Manchester Raspberry Jam

For Digital Makers

Show and Tell Interviews

Interviews by Hayley Walsh, @moses_walsh

Show and Tell interviewees at Manchester Raspberry Jam

Despite the oh so quintessential Manchester weather this Saturday, it didn’t stop the ‘summer’ Manchester Raspberry Jam Show & Tell.

Saturday 11th June 2016 saw another successful Manchester Jam held at its home The Shed, Digital Innovation Manchester Metropolitan. This month’s Jam was different to the previous 36 as we invited the community, old and new, to come and show and tell their projects, creations and ideas with one another alongside the traditional hack style activity.

As the rain bounced down outside the Pi projects and activities flowed inside, from robots that follow lines to Dr Who’s TARDIS consoles. The wealth of imagination and passion was awesome, and it’s safe to say that MCR has a burgeoning Digital Maker Community.

For those of you who missed it don’t worry we’ll be holding another show and tell in the Shed in 2017. For now, check out some of the project and people who made them…

Edward & James West – TARDIS Console

Twitter: @jameswest
Edward and James West's TARDIS console

What does your project do?

Edward: When you press the buttons on the console, it makes a bunch of different noise from Doctor Who :)!

Why did you decide to make the TARDIS console?

James: The Tardis console was a Christmas present for Edward.

Edward: Let me say as I walked through the door on Christmas day I nearly fainted!

James: I had a pi and had done bits with it before, but wanted to build something that Edward would enjoy. This project meant I could tie together things that I had learnt from other projects, and challenge myself a bit.

Programming it was a challenge, but I enjoyed doing it. I got a lot of learning from the internet and followed a method of prototyping, try and repeating until I got the TARDIS right.

What was the best thing you discovered while making the TARDIS console?

That a project like this is possible. I’m not big into computing or electronics but given time and patience projects like the TARDIS console can be achieved.

What will be your next project?

The News Ticker.­ I’m big into the news, a news addict if you like! So rather than having to pull my phone out of my pocket or switch on the tv/radio I’m going to build The News Ticker, which pulls in tweets straight to a screen for me. I’m thinking of having the screen on the kitchen fridge.

Shreya Kamath – Chat Robot

Shreya working on the chat robot

What does your project do?

Chat Robot asks you questions which seek to find out whether you would make a good detective, if you answer all of the questions right you will be asked to become a spy, however, if they are wrong your services won’t be needed, and you will be told to leave the programme.

Why did you decide to make the Chat Robot?

I was on Raspberry Pi resources and saw a project like mine but more basic, so I took on the idea and decided to give it a spy theme and make it more complex with different functions and loops.

What was the best thing you discovered while making Char Robot?

When I started the project, I found some software called e-speak, which speaks back what you’ve typed, kind of similar to [Apple’s] Siri. I played about with it typing in random words which would be played back in a really robotic voice; I found this funny!

What will be your next project?

After looking at one of Edward’s projects which used Cam Jam, I would like to start making small robots using Cam Jam. I’m also always on the Raspberry Pi’s website buying new things or getting access to the code to help inspire me.

Dulcie Turner – Frankenrobot

Dulcie Turner with Frankenrobot

What does your project do?

Frankenrobot has been programmed to follow any basic line which is in front of him, he can also be controlled via a Playstation joystick.

Why did you decide to make Frakenrobot?

I wanted to do a big project with my Raspberry Pi and at the last Jam I had the Opportunity to program a robot, and this gave me the inspiration to build and program my own.

What was the best thing you discovered while making Frankenrobot?

While making Frankenrobot, I learnt how to use open CV (python library for image processing) learning this meant that I could program Frankenrobot to follow lines, discovering and learning this was really important to my project.

What will be your next project?

I would like to do something with lights or maybe using Neopixels, I think these will be a fun programming project.


So there we have it, three very different and exciting projects all brought to you by our fantastic Jammers!

We look forward to the next Show & Tell and hope to see you there. To come along to the August Jam sign up here, or check out our upcoming events page for future events.

See you in August at the Shed!