Experimenting with an Arduino first!


I need to make something cool for the Maine Maker Faire in a few weeks, better get hoppin'. This seems like a perfect time to miniaturize one of my old, favorite projects.... the Skeleton Puppet!

Skeleton Marionette Animatronic - single motor


No I'm not going to overload the hobby servos or spend $200 on high-end steppers, rather try and shrink everything down to a little puppet for the faire booth. The same basic mechanics apply, just a massive ramp up in friction-to-weight rations and string rigidity issues going from a life-sized skeleton to a 10" CVS toy.


Day 1 

Got the first dual-servo setup running in a pair of linear loops... works as advertised but its going to take a lot of work to make something with organic motion.

Arduino Skeleton Puppet




 **** Reference Tutorials ************

Joystick and dual servo video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kA_pbMR6jVs



=============== Raspberry PI ================



First, the basics in picking out the right device


Raspberry Pi Comparison Chart

Complete Raspberry Pi comparison chart

Confused by the Raspberry Pi naming scheme and not sure which to buy? This comparison chart outlines the differences between each model.


  A+ B B+ 2 2
Raspberry Pi:  Model A+  Model B  Model B+  2, Model B  3, Model B  3, Model B+
Quick summary:  Cheapest, smallest single board computer  The original Raspberry Pi  More USB and GPIO than the Model B  Faster CPU and more memory over the B+  Faster CPU, Addition of Bluetooth and Wireless LAN  Latest and Fastest CPU, Faster Ethernet & Wifi
Chip:  Broadcom BCM2835  Broadcom BCM2836  Broadcom BCM2837 64-bit  Broadcom BCM2837B0 64-bit
Processor:  ARMv6 single core  ARMv7 quad core  ARM Cortex-A53 quad core  ARM Cortex-A53 quad core
Processor Speed:  700 MHz  900 MHz  1.2 GHz  1.4 GHz
Voltage and Power Draw:  600mA @ 5V  650mA @ 5V  750mA @ 5V  750mA @ 5V
GPU:  Dual Core VideoCore IV Multimedia Co-Processor
Size:  65x56mm  85x56mm
Memory:  256 MB SDRAM @ 400 MHz  512 MB SDRAM @ 400 MHz  1 GB SDRAM @ 400 MHz  1 GB SDRAM @ 900 MHz  1 GB SDRAM @ 900 MHz
Storage:  Micro SD Card 
(not included)
 SD Card 
(not included)
 Micro SD Card 
(not included)
 Micro SD Card 
(not included)
 Micro SD Card 
(not included)
 Micro SD Card 
(not included)
GPIO:  40  26  40
USB 2.0:  1  2  4
Ethernet  None  10/100mb Ethernet RJ45 Jack  10/100/1000mb Ethernet RJ45 Jack
Wireless LAN  None  Integrated 802.11 b/g/n  Integrated 2.4GHz and 5GHz 802.11 b/g/n/ac
Bluetooth  None  Integrated Bluetooth 4.1 (Classic & Low Energy)  Integrated Bluetooth 4.2 (Classic & Low Energy)
Audio:  Multi-Channel HD Audio over HDMI, Analog Stereo from 3.5mm Headphone Jack


All of these Raspberry Pi Models share the following features:


  • Operating Systems: Raspbian RaspBMC, Arch Linux, Rise OS, OpenELEC Pidora
  • Video Output: HDMI Composite RCA
  • Supported Resolutions: 640x350 to 1920x1200, including 1080p, PAL & NTSC standards
  • Power Source: Micro USB


What's the difference between the Raspberry Pi 2 and the Raspberry Pi Model B+?


Although both models look the same, there are a couple of hardware changes that really put the Raspberry Pi 2 ahead of the game. 

Most notably the Pi 2 uses a Broadcom BCM2836 ARMv7 chipset with a powerful Quad Core Processor running at 900MHz, while the Model B+ falls back on a Broadcom BCM2835 ARMv6 Single Core processor running @ 700 MHz. 

The other main difference between the two is the amount of RAM each one carry. The Model B+ is limited to 512 MB SDRAM @ 400 MHz while the Pi 2 boasts a  a hefty  1GB SDRAM running @ 450 MHz. 

Be sure to double check the model before purchasing as the increase in power from the Pi 2 makes a huge difference not only when browsing through your OS of choice, but also when watching 1080p video.



Ok finally got the PI ! I landed on the 3 B+ with an LCD touch screen. After a lot of frustration and debating about the loss of the GPIO pins with a touch screen, I lucked upon a combination of elements that gave me all that plus a set of break out pins. The LCD tuch screen doesnt use all the GPIO pins but the connector globs over them all, hence the need of the breakout board.


Raspberry PI 3 B+ LCD with Breakout Pins



...and the GPIO pinouts of the PI 3/3B+





For later, running Drupal on a Raspberry Pi = https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JbHz602ApN0


Node Red flow for listening on an http web socket : 



Best Node Red Overview : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WxUTYzxIDns