Star Wars / Alexa
For those of you who don’t follow cinema avidly, I should first of all say: There’s a new Star Wars movie out. This one’s called ‘Solo‘ and is about the early day of everyone’s favourite smuggler Han Solo. By all accounts (though I haven’t seen it for myself), it’s a fast-moving, thoroughly entertaining caper movie. One of the features of a Star Wars movie is the fascinated “droid” (robot) concepts they have in there and Solo is no exception. One of the droids featured is called L3-37 and maker Patrick Stefanski has re-created the head of this robot using a Raspberry Pi. The articulated model uses the Pi plus an Arduino Nano, Neopixels, an audio amplifier and 3D-printed parts. He’s even painted his model to look distressed from its exploits! To finish it off, Patrick has installed the Amazon Alexa software so that the droid reacts to voice commands. It’s a really nice build and you can see it in action below and find out more in the description of the YouTube video.
Skywriter and Unicorn
Johannes Bergs has taken a Pimoroni Skywriter board and a UnicornHAT and connected them, via a pHAT stack board to a Raspberry Pi. He has then programmed the Pi to change the colour of the Unicorn’s pixels based on the position of the hand above the Skywriter. Instructions on how to do it are over on his blog and you can see it in action below:
Pi Wars announced
The Pi Wars team have announced that their next Pi Wars competition will take place on 30th & 31st March 2019. The competition, which has grown substantially since its inception in 2014, last year attracted over 150 applicants for the 76 available places. They are hopeful that they will have a similar response for the 2019 event.