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The Android phone is controlling an LED strip hidden in the vase using a IOIO board with Bluetooth. In this example, the Android phone is running an app which obtains color values from the onboard camera and then in turn matches those colors to the LED strip. We (myself and Ytai) sort of ran out of time on this project but with the sample code, it can easily be expanded to do other things. Here's a few ideas we didn't get to:
Using the phone accelerometer to change the color patterns, a shake event for example
Displaying a pattern when receiving a text
Displaying a pattern when receiving a phone call
Displaying a pattern when a friend if nearby via social networking
Displaying a pattern on specific Twitter keywords
IOIO is a physical computing platform for the Android platform, kind of like Arduino but dedicated to Android and features a small form factor with Bluetooth capability leveraging off the shelf & inexpensive Bluetooth dongles. IOIO was created by Ytai Ben-Tsvi who was my partner on this project, actually Ytai did all the work. I've done a few Arduino projects in the past that also required a PC for the graphical & rich internet application capabilities, it was nice see how one can get rid of the PC and yet still retain these rich capabilities leveraging the Android platform. This opens up many new application possibilities for hobbyists.
The LED strip is digitally addressable meaning each LED (32 in the strip) can be controlled individually. That combined with the Bluetooth IOIO and Android opens up endless interactive lighting schemes.
- IOIO Board - $50
- RGB LED Strip Addressable from Sparkfun - $45
- Bluetooth Dongle - $5
- Android Device *
- Hookup Wire
- Form factor of your choice for the LED strip(s), vase used in this example
- Android Holidays IOIO App (Android Market link) or here for users without Android Market - free
* Android 2.3.3 and above required for Bluetooth
Android 2.1 to 2.3.2 will support Bluetooth but you'll need to enter the Bluetooth pairing pin on every connection
Android 1.5 and above can use a USB cable connection as opposed to Bluetooth. For USB connections, the "USB debugging" setting (also known as ADB) must be turned on in your Android phone, you'll find this setting under "Settings", "Applications", and "Development".