EllieDee is an arduino-powered 12 x 12 LED matrix who lives in San Diego, CA with her human Chris Fasulo. EllieDee can be a bit flashy at times, but she's pretty bright for her age and can instantly light up the room with her vibrance! Originally, EllieDee only communicated via Bluetooth, but now with a few upgrades, she's joining the Internet of Things revolution! This is her story...
April 2016: Hardware! Every loveable robot needs a body, so Chris started crafting EllieDee with everyday household items like wood, a 3D printer, 16 feet of digitally addressable LEDs, some diffused acylic paneling, and various electronics (ya know, only the essentials).
July 2016: Software! Initially designed and built by Chris prior to any serious programming knowledge, the result was a muddled but workable Android-compatible app created with MIT App Inventor tools.
February 2017: V3: EllieDee Does Rails. After attending a four-month long programming bootcamp at LEARN Academy, Chris rewrote the "controller" as a full-stack Ruby on Rails application to begin IoT integration.
TODO: Teach EllieDee how to say "please" (GET led colors from online database) and "thank you" (POST connection status) when speaking with the shiny new Rails app hosted by Heroku. Stay Tuned!
Design Stage: Let's do this!
Let There Be Light!
Blink LED Level:9000
Internal Grid Template
Gotta keep all of these knuckleheads in line
Aligning Strips to Template
Cut, glue, solder, repeat.
3D Printed Internal Grid
Testing Diffuser Strengths
Don't wanna shed TOO much light on the situation
3D Printed Grid Front
Not great...not terrible, but not great. We'll round up.
The Same Thing, But Different
Upon closer inspection...yep, still not that great.
(there may have been one or two or seven steps between this and the last picture but I forgot to document, oops)
*Close-up for dramatic effect*
Glare? What glare?
MIT App Inventor
How do I make Facebook?
Not ideal, but hey, it got the job done for the time being
LED x 144
Oh did I mention I had to create a unique block/ID by hand for all 144 LEDs? The most out of control controller I've ever seen.