The ISS Love (print club edition)

Posted March 6, 2014 | 11:42 am, by nadine

The Interstellar Selfie Station is a mobile app coming out for iOS and Android in 2014 by the talented Toronto game dev Christine Love. You can get the offical press deets here.


The ISS Print Club edition is a large scale interactive traveling photo booth to promote the application. The booth measures 4 feet x 5 feet x 6 feet high and has gone through a few renditions since its inception earlier this year. Christine did all the software, and I did all the hardware and rigging.

It debuted at Bit Bazzar in December 2013, and will be at GDC, PAX East, and Bit Bazzar (spring addition) in the coming weeks.

At its base, the ISSlove is a skeleton of PVC pipes and connectors. PVC was chosen because it is lighter than most other tubes or dowels, and can be easily cut to lengths without special tools or equipment (you can use a 6 dollar hacksaw).

The booth was originally designed to be 6 x 4 x 6, but this proved to be un-wielding to transport and set up.


Some custom banner items were also made for it.


A custom analog controller was made to interact with the ISS software. Which emulates an old game boy camera. The user can control contrast, dither, and palette. Earlier renditions had a bit-state switcher as well to toggle between 1 and 2 bit. It runs off an Arduino Micro and is USB powered. It outputs a combo of key presses and analog positioning info, which are then parsed in Air.


Pictures are wirelessly sent to a Zink sticker printer.

So far its been very well received. I hope it continues to have a good run in 2014.

Also big things are logistically challenging. But hey, I managed to get the whole rig in a ski bag. Eventually I’ll post some plans, so if you’d like to make your own DIY booth in a bag, you can!


X-Mas Dance Lights

Posted February 25, 2014 | 6:29 pm, by nadine

Yeah you could program a lot and buy expensive RGB strips. Which is something to learn in its own right (also awesome).

Or you could pick up some 2 dollar battery powered x-mas lights from the dollar store and slap some TIP-31 transistors on it. Or do a set up with a few capacitors and such for filters on things to make your lights dance around to different frequency levels.

Good learning experience with this one. Plus I got to brighten up someone’s x-mas party.



And since they run off 2 double AA batteries you can run three strands off a 9-volt.

blinky lights

blinky lights


make with the blinky (quick time)


Sorry tho, no sound.

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Python Experimenting

Posted February 25, 2014 | 5:31 pm, by nadine

A little while ago I made a dive into learning Python, and to do so, started a “try and code something every other day” challenge. It went pretty well and I got up to about 15 projects including:

  • An online magic 8-ball
  • Texting app that gives you activity suggestions based on what season it is
  • Forecast texter
  • Basic questions quiz
  • Movie title mixer that reads from files and emails you a movie title
  • Texts from your cat (totally revisiting this one)
  • Web scraper that tells you when Ghostly artists are going to be in town
  • Pizza Randomizer – you enter ingredients, it picks some ingredients and combines them
  • BikeTO hashtag scraper
  • Recipe maker (you enter some ingredients and it does a search and pulls 3 recipes for you)
  • Tweets from my cat

I’d like to get back into doing these again, they were a good learning process, but like all things I had to put it down to pay attention to a few other (awesome) items that popped up.

I also really enjoyed Python. After years of trying to learn programming and trying to think logically, it was Python that clicked.

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