Maker Faire 2017 — it’s almost here!

We are nearly ready for set-up later today, and the Maker Faire Orlando tomorrow and Sunday.  “Weave your way to the internet of things” involves weaving on Reggie, my Schacht Flip rigid heddle loom, using stick shuttles with RFID sticker tags on one end.  The Adafruit reader is mounted on an Arduino on the right side frame of Reggie.  There is a long 1 x 2 mounted to the left side of the stand frame which has an led sign showing Picks: and the current total number of weft picks.  The info is sent from the Arduino via a wire across the botton of the frame/floor.  A Particle Photon (built in wifi for easy IoT things) also receives the info which is sent to a public page on Thingspeak (Particle provides demo webhook setup).  I am officially taking the class my husband is teaching on Embedded Computing, and doing a reasonable amount of this myself.  The key to embedded projects is that many wonderful people have provided sketches/programs for use/editing by anyone who wants to, plus details and youtube videos on projects they have made.  A big thank you to Adafruit and Sparkfun, where we bought many necessary items, and to Skycraft, a terrific Central Florida resource.

this "reads" the rfid tags on the stick shuttle

this “reads” the rfid tags on the stick shuttle

reggie with shuttle in shed cropped

Anyone who wants to weave (or can be bullied into weaving) will receive the basic instructions on the sequence for weaving, so that rfid sticker end of the shuttle “taps” the clear protective setup for the reader at the proper time.  The way things are set up, the reader won’t see/record a tag unless it has finished showing the updated count on the display.  As it takes a few seconds to fiddle with the weft and beat, the weaver won’t be inconvenienced at all.

Other members of the Weavers of Orlando and Drunken Monkey Spinners (check us out in Ravelry) will be demonstrating spinning and (maybe) helping me with the showing people how to weave part….

I have updated the weaving and spinning resources handout for 2017 and will post that as well.

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