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Geekdom Applied

So…I did the set up I needed to do before I started my first Arduino project.  Did I do the normal thing and download the software onto my Mac?

 

No.  Apparently that would have been too easy and that’s not how we roll at my place? I thought it would be fun to download the software onto the Raspberry Pi, and my husband agreed.

 

Yeah.  I wonder about us sometimes, too.

It actually worked out pretty well.  It turns out that Raspbian (the operating system that we are using on the Raspberry Pi) is close enough to Debian that we got everything running like the book said it should.  Well…mostly.  I looked up more recent info on the Arduino website, and it looked closer to that.  Still, one more in the win column, yeah?

 

(I’m as surprised as you are.)

 

We got the Arduino hooked up, opened up the Sketch program (Arduino programs are called Sketches) and uploaded the test Sketch that was supposed to make a light blink on the Arduino.  And it worked!  We rejoiced.

 

…And then we couldn’t figure out how to shut the darn blinky light off. I read ahead in the book.  Nothing.  We tried the reset button. Nope.  Unplugging it from the system shouldn’t have done anything…and it didn’t.

 

Sigh.

 

Luckily, my hubby actually knows the underlying programming language that Sketches use.  After a couple of tries, he managed to get the darn blinky to stop.  *whew*

 

Now we’re all ready to dive in, right?

 

…And then we went to Maker Faire.

Moment of Science - Hawking

Click here to view and listen

Download .MP3

Meet Robert and Alex Doyle, the father / daughter team who are sending a TARDIS into Orbit for the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who.  There is still time to support their project before the Kickstarter ends on June 29th 2013.

 

Once the projects funds, stay connected to this dynamic duo by following their progress on their Facebook Page

This is a big day for me.  My first book, Archaeology In Fiction, is now available via Amazon in both paperback and Kindle versions.  I have taken my popular Archaeology in Fiction discussion which I have presented at various sci-fi and fantasy conventions and transformed it into an in depth discussion of Archaeology as it is depicted in fiction.

What is the truth? In this book we will explore:

  1. The fictions surrounding archaeology
  2. Why we love and perpetuate those fictions
  3. What the truth behind the fiction really is

Sometimes truth really is stranger than fiction.

Archaeology In Fiction is available here.

I’m not very good at sticking with one project alone, so it shouldn’t be any surprise to you all to know that I’ve also gotten my bits and pieces together to work on an Arduino project.

At this point, I’m sure that some of you are wondering what the heck an “Arduino” is. Well, let me tell you:

“Arduino is an open-source electronics prototyping platform based on flexible, easy-to-use hardware and software. It’s intended for artists, designers, hobbyists, and anyone interested in creating interactive objects or environments.”   – Arduino – http://www.arduino.cc

More specifically, though, we are talking about the Arduino Board (or generic equivalent), which is basically a tiny computer that can help you do things like…make Robots.

You see why I’m so interested.

Sadly, I have a bit of work to do before I can build my robot army.  The book I will be working from is a bit out of date, so if you want more info, you can probably find it on the Arduino website.  If you have a hankering to follow along as I limp my way slowly through, you can do so with Beginning Arduino by Michael McRoberts.

Apparently, my first project will be an LED Flasher.  But first, I have to do some set up.

Cue the ominous music.