About Lifegraph Labs
My name is Jon and I'm a member of Lifegraph Labs! We're a group of six students at Olin College of Engineering passionate about connecting digital and physical interactions. We have a website with a handful of how-to's and tools you can use to connect to the internet, and leverage information about your digital identity. Check out the website and our Github repository! All the code for this tutorial can also be found on our Github repo.
What you'll need to make Music Party:
An Internet Connection
Adafruit NFC/RFID Reader Shield or Sparkfun RFID shield (& Stacking Header Pins to connect to the Arduino)
An NFC/RFID device (Any 13.56 MHz RFID card will work). You can see an example here.
A Facebook account (that has ‘liked’ bands/music)
One more Note: We’ll guide you through how to do this with the above mentioned Arduino shield/module but you can easily modify it to be able to work with a different RFID or WiFly solution if you already own one.
Check out the block diagram image for a pictorial representation of the system or follow along with the video above.
It starts with the RFID reader reading the unique id of whatever device/card was placed near it (we'll call this the Tap ID). The reader passes the Tag ID on to the Arduino which sends it and the Device ID (which you will make up) out to our Music Server through the WiFly module. That's as much as you need to build! The rest has been extracted into a separate server that can handle everyone's requests to remove a lot of the complexity. If you want to configure your own server you can check out the Github repository for it or let us know and we'll make a tutorial for it!
The server will take care of converting the Tag into a Facebook ID, grabbing the musical preferences of that person associated with that Facebook ID, merging those tracks back into the playlist for everyone else in the room and passing those tracks to who ever connects to the URL associated with the Device ID (musicparty.herokuapp.com/*Device ID*/party). We are using the Tomahawk API when you connect to a music party in your browser to find a media source that can stream each particular track (youtube, soundcloud, etc.).
We built the Lifegraph Connect platform to have a centralized API and database for bridging physical and digital identities. It's easy to use, and once we put the hardware we'll sync our IDs there so that we can convert an RFID tag to a Facebook ID.
Now let's get started with the tutorial!