DIY Makey Makey With Arduino Leonardo

About: DIGIJEUNES is an NGO active in the field of digital mediation.

In this tutorial you will learn how to create a makey makey-like device with an Arduino Leonardo.

You can watch this video to familiarize yourself with makey-makey.

This tutorial was developed as part of theI TECH project, co-financed by the Erasmus + Program of the European Commission. For more info contact us on info@digijeunes.com

Step 1: Parts

you will need:

1x Arduino Leonardo + USB cable

6x 1MOhm resistors

1x large breadboard

14x jumper wires

7x alligator clips

Step 2: Wiring

The image below shows the wiring that is needed for one key of your makey-makey-like device. In order to obtain 6 functional keys, you will need to repeat this wiring 6 times overall, each time using a different analog pin on your arduino leonardo.

Step 3: Program the Makey Makey-like Device

In order for your makey-makey-like device to function like a classical makey makey, you will need to program the Arduino board, so that whenever a circuit is shut, the computer will react as if a certain key (ex. “a”, “backspace”, “space”) were pressed.

You will need to use Arduino IDE to code and upload the firmware onto your Arduino Leonardo board. Download the software by visiting Arduino IDE > Scroll down until you see the “Download the Arduino IDE” section and choose the version based upon your operating system (e.g. If you have Windows 7, choose “Windows Installer” / if you have Windows 10, choose “Windows app”) > On the next page choose “Just download” and run the installation files.

Here you can download the code to upload on your Arduino board.

You then need to run the .ino file with Arduino IDE and make sure you install the movingAvg library from “Sketch” menu > Include Library > Manage Libraries… > Search for “movingavg” > Install. Afterwards, select the correct board from Tools > Board: Arduino Leonardo and then the correct Port from Tools > Port. Finally, upload the code by using the right arrow (→) button at the top right corner of the window, by choosing Sketch > Upload or by pressing Ctrl+U on the keyboard.

Note that we’ve mapped the analog pins so that A0 maps to letter “d”, A1 to letter “s”, etc.

You can modify the mapping by changing the letters “d”, “s”, etc.

Step 4: Play

Just like you do with a real makey makey, it is convenient to attach alligator clips to the jumper wires, and connect the alligator clips themselves to whichever conductive object you'd like.

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