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Monday, 24 November 2014

C3Pi is innocent, Flora not so much, and more Shrrimps are on the way.

I took C3Pi to the Elephant and Castle Mini Maker Faire a few days ago, but had to leave early since he suddenly stopped working.

At the time I blamed a loss of battery power, and thought that he'd wiped the file system on his SD card. Various holdups meant that I have only just been able to try to fix the problem which turns out to be rather simpler.

C3Pi has two controllers on board: a Raspberry Pi model B+ does the thinking, and a Teensy 3.1 controls his motors. The Pi B+ uses a micro SD card but when I removed it the card was even more micro than usual: half the card had been broken off!

I have no idea how this happened but poor old C3PI is off the hook. He's now back in action with a newly-flashed SD card and will soon be getting the first of a series of upgrades.

I mentioned that I had only just been able to get around to investigating the problem. I spend several days after the Faire learning about wearable electronics. I'd been asked if I could help with a wearables workshop at last Saturday's Southend Raspberry Jam, and as I knew next to nothing about the Adafruit Flora or Gemma I got some hardware and started to tinker.

I run Linux on my workstation and laptop and I soon found that Linux is the poor relation when it comes to programming Gemma and Flora. I can program Gemma using my workstation, but the laptop does not see the device at all, and neither sees the Flora. Nonetheless I managed to get enough code working to feel prepared.

Alas, on the day I was very poorly and had to stay at home. My friends at Southend
seem to have forgiven me as we're now planning a Shrimping It! worksop in February. More details soon.