Tag Archives: STEM

Review of Raise3D N2 3D Printer

As most of you know I teach high school engineering classes. While our main focus is on electronics, circuits and microcontrollers, we also dabble in other engineering areas. A few years ago I wanted to expand more into the mechanical domain. We ended up getting burned really bad by purchasing a Makerbot Replicator 3D printer. Bases on how bad that went, I have been very cautious about dipping my toe back into the 3D printer arena. Being a sucker for bleeding edge technology, I did bite the bullet and purchase another 3D printer last week. After a whole lot of research I got the Raise3D N2 plus printer. I have it up and running, and the bottom line is that I believe this printer is a real winner, and is ready for prime time. My full review is in the video below:

To incorporate new technology into the classroom, the technology must be mature enough that you can count on it to work. If you are teaching a class on mechanical design, and the printer is down for weeks on end, the class becomes restless, and you have a pretty big problem on your hands. That is what happened when we got the Makerbot. The good news is that the Raise3D printer appears to be rock solid, and reliable enough to use in the classroom. I will be posting more tutorials and howto’s on this printer in the future, but for now, I will say I am impressed with everything I have seen in this printer. If you are interested in a rock solid 3D printer, I recommend the Raise3D, available at the link HERE. This is for the top of the line model which I have. Yes, it is a little on the pricy side, but like I say in the video, there is nothing more expensive than a cheap 3D printer. In my mind the Raise3D is worth every cent.

Raspberry Pi Zero Model W Tutorial 2: Making a Wireless Portable IP Camera

Raspberry Pi Zero W Camera
Super Cool Portable Wireless streaming IP Camera

This is a super cool project where we build a concealable, portable, live streaming IP camera based on the Raspberry Pi Zero Model W, and the Raspberry Pi camera module. In order to do this lesson, you need to start with Lesson 1,  where we show you how to get the IP address of your Pi zero, and how to get it booted. For this project, you need a Raspberry Pi Zero Model W. If you do not have one, you can get the ESSENTIAL HARDWARE HERE.  In addition, you will need the Raspberry Pi  Camera, which you can GET HERE.  The Pi Zero needs a special Camera Cable, which you can get HERE.

That should be the equipment you need to this really fun project. When you are ready to go, the instructions are in the video below.

UPDATE on EAGLE-VI

 

Thank you to everyone who tuned in to our broadcast of the launch of EAGLE-VI. We have gotten lots of questions and comments and so here is an update on the flight. The video gives more info, but bottom line is the Spot Gen GPS tracker provided one data point on re-entry, and then did not provide any other data. Hence we did not get the landing coordinates from the Spot Gen. We have used the Spot Gen on six flights, and will be doing a review on it soon.

Low Cost Raspberry Pi IP Camera

Raspberry Pi Camera
Low Cost IP Camera with Raspberry Pi

In this lesson we give you a step by step tutorial on how to create a low cost IP camera from a Raspberry Pi and the Raspberry Pi camera module.  (If you need to get a Raspberry Pi and Camera Module, we recommend this complete starter Kit, which you can order HERE.  If you already have a Raspberry Pi, and just need a camera, you can get the camera module HERE.) We are going to assume you already have your Raspberry Pi up and running, and are able to make a connection to it via Putty or SSH. If you are completely new to the Raspberry Pi, you should probably start with the  first two lessons on THIS PAGE.

This video will take you through the steps one at a time. In addition, the tutorial below has the commands that you can copy and paste. We recommend you both follow the video, and get the steps from the instructions below, so you do not have to manually type the commands. Be very careful . . . you must be precise in following these instructions for things to work.

OK, now assuming you have your Raspberry Pi up and running, and you can connect via Putty or SSH, These are the steps to get your dandy personal IP camera working. You will type or copy and paste these lines one at a time into the Raspberry Pi command line.

STEP 1: Get Your Raspberry Pi Up to Date:

STEP 2: Install Lighttpd Web Server:

STEP 3: Enable Server to Process PHP Scripts

STEP 4: Create a PHP WEB Page:

Now you will want to type or paste this info into the nano window.

STEP 5: Save your nano file with these key strokes:

To be clear, you press the Control key and the letter “O” at the same time. Then press the enter key. Then press the Control and “X” key at the same time.

STEP 6: Restart the Webserver:

STEP 7: Check That the WEB Server is Working:

Go to a browser on a Windows computer on your network, and type:

http://10.1.15.94/

(NOTE: You would use your Pi’s IP address above. The number I use above is the IP address of our Pi. Your number will be different. You can find out your IP address on the pi by typing ifconfig into the terminal window.)

If you configured things correctly, you should get an Apache info page pop up.

Also, you should be able to see your php information page by entering:

http:/10.1.15.94/php.php

Again, you should use your IP address. If you did things correctly you should have a page come up with lots of tables describing php configuration

STEP 8: Reboot Your Computer

STEP 9: Install the crtmpserver

STEP 10: Backup default crtmpserver file

STEP 11: Edit flvplayback.lua file

 Open the file in nano editor:

Now edit your file to these values:

STEP 12: Save and Exit 

To be clear, you press the Control key and the letter “O” at the same time. Then press the enter key. Then press the Control and “X” key at the same time.

STEP 13: Restart crtmpserver

STEP 14: Remove ffmpeg

We need to make sure we have a clean copy of ffmpeg, so safest thing to do is un-install it in case an old version is on your pi.

STEP 15: Intall Latest git-core and ffmpeg software

and then:

and then:

and then:

and then:

and then:

and then:

STEP 16: Now Make and Install the software:

These two commands will take a while. After inputting the commands go and get some coffee.

STEP 17: Install Samba:

 

We will want Samba to easily exchange files to and from windows.

STEP 18: Edit Samba File:

Now you need to add these lines to the smb.conf file. You should add them into the SHARE DEFINITIONS section, after the netlogin part.

After adding this code, my SHARE DEFINITIONS section looks like this:

Now save and exit the nano editor with:

Ctrl O
Enter
Ctrl X

At this point, your Raspberry Pi should show up on your Windows computer network on your windows machine.  On your windows machine, open a folder, click on “network” on the left, and you should see your raspberry pi show up. Now you can move files to and from your Raspberry Pi from Windows.

STEP 19: Install Strobe Software and WEB Page:

We will want to be able to view the live video stream in a browser, so we need to install the Strobe software. These next steps will install and enable the strobe feature.

Now the easiest way to get the strobe software is to download it on a windows computer. You can get the software by going to:

http://sourceforge.net/projects/smp.adobe/files/

and downloading the latest version of strobe media playback.

Now open the zipped folder and drag and drop the folder “for Flash Player 10.1” to your desktop.

Now move the CONTENTS of the unzipped “for Flash Player 10.1” folder onto your Raspberry Pi. You will want to move the CONTENTS of “for Flash Player 10.1” folder into the /home/var/www/html/strobe folder on your Raspberry Pi. If you installed Samba correctly, the Raspberry Pi should show up when you open a folder in Windows and click on “Network”.

Now you have the strobe software installed and you need to create a Strobe WEB page to display your live video.

First, make sure you are in the html folder by typing:

On your raspberry pi, now issue the command:

Now paste this code into your Nano window. You can paste by copying the code below, and then going to your Raspberry Pi command Window, and right mouse clicking.

Now you should save and exit nano with these commands:

To be clear, you press the Control key and the letter “O” at the same time. Then press the enter key. Then press the Control and “X” key at the same time.

STEP 20: Enable Raspbery Pi Camera Module:

At the command line enter:

Scroll down and enable the camera.

STEP 21: Start the Camera:

You are now ready to fire up the camera. You can start the camera by issuing this command in the Raspberry Pi command window.

STEP 22: View the Live Stream

Now to view the live stream just open a browser on a computer on your network and type in the IP address of your pi:

http://10.1.15.94

(Use your ip address. The one above is my IP address.

This has been a long project, but I hope well worth it. If you follow the instructions EXACTLY, it should work. Enjoy!

Raspberry Pi LESSON 35: Install a Free Office Like Product on Raspberry Pi

Now that we are booting in the Graphical User Interface on the Raspberry Pi, we can explore some useful applications that will run on the Pi. LibreOffice is a free product that will do many of the things Microsoft Office does. This is a great addition to your Raspberry Pi. You can install this product by going to the terminal window, and at the command prompt on your Raspberry Pi type:

$ sudo apt-get install libreoffice

Now the new software should show up under your menu button. The video above steps you through some of the cool features of the product.