CircuitPython is Python that runs on microcontroller boards, and is designed to make learning programming and electronics super simple. This tutorial will introduce participants to CircuitPython, using the Circuit Playground Express, an all-in-one microcontroller board with sensors, lights and switches built in. They will learn the basics and build up to a final project.
CircuitPython is Python that runs on microcontrollers. It's designed for learning and it's super simple to use. If you're new to programming or electronics, CircuitPython can help you get started with both. All you need to do is plug in a microcontroller board, open any code editor, and start editing. Participants will be provided with a Circuit Playground Express microcontroller board to use. We will be using Mu as our code editor - Mu is an editor that has the serial REPL and a plotter built in, and makes getting started with CircuitPython quite easy. This beginner-friendly tutorial will cover what CircuitPython is and why you would use it. I will discuss the community built around CircuitPython. Then we will get into working with code. There will be a series of examples that utilise the various sensors, lights and switches built into the Circuit Playground Express board. We will start simply with the CircuitPython "Hello, world!" Then we will use the plotter in Mu to graph the data live from a few of the sensors. Next, we'll begin exploring the various other inputs and sensors on the board. From there, we'll build on the concepts learned, combining them as we go to eventually build a light up, capacitive touch tone piano. All code will be provided on GitHub.
Prerequisite setup instructions can be found here.
I am a freerlancer working with Adafruit Industries as an embedded software developer, technical writer and community manager. I began learning Python in June 2017 and began working on CircuitPython in July of the same year. I started full time with Adafruit in January 2018. Adafruit is an open source hardware company, working to lower the barrier to entry for programming and electronics with CircuitPython (Python for microcontrollers).
Since I began with CircuitPython, I've written the definitive Getting Started guides, and the library currently shipping on Adafruit's premier learning board, Circuit Playground Express, as well as several project guides and tutorials. I have helped build an amazing, supportive online maker space around CircuitPython and a wide variety of other open source topics. The community was a huge part of what got me started, and I have greatly enjoyed becoming such a huge part of it.
I am a board member for my local Linux user's group, Michigan!/usr/group.