Do you feel like a hanging-down bat? Let´s build something to find out!

Today´s article will teach you how to create your own FPGA-based tilt sensing device. It is one of those really thorough tutorials where almost nothing is left to your imagination but the infinite applications you may develop. Cool right?

This project is based around the DEo-Nano board and its built-in tilt sensor. I am pretty sure you know what a tilt sensor is, but do you know how it works? Read this to find out the real physics behind this highly useful tiny device.

Another cool thing you will learn if you invest some time reading this article is to create your own, home-made, PCBs. You need to build one in order to be able to access the I/O pins of your DEo-Nano board. Everything couldn´t be easy, otherwise it wouldn´t be challenging and so boring.

All the rest you need is given, schematics, parts lists, code…So, what´s left for you to do is the funny stuff: building things and playing!



By Chris

Remember Playing Cowboys With A “Hand” Gun? Now It´s a Video Game

shooter game

Thanks to the work developed by a group of students at Cornell University, all you would need to do is to paint the tip of your finger in Red. This is not to fake that you are shooting that much that your finger is burning. This is because their project is based on this color. Feel free to adapt it to you likes as it is all open source.

This article presents a thorough description of their work. Read it to learn how you can use the power of an FPGA´s parallel processing to build your own shooters game.

All you need is a video camera to capture the movement of your hand and then output the NTSC signal that is processed by the FPGA board (like a Papilio). Finally, the VGA controller will output the signal to the VGA monitor. Otherwise you wouldn´t know where to shoot!

Oh! And of course, you need to read this and thank the Cornell guys for their great work!

Sayonara baby!

By Jeff Mu and Edgar Munoz

Would you like a free Zynq-based Digilent ZYBO dev board? Win one over at the ARM Connected Community

ZYBO Top View closeup.jpg



It is not Open Hardware as per se, but it is FREE!! If you have a good project they pick get yourself a free ZYBO Zync ARM/FPGA board.

The digilent ZYBO board based on the Xilinx Zynq SoC is a full-featured development board with 512Mbytes of DDR3 SDRAM, HDMI, VGA, Ethernet, MicroSD slot, OTG USB 2.0, audio inputs and outputs, and six Digilent PMOD expansion connectors. Normally, this board sells for $189 ($125 academic pricing) but you can win one from the ARM Connected Community with a power supply and some Digilent swag—and pretty easily. Just click here and leave a comment, stating what you’d do with this board if you won it. However, tick tock Cinderella. You have until 11:59 PST on May 14 to enter. The offer turns into a pumpkin at midnight. Digilent ZYBO board based on the Xilinx Zynq SoC There are only five comments so far, so your changes are good right now. Good luck!

Working on Today Toaster in US-China Maker Competition!

I’m in China now working with a team of young Makers on a a very special toaster that prepares you for the day by toasting the weather forecast onto your toast! Using the Intel Galileo board and a connection to the internet it will get the latest forecast and then use an Arduino sketch to select the right pattern of burners to serve you up with a fresh and informative piece of toast! It’s been a blast so far and I’m thoroughly enjoying my time in China with my awesome teammates!

Here we are meeting for the first time – the Today Toaster team!


Here is the conceptual drawing made in the team building exercise.


Here we are tearing apart and modifying the toaster.



Papilio: The Untold Story

Chris Taylor, over at Sparkfun, recently introduced us to the All Programmable Planet blog. There have been some great Papilio related blog posts there and in a conversation with Max Maxfield, the editor in Chief, he asked me about my background and motivation to make the Papilio. I promised him an email with the Papilio story that could be turned into a blog post. After editing some of my clumsy writing and splitting it into two posts we now have Papilio: The Untold Story! So if you’ve ever wondered about my background or motivation for making the Papilio then wonder no longer! Check out Papilio: The Untold Story Part 1 and Part 2.