2016 Community Hall of Fame Inventions

#2016 Community Hall of Fame
Hi there, friends! Today the forum sent me an automagic message about 2015 Community Hall of Fame inventions. Looking at that post was a fun trip down memory lane until I realized there was no similar post for 2016. Oh, well. It’s never too late to celebrate awesomeness, amiright?

Without further ado, please accept for your review the 2016 Community Hall of Fame inventions made by amazing community members like you. If I mention your name, please take a bow. We’d love to hear about what’s going on with you and your most recent project(s). :smile:

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##December, 2015

Ron Dagdag’s @rlyle78 Augmented Reality LightSaber for #BitWars

Medicine Machine by Sky is a machine for water, medicine, and tracking the amount of medicine taken! It looks super official with internal lighting and first aid decorations!

X-mas feelings vending machine by @Yuziana & family. - “These times, people buy all sort of presents for each other. In the hope they make others happy, and feel loved. But why would you use an intermediate object, if you can buy the feeling itself? This X-mas feelings vending machine distributes real love, adoration and happiness.”

##January, 2016
​Episode 0 featuring R2D2 #BitWars2 by thisismitch from New York City. They powered a papercraft R2D2 with the Gizmos & Gadgets Kit (Cinnamon buns not included). In this scene from “Episode 0” Kubo-Wan Kenobi attempts to rescue the beautiful Princess Mitchelleia but ends up getting caught in a devilish Sith trap.

littleBits goes Bluetooth: ​@SeventhDwarf couldn’t resist investigating whether a littleBits Arduino could be controlled by an Android device via a Bluetooth module! Read more on the forum & watch a demo here!

Inchworm by @superyummywonton won our hearts. The interwebs are abuzz with replicas from our lovely Community. Make some with friends, have a race and share on social media with #littleBits!

​"This is a simple, fun project to introduce concepts of mechanical linkages, surface friction, and basic kinematic systems. More important, robotic inchworms are inherently silly and amusing to play with."

Signs of Snow by Zachary McCune. This retro billboard uses the cloudBit to make three long leds turn on when snow is falling in Tahoe.

##February, 2016

Vi, a music device for the deaf , by UK-based product designer Dimitri Hadjichristou. He conducted his own cymatics experiments to see how sound affects various materials - cous cous, jelly, cornstarch, custard, oil, and even skittles! Watch this video to see how Vi helps kids with hearing impairments experience music in a new way.

@alexpikkert Invented Bits on a String, a homemade dulcimer with coil pickups that plug into the microphone bit. The microsequencer triggers Mr. littleBit to activate strings by a servo and vibration motor as he is accompanied by some percussive sounds on the mp3 player. WATCH!

Squirm The Snake Puppet made from motors and paper towel rolls by @macinspires in Larchmont, NY caught our eye. They were strong contestants in the Animatronics Challenge.

Young Jason discovered how to use littleBits in water with the Gizmos & Gadgets Kit. He created his version of a hovercraft.

GAME: 100 Mice, presented by @Anahit and Astghik, is an Arduino game of chance and skill. You’re the cat, and you want to catch all 100 mice as they light up by pressing paw print buttons! Try making this game at home - it’s a great way to introduce the concept of random to your little coders. Let’s watch a sweet demo video:

Pete the Circuit Board Peacock was a winning entry for the #AnimatronicsChallenge. Mya made it with help from her Dad, Scott. “Hi, I’m Pete the Peacock! I walk, strut, and call out in the oh so very confusing peacock language. With a shell made out of a recycled orange juice container I won’t run out of juice!” Let’s watch Pete strut his stuff!

##March, 2016
Penny Controlled Car by Vedant @dpathik. That’s right, control your BitBot with pennies via the Makey-Makey Bit. Let’s watch Vedant demonstrate how it works:

Growling Crocodile by @Yuziana and Dad, Carl - a winner in the Animatronics Challenge!

Bitbike #InventForGood is a blinker system created by the three J’s and S, a homeschooling family from Toronto, Canada. “We were inspired to create this project because of two bicycle deaths that occurred during the previous year - one was a well-loved local teacher cycling to school and the other was a mother who was carrying two babies behind her in a trailer. Using the STEAM Student Set we designed a solution.” Let’s watch Julius and Savannah demonstrate their invention in a fun reenactment!

Templo Maradoniano Interactivo by Brothers Barcelona students and teachers is a cloudBit connected shrine of legendary soccer player, Diego Maradona. Tweet a summary of your best digital idea with #ideadelfuturo and baked clay Maradona, will reply from his lego temple with a message that could change your life. Let’s watch again & again!

Bits in Space!? … (nearly) ​:pig2:
That’s right, littleBits flew to the stratosphere when Chris and Aiden Hillcox from the UK sent a temperature sensor and number bit up up and away in a high altitude balloon filled with helium. Isn’t science fun?

##April, 2016
Telly the Telepresence Robot comes to us from @Joey Wilson for #InventForGood. Joey can control this two-wheeled robot over Skype, Google Hangout, or any VoIP client. But how, you ask? Telly listens to a series of tones played to it from the cell phone through a custom module Joey invented with Michael Schippling.

The Celebration Board – #hackyourhabits comes to us from our Honolulu Chapter, Little Oha Bitty Bytes.

“Every time the toddler goes potty, he or she presses the button and the bear’s nose and antennae lights light up, and colorful wheels that the toddlers helped to color jiggle and move happily. All the daycare toddlers love the board, and can understand the procedure: potty, press button, celebration – yay! Most of the toddlers also recognize numbers, and can understand that we are counting the number of times he or she went to the potty. The tracking helps caregiver and parents to monitor potty training and is as effective as reward stickers or a reward chart.”

Calm your dog with Pawmer #HackYourHabits by Anoushka, a fourth grader from Santa Clara, California. The Banerjee family found themselves losing too much sleep when they adopted Leo, a Shiba-Inu puppy. Anoushka decided to fix that problem with her inventive might! Pawmer reinforces quiet behavior; it plays Leo’s favorite music on loop until noise and the sound trigger interrupt it momentarily. The device also sends an email via the cloudBit and IFTTT to alert the family when the music is no longer effective.

Robot Wars Team Building, uploaded by Hugo of London, UK.

“We designed a team building event in which four groups needed to make and decorate a killer robot each.” The resulting remote controlled robots (made with Gizmos & Gadgets Kits) were judged on their beauty, agility, ability to write, and deadliness. Watch these feather adorned beauties fight to the end!

##May, 2016
Messy Shoe Solution (challenge winner), by Three J’s and S, is an automatic cloudBit circuit designed to #HackYourHabits for the better! “No more tripping over that pile of shoes that sits in your hallway. A delightful invention that will encourage your children to put away their shoes. The reward system is remotely controlled by the parent who may be away at work.”

Introducing the “semi-intelligent bridge” #ChainReaction by Donald Drake, who currently lives in Berlin, Germany. “For this Rube Goldberg (that technically fails at the end from a machinist’s point of view but is a success from a comedic point of view!) I chose to play around with sphere sizes and a light sensor, as well as using the wireless capabilities to make everything more compact.” The result is simply mesmerizing! Let’s watch first, and then review how it works.

Did you miss anything? Here’s what happens, step by step:

  1. The yellow marble rests over the light sensor which signals darkness which…
  2. Turns the Motor with the wireless signal bit…
  3. The spinning arm has a magnet on it which uses it to grab a set piece.
  4. The marble is hit off with a smaller arm on the main body, which stops the
    spinning. :smile:

Airship by Alex012008
“It’s made from an air balloon with helium, two electric motors from nano-quadcopter and ‘remote control board‘ based on LittleBits slide dimmers & proto modules. The ‘control board‘ feeds and controls airship motors by wire (proto modules are used to connect wires and LittleBits circuit).”

Minecraft Smart House – Vincent @Vlab uses the cloudBit module to control things inside his AWESOME Minecraft Smart House. He connects Bits to redstone to open/close doors, turn on/off the stairway and lights, AND shine a bright led to let him know if anyone is in the smart house!

##June, 2016
littleBits Synth Kit Premuim, is @boycat pingpong’s vision for a new kit. Here he is playing two separate circuits, and he plans to add a third. ”The larger “Keys” synth on the right plays melody and rhythm while the other synth plays the beat. The two are synced together using the CV bit and in this example the keys synth is driving the “Beats” synth. When I bring in the third synth to play ‘Bass’ I will sync it with the CV bit and have the beats synth drive the bass synth.”

For her Automatic Candy Dispenser Sky used a deceptively simple circuit to make a completely automatic candy dispenser! Simply block the light path from a bright led to a light sensor, and a DC motor will will tumble candies directly into your hand! No muss, no fuss! YUM!

Play a song with the Arduino Tone Sequencer by Paul Drongowski @pjd from Westford, MA. Pj explains: “Synth people and other musicians call this kind of application a ‘sequencer’ because it plays the sequence of notes as an endless loop… In fact, if you have the Synth Kit, you might want to send the audio signal to an envelope module, filter, etc.”

The code is basic enough for a first time musical coder and the dimmers are completely optional. If you have an Arduino module and speaker, give it a try! Then, try changing the code to react differently to sensors of your choosing on the left. Finally, share your remix at littlebits.cc/invent !

Beat Wheel & Cheeseboard Keyboard by @BitCaper features a homemade controller made from a paper disk spinning on a DC motor. When light from a long led shines through hole, the oscillator gets a momentary pulse; altogether the pulses create a rhythmic beat. That’s only the first half of this musical creation! The Cheeseboard Keyboard uses the Makey-Makey and MIDI modules to make cheesy music and chimes from wine glasses. You have to see it to believe it!

##July, 2017
Fridge Door Alarm by @DionoiD , a software developer from the Netherlands who also mentors children at CoderDojo Leiden.
“This littleBits circuit buzzes if the fridge door is left open for too long or hasn’t closed properly, to stop food from spoiling and also to prevent high electricity bills. So from now on, whenever my kids forget to close the refrigerator door, after 15 seconds they will hear a loud buzzing sound that only stops when someone closes the door… or when the battery is drained, of course. Please see the video for a demo.”

How have your kids reacted to the Fridge Door Alarm? “My kids love the door alarm; my youngest daughter even had an idea about using a servo and a cord with a counterweight connected to the door so it can automatically close the fridge door after 20 seconds.”

The Fabulous littleMakey GIF Box. @LeLeo, leader of our Belo Horizonte club in Brazil, shows us just how easy is it to make an animated GIF with littleBits, Makey-Makey and a computer. He uses 4 bright led’s to put subjects in the best light and uses a number module to keep track of the number of frames. On the floor of the gif box is a piece of aluminum foil that is connected to the EARTH terminal of the Makey-Makey, and on the servo arm is a popsicle stick wrapped in foil that is connected to the SPACE terminal. Every time Leo presses the button, the servo touches both foil pieces together, which completes the circuit and triggers the computer to take another picture.

Remote controlled Airboat V2@Marcel created the popular Remote controlled AirBoat back in May. Now he’s back with a new and improved V2! He still controls speed and direction with wireless Bits, but now at twice the speed with 2 fans on board, and with a streamlined hull and decorative cover. He even included files for 3D printed bands to connect Bits together, based on @mathgrrl’s design. Great work, Marcel!

##August, 2016
According to Vedant @Vedantdesai , his Light Saver, a Rule Your Room Kit Invention is “guaranteed to save you energy™.” He connected the light switch in his room to the Makey Makey Bit with alligator clips and aluminum foil. When the light switch is turned on, a monster face glows and a servo motor blocks the door with a sign that reminds him to “Turn the lights off.” :eyes:

Light the Cauldron - BitOlympic Opening Ceremony not only warms our hearts, but it fuels the flame for our #BitOlympics Challenge. Watch as jonny6, aka Jonathan and Dan, bring the torch with their own opening ceremony.

Dotty. For a summer project, inventor extraordinaire @Anahit decided to create a type of dot matrix printer using a marker, the Arduino Bit, a few stepper motors, and a whole lot of ingenuity. Simply send some text from your computer and Dotty will print it out for you.

##September, 2016

Luke @Pooky describes his #BitOlympics Soccer Challenge as “a soccer field with goal line technology using a motion sensor attached to a buzzer, light wire, and the cloudBit that sends a message to your phone using the IFTTT app when a goal is scored. Play as your favorite striker attached to a servo and button to take the winning shot. But look out for those pesky defenders rotating on DC motors with wheel bumpers!” Let’s watch:

Mya’s @Mya_Berkey Tech Table Tennis tied for first place in our BitOlympics Challenge. “This exciting electronic game of table tennis uses two servos for each racket – one to turn it side to side, and one to make it go up and down. Like real tennis, this game requires lots of practice. Also, like real tennis, once mastered it will be a blast!” Let’s watch Mya and her brother play a round.

Alex used the Gizmos & Gadgets Kit to build a self-playing guitar he calls “The Guitar of the Future.” A mechanical arm and servo strum the guitar by remote control as he plays chords with his left hand. Let’s watch.

##October, 2016
Check out the littleBits 5th Birthday “Party Train” by Etierne and the District 75 STEM team of the NYC Department of Education! Ayah Bdeir is the engineer in the first of six party themed cars that each do something different. There’s a BitGuy who tries to hit the piñata, a cake with a glowing flame, a puppy peeking out of a gift box, and so much more. You really need to see it for yourself:

Zbeeboy made his Robotic dog with the Gizmos & Gadgets Kit, lego technic beams and felt. “This robotic dog can move its head and use its wheels to move.” Great job, Zbeeboy!

After brainstorming ideas with her kids, Michaellla built Dragon Party Boat, an animatronic mashup of two Gizmos & Gadgets Kits and a Bare Conductive Touch Board. Inside is a remote-controlled Bitbot, with one servo to open its mouth and another to dispense sweets off the poop deck. She even set up a DC motor to shoot marshmallows from a LEGO canon! Let’s watch Nehan and Tarek play with it:

Toshiki Asakawa, leader of the Digital Hike chapter in Ikebukuro, Tokyo, designed the flexible “Funya-Funya” controller. He used Scratch,the easy programming language, to create a simple game that can be controlled with a the spacebar and left and right arrows on a computer. Next he designed a controller with four touch pads made from conductive ink. Using four alligator clips, he connected the touch pads to the Makey Makey Bit and a circuit of Bits that move, light up and make noise. The result is a fun game controller with lots of feedback for the user. Toshiki suggests it could even be used as a wearable. Check it out:

Richard Pierce and his eight-year-old twins, Carson and Cole, made Scary Zombie to startle unsuspecting visitors this Halloween. “We sit inside the house with the littleBits transmitter circuit. As the visitor approaches…we hit one of the sliders which makes the zombie’s eyes light up. Then we press the button Bit and hit them with the blood curdling scream. Last but certainly not least, we activate the 2nd slider which pulls a pin and releases the Scary Zombie along a zip line to chase the visitor away!”

##November, 2016
Avery and her family made a slithering animatronic snake that looks like it came straight from Harry Potter! They call it the Parselbot. “My invention gives you the ability to control and influence a snake – just like a Parselmouth! Well, at least it appears that way! Practice your magic skills and impress your family and friends using BLE Bit technology and an iPad (or other smart device) with the littleBits app.” Let’s watch Avery reenact a scene from her favorite wizarding movie as her brother, Jack, controls the snake with a tablet.

Luke’s Magical Hogwarts Express is a mashup of a Lego model and the Gizmos & Gadgets Kit, 2nd Edition. He controls locomotion by waving his smartphone like a magic wand. As the train pulls into the station, a light sensor and Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) Bit trigger his smart device to take a picture in “camera mode.”

Remote Controlled Lego Tank by BradC. “We used the Gizmos & Gadgets Kit with a bunch of Lego to build a tank that can drive forward, backward, turn and fire a Lego rocket.” Check out the working treads on that Lego tank!

To learn more about how you can use Brick Adapters to connect littleBits to Lego, read Tips & Tricks: Brick Adapter by yours truly (Jude). :bitstar:

At their annual family hackathon, the Longpre family made a fun and realistic Monster Book of Monsters. It rolls around and snaps at any wizard or muggle who dares to approach. “We’ve decided to add a magic wand that will command the book with a twist of a hand, literally. The book is moving with two motors with wheels, the cover opens with the servo motor and all these Bits are connected to the wand by a homemade extension wire. The wand is essentially a battery with a tilt switch glued on a wristband. To simplify the process of construction, we divided the group into smaller teams to work on the book’s cover, the mechanical parts and the wand. We also assigned someone on the photos and videos, to be sure every moment was documented.”

If I missed anyone, please reply with a link to their invention. Thanks so much! :wink: