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31 October 2021
This year I did a trick or treat with a difference. I supported the local Scout group going around door to door, but instead of asking for sweets we asked for donations for the local support group / food bank.
As you can imagine the tins of food and non-perishable items weighted quite a bit more than candy and sweets which were lucky to get as far as a collection bag. We therefore used a trolley to collect the donations, and of course I pimped up the trolley with Raspberry Pi and Arduino flashing lights and color changing pumpkin.
This is all based around my current NeoPixel based projects.
I've created a YouTube #shorts video showing the trolley in action.
As well as using my new custom PCB for the Arduino Nano RP2040 connect (based on the same processor as the Raspberry Pi Pico), this uses the new Raspberry Pi Zero 2 W.
The new PiZero2 has only been out a few days and I had to make some changes to the WS281x (NeoPixel) library to get it to work, but I've submitted a pull-request to get that included in the default library in future.
For more Halloween Projects see: Raspberry Pi and Arduino Halloween Projects
The Raspberry Pi Zero 2 W is an updated version of the Raspberry Pi Zero. It uses the same form factor and has the same connectors in the same position, but what it does have a huge performance increase. It is only a tiny bit more expensive than the Pi Zero it replaces.
In the video below I explain about the board and how well it works for a maker project using NeoPixels with the Raspberry Pi Wi-Fi NeoPixel Server.
Please note that I had to make some modifications and recompile the rp_ws281x library. I then had to install the rpi-ws281x-python libraries against the updated library.
I created a pull-request so the updates are no in the main library. If you want to use them now then you will need to compile from source, but hopefully it shouldn't be too long until these updates are included in the Raspberry Pi OS and PIP.