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empowering creative people

Raspberry Pi Workshop 13/6/18

Yesterday we ran our Raspberry Pi Beginners workshop! This one was actually a last minute addition to try and keep up with the demand for this workshop, and we still had an almost full house! I'm absolutely loving the enthusiasm, we had all new faces tonight, and I saw a few sparks starting as our participants saw just how much you can do with a tiny computer. One little maker went home with a mountain of MagiPi magazines to chew through, I'm looking forward to seeing what he comes up with!

If you want to get started with Raspberry Pi come along to one of our workshops, seats are going like hotcakes so be quick! Or, if you'd rather learn about Pi from the comfort of your own seat, have a gander at our excellent beginner's course that covers the same content and more!

 Raspberry Pi Beginners Workshop 13/06/18

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- By Ben Mildren

Laser Cutting Workshop 12/6/18

On Tuesday we held a workshop to show off the humble laser cutter. These things are absolutely incredible, the precision of a high power laser is super handy if you want to etch and cut some really intricate designs. They are also slightly hard to come by, so we're incredibly lucky to have one in our makerspace! Our participants were taught how to design for a laser cutter, and at the end of the night, they used ours to print a little custom keychain to take home!

Working with laser cutters is an awesome skill to have under your belt, and we'll have some online tutorials to get you started very soon! in the meantime, see if you can make it down to a local workshop!

Laser Cutting Workshop 12/06/18

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- By Ben Mildren

Raspberry Pi: Next Level Workshop 6/6/18

On Wednesday we held the first Next Level Raspberry Pi course! For those waiting for some Raspberry Pi learning that is a little bit more intermediate, you're in luck! We covered a whole lot of ground and started to really have a look at what you can do with a tiny computer that has a complete operating system. Even I was a little bit excited by how easy it was to build a nice program with a GUI to control your electronics, even mixing it in with some IoT capability!

If you're as excited as I am by these wonderful little computers, why not check out our online Raspberry Pi Workshop and Tutorials, or even come along to our next workshop!

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- By Ben Mildren

Arduino: Next Level Workshop 30/5/18

On Wednesday we held the very first of our "Next Level" series of workshops, for Arduino! We had some makers who were eager and ready to learn more come around, and we covered some really in-depth and useful parts of the Arduino ecosystem. We made a library that simplified our code for reuse in many projects, and we used interrupts to create really responsive electronics using low-level coding techniques. It was fantastic having enthusiastic makers come in to learn something new, and also sharing some of their own knowledge with the group!

If you're ready to take your making to the next level, then our tutorials are the place to be, they have some awesome, in-depth stuff for you to learn. Or, come to one of our next level workshops!

Arduino Next Level Workshop 30/5/18

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- By Ben Mildren

3D Modelling Workshop 29/5/18

Yesterday we had a packed room learning How to Design 3D Models for Practical 3D Printing! This one was a toughie, but everyone who came in was fantastic at handling Fusion 360, and learnt lots! Working with CAD can be tricky, and take a lot of time to fully master, so it was great seeing our participants making their first baby steps into 3D modelling and design.

If 3D Modelling sounds like something you want to try for your project, check out our tutorials on 3D Printing, or come to our next workshop!

3D Modelling Workshop 29/5/18

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- By Ben Mildren

Circuit Design and Simulation Workshop 23/5/18

On Wednesday we ran our introduction to circuit simulation in Proteus! This course covers a lot of ground, we went through almost the entire workflow of developing a completely new and mass producible piece of electronics in only a couple of hours. The guys we had around were great, with them we designed and simulated our very own functional voltmeter!

Check out our growing list of online tutorials if you want to build and simulate yourself, or come around to our next workshop!

Circuit Design and Simulation 23/5/18

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- By Ben Mildren

Circuit Playground Workshop 22/5/18

This past Tuesday we had a whole lot of fun with Circuit Playground! We had programmers, teachers, and absolute beginners come around to build a whole bunch of awesome projects. I think more than a few were a little bit mindblown by the amount that can be done with one little board, and even our most experienced programmer was learning and loving working with MakeCode!

If you want to see just how much you can do with Circuit Playground check out our wealth of tutorials, and a whole course in progress! Or if you want to come see us and learn in person, come down to our next workshop!

Circuit Playground Workshop 22/5/18

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- By Ben Mildren

Raspberry Pi Beginners Workshop 16/05/18

On Wednesday we ran our fantastic Raspberry Pi Beginners course, to a full house! We had some last minute bookings from Tuesdays guests, a few more returning guests, and some fresh faces as well. We had a look at the various operating systems that a Raspberry Pi can run, made some cool electronics projects, and we got minds buzzing over how simple it can be to make your own projects, from a digital picture frame to an infrared camera, to a retro games box!

If you want to join in on the fun take a look at our Raspberry Pi online course, or come see us at our next workshop!

Raspberry Pi workshop 16/05/18

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- By Ben Mildren

Internet-Connected Projects Workshop 15/05/18

On Tuesday night we ran our brand new IoT course, How To Build Internet Connected Projects! It was an absolute blast, everyone loved it!

We spent the night getting our Pycom devices running our own code, and controlling them completely free of a computer with our phones using adafruit.io. It was fantastic seeing some guests go from no coding experience at all to building and debugging their own programs! If you want to get involved with the internet of things check out our fantastic short form tutorials for Pycom, or come along to our next workshop!

IOT workshop 15/05/18

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- By Ben Mildren

Arduino Workshop For Beginners 9/5/18

On Wednesday we held an Arduino Workshop for beginners, we had a blast! It was great seeing people of all ages learning to work with an Arduino for the first time, everyone was super enthusiastic and asking great questions! We even have a few already getting keen to come back around for a level up...

If you would like to join in on the fun come around to our next Arduino beginner's workshop, or check out our awesome online course!

Arduino Beginner's Workshop 9/5/18

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- By Ben Mildren

3D Printing Workshop 8/5/18

Yesterday we ran an introduction to 3D printing! We had a look at printing 3D models using CURA, and all the different things we can modify to make our prints perfect. We also looked at Thingiverse, which has thousands of models that are ready to print right away. We even printed out a cute little Rocktopus on a LulsBot Mini.

If you want to learn how to work with 3D printers check out our awesome online course or come around to our next workshop!.

3D Printing Workshop 8/5/18

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- By Ben

Raspberry Pi Workshop for Beginners 2/5/18

Wednesday night we kicked off our Raspberry Pi Beginner workshops for the year! We got our own Pi's up and running with flashing lights and fancy scripts with a group of friends ranging from IT specialists to artists, who learned how to install Raspbian and built a simple blinking light program in Python. These simple steps got minds buzzing, there was talk about building IoT devices and connected sensors for all sorts of projects.

We covered a lot of ground, these guys are on track to make some awesome projects. If you want to get started with Raspberry Pi check our free online workshop, it covers the same content and then some, it's a super fun way to get into making with a Pi! 

Raspberry Pi Workshop 2-5-18

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- By Ben

Meet Stephen

Meet Stephen, he has joined our team and is here to help makers and educators with their Arduino projects along with modern platforms such as Circuit Playground.

Stephen has been a lifelong maker and tinkerer, with a professional background in aircraft maintenance and avionics in the USA. He first became interested in Arduino 2011 while building UAVs using an early version of ArduPilot. He began creating Arduino wearables in 2014 to wear in his acts as a circus performer (really!). In 2016 he came to Australia and settled in Newcastle. Stephen now has an interest in wearables and interactive art, and collaborates with Newcastle artists to add interactivity to their art installations.

Next time I'll introduce you to someone else, stay tuned!

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- By Graham

Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ Released!

Raspberry Pi Foundation has just released a new board, yep you read right! It's called Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ (note the plus at the end).

You can view or buy this board right now - we have stock available in Australia for dispatch. Be quick, as it'll likely sell out pretty quick during the launch.

Here's what it looks like (notable visual differences are the SoC package and wireless hardware changes):

Here are the specs and features. We have more information available on the product page (highlights include +16.6% CPU speed, Dual-Band Wireless which supports 802.11ac, and support for PoE via a HAT):

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- By Graham

Arduino Workshop 1/2/18

Last night we ran another Arduino Workshop which was a lot of fun. We covered off on all of the basic content, plus looked at a few extra challenges involving decision making and case logic.

The most notable aspect of the night was the participation of Luke who is completely blind, still in high school and was assisted by an engineer called Simon. Using software Simon has created for his laptop, Luke was able to not just follow along with the workshop, but knock it out of the park with some interesting project ideas, and a great handle of Arduino programming. It's always inspiring to see the backgrounds of our workshop participants, and last night was certainly no exception.

Arduino Workshop group 1/2/18

Remember that if you're not able to make it in for our in-house workshop, but you're interested in learning about Arduino, then I'd recommend our online Arduino course which is available for free, and covers off on almost 5x the content that we get through in a single Workshop. It's perfect for learning at home or on-the-go, and if you get stuck along the way, we're here to help!

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- By Sam

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