Building a Classic Star Trek Control Panel

Arduino Raspberry Pi Technology
Building a Classic Star Trek Control Panel

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Scott, Blair, and Bob of the USS Nokomis Star Trek fan club, who also frequent Minneapolis’ Hack Factory, built this control panel for a local science fiction convention. It’s powered by an Arduino, which controls the lights and buttons, and a RasPi, which manages the sound.

The Arduino also scans the bank of 8 switches on the control panel. When a switch is flipped, the Arduino passes its pin number up the serial connection to a Raspberry Pi. A simple Python program on the Pi runs a background sound loop, plus plays sounds as the switches are flipped. (The code was freely adapted from an article on the Make: blog.) A pair of amplified computer speakers was cannibalized and installed inside the panel. Unfortunately the amp wasn’t powerful enough to overcome the con’s background roar — yet another thing to fix for next year.

Looks great, guys!

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My interests include writing, electronics, RPGs, scifi, hackers & hackerspaces, 3D printing, building sets & toys. @johnbaichtal nerdage.net

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