumper wires! We tested our board using another Adafruit product, an RGB Matrix Shield for Arduino. Coming as a kit, we soldered everything up and installed the libraries necessary. Then a quick demo script was tested, and everything worked.

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