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Hack the Storybook


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Hack the Storybook


What if you could illuminate your thinking? Using simple materials like copper tape, surface mount LEDs and batteries, you can light up your notebook to literally highlight your personal light bulb moments. Explore basic scientific concepts like conductivity, current flow, simple circuit design, and mechanical switches while making your notebook come alive with beautiful electronics.

Educators! Want to learn more about why and how you can bring paper circuitry into your classroom? Download our mini-guide and contact us about bringing Inside/Out to your school, museum, or after-school program.



Introductory Activity: Hack the Storybook

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Materials

These flat, simple materials make it easy to create circuits anywhere you want them. 

 

Project Directions

  1. Print out the storybook template.

  2. Assemble the template into a mini-book. This video from YouTube user Simple and Easy Projects demonstrates.

  3. Choose a story. Use the storyboard page to plan your story in four panels.

  4. In panels 2-4, decide what visual elements should light up in order to enhance the story and circle them.

  5. Using your storyboard as a reference for LED placement, construct circuits on each page. Then draw the scene around the copper tape and LEDs.

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Demonstrations and Tutorials

SIMPLE CIRCUIT DEMO  

Interested in paper circuitry but not sure how to begin? Start here! In this video demo, we walk you through basic materials and how to make an LED light up. (If you want to illuminate more than one LED, stay tuned for our tutorial on parallel circuits--coming soon!)

TAPE FOLDING DEMO  

To maintain electrical continuity, you have to be careful about how you fold the copper tape if what you're using doesn't have conductive adhesive. We show you how!

PARALLEL CIRCUIT DEMO

What if you want to use more than one light in your paper circuitry project? You need to design a parallel circuit. This demo shows you how to plan and create a parallel circuit in your notebook using type 1206 surface mount LEDs.


Additional Resources and Links

We're working to create our own step-by-step tutorials and a page of tips and tricks. Until then, take a look at some of these resources to spark your imagination and get you started.


Collaborator: Jie Qi, MIT Media Lab

technolojie.com

Jie is a doctoral candidate at the MIT Media Lab in the Responsive Environments research group. With a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Columbia University, Jie's work blurs the boundaries of science, engineering, and art by exploring the synergistic relationship between technical and artistic competencies. Whether making self-folding origamipaintings that change with viewer interaction, or interactive light-up pop-up books, Jie's playful investigations inspire not only with their beauty but with their implicit invitation for audience to become participant. 

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ATTiny85 Programming


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ATTiny85 Programming


Program your pages. Add more control and features to your notebook by adding microcontrollers like the ATTiny85 to your paper circuitry. Make your LEDs blink in different patterns. Have them react to a light sensor. All this and more is possible with a chip, a computer, a few components, and the Arduino IDE. 

Educators! Want to learn more about why and how you can bring paper circuitry into your classroom? Download our mini-guide and contact us about bringing Inside/Out to your school, museum, or after-school program.



Introductory Activity: Embed a Secret Message Using Morse Code

Hide a message in plain sight by programming a microcontroller to tell an LED to blink a message in Morse code. Hand your friend the code key and tell them to keep it secret and keep it safe!

Our example here has a radio blinking SOS.

 

Materials

  • ATTiny85 microcontroller (Sources: Jameco, SparkFun)

  • Tiny AVR Programmer (SparkFun)

  • 3V coin battery (like this)

  • Copper tape with conductive adhesive backing (like this)

  • Surface mounted (SMD) LEDs - type 1206 (like these) or LED circuit stickers (here)

  • Transparent tape

  • Scissors

  • Pliers

  • Computer with the Arduino IDE installed (download here). The Arduino IDE = The Arduino Integrated Development Environment. This is the application that lets you write code and send it to the microcontroller.

  • Blinking Morse Code Alphabet for Arduino: .RTF file (download here)

 

Directions

  1. Plan your coded message. Decide what you want to illuminate with a blinking light.

  2. Get your computer ready to code. Download and install the Arduino IDE and the ATTiny85 library. SparkFun has a step-by-step guide that walks you through the entire process. Complete all the steps on the Driver Installation page and up to Step 3 of Programming in Arduino.

  3. Write your code. Open Arduino on your computer and copy the code in Step 5 of SparkFun’s tutorial into an Arduino Sketch. Use the Blinking Morse Code Alphabet for Arduino to replace the code in the loop section of the sketch to spell out your secret message.

  4. Insert the ATTiny85 into the Tiny AVR programmer. When inserting the microcontroller, make sure that the dot on the chip is on the same end as the notch illustrated on the USB stick (see Image 1).

  5. Plug in the Tiny AVR Programmer into your computer’s USB port.

  6. Click the Upload button in the Arduino IDE to load your code onto the microcontroller using the Tiny AVR Programmer. The LED built into the Tiny AVR Programmer should blink according to the pattern you programmed. Watch the LED and make any necessary adjustments to timing or pattern. Remember to upload the sketch to the microcontroller after each round of changes.

  7. Use the pliers to gently bend the legs on the microcontroller so they lie flatter but still make contact with a flat surface.

  8. Make your circuit, place your LED and the microcontroller. Secure firmly with tape making sure that the three pins of the microcontroller are making strong contact with the conductive tape. See Image 2 for an example of how to wire your circuit.

  9. Power the circuit. 

Image 1

Image 1

Image 2

Image 2

 

Demonstrations & Tutorials

More coming soon!

This demonstration shows how to add standard surface mount (SMD) LEDs to paper circuits, soldering techniques for copper tape on paper, and incorporating microcontrollers. (Tutorial for programming microcontrollers using the Arduino IDE coming soon.)


Additional Resources and Links

  • SparkFun: Everything you need to get programming with their Tiny AVR Programmer is included in their hookup guide, from set up to programming.

  • High-Low Tech at the MIT Media Lab: Programming the ATTiny in Arduino. This page shows you how to bypass the Tiny AVR Programmer and use a breadboard, Arudino, and a handful of other components.

  • Instructables: User randofo created a highly illustrated step-by-step of the breadboard + Arduino method.


Collaborator: Natalie Freed

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www.nataliefreed.com

Natalie holds a B.S. and M.S. in Computer Science from Arizona State University and an M.S. in Media Arts and Sciences from the MIT Media Lab. She currently teaches computer science and robotics at Lick-Wilmerding High School in San Francisco and collaborates with the Exploratorium. Natalie likes to work in spiral-fashion: continually circling back to favorite ideas while expanding a bit each time. Some recurring obsessions include: new ways to connect at a distance, dollhouses and furniture both tiny and large, imaginative play, storytelling tools for shy voices, tangible interfaces with a love for beautiful materials, and most recently, parametric design.

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Notebook Hacking Materials


Find out what materials we're using and where we're getting them from.

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Notebook Hacking Materials


Find out what materials we're using and where we're getting them from.

Part of what makes hacking a 21st century notebook so much fun is the variety of materials you can use to illuminate your thinking and engineer your ideas. Here are some of the materials we've been using and where we get them from.

A note on sources: These are listed in no particular order, although the first source listed is where we generally get that item. Make sure to check out a product's dimensions/length/quantity when comparing prices!

You can also order a complete kit from our partners at CV2.

See something missing? Please contact us or post to our G+ community!

 

Power Supplies & Housing

Conductive Materials for Traces and Jumpers

Things to Activate with Power

Tools

  • Soldering station & iron - Weller is a well-respected manufacturer
  • Tweezers - Useful for soldering small components like SMD LEDs
  • Tiny AVR Programmer (SparkFun) - For programming ATtiny microprocessors
  • Transparent tape
  • Scissors
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Demos


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Demos


Need to watch someone walk you through a project? Watch our animated GIFs for a quick overview or scroll down for more in-depth video demos to see how we do it. Don't see what you need here? We do requests! Contact us here or join our G+ community.

 

 

Animated GIFs

Simple Circuit

Parallel Circuit

Adding a Switch


Video Demonstrations

Interested in paper circuitry but not sure how to begin? Start here! In this video demo, we walk you through basic materials and how to make an LED light up. (If you want to illuminate more than one LED, stay tuned for our tutorial on parallel circuits--coming soon!)
To maintain electrical continuity, you have to be careful about how you fold the copper tape if what you're using doesn't have conductive adhesive.

What if you want to use more than one light in your paper circuitry project? You need to design a parallel circuit. This demo shows you how to plan and create a parallel circuit in your notebook using type 1206 surface mount LEDs.

This demonstration shows how to add standard surface mount (SMD) LEDs to paper circuits, soldering techniques for copper tape on paper, and incorporating microcontrollers. (Tutorial for programming microcontrollers using the Arduino IDE coming soon.)
2013.11.21_NWP_1920x108003.jpg

Educator Resources


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Educator Resources


Mini-Educator Guides

Our Hack Your Notebook series of mini-educator guides provide a pocket-sized overview of how notebook hacking fits into larger discussions of education policy, standards-aligned class projects as well as introductory activities. Created for educators in professional development settings, these booklets offer unique hands-on explorations in creative learning.

Developed with support from Educator Innovator, powered by the National Writing Project.

Future installments:

  • Amplify Your Ideas: Working with Sound
  • Engineering Your Materials: Working with Pop-Up
  • Remix Your Projects: Working with Transmedia
 
Click to download PDFs.

Click to download PDFs.


Activity Templates and Worksheets

Basic Paper Circuitry

Activity Template - One Sheet Storybook (click image to download, instructions here) 

Activity Template - One Sheet Storybook (click image to downloadinstructions here

Activity Template - Simple Circuit Card (click image to download)

Activity Template - Simple Circuit Card (click image to download)


Hack Your Notebook Day Activity Pages

Simple Circuit

Click to download.

Click to download.

Parallel Circuit

Click to download.

Click to download.

Simple Switches

Click to download.

Click to download.

Basic Notebook Hack

Click to download.

Click to download.


Working with Microcontrollers

These two resources were developed to support the Morse Code Secret Message activity found here.

Arduino Morse Code .RTF file

Click to download file.

Click to download file.

The Rhythm of the Light Worksheet

Click to download.

Click to download.


Additional Resources

Chibitronics

The creators of circuit stickers have developed a number of resources to support users, including video tutorials, printables, project galleries and a discussion forum.

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test


Intro

Resources

Materials

Demos 

Educator Resources

Programs

Blog