I stopped by Eyebeam in NYC on Tuesday to chat with Tom Igoe about the new Arduino MEGA and few other projects that he is working on. I took a quick video and some pictures of the new board to share with our readers.

If you don’t already know, Tom is the Area head for physical computing classes at ITP. He also wrote two of my favorite books, Making Things Talk and Physical Computing (with Dan O’Sullivan). Did I mention he is also part of the Arduino team? Now that’s cool.

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Eyebeam is a really cool space. I haven’t been there before, but I have heard a lot about it. Hopefully I can check it out more in the future. It looks like a great place to be creative.


That’s 128 LEDs controlled by the Arduino MEGA. No extra parts needed! Also, check out the prototyping shield that Tom used.

Update: Tom sent me a link to more documentation about his 128 LED project. You can read a lot more about it here. Thanks Tom!


This is the original Arduino MEGA prototype. It’s beautiful, and certainly is a lot nicer looking than anything I ever prototyped!


I really like these LED’s that Tom was using for a new project. They are really bright, and just look cool.


This is the original Ardino Duemilanove prototype. It’s red, just like the MEGA prototype. They don’t fool around when it comes to prototyping. These are beautiful boards.

Check out Tom Igoe’s website for a lot more information, including his Monkey Tracking Adventures.

  • Spikenzie

    You’re right, Now that’s cool. ;)

    • Marc de Vinck

      Yeah, it was a great opportunity to sit down with Tom and talk about the Arduino, his work, and a bunch of other stuff. I hope to do it again some day!

  • Gareth Branwyn

    BTW: Tom Igoe will be our guest on Make: Talk this Friday at 12 noon PDT, 3PM EDT. We’ll have the show widget right in a posting here on Make: Online, so stop by and listen in (and CALL!). We’re *trying* to give away free stuff, but people are too chicken to call. This ain’t Larry King, people. It’s serious lo-fi radio, very informal. So call in and say hi or ask Tom Arduino questions.

  • Mike Mc

    Is it just me or can you not really hear what Tom is saying? The audio is terrible.

    • http://www.makezine.com Marc de Vinck

      Yes, the audio is not that great. It was silent in there until I pressed the record button.This is going to be my excuse to talk with him again in the future…..with a mic, and in a quieter space.

      The funny part is the people speaking in the background were planning a trip to ITP. Not realizing they were sitting next to Tom. Funny.

  • [email protected]

    Yes he is brilliant, but where is the code. You get tired of people showing off how smart they are but refuse to share.

    Show me the beef (I mean code :)

    • http://www.makezine.com Marc de Vinck

      Scroll down and read the post, there is a link!

      Tom shares more about his work than most people. His website is inspiration for anyone who wants to learn about physical computing. He posted tons of code and info!

      Here is the link from my post:


      • [email protected]

        My sincere apologies, and thank you for the link. I did look on his site but apparently not enough to dig up the code. I will give it a much more in-depth search.

        Thanks again.

        • http://www.makezine.com Marc de Vinck

          No apologies necessary.

          Here is the story behind the code:

          I never asked for it (although I should) and just before posting I received an email from Tom. When I left Eyebeam he had written up the code and a full post on his site. Thats just another reason Tom Igoe is awesome!

          OK, now this is just too funny……

          My email just “dinged” (right now!)….it’s Tom. He has another great example code for the Mega. I’ll post it ASAP.

  • Mike Mc

    Does anyone know the make and model of the LED display module that Tom is using? (the one were he is scrolling the message across)

  • Mike Mc

    Thanks for that. I found them cheaper at Newark :-


    They are expensive, but compared to the cost of sourcing 5×7 Dot Matrix units, driver IC’s, etc. these are good value as everything is in one unit. Plus, not need to program fonts, etc. They look really nice.

    • http://www.makezine.com Marc de Vinck

      I didn’t look at the data sheet. They do look really cool. OK, sold!

      Thanks for the link!

  • Puneet


    I’ll appreciate if someone could send me the link to the datasheets of the Arduino MEGA and the Arduino 2009.