Monday, March 14, 2016

Just A Little Making Fun #MakerEd

As some of you might have seen, I've become a bit obsessed with Making things lately. I just recently put together my own travel Raspberry Pi/Making briefcase. Check this out.

A photo posted by Nick Provenzano (@thenerdyteacher) on

I decided to add the Raspberry Pi Sense Hat to my kit. This picture shows it at the bottom, but I did install it at the top. It is pretty cool.

A video posted by Nick Provenzano (@thenerdyteacher) on

The process was pretty simple. I ordered the briefcase from Amazon and it was very nice. It was a bit bigger than I thought it would be, but it worked out for the best. The extra storage space allowed me to store other Maker goodies I have accumulated over the past few months. Lots of 3D printed items, extra micro usb cords, my Duino Kit Jr fits in the center part very nicely, and anything else I might need to take from place to place. 

I wanted to share some of these little creations with all of you for a couple of reasons:

1. Anybody can Make. It's true. Not all making has to do with technology. I happen to enjoy tech and playing with it, but putting this briefcase together wasn't about tech. I needed to measure and cut and then remeasure and cut again because I messed up the first time. I never thought I would be doing this as an adult. It reminds me of the fun and the trouble I used to get into when I was younger. I loved taking things apart and trying to put them back together. My Nerdy Pi portable game device was something that took me time and effort to assemble. I never thought I could do this, but I learned so much along the way.

2. Anybody can code. I never expected to learn how to code with Python. I was able to have the Raspberry Pi send messages on the Sense Hat without a monitor. I actually did it. It took me a few hours to figure out what was needed from one line to the next, but I was able to figure it out and now it asks me the correct line from War Games ("Shall we play a game?"), it will wink at me, and give me the temperature. That is so cool. I still haven't figured out how to covert it to F, but I know I will get it there. Like most things, it takes time to get it right, but it has been a fun trip along the way. As someone who never excelled in Math or the Sciences, but found them interesting, this has been such a great experience.

I have received so many positive remarks from friends about the crazy things I am doing. I hope more people that are hesitant to get out there and try new things will see what I can do and give it a try.

Get making!

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