Ben Miller
Ben is a co-founder of Bluelock.com and gets to invent cool new cloud computing services during his day job. For entertainment he explores hobby electronics and all things blinky and technical. He blogs about his adventures at locgt.blogspot.com. With a background in education and technology he enjoys any chance to share what he has learned.
Latest Posts
  • Computer Skills
    Electronics
    How to Build a Stop Motion Animation Studio With a Raspberry PiStopmopreview400
    Creating animated movies can be fun and easy using stop motion techniques. Stop motion movies are built from individual pictures of slight changes in a scene compiled into a video. Setting up a studio to film an adventure is a simple and fun project with a Raspberry Pi and its camera module. Read More…
  • Computer Skills
    Electronics
    Building a Wireless Sensor Network in Your HomeSensors
    Your environment is full of all sorts of fun and useful data, but getting it all together can be a challenge. In this tutorial you will learn how to use Arduino and Raspberry Pi technology to create inexpensive, wireless sensor nodes that report their data back to the Internet of Things. Read More…
  • Computer Skills
    Electronics
    How to Control a Lamp With Voice Commands and a Raspberry PiPivoice400
    Voice control is not just for smart phones and B-movies anymore. Steve Hickson has created a system to bring automation and the intelligence of Wolfram Alpha to your beck and call. In this tutorial I'll show you how to install Voice Command, configure it, and teach it to turn a lamp on and off. The control of mains power is a tricky and dangerous subject for hobbyists so you'll be using a prebuilt solution for controlling the voltage to the lamp.Read More…
  • Computer Skills
    Electronics
    Learn How to Use Raspberry Pi GPIO Pins With ScratchScratchgpio400
    In this tutorial, I'll show you how to install the ScratchGPIO expansion package, how to assemble a breadboard with LEDs and buttons, and run a simple Scratch game that uses the LEDs and breadboard buttons to play.Read More…
  • Computer Skills
    Electronics
    Creating a Speaker for Your Raspberry Pi Using a Piezo ElementPispeaker400
    Adding sound to a Raspberry Pi project is a simple matter of hooking up an HDMI monitor with built in speakers or attaching amplified speakers to the audio port. However, neither solution is very light or portable. Projects that require a small, energy efficient footprint don't have room for big amplified speakers. However for simple sounds, the Pi can generate frequencies on its GPIO pins that drive a piezo element to produce sounds. This tutorial will show you how to connect an inexpensive piezo electric element to your Pi to produce simple tones.Read More…
  • Computer Skills
    Electronics
    How to Make a QR Code AdventureQr400a
    A scavenger hunt adventure is a fun game that can be played at any party or gathering.  It takes players from clue to clue before finally leading them to a prize. This tutorials teaches you how to add a new high tech spin on this game. Players will find QR, or Quick Response, codes along the way. Scanning these with a smart phone or tablet will reveal the next clue. The game culminates when the players arrive at the final location. Follow the steps below to setup a fun activity for family and friends. This might be a creative way to get kids up and around over holiday breaks and they don't have to put down their screens.Read More…
  • Computer Skills
    Electronics
    How to Build a Wireless Pi Camera Pan and Tilt PlatformRapi400
    With the release of the Raspberry Pi camera module, taking high quality pictures, or video, with the Pi has become very simple. In this tutorial, I will show you how to attach the Pi camera module to your Pi and wirelessly control a pan tilt platform. In the process, I will cover topics that include attaching the Pi camera module, connecting and controlling servos with your Pi, command line control of the camera, and some low level video streaming commands.Read More…
  • Computer Skills
    Electronics
    Installing OpenWRT on a Raspberry Pi as a New Home FirewallRapi400
    OpenWRT is an active and vibrant home firewall project that was born on the Linksys WRT54G line of home routers. It has grown and expanded to support an amazing array of old and new hardware alike. The list of compatible hardware is large enough to require its own index. With the recent interest in the Raspberry Pi there is of course is an OpenWRT build for it as well. In this tutorial I will show you how to install OpenWRT on a Raspberry Pi, add a second network interface, and replace your home firewall with your new OpenWRT firewall.Read More…
  • Computer Skills
    Electronics
    How to Use a Breadboard and Build a LED CircuitBreadboardpreview
    A breadboard is a great tool for quickly testing out a prototype circuit or hooking up a quick experiment. Breadboarding is an important step in testing out ideas or learning how things work. When I first started tinkering with electronics I discovered that everyone assumed that I would know how to use a breadboard. I wasted quite a bit of time wondering what I did wrong or if my Arduino was broken before I figured things out. This tutorial is for those who are just getting started and want to brush up on the basics before diving in. In this tutorial I will explain the basics of how a breadboard is laid out and and offer some tips on how to keep things manageable as your creation or experiment grows on your workbench.Read More…
  • Computer Skills
    Electronics
    How to Open Your Garage Door With RFIDRfid400
    Radio Frequency Identification, or RFID, is an exciting technology that has gained popularity in recent years.  It creates the ability to tag something with a very small passive chip that then allows remote reading of the information on that chip.  RFID tags are commonly used for security door swipe cards, identification for lost pets, and more recently near field communication in smartphones.   In this tutorial I’ll explain a few basics about how RFID works, describe some different types of RFID, and show how you could build an RFID garage door opener.Read More…
  • Computer Skills
    Electronics
    How to Read Temperatures With ArduinoArduino temp 400
    Reading the temperature with an Arduino is an extremely useful function. It's the sort of function that is essential in many projects ranging from building your own home thermostat to creating a weather station. In addition it's simple enough to be implemented in a few minutes with any Arduino and just two simple components. In this tutorial, I will show you how to use an Arduino to read temperature from a thermistor and print it on the serial port.  A thermistor is a simple electronic component that changes resistance based on the temperature. This tutorial focuses on the simplest and least expensive means for reading temperature. Along the way you will learn a simple, core building block of electronics that enables you to explore a whole world of sensors with your Arduino.Read More…