We now have promotional flyers and wallet cards for Twin Cities Maker! They come in three flavors: 8.5″x11″, 5.5″x4.25″, and 3.5″x2″, all in PDF format. Please distribute appropriately and ask for permission at businesses as necessary! Clicking an image below will produce the full-sized version.
There is an Arduino class coming up in the Minneapolis area. Willis Bowman (Arduino Boy on the forum) will be teaching the class, it’s sure to be good and you can purchase an arduino at the class if you don’t have one. Below a sort bit on the Arduino from the BBC.
Arduino for Artists (Session one of two)
Date and Time:
Jul 9 2009 – 7:00pm – Jul 9 2009 – 10:00pm
Leonardo’s Basement 4301 Nicollet Ave Minneapolis, MN 55409
$90 for two sessions. Materials fee: $50 if you have your own Arduino. $80 if you don’t. Amount payable to instructor during first class.
Arduinos are small, palm-size computers (“microcontrollers” in geek speak) that you can program to make your art come alive. They can control the movement, sound or sight of your art and sense and react to almost anything, including you. This can add a new dimension to your work that travels beyond the fourth dimension, constrained only by your imagination!
You don’t need prior computer programming experience but you do need to know how to use your own computer for everyday use. Windows, Macs and Linux can all be used with the Arduino microcontrollers and software. Bring a laptop if you have one but we’ll have desktop computers available to use. At the end of the classes you will have a working Arduino and a decent understanding of how to use it to help your art interact with the environment.
During the first class we’ll explore very simple programs and circuits to blink and fade lights, read the status of switches and potentiometers, mess around with three-color LEDS and finally make motors spin in interesting ways. In the second class we will dive into the curious world of DC, stepper and RC servo motors and solenoids.
Instructors are Willis Bowman and Adam Wolf with special guest cameo appearances.
I’ve been doing upgrades of my main desktop computer about every four or five years. Recently I got the “builder’s bug” and decided to do a complete rebuild. Using parts ordered from Newegg.com, I spent less than $900 for a gaming-class machine. Mail-in rebates should recover some of my expenses as well. Highlights of my new computer:
AMD Phenom II X3 720 2.8 GHz triple core CPU, clocked at 3.3 GHz
Gigabyte GA-MA790X-UD4P 2 oz. copper motherboard
Asus 512MB Radeon HD 4850 video card
Two hard drives: Western Digital 74GB SATA Raptor (primary), Westen Digital 1TB SATA (secondary)
4GB DDR2 memory at 1066 MHz clock
Samsung DVD/CD-ROM RW drive/burner
Antec 300 case/Seasonic 550W power supply/Xigmatek cooler (massive)
Windows Vista 64-bit operating system
Computer building has some interesting challenges, but it’s a very satisfying “maker” project! If done with care, a DIY computer builder can create a great machine on a designated budget.
Among other places, a good overview of DIY computer building can be found at MySuperPC.com.