Two new toys and one older one.

While cleaning up a bit, I decided to show off some new toys.

From left to right, there is a Waveshare 2.13" e-ink hat, a GrovePi+, and a Velleman 3.5" resistive touch screen.

One of the things I have wanted to do with Charlie is to add some kind of display and/or input device so that Charlie could report status and/or accept input while running headless.

The Vellemann resistive touch screen was one of my first attempts to do this.   Unfortunately, the results were less than spectacular.

Since then, I have recently bought a Waveshare e-ink panel that I want to try.

The GrovePi+ is simple curiosity.

I have been wondering about the Grove pi, since we seem to get a bunch of questions about it periodically.

So!  I bought one.  I’m not sure what I am going to do with it yet, but it will be interesting!

We’ll see.


Monkmakes speaker fit the bill?

  • The house is quite small, (the equivalent of a two bedroom apartment), and is already too noisy.  And maybe I don’t want a noisy, chatty robot?

  • Also, (with a bit of luck), I can use the display device as an input device.

  • Speach is slow.  I can read faster than I can hear.   Likewise I can display more data, (even on a small screen), than I can reasonably expect Charlie to speak.

  • Lastly, (though it doesn’t allow input), the e-ink display’s display images will survive a power failure or hard crash allowing me to see what happened just before Charlie died.

  • Also e-ink doesn’t use much battery power, (μ-amps), unless actually refreshing the screen.

I can get these without having to bribe half the Kremlin.  Monkmakes, on the other hand, is relatively difficult to find.


Saw an article today on “battery-less circuit-python driving an e-ink display” where even the Python script sleeps till enough power is recovered from solar or device motion.

Pretty cool.


Best answer:

It’s cute and I want to play with it!


The Wikipedia article on the “joule thief” is an interesting take on this.

Solar lawn stakes use a special four-pin IC (that looks like a regular transistor) to incorporate much of the circuit into one device.



I’d love to see it.


Cool beanies!

Next, a solar powered GoPiGo?

Though he might need a trailer for all the solar-cells. . . .

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