Playing with the SPO256-AL2 Speech Chip

Brought out the trusty Arduino Uno to hook up this classic 8-bit era voice synthesizer. The warbly sounds of the past await! See https://github.com/allisonbuilds/spo256_arduino/ for details. If you do one, please share your build with me! I’d love to see what other people are doing with it. I recommend decorating your Uno so that it is…

Things I learned today

When using Cura, I’ve had prints that I wanted to nest inside each other. Cura does not like this, not one bit. But it turns out you can disable the bit that pushes objects away from each other by turning off pushFree in util/objectscene.py I would verify this, except I was on a work computer…

Sparkfun Weevil Eyes

Yesterday I ran the Learn to Solder workshop at the Tech Museum of Innovation.  We put together the light-sensitive Weevil Eye kits.  It was great fun, we had wonderful participants!  A few participants had questions about the circuit, which I will answer here. Sparkfun provides a circuit diagram on the product website. Here I will…

Puzzle Pieces

I love open-ended building blocks, and I always wanted to create my own.  One of my favorite projects on the laser cutter was to make a set of infinitely recombinable puzzle pieces.  At first I planned to make a 2D tessellating set, with simple shapes. Then I realized I could cut pieces to the width of…

Experiments in resin

Inspired by this delightful resin embedment project  I decided to get a few supplies and try it out.   With my new TechShop membership I should be able to get to furniture pieces soon, but until then I will get to know my materials. I also strongly recommend checking out Resin Obsession’s website and Youtube channel…

Maker Faire!

  This past weekend I achieved the long-time dream of running a Maker exhibit at the Maker Faire in San Mateo!  I went representing Maker State (www.maker-state.com) and ran a table in the Young Maker section teaching how to make a two-part paper circuit.  I learned many things along the way. Here are some lessons…

Arcbotics Build

Building the Hexy Behold the Hexy, by Arcbotics! According to the instructions, this build takes takes 4 hrs. It took me about 2 days, working 8 hrs each day (with breaks).  The primary slow downs were the servos, which I will detail below. 1. Some of my servos arrived broken. a.  I took a few…

More MAME

Success! Hooked up the Atari joystick to the Raspberry Pi, played a proper round of Galaga.   Making the adapter: Many classic joysticks used the commonly available DB9 connectors.  The joystick has a female DB9 so we need the male DB9.  Solder leads to all 9 pins of the male D9 connector.  You only really…

MAME notes

Getting SNES roms to play on PiMAME Do not upload files to main roms dir (/home/pi/roms).  Instead upload to the SNES emulator specific rom dir (/home/pi/emulators/pisnes/roms).   Obvious in retrospect, of course.  But all other functioning roms have worked in the main roms file.  SNES keyboard controls: ‘up arrow’       Up direction’down arrow’…

MAME time

Today was a day of experimenting with MAME on a Raspberry Pi.  Some things I learned: Emulators do not always default to HDMI output so either a) that needs to be modified in setup or b) you need composite out cables.  Adrian was sweet enough to drop by the Radioshack and pick up a composite…