Tag Archives: Learning is for Everyone

TDT in Red Bull Creation 2013

One of our more entertaining projects this spring has been the 2013 Red Bull Creation challenge, in which some of our team members and mentors took part.  A collaborative project of our sponsor, Learning is for Everyone, the Red Bull Creation build provides yet another avenue of creative learning for people of all ages. This year’s challenge is called “Let There Be Light!” and the competition package included addressable LED strips and a custom circuit board.   RBC teams had about six weeks to “create something awesome with light”, an open-ended enough challenge that resulted in a wide variety of entries.

Our build, which we called the “Spectrapiano” gave us an opportunity to play with different technology.  Working with Paul Markun, our Super Mentor from Tampa Technik, we helped fabricate  an acrylic “bubble wall” around which we fastened LED lights that were activated by the piano keys being played.  Our new friend and mentor, Chuck Stephens, an accomplished and artistic jack of all trades, crafted the case for the whole thing.

The whole light show was controlled by an Arduino and a Raspberry Pi, two devices we hope to continue learning more about.    We also learned some cringe inducing physics of water pressure in the thin tank, coupled as it was with a lot of electronics, including a Yamaha stage piano!  TDT alumni and programming mentor, Chris Willingham, did most of the programming work, with friend and fellow FIRST alumni JR Weis.  They archived the and some CAD concepts in a  repository on GitHub , for anyone who wants to tinker around with his or her own Spectrapiano idea.

Extra points were awarded for publicly displaying a build, so we took our “Spectrapiano” to the Land O’Lakes Branch Library’s popular Teen Night, where over 200 people were in attendance.  We took Sheldon along, too, so people could play with him.

Between a light up bubble piano, a robot and an all purpose game night, the evening was a huge success!  You can see our Red Bull Creation build in action in the video.

Enjoy! And Stay Creative!







Robot Wrangling at the Tampa Bay Mini Maker Faire!

We’re excited about this weekend’s outreach event, the 2nd annual Tampa Bay Mini Maker Faire, organized by our parent sponsor, Learning is for Everyone (LI4E) and being held at the Florida Concourse, on March 23, from 10am-6pm.   There’s an awesome slate of “Makers” participating, including a tiny satellite maker, artists, musicians, jewelry makers, inventors, ham radio operators, game makers and, of course, ROBOTS!

We’ll be at the FIRST exhibit area, along with several other area FLL, FTC & FRC teams, and the USF Robotics Interest Group will be there, as well as the North Tampa Robotics Club.

We love that Sheldon the Robot is literally a poster child for the Mini Maker Faire and we’re  looking forward to a fun day with other folks who like to make stuff!  Advanced, discounted ticket sales will continue through Friday . Visit www.TampaBayMakerFaire.comfor more info.

TDT at the inaugural 2012 Tampa Bay Mini Maker Faire

Hope to see you there!




Thank You Friends of Team Duct Tape!

As we hit the road today, we want to express our gratitude to these fine organizations and individuals for their support of Team Duct Tape this season:  



The Niederlander Family, in Memory of Paul Niederlander

The Luster Family


 You journey with us in all we do!