Weekly Roundup #52 – New Maker Products // News

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Watch "Weekly Roundup #52 - New Maker Products" on YouTube.

It’s a pretty quiet Weekly Roundup, but there’s still some cool stuff and yes… I need another haircut.

Before we get stuck into the video, I thought I’d mention something really cool. A while back YouTube stopped supporting annotations in videos… that wasn’t cool… This was a real pain in the neck for me and also my viewers, because I lost the ability to be able to provide annotation links as the video progressed.

So, I wrote a simple WordPress plugin for my website that provides all the missing annotations and allows you to skip forwards and backwards through the video. It’s only in beta at the moment, so let me know if you come across any issues.
but you’re gonna love it.



Crowd Sourcing sites are pretty quiet at the moment… you can almost hear the crickets.


WR-NMP52p1At first glance the RetroStone looked like just another gaming case wrapped around an ordinary Pi3. However, it’s a custom SBC running an AllWinner H3 with 1G DDR3 RAM, USB ports, 100MbE, SD, HDMI, all the usual stuff you might find on an SBC, but also has speaker connectors, LiPo management, power switch, LCD driver IC, on-board buttons and vias providing a bunch of GPIOs. It also supports EnergySquare wireless charging, which is a much cheaper way of charging devices. Seems to tick all the boxes for portable gaming.


WR-NMP52p2SODAQ have just published their 5th campaign on Kickstarter with a bunch of new IoT specific boards.

Three boards are based on an Arduino form factor and provide a mix of GPS, LTE-M, 2G and NB-IoT and another three with the same line-up mix but smaller. All of the boards are based on the well-known uBlox modules and come with LiPo battery management and a SAMD21 core.


WR-NMP52p3This next Kickstarter just might be too late in the game considering you can get high quality PCBs made very cheaply these days. However, there might be a niche market here for people wanting ultra-fast PCB turn-around. It’s essentially an ink printer that can be used as an etching mask for PCBs with a resolution of 8mils. Great idea, but once again, the hassle and mess of DIY PCBs… and the price tag of US$1000, you’d have to be desperate.


WR-NMP52p4We’ve seen a couple of these keyboard ideas in the past. Most of them aimed at a consumer market, but this one aims for the Maker. It’s essentially a 6 by 6 capacitive touch grid running an ATmega32U4 and USB HID chip. You can re-program using the Arduino IDE and print out special overlays allowing you to change the function of each button. Cool.


And then there’s IndieGoGo… crickets


Over at Crowd Supply there’s …

Nixie Tap

WR-NMP52p5… another Nixie Tube clock in pre-launch called the Nixie Tap. Runs off an ESP8266 syncing to an Internet clock source with a capacitive touch sensor for control contained in a steam punk style Walnut case.


SimpleSense Presence Sensor

WR-NMP52p6Over at GroupGets there’s a group buy for a remote presence sensor. Runs a SAMD21 MCU, SD for logging, UBlox SARA module for cellular connectivity and PIR motion sensor. It’s housed in an IP67 rated enclosure so can live outdoors without issue.