MAKE + Shigeru Kobayashi (

MAKE + Shigeru Kobayashi (

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In Japan we met with Shigeru Kobayashi ( is an open source Cypress chip-based dev board with an open IDE. Shigeru is working on a wireless XBee prototyping dev board (above). Shigeru also has a new book Physical computer with gainer it’s somewhat like our Making things talk but in Japanese and gainer specific of course. Here are some more photos, enjoy – Link.

14 thoughts on “MAKE + Shigeru Kobayashi (

  1. yzf600 says:

    Any chance those Xbee adapter boards are open source as well? I’d love to see the schematics and gerbers for those.

  2. kotobuki says:


    The XBee dev board is a part of Funnel toolkit. More information about the toolkit is available at:

    Of course, the dev board IS open sourced. I’ll release a new build including the board design soon. ;)


  3. Shadyman says:

    Gainer looks suspiciously like an Arduino to me :)

  4. kotobuki says:

    Hi Shadyman,

    Yes, Gainer is yet another physical computing toolkit similar to Arduino, and Gainer I/O module is designed to be a very simple I/O module (i.e. doesn’t work in standalone mode).

    I’m also working for a new toolkit “Funnel,” a little bit higher level software libraries for Arduino, Gainer, XBee and Funnel I/O.


  5. tofarley says:

    I just got my gainer from Sparkfun last week. I’ve been putting together my first gainer based project and I think it’s a solid design. It’s actually a nice alternative to arduino if you plan to do all of the processing on the PC side.

    Unfortunately, the cost is still a bit high. You can get a barebones arduino for cheaper and have processing power on-board, or pickup a USB interface board ( for the roughly the same price and use real USB instead serial.

    Still, I like the gainer. I hope the project grows and continues to gain more support in the english forums.

  6. Kagetsuki says:

    For those not aware of what Gainer is (it has shown up on the MAKE Blog before!) it’s basically a general purpose programmable controller module similar to Arduino etc. Gainer can be controlled and programmed from a variety of environments, most very media oriented (Flash, Processing, Max/MSP, etc.). From what I have seen it’s primarily been used in interactive art and various automated/interactive “objects”. Gainer hits a different niche than other controllers because of it’s somewhat strict media orientation and the fact that the primary programming environments for it are super visual. In short it’s a controller for people who want to work with everything as visually as possible, such as artists and designers.

  7. tofarley says:

    At the end of the day, gainer communicates over serial, using the FTDI chip. So even though Flash, Processing, and Max/MSP are the officially supported languages, any language capable of opening a serial connection can make use of the gainer (provided you want to write your own library).


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