PiHut’s Maker Advent Calendar 2023 – Day Two Project

Now that we have two boxes open we can carry out the first project which is to take the supplied Pico, LED block light, breadboards and cables and wire them together.

As with last year’s calendar, the projects come with an excellent set of tutorials which you can find on the PiHut website. These walk you through not only the project but also come with an explanation as to what the components are and how they work. This is useful for beginners and acts as a nice refresher for experts too.

Today’s project was to take the block LED, which … Read the rest

PiHut’s Maker Advent Calendar 2023 – Day Two

Yesterday, I opened the first box from this year’s PiHut Maker Advent Calendar. This next box revealed some simple parts so we can get on and do the first proper project, which I will be covering tomorrow. Take a look at the video 👇 for details of what is in the day two box.

Day two included the following:

  • 1x 15mm diffused ‘blocky’ LED
  • 1x Resistor
  • 2x Male to male jumper wires

Tomorrow I will post a video showing how I got on wiring it all together.… Read the rest

PiHut’s Maker Advent Calendar 2023 – Day One

It’s back! As I trailed a while back PiHut have released what they call the “Maker Advent Calender” for 2023. This year both the original and a new “Let it Glow” versions are available. Given that I did the original one last year, this year I am unboxing the “Let it Glow” version.

Day one included the following:

  • 1x Raspberry Pi Pico H (with headers pre-soldered)
  • 1x 1m Micro-USB cable
  • 2x 400-point solderless breadboards

Not terribly exciting but the foundations on which to build what I hope will be some exciting light based projects.

As last year there is a … Read the rest

PiHuts Maker Advent Calendar “unboxing” Video 2023

Last year for the first time PiHut released an advent calendar called “The 12 Projects of Codemas!” which included 12 projects based around a Pico covering such things as temperature sensors, switches and the like. I did a series of unboxing and project videos covering their content. I had great fun so I was pleased to see that PiHut have brought them back for this year too.

This time there are not one but two advent calendars to get stuck into. This year alongside “The 12 Projects of Codemas!” is a second one called “Let it Read the rest

Simple Remote Wake on Lan with Raspberry Pi Zero W

As part of my drive to help the planet, I am trying to use less electricity. We have a Windows machine in the lounge that acts as a Plex media server. This works very well but I realised that it was only being used at certain times of the day, usually in the evenings, meaning that it was running for hours on end unnecessarily. Therefore, the plan was to have the machine automatically turn off each night at midnight when I knew we would definitely not be using it, but what about turning it on?

If I was at home … Read the rest

Untethering a Raspberry Pico from your Computer

In my series on the PiHut Maker Advent Calendar, I posed a couple of questions:

  1. how do you move from a wobbly breadboard to something more permanent?
  2. How do you run code without having the Pico tethered to a laptop running Thonny?

I have, at least, now worked out how you do the latter of these two and I will explain how below.

In order to get a script to run on start-up you need to save a file called “main.py” to your Pico device. To do that I have included steps for this using Thonny. Firstly, make sure … Read the rest

PiHut’s Maker Advent Calendar – Day Twelve Project

The final project and this one feels a little bit Christmasy. Making use of the led light strip from the last box we opened yesterday I have created a slightly extended video showing not only the project itself but also a longer and silent(ish) demo at the end.

Take a look at the video below:

That’s it for 2022 and the very enjoyable PiHut Maker Advent Calendar. Would I do it again in 2023? Certainly I would providing the componts were going to be different which might be hard to achieve. What I will do is look to make use … Read the rest

PiHut’s Maker Advent Calendar – Day Twelve

I seem to have got my days wrong and am posting this a day early but who cares! It’s nearly Christmas and you want to see what’s in the last box don’t you?

Where here it is the last opening video which the thumbnail conveniently gives away what’s in the contents. Take a look anyway as it’s pretty cool.

Day twelve included the following:

  • 1x Custom 50cm WS2812 RGB LED strip with jumper wire ends

That’s the last box done and just the final project to go. I have greatly enjoyed both the box itself, which contained some well thought out contents, … Read the rest

PiHut’s Maker Advent Calendar – Day Eleven Project

SPOILER ALERT! I have never been so disappointed during this opening of the PiHut Maker Advent Calendar when I couldn’t get the OLED screen to work.

Watch the very quick video below and then read on for more thoughts.

I have no idea why this didn’t work. I tried several things to try and coax it in to life stripping it right back to basics. The project includes a switch and the potentiometer but I removed all that just to try and get the screen to work. However, no matter what I did I just always ended up with this … Read the rest