Introduction: Disco Tie With TinkerGen Glint
In this project we will use TinkerGen's latest product in STEM education line-up, Glint. Glint is a wearable bracelet that allows creating projects with a lot of interactivity for young students, who are just starting out with graphical programming. Its interactive interface consists of 12 programmable RGB LEDs, a push button in the center and built-in accelerometer. Behind the simple, yet elegant appearance of Glint, there is a wealth of projects that can be done, which are described in the free online course, included with every Glint purchase.
We're going to make a stylish interactive accessory, that can be used as a prop for children birthday parties, Halloween parties, etc. And it makes a great Father's Days surprise present too!
Step 1: Laser Cut the Tie
To make our tie neat and properly shaped, we recommend using laser cutter machine to cut the tie from a cardboard. If your household (understandably) doesn't have a laser cutter, you can still cut the tie from a cardboard paper with scissors - above is the reference picture of tie shape after laser cutting is finished. Go to Thingverse.com to download the laser cut files.
After we have the basic shape of the tie, it's time to add some colors - we provide some reference designs, but feel free to draw whatever ornament you think the person wearing a tie would like. We used acrylic colors for coloring. Insert the Glint into a hole in the "knot" of the tie and go to next step where we upload 3 simple programs to Glint.
Step 2: Program Glint
Since Glint was made with keeping programming and making things as simple as possible for young learners, our programs are fairly short. Open the graphical programming environment for Glint, called Codecraft at https://ide.tinkergen.com/ , press on switch device and choose Glint from the menu.
The first example we have will switch on and off all 12 LEDs of Glint with a purple color. The second example will blink the LEDs in pattern 10 times after button is pressed and then turn off the lights. Finally, the third program executes animation shooting stars for 10 seconds after button press.
Step 3: Be Creative
There is plenty of ways you can customize this project - starting from simple things, like changing the color or the tie or it's shape to adding more interesting functionality to it, for example using built-in accelerometer to detect movement and display different color patters.
In this project we saw Glint as a tie - but apart from standard bracelet form, Glint can easily be transformed into stylish medallion for you child to hang on the neck or a schoolbag. Or with the use of magnet it can be attached to metallic surfaces, such as fridge.
If you come up with some new and interesting ways to improve this project, please do share in the comments below. Also, Glint comes with an online course you can access at TinkerGen's online course platform, https://make2learn.tinkergen.com/ for free! For more information on Glint and other hardware for makers and STEM educators, visit our website, https://tinkergen.com/ and subscribe to our newsletter.