Thursday, November 1, 2012

Electronic Halloween - My Pumpkin 2012

Halloween is a natural time for Makers to show their skills, be it a simple but effective decoration or costume or something way over the top.  I wanted a sound project so I had the choice of using a Raspberry Pi or an Arduino with a sound board.  I chose Arduino with an Adafruit Wave Shield as the programming is very straightforward, reading and outputting sounds via an SD card.  The pumpkin is controlled using a IR receiver to decode keys representing commands to the pumpkin.  I chose IR over radio control for simplicity and time.  The LED array is a Larson Scanner kit from Evil Mad Scientist - it can vary the scanning frequency and eye size.
The remote can select from five phrases and can mute/unmute the cylon eye sound.

I plan to reuse the Arduino/Wave Shield in upcoming projects, perhaps my robot/home automation project.

If you would like to see a video of it, go to Youtube at

The sad thing overall: many of the younger folks in the office did not know what a cylon is.  I thought it might be confusion over new Battlestar vs. old
but that wasn't it - must be Geek vs. The Rest of Humanity :(