Look ma, I’m on TV!
Just in case you needed any more proof that the Maker Movement has gone mainstream, here’s a quick look at five times Atmel-based projects got some TV love this year.
An Arduino Uno (ATmega328) was the unexpected guest on “The Tonight Show” in April when 14-year-old Sahar Khashayar had the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to show off her project, the Wildfire Warning System, during Jimmy’s “GE Fallenventions” segment.
The project Conan was referring to was none other than Simone Giertz’s infamous Wake-Up Machine that has attracted millions upon millions of views over the last few weeks. Not a fan of the morning, the always innovative (and hilarious) Maker decided to build an alarm mechanism that would literally slap her in the face with a rubber arm until she got out of bed. To achieve this, she picked apart an ordinary alarm clock, wired it to an Arduino Uno (ATmega328), and controlled a 165rpm brushless DC motor through a relay. We’ll have to wait and see if Giertz gets the invite to demonstrate it live!
Not only are startups launching their products on crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo, a few have even taken their chances in the “Shark Tank.” Like for example, sisters Melissa and Lavanya Jawaharlal, who together founded STEM Center USA with hopes of inspiring the next generation of engineers. The dynamic duo ended up closing a $200,000 deal with QVC’s Lori Greiner for their robotics education concept, but not before attracting interest from Silicon Valley venture capitalist Chris Sacca.
The Daily Show with Trevor Noah
Actress Lupita Nyong’o recently appeared on “The Daily Show” to talk about the highly-anticipated release of Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens. But it was her color-flicking dress that stole the spotlight. Created by Zac Posen in collaboration Google’s Made With Code initiative, the garment was embedded with over 500 programmable LEDs underneath a top layer of fabric, which sparkled as Nyong’o was welcomed by Trevor Noah. If you recall, the partnership between the designer and Google was announced at New York’s Fashion Week back in September, where the Adafruit FLORA (ATmega32U4)-powered dress was first modeled at Posen’s runway show.
The Ellen Show
According to The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, USA Today and TIME, the littleBits Gizmos and Gadgets Kit was one of the year’s top gifts. It was so popular that it even made a cameo on “The Ellen Show” on December 18th, when Ellen and her sidekick Andy Zenor debuted their own drawing robot. Even better, the entire crowd went home with the DIY set!