Building a Virtual Assistant for Raspberry Pi w/ blink(1)

blink(1) customer and Raspberry Pi hacker Tanay Pant let us know that he is soon releasing a book called “Building a Virtual Assistant for Raspberry Pi”. You can read a bit of behind-the-scenes here. It looks like it will have bunch of interesting features, including the ability to control blink(1) notification lights. Think of it kind of like a Siri or Amazon Echo you can customize yourself, but entirely open source, and available on Github. Pre-order it now, check out the source code, and start making some AIs!

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blink(1) 20%-off Summer Fun Sale

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Summer is here! Make your computer instantly cooler with a snazzy blink(1) USB notification light and get 20% off with coupon code “summerfun2016” on checkout from the ThingM store buy.thingm.com.

Use IFTTT to make blink(1) flash when UPS packages arrive, or when a meeting is to start, or many other things. Hook blink(1) to your servers to announce their status. Or just make a pretty sunset color pattern to play at night.

If you’d prefer to get your blink(1)s from Amazon or live outside the US, please visit one of our many wonderful blink(1) distributors. The code won’t work for them, but Amazon has really great prices on shipping!

Stay cool and keep blinking this summer!

Integrating blink(1) w/ Hspec Haskell Testing Framework

If you develop in Haskell, you probably use the hspec testing framework. Here’s a new package for adding blink(1) USB Status LED output to your hspec tests.

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The hspec-blink1 package is from Bob Long. He includes both the source and a small video of it working. Bob will also be demonstrating at a Meetup in Dublin, Ireland on 27 April titled “Hspec, & Integrating with blink(1) devices”. If you go, let us know!

New blink(1) IFTTT channel soon

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We love IFTTT (aka “If This Then That”). Our blink(1) USB LED was one of the first hardware devices that worked with IFTTT and we’re excited that IFTTT is helping us upgrade our IFTTT channel!

This upgraded channel will initially work just the same, but with the added ability of allowing multiple blink(1)s to work with a single IFTTT account (something many of our customers have asked for). And this new channel is more easily customizable by us so it will open up the door to more advanced features down the road.

Current IFTTT blink(1) channel users:
As IFTTT gets ready to make the change, they will be contacting you. We believe that all your recipes will be migrated so no changes will be necessary by you. You will be able to distinguish the new blink(1) IFTTT channel by the updated graphic (see the above image) and your channel authentication will be via OAuth2 to our new blink(1) data feed service.

And if you have any questions, please feel free to contact us.

Ambient Wind Energy Indicator using Node-RED and blink(1) USB LED

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Glyn Hudson created an ambient wind energy indicator using a emonPi environmental monitoring Raspberry Pi and blink(1) USB LED. Then on the software side, he used Node-RED and Emoncms to pull in real-time UK wind energy generation and map that data to colors on the blink(1).

Glyn goes into detail on how to set everything up and it’s a great example of integrating disparate devices and data sources into Node-RED. Here’s what his setup looks like in the Node-RED GUI:

Node_RED_Emoncms_WindEnergy