On December 21st, at 6pm, LVL1 is hosting its first ever Quadcopter Destruction Competition! Test your aerial skills in the ring of battle in this single-elimination tournament of destruction! For $40, you get a quadcopter, and entry into this one-of-a-kind competition.
Here’s how it works: On December 14th, you’ll receive your Quadcopter (A Syma X1 Model). You have 7 days to train up and modify your drone however you see fit. On the day of the competition, all competitors will be placed in a single elimination tournament. Before each round, a 3 foot crepe-paper streamer will be attached to your drone. The match begins by a signal from the event organizer, and ends when one competitor’s quadcopter can no longer take flight, OR one competitor’s quadcopter runs out of battery power. If one quadcopter is rendered unable to take to the skies, the remaining quadcopter is the winner. if both survive, the winner is the quadcopter with the longest streamer remaining.
1. The event organizers may disqualify any quadcopter at any time for any reason.
2. Any modifications applied to the quadcopter must pass the following test: “You must be willing to remain in the same room as the quadcopter if the controls are given to a psychopathic 12 year old.”
Q: May I use a controller other than the one that comes with the quadcopter?
On November 7th and November 14th, Jael Harrington will be returning to LVL1 to teach a sewing workshop double header! Jael taught a sewing workshop back in June, and has returned to teach even more people the joys of fabric hacking! Since the age of 7, Jael has been ripping stitches and forging her own fashions, so she knows her way around a sewing machine!
Are you interested in sewing? Sewable electronics? Making your own clothes? Then these workshops are the workshops to attend! No experience needed! All are welcome to attend!
You need to bring 2-3 yards of fabric and a spool of thread, and we’ll take care of the rest! If you’ve got a project in mind, it would help if you brought your own pattern, and if you’ve got a sewing machine, bring it as well. If you need any help sourcing fabric, thread, or patterns, let us know beforehand, and we’ll help you out!
The workshops are pay-what-you-want, and if you bite off more than one workshop worth of project, come back for the second one!
Seating is extremely limited, so sign up early and sign up often for these great pay-what-you-want workshops!
John Pagya of Verdant Design is back on November 5th, teaching another Sketchup Workshop! Last time, he went over the basics, and why you would want to use a tool like Sketchup. This time, he’ll be reviewing the basics, and going into more detail about how you can actually design parts for the 3D printer! If you’re interested in 3D design, art, or printing, you should stop by on November the 5th! Sketchup is a completely free tool, and John is a downright Sketchup professional! This tool allows you to create 3D models, which you can then take and print on one of the two LVL1 3D printers.
Like many of us, John Pagyga was immediately taken by the idea of 3D printing. As a landscape architect, he has already adapted sketchup into his daily routine, so he was able to translate those skills into near-immediate 3D printing prowess. He’d like to share these skills with others in the LVL1 community. On November 5th, from 6 to 8pm (immediately preceding one of our regular Tuesday meetings), he’ll be teaching a workshop about the ins and outs of Sketchup in a 3D printing context. Come on down, and learn you a 3D design tool!
On Friday, October 4th, LVL1′s own Brian Wagner will be teaching a workshop on Sumobot Construction and programming! Brian spent his summer vacation designing and prototyping the “BaxterBot” board, a circuitboard which drives motors, IR sensors, sonar, and many, many more, and is Arduino compatible! For a mere $60, you get all the electronics you’ll need for a Sumobot! Chassis isn’t included, but you have full access to the LVL1 boneyard, and all the tools you could need to make your own.
Only 9 seats remain as of this writing, so hurry up.
All you need to bring is a laptop and your imagination. Don’t know how to solder? Not a problem! This is the workshop you need to get ready for LVL1′s 4th annual SumoBot competition and Halloween party!
LVL1 is proud to host a Raspberry Pi Bootcamp on July 31st, at 6:30pm. This workshop will go through the basics of hooking up a Raspberry Pi and getting it up and running, using the wonderful Adafruit Raspberry Pi Starter Pack. Pick your ticket, with or without Pi, and come to LVL1 on July 31st. You need only bring your laptop! We’ll go through the basics of hooking up the Raspberry Pi, loading an image onto the SD card, booting the Pi for the first time, and getting it blinking. If you’re curious about this exciting physical computing platform, this is a great excuse to pick it up!
What timing, also! LVL1 is on the proposed route of the Raspberry Pi Foundation’s American Pi Roadshow. Tentatively, they’ll be stopping by on August 9th! This will be a great kick in the pants for your latest embedded project, which you can then show off to all the Pi fanatics in the Louisville area!
Seating is limited to 15, and ticket sales will end on the 27th so we have enough time to buy the kits. Tell all your fiends, and get ready for a slice of Pi! The evenbrite link is here: http://www.eventbrite.com/event/7404548203
As many of you are no doubt aware, after almost two years of paperwork, negotiating, and discussions with the IRS, LVL1 is now a 501(c)3 Non-Profit Organization! This means LVL1 can now accept tax-deductible donations of money and physical items!
This has been an absolutely huge undertaking, from Joe P., filling out our first application, to Chris C. and Mark E. fighting for us every step and speed bump in the road, to Tim M. putting together a donation form and incorporating the responsibility of keeping 501(c)3 records into the office of the treasurer. Everyone in the LVL1 community owes these fine folks (and many more!) their due.
This goal comes with its fair share of responsibility, though. Each and every one of us in the LVL1 community are responsible for maintaining the requirements of the 501(c)3 code. We’ve put together a short page here with some rough guidelines: http://wiki.lvl1.org/501c3 As always, if you have any questions concerning our 501(c)3 status, please feel free to email firstname.lastname@example.org. The long and short is this: follow the guidelines on the wiki, fill out the appropriate paperwork, mark items donated with a 501(c)3 receipt as 501(c)3 donations, and DO NOT remove 501(c)3 donated items from LVL1. These items are now LVL1 property!
Again, HUGE thanks to everyone involved in making this happen over the years. Let’s use this to our advantage, spacers! I’m looking at you, folks who have an employer match on 501(c)3 donations!
This weekend, we were lucky enough to have Sonny Mounicou come up from Memphis to teach a workshop on building a Prusa i2 3D printer. 10 people were in attendance, and everyone walked out with a working 3D printer!
The workshop was a grueling 24 hours, running from 8am to Midnight on day one, and 8am to 4pm the next day. By the end of the workshop, though, everyone was slinging plastic! Aaron was talented enough to be printing cubed gears after a mere 14 hours!
A big thanks to Jon from SeeMeCNC, who came in to help out with the workshop. He also managed to sell a couple of printers while he was at the space! And an absolutely huge thanks to Gerrit, who kept us all fed throughout the event. May no build-off ever go without catering.
Jon from SeeMeCNC (And his huge printer)
Gerrit, Keeping us all alive
Scroll past the break for more pictures of the event, but I’ll wrap it up here by saying that the build was a great event. 10 people in the LVL1 community got to build 3D printers, 2 more people bought 3D printers during the event, and our expertise for printers is growing. This event even motivated some to start a Louisville-Area Thrug (3D Printer User Group). If you’re interested in 3D printer, join the conversation here: https://groups.google.com/forum/?fromgroups#!forum/kyin3dprinters
Until then, we’ll be hacking away at our printers. For those who missed out, don’t despair: Sonny let us know that any time we can get 8-10 people together for a build, he’ll make the drive!
This October, from Saturday the 20th to Sunday the 21st, pit your building skills against 9 other teams attempting to assemble the finest food-flinging machines in the world!
Your challenge is to build a machine in 24 hours (or less) that can fling the tastiest foodstuff the longest distance with the most style. Teams can bring in any supplies they want (up to $150 worth– We will be asking for receipts at the door!), but you can’t put anything together until the start of the competition. From then on out, it’s a free-for-all to build your contraption using the supplies you’ve brought in alongside the supplies at the LVL1 hackerspace.
As with last time, buy only one ticket per team! One ticket gets your entire team in the door! Try to think of a team name before you show up!
At the end of the competition, teams will judge eachother in the following categories:
Taste: How delicious is it, after being flung?
Distance: How far did you fling it?
Ingenuity: How well-built was your flinger? How crazy?
Appearance: Is your food recognizable on the other end?
Scores in each category will be averaged, and the top three teams will receive their assorted glory.
$150 budget, not counting parts from the boneyard at LVL1
Must be built in 24 hours (nothing preassembled!)
Team size is unlimited (in either direction), but 3-6 is recommended
If you have any questions, feel free to email me at BradLuyster@gmail.com
Introducing the Arduino Simple Task Scheduler. This is part of the balloon flight computer code I wrote for White Star, with some more polish. This library allows you to create a schedule queue of functions to be executed at specified times, on specified intervals. For example, say you’re trying to log some sensor data and update a display in the same program. With the task scheduler, you can simply write a function to gather sensor data, write a function to update the display, add them to your queue, and let the library handle the rest.
This isn’t really useful for blinking LEDs, but it’s great for complex systems. For example, the balloon computer was gathering sensor data, sending short reports, sending long reports, monitoring vertical speed, monitoring GPS Status, monitoring flight state, managing ballast, and managing a backup high-frequency radio at the same time. Halfway through development, it was obvious that we would need to integrate a watchdog timer to keep other systems from freezing the flight computer. If all of these tasks had been occurring simultaneously, spread throughout spaghetti code, it would have been very difficult to add watchdog resets in all the right places. With the task queue, I simply defined another function that reset the watchdog, and put it in the queue. Two minutes, tops!
You can find extensive documentation and examples in the Github project. To install, just copy the “Arduino” directory contents to the “Libraries” folder of your Arduino IDE install. Restart your IDE, and it should pop right up. Here’s a really simple example program:
This will print “Hello: X” where X is the number of milliseconds since startup, starting 5 seconds after startup, and repeating every 1 second.
The Arduino library has some limitations, so I’ve also included an AVR “library” (just a couple of source files to include in your project). This one’s a little easier to tweak to your specific application, and doesn’t suffer some of the same drawbacks as the Arduino library. That said, the Arduino library will be find for almost every project out there! The limitations are listed in more detail at the Github site.
If you find any bugs, let me know! Submit a Github issue, fork, fix and submit a pull request, or contact me directly! If you find this useful, let me know! It isn’t a lot, but I hope it’s well documented, and easy to use/read/understand.
A big personal thanks to everyone who came out to the 2012 LVL1 Boneyard Hackathon. We had 9 teams consisting of 54 hackers compete for 24 hours straight, putting to the test their technical capabilities, endurance, and creativity. We had 9 great projects, and everyone had a lot of fun! Our youngest competitors were only 11 years old! Everyone here already looks forward to the next event.
Thanks to Jon for recording a summary of the projects at the hackathon. I’ll upload a full video of the project showcase soon!
Team Bloominglabs made an incredible 3 musical instruments, a mixer for them all, and a bunch of LED blinky stuff! They brought 9 hackers to bring this all together, and were a flurry of activity throughout the hackathon.
The Raging Narwhals, a team from the Triangle Fraternity at LVL1, made a floppy drive keyboard. Unfortunately, it wasn’t quite working by the end, but it was an impressive effort, and they plan to come back to finish it up. They brought a huge team, and almost all of them stayed through the night!
The LVL1 Stonecutters managed to make a 3-D Scanner and Animated Gif Maker using the parts in the boneyard!
Team Rainbow Unicorn built a first place trophy, so even if they failed, they would win.
The Dirty Cheaters put together an incredibly impressive Rock ‘em, Sock ‘em robots kit, which included rack and pinion steering, and no microcontrollers.
Destined for Failure built a looping synthesizer controlled by a PS2 mouse. Very impressive, especially consdiering this was the group’s first foray into Arduino progrmaming!
Team Polar Bear build a laser pong game, complete with scorekeeping, 8 bit sound effects, and varying difficulty levels. Superb engineering, guys!
The Noobs were our youngest team, and they put together a custom computer using parts from the basement, including custom LED signs.
Finally, Bob the Bodybuilder built a very loud keypad controlled synthesizer. They even devised a means to convert sheet music to keypad tablature.
I owe a huge thanks to everyone involved. Thanks to FoodCalc Inc. (http://www.foodcalc.com) for supplying libation for the event. Thanks to Joe L. for helping out throughout the event. Thanks to Gary F. for being a trooper, staying way later than he meant to, and helping out almost every team here. Thanks to Jose C. for taking way more crap than he deserved. Thanks to Lauren, Jynn, and Steph for acting as team breakfast, and keeping us all from starving.
Plenty more photos on the flickr stream. Peruse through, and if this interest you, come to our space! Links above and to the right will help you find us.