In early summer, a few of us in nearForm realised that an Open Source hackable conference badge inspired by legendary ones like DEF CON, could be the icing on the cake of an already exciting NodeConf EU 2017.
Powered by the same module as the Puck.js, so lots of existing Bluetooth LE and Espruino goodness
Run off a CR2032 button battery for multiple days instead of a big bank of AAs
Daylight-readable LCD screen (OLEDs too small, ePaper too laggy)
Gaming button layout
Hexagonal PCB (of course!) with capacitive touch around the corners
And in no time at all, we had our first prototype:
Minimal changes later and the final badge was revealed.
Here is a quick video of it action (many more coming):
We hid everything behind the Konami Code for the big reveal.
In addition to our grand challenge with a big prize, we have a Hacking Lounge and Workshop so attendees can learn how to add LEDs, buzzers, sensors, felt and glitter to their badges.
What can you do with the badge? Lots!
Access a JS REPL over Bluetooth
Use a Web IDE inside Chrome or standalone
Play Asteroids, Snake, T-Rex , Mario and Flappy Bird
Use it as an Etch-a-sketch
Use Blockly to write your code graphically
Use the extensive body of work that has built up around Espruino
Interact with a wide range of Bluetooth Low Energy devices including RGB lightbulbs, sensors and fitness equipment
Connect any hardware components you like
Act as an iBeacon or Eddystone device
Share a URL to an NFC-enabled phone
Act as a Bluetooth button connected to your phone or Laptop
Use Web Bluetooth to connect to your badge from inside a webpage
The badge is something we hope will live long after NodeConf EU has finished. Please reach out to us on Twitter or Facebook if you do something interesting with yours in the coming weeks and months.
In keeping with our ethos, the badge is Open Source Hardware and the design files are available in the GitHub repo. We encourage you to engage directly with Gordon if you’d like to create a badge for your event.