10 LED Projects for Geeks

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Build Light-Up Costumes, Sci-Fi Gadgets, and Other Clever Inventions!

10 LED Projects for Geeks is a collection of interactive and customizable projects that all have the humble LED in common, but don’t write them off as basic!

You’ll learn how to make challenging and imaginative gadgets like a magic wand that controls lights using hand gestures, a pen-sized controller for music synthesizers, a light strip that dances to the beat of music, and even an LED sash that flashes scrolling text you send from your phone.

Every project includes photos, step-by-step directions, colorful circuit diagrams, and the complete code to bring the project to life. As you work your way through the book, you’ll pick up adaptable skills that will take your making abilities to the next level. You’ll learn how to:

  • Design versatile circuits for your own needs
  • Build and print a custom printed circuit board
  • Create flexible circuits which you can use to make any wearable you dream up
  • Turn analogue signal into digital data your microcontroller can read
  • Use gesture recognition and wireless interaction for your own Internet of Things projects
  • Experiment with copper tape and create circuits with paper and foil
  • Build “smart” gadgets that make decisions with sensors

If you want to experiment with LEDs and circuits, learn some new skills, and make cool things along the way, 10 LED Projects for Geeks is your first step.

Table of contents

Introduction by Matthew Beckler
Project 1: Four Simple Projects by Lenore Edman and Windell Oskay
Project 2: The Desktop UFO by James Floyd Kelly
Project 3: The Cheater’s Dice Roller by John Baichtal
Project 4: Color-Coded LED Watch by John Baichtal
Project 5: Real-Time Music Visualizer by Michael Krumpus
Project 6: Automated Infrared Remote Control by Kaas Baichtal
Project 7: Starfield Light Effect Box by Adam Wolf
Project 8: Optical Screwdriver by John Baichtal
Project 9: Wearable Timing Bracer by Mike Hord
Project 10: Wearable LED Text-Scrolling Sash by Kristina Durivage
Getting Started with Electronics Soldering by Matthew Beckler

Author Bio

John Baichtal has written or edited over a dozen books, including the award-winning Cult of Lego (2011 No Starch Press), LEGO hacker bible Make: LEGO and Arduino Projects (2012 Maker Media) with Adam Wolf and Matthew Beckler, as well as Robot Builder (Que 2013), and Hacking Your LEGO Mindstorms EV3 Kit (Que 2015).

He’s hard at work on his latest project, a compilation of Minecraft projects for Maker Media. John lives in Minneapolis with his wife and three children.

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