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DIY and hacker types that like working on their own projects will be glad to hear that RS Components has a couple new LCD kits that are available for Raspberry pi-based projects. There are two LCD kits offered that promise to be easy to wire to the Pi.
One of the kits is the 2.8-inch uLCD-28TU-PI measuring 2.8-inches. The screen has a resolution of 240 x 320 and resistive touch capability. It also has an onboard audio amp and speaker. The other LCD starter kit is a 4.3-inch uLCD-43PTU-PI kit that has a resolution of 480 x 272.
It looks like Staples is about to offer its US-based consumers the option to print products on-demand, and on-site using 3D printers. The retailer will offer action figures and personalized Starfleet officers to walk-in consumers.
Staples has added that it wants to get the attention of small businesses with its new 3D printing venture. Consumers on the other hand will have access to up to seven different printers and six differing types of materials in-store, including the Cube and Cube X models that Staples already offers. The larger goods will be handed over to 3D Systems, which is the company who printed a 3D-printed guitar.
The retailer will also be offering up trained graphic design consultants, where they'll help consumers model their vision to reality. At the moment, there is no ETA on when Staples will be rolling this out, but it shouldn't be too far away now.
Many of you reading this will know my fondness for the popular BeagleBone Black development board, and how much I love new accessories for it. Today I caught wind of a new Kickstarter campaign that is looking to bring high-quality analogue and Bluetooth audio to the BeagleBone and BeagleBone Black development boards. The all new SoundsCape is a "cape" add-on board for the BeagleBone system that allows users to add an analogue and Bluetooth audio solution to their projects easily, and from a single board.
The SoundsCape is being developed by Simple Media Networks, and is designed for developers using the BeagleBone for systems that need an easy solution for high quality audio performance and/or Bluetooth connectivity in their project. The SoundsCape is also for Makers who like hacking Audio platforms, or anyone who would like to wirelessly stream internet radio to their wireless speakers.
I'm sure you know someone who floods their social networks with selfies. Perhaps you are the person your friends know that posts selfies constantly. We aren't judging here.
If you are the sort that likes taking selfies, you might appreciate this cool mirror that will snap the picture for you and automatically upload it to twitter. The mirror has a Mac mini stuffed inside. The LEDs you see in the image countdown to when the selfie is taken so you aren't caught with your eyes closed.
The Mac runs facial recognition software so it recognizes the user and automatically takes the image when you step in front. The mirror is called S.E.L.F.I.E., which stands for Self Enhancing Live Feed Image Engine. After the selfie is taken, it brands the images with a company logo and puts it on Twitter.
Discrete electronic components such as resistors, capacitors and even larger IC's are shrinking down smaller every year, and that makes it harder for the average home maker or hobbyist to create their own DIY circuit boards. The difficulty comes in melting the solder paste that is used to affix the components to the PCB's circuitry. Why something as simple as a hotplate can do this, certain pad configurations and joint specifications require the "Reflow" process to be done in stages of varying temperature. In the past toaster ovens have been used for this and manually controlled, but that process was time consuming.
Reflowster is a new product which has just went live on Kickstarter that aims at making the toaster oven reflow method much more accurate while automating the temperature ramping process. Reflowster is basically a smart-outlet that is controlled by an Arduino-compatible microcontroller that utilizes a thermocouple temperature probe to turn the power to the toaster oven on and off to regulate the temperature. This allows the user to create custom temperature ramp profiles based on the instructions provided by various solder paste manufacturers. $100 is all it takes to get your own Reflowster which will begin shipping at the end of the year.
3D printing enthusiast world wide have at some point used Netfabb's cloud service to repair .STL files that were not solid meshes and not manifold. Over the last few years the service's popularity has grew can that has caused the service to slow down quite a bit. On Friday Netfabb announced that it has partnered up with Microsoft to host the cloud service on Microsoft's Azure cloud computing platform.
The new service is called Microsoft Model Repair, and uses Netfabb technology at its core to provide a more powerful and efficient mesh repairer that can scale as its popularity continues to grow. Instead of each model being issued a separate download key like before, Microsoft Model Repair uses your Microsoft Account credentials to securely store your fixed files. This greatly cuts down on the time it takes to get the file back to you after repair too, and users will notice a increase in speed with most repairs taking just seconds.
Its been more than two years since the first Raspberry Pi was shipped, and today the Raspberry Pi Foundation announced a new way to get your Pi on. The new Raspberry Pi Compute Module is based on the SO-DIMM form factor that is popular with DDR2 and DDR3 RAM in many modern laptops, but do not confuse that as being compatible with the SO-DIMM port on your laptop because it is not. The Raspberry Pi foundation says that this new form factor is designed to help makers embed their Raspberry Pi projects into final products.
The new Raspberry Pi compute module features a Broadcom BCM2835 chip with 512MB RAM with an on board 4GB eMMC Flash memory for booting the OS. The overall footprint of the device is 65mm x 30mm and its 200 pin edge connector allows the full i/o and other pins from the BCM 2835 chip to be utilized instead of just 19 I/O like the original Raspberry Pi.
XYZ Printing has just unveiled two new 3D Printers to its da Vinci line of affordable 3D Printers. The new da Vinci 2.0 Duo, and da Vinci 2.1 Duo Plus bring several new features to the popular da Vinci 3D Printer. The new da Vinci 2.0 Duo and 2.1 Duo Plus are dual-nozzle 3D printers that are capable of printing in 2 colors at once, with the da Vinci 2.1 Duo Plus functioning as a completely stand-alone unit.
The da Vinci 2.1 Duo Plus features Wi-Fi connectivity, and allows remote access and printing through a remote app, and allows users to monitor the print via a built-in camera. An easy to use touch-screen panel is also present for added functionality. The new da Vinci 2.1 Duo Plus is capable of printing in two colors at once just like its counterpart, the da Vinci 2.0. The 5-inch touchscreen LCD panel runs a version of Android, and allows users to select models to print that have been placed on a USB thumb drive as well.
Wearable electronics are the hottest thing in tech right now and with things like fitness trackers, smartwatches, and head mounted displays being released every week, it was only a matter of time before the DIY community joined the party. Today, MbientLab has launched a crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter for its new MetaWear development and production platform that is designed to make DIY wearables easy, cheap, and fun!
MetaWear is designed around a small ARM processor and Bluetooth LE platform that is small enough to fit in arm bands, watches, headbands and more. MbientLab has optimized Metawear for cost and shrunken the Bill of Materials, so that use can take its design and move straight into production with your finished product. The entire development board is about the same size of a US quarter and is CE and FCC certified by TCB lab in California, meaning that no additional paperwork needs to be filled out.
It's been more than a year in the making, but Alessandro Ranellucci has finally released Slic3r 1.0 to the masses. For those not in the know, Slic3r is the default-slicing program that most 3D Printing enthusiast, such as myself, use to slice the 3D models we wish to print into manageable layers. Slicer also handles the hard-work of plotting the tool-path head, injecting control coding, and spitting it all out into machine-readable GCode. While there are other slicing programs out there, Slic3r is by far the most popular and feature rich.
Today Slic3r 1.0 stable has been released and it brings with it, a myriad of new features as well as support for a host of new printers and tool-heads. As always, Slic3r 1.0 is fully open source, and free to download, modify and distribute as you see fit, making it fully Libre / Open Source compliant. A lot has changed in Slicer 1.0 so I fully recommend that you read the user manual before jumping straight into use.