Archive for the ‘around the world’ Category

Social Fuel For Your Car: Travel With A Little Help From Your Friends

Thursday, February 23rd, 2012

Impressing automotive hacking lets this FIAT car moving by the number of “like” from the Guarana Antarctica Facebook Fan Page. The advertising idea is simple: let the social audience support this Sau Paulo to Salvador trip to reach the Carnivalby commenting / “liking” the page. The onboard Arduino ADK (connected to a tablet and the internet) allows the car going on by a certain amount of meters (apparently one “like” is 10 meters, while each comment lets the car go ahead for 20 meters).


Welcome Officine Arduino Torino

Wednesday, February 22nd, 2012

(photo by Cesare Griffa)

Last friday in Torino, Italy a new kind of company opened its doors.

Officine Arduino Torino is a combination of Makerspace, Fablab and an Arduino “office” dedicated to further the development of the platform and open source hardware.

Officine Arduino is born out of the experience of creating the first FabLab in Italy during an exhibition that lasted throughout 2011. We experienced the positive energy that came out of the encounter between the local community of makers, students, designers and our team based in Torino.
After the exhibition shut down we though that Arduino could act as an “incubator” to empower the people we work with to setup a company that would share our resources and equipment with the local community. Luckily we found the amazing people at Toolbox co-working  ( who provided us with free space within an old FIAT factory.

Officina means “workshop” and in Italian it has the vintage sound of the name given to those small companies that made amazing products with limited resources and a lot of ingenuity.

We wanted to see what comes out when you connect open source hardware and software, digital fabrication, maker culture, hands-on learning, open design, alternative business models, co-working and a great community.

Torino is the “template” for more Officine Arduino we would like to open around the world so that more people can hang out with us and build amazing stuff.

If you have the chance go to Torino and have fun at the officine.

PS: We’re looking for some people to help us in Torino.
PHP Developer
Guest Blogger
Interns // Electronics Engineer
(please note that the Php developer and Intern position are based in Torino Italy and are open to people who have the legal requirements to work in the EU/EEA)

#Arduino@Radioshack. Post Your Pic!

Thursday, November 24th, 2011

Even if some of you (thanks for the wonderful picture, Bill) already realized it, we are officially announcing a big Christmas surprise for all Arduino users in North America: Radioshack sells Arduino in most of its 6000+ stores all around US!

This means that you’re going to find Arduino UNO, Arduino MEGA 2560 and Arduino ADK, together with four shields, in the main Radioshack stores in your homecity.

Arduino jumps into the retail market in its new *sexy* retail packaging developed by TODO.
We are asking you to celebrate this wonderful achievement by taking pictures of  the Arduinos in the Radioshack nearby and twitt them with #Arduino@Radioshack hashtag.
Wonder if any of these new products (and retail packaging) will be sold on the Arduino Store? Stay tuned for next week Christmas’ Specials.


Directional shoes for the blind

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2011

Le-chal from Anirudh's presentation

Sometimes, it is amazing to see how technology is used to make the world a better place to live for the less fortunate. One such problem has been thought out and tackled by Anirudh Sharma aka touchaddict on IRC. His invention is called ‘Le-chal’ which translates to ‘Take me there’ in Hindi.

Sharma conceptualized and demonstrated the system at MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) Media Lab Design and Innovation Workshop 2011.

The Le Chal system comprises of a pair of shoes, one of which is fitted with Vibrators, proximity sensors and a Bluetooth pad which is connected to an Android phone that calculates directions and real time location using Google Maps and the phone’s built-in GPS and compass module.

For all the people calling Arduino a ‘toy’ and ‘too simple’ here is a fact: it’s simplicity gave the inventors the power to rapidly prototype, and the invention was ready in 6 days.

As per his presentation, the system costs barely a few hundred rupees to assemble with 8 mini vibrational motors costing Rs 90, a sole of specified dimensions, an Arduino Lilypad GSM+GPS shield custom made for Rs 400 or a wired version costing Rs 150 for all the components.

The shoes have also been tested at a blind school in Bangalore, India, and have received positive reviews.

Source: Medianama and Pixelonomics

Happenings in Toronto

Monday, October 31st, 2011

Just got back from Toronto, where I attended events at Toronto Digifest and TIFF Nexus.  I was very impressed with all the interesting work happening there. I gave a presentation at DigiFest on Arduino, Physical Computing and Mass Participation (PDF, 25.9MB). At TIFF Nexus I was a commentator on the Peripherals Initiative along with Steve Daniels, John Bouchard, and Emilie McGinley.
On Thursday  Kate Hartman took me to visit her Social Body lab at OCAD University. After that, we went to visit Lawrence at Creatron, a local retailer of electronics parts for hobbyists.  I am envious of the electronics hackers in Toronto because of that store!  Lawrence carries all the stuff I and my students buy online all the time: microcontrollers, modules from online retailers like Adafruit and Spark Fun and individual components like resistors, LEDs, and much more.  He told me he works directly with his friends and colleagues in Hong Kong to import parts directly, so as to cut out the middleman and keep prices low. I tried to talk him into opening a store in New York City as well. We need you in NYC, Lawrence!
The Digifest talk was a great experience, thanks to organizers Luigi Ferrara, Nick Crampton, Samantha Fraser and the rest of the Digifest TO team. Thanks also to Maria Grazia Mattei and Giulia Capodieci of Meet the Media Guru for inviting and hosting me as well.Thanks to all the folks in the audience who asked really great questions as well.
On Friday Steve, John, and Ramona Pringle gave me a tour of Ryerson’s Digital Media facilities. Ryerson’s just finishing off the renovation of their Image Arts gallery, which looks like it’ll be a good space for showcasing student and faculty work. The building has a skin of LED panels, all of which are software-controllable, and John and his colleagues have been writing driver software for it.  I look forward to seeing images from it when it’s lit up, and seeing what students do with it when they get their hands on it. We also took a tour of Ryerson’s Digital Media Zone business incubator, and had a great chat with Jason Nolan about the work EDGElab is doing in assistive design. He showed me an Arduino-based keyboard emulator designed by Vlad Cazan that was built to help a young girl with 1P36 deletion syndrome to communicate.

Keyboard emulator by Vlad Cazan and EDGELab

The TIFF Nexus peripherals event featured five hardware and software game hacks developed by teams who signed up for the event. Sadly, I only got to play two of them before I had to leave.  Button Masher (again featuring Vlad  and Alex Bethke of Golden Gear Games) is made up of two panels of hexagons of large light-up buttons, a sort of 21st century wack-a-mole, but with a variety of different games you can play on it, from snake trap to an Othello-like board game. Analog Defender, by Alexander Martin and Patrick Dinnen is a space game in the style of Space Invaders, but with a control panel made of great chunky industrial control knobs and buttons. The interface is pretty complicated but unlabled, and the developers encouraged players to label the controls with post-it notes as a form of social labeling. I loved the way you end up collaborating with people who played before you as a result.
It was a great trip, and it was wonderful to see so many folks using Arduino in really creative ways in Toronto.

Analog Defender


Vieni a Trovarci a Robotica 2011

Monday, October 3rd, 2011

Massimo interverrà all‘Arduino Day organizzato all’interno di Robotica 2011.  Oltre alle presentazioni di Davide Canepa [Scuola di Robotica] e Leonardo di Cosmo [Discienza] vari utenti Arduino (scuole e singoli) avranno la possibilità di mostrare / presentare il loro progetto [Programma]. (scrivi a info (chiocciola) partecipare allo show-case).  Arduino parteciperà attivamente a questa edizione di Robotica 2011 con uno stand. Veniteci a trovare per avere maggiori informazioni su Arduino e la didattica, sperimentare con vari progetti in esposizione e partecipare alle attività organizzate durante la fiera.

via [Robotica 2011]

Massimo Interviewed For IxDA Awards

Tuesday, September 27th, 2011

[Jennifer Bove] interviewed Massimo in the series of portraits she is making to introduce the IxDA awards.  BTW, don’t miss the chance to join, the deadline has been post-poned till October the 1st.

1- What is your favorite product, digital or otherwise, to use, and why?

When I was 8 years old my dad gave me a Braun Lectron Electronics Kit. It was packaged like a book. On the left side there was an actual book you could pop out that explained how electronics work using hand-drawn bubbles that kids could understand, followed by very clean and simple instructions on how to assemble the modules. Then on the right there was a play area made of metal, where you could make various projects and then neatly store away the building blocks when you were done. You could just close up the book afterwards and put it on the book shelf.

read the complete interview

Arduino Confidential @ Open Hardware Summit

Friday, September 16th, 2011

Yesterday we had a wonderful day at New York Hall of Science, for the Open Source Hardware Summit, in its second edition. We had the chance to see amazing presentations from makers all over the worlds [see schedule & list of participants]  We had a good time in taking with Alicia Gibb, one of the organizers who explained us this year’s numbers and some ideas for the future.

[SlideShare presentation after the break]


IAAC’s CAN-Based Interactive Architectures

Monday, August 1st, 2011

Barcelona-based IAAC school is hosting a summer school (in Barcelona and Mumbay). The theme of this year’s course is creating an urban tool of a networked city based on a new informational layer.

What happens if we think Urbanism and Energy through a new informational layer added in our cities?


IAAC's CAN-Based Interactive Architectures

Monday, August 1st, 2011

Barcelona-based IAAC school is hosting a summer school (in Barcelona and Mumbay). The theme of this year’s course is creating an urban tool of a networked city based on a new informational layer.

What happens if we think Urbanism and Energy through a new informational layer added in our cities?