Usually it’s considered impolite to purposely scare people, but one night of the year it’s actually encouraged. You could buy a skeleton or other scary device and simply place it on your porch, but for something truly unique, here are seven options that you can build yourself.
LED Pumpkin Eyes
Putting a candle inside of a pumpkin is interesting enough, but for a unique take on this idea here’s one that uses LEDs instead. Expressive LED matrix eyes are controlled by an ATmega328 chip, and an RGB LED is embedded inside the pumpkin so that it can light the mouth different colors.
Raspberry Pi House Lighting Control
This Halloween you could light up a pumpkin and call it a night, but Noel Portugal instead decided to turn his house into a light and music display using a Raspberry Pi. The display looks interesting on video, but was even more entertaining in person!
Acrylic LED Lighting
Here’s an interesting technique that could be adapted for other scary purposes as well. An etched piece of acrylic will glow mostly where you’ve scratched it. This means that any sort of drawing can be reproduced, in this case a glowing ghost.
The Pumpkin Pi
If we are going to talk about adding electronics to Halloween decorations, “Pumpkin Pi” certainly seems like an appropriate pun for the occasion. Puns aside, this pumpkin lights up via LEDs controlled by a remotely mounted Raspberry Pi, and uses a passive infrared (PIR) sensor to respond to its environment.
Ping Pong Pumpkin LED Holders
If you want a simple way to dress up your LEDs, this instructables article goes over how to put them in Ping Pong balls to diffuse the light. As also shown there, you can color the outside of the orange type in a pumpkin shape for a “spooky” effect.
If the light display shown earlier wasn’t enough of an accomplishment, in 2009 Noel Portugal decided to hook up a fake spider to drop down on unsuspecting guests. He used a VHS tape as a clever way to physically winch the spider up and down.
[via Planet Arduino]
Marty the Pumpkin Automaton