Pi-LITE up your day

@torbjornvatn torbjornvatn, Senior Platform Engineer
Everybody should have their own personal light show

The usual recap

In my two previous posts (“Welcome to Unacastle”, “Your own personal theme song”) I’ve been writing about a little side project I’ve got going here at Unacast were I try to leverage beacon technology to create personalized greetings when we enter the office.

As my previous attempts have included smart phones, webhooks and third party apps that has to be installed, I wanted to try something a little more low tech and offline.

Introducing the Pi-LITE + Ti’Be combo

When Birte, our VP of Strategic Partnerships, came back from one of her partner meetings with one of these: tibe It was just what I needed to make this work. The Ti’Be is a small beacon that you can attach to your keys (or anything that you tend to misplace). It connects to an app that among other things can locate the keys for you. Since this is a beacon that I carry with me when I go to work every day, my plan was to create a scanner that triggers an action when the Ti’Be gets in range. This is actually the opposite way of doing things compared to my last experiment.

I remembered that I had a Pi-LITE board for my RaspberryPi laying around, so I decided to make my “own personal light show”.

How it works

I wrote a small Node.js app to run on the RaspberryPi that scans for iBeacons (in this case, just my Ti’Be identified by it’s UUID) and on encounter triggers the LED matrix of the Pi-LITE. The source code can be found on GitHub, feel free to play around with it. I use node-pilite to display stuff on the Pi-LITE and node-bleacon to scan for beacons.

Demo time

sorry about the cheesy music ;)

and a closeup to see the details better

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Published on March 02, 2017