Soldering Fun at the Ben Franklin Center in Norwalk

It’s always a pleasure to volunteer for the Aspire program, run by Norwalk-based Family and Children’s Agency. They’ve got a new home at the Ben Franklin Center – and the kids are loving it!

In the latest class offered by Rippowam Labs, the kids are learning how to solder an RGB LED strip to an Arduino Nano.  Special thanks to Emanuel and Josh for being great helpers in Friday’s class!!!


IoT Christmas (Box Project Club December)

In the latest installment of the Box Project Club, we’ll harness the power of the ESP8266 computer chip to create a strip of Christmas lights for your tree that you can control with your cellphone – from anywhere in the world!

If this is your first time with IoT, don’t worry one bit! The chip we’ll be working with is 100% Arduino compatible! But this WiFi-connected microcontroller can be controlled anytime/ whywhere, because its part of a WiFi network. So you could turn your Christmas Tree Lights on from your smartphone  – or from any internet browser on the planet! This way, if you have relatives that have to be away for the holidays, they can take part in the fun at home too!

This project will require students to solder, write code (Arduino and HTML) and get creative with colors.  No experience is necessary, though!!!

The event will take place on Saturday, December 16th at 9:30 am in our Labs at 425 Farifield Avenue. Signups are due by midnight December 8, to give us time to order the parts!

All proceeds go to supporting Rippowam Labs.

Friday Night Slime

Kids everywhere have been caught up in the slime-making craze that’s sweeping the nation. My 11 year-old daughter has  been making buckets of slime lately – and she wants to share what she’s learned!

On Friday, November 10th at 6 pm, come by our space and we’ll have everything you need to make your own batch of slime. So come on down and have a slimy good time!

*A $10 donation would be appreciated (to help us keep the lights on).

Our Neighbor has the BEST Ice Cream!!!

Our new home address at 425 Fairfield Avenue has so many interesting businesses! What’s probably my favorite is Longford’s Ice Cream.

I don’t know what it is – but they make the best I’ve ever tasted!

Don’t get me wrong. This isn’t something you eat if you’re on a diet. But these guys are 10 times better than Ben and Jerry’s – or any other well-known brand.

Most of their clients are commercial accounts – or restaurants in the area. But they do offer their products to the general public. Just visit their office at 425 Fairfield Avenue between 1 and 4 pm weekdays and you can buy a quart of their ice cream for just $6.

Sometimes, they even have sales, where you can buy 2 Quarts or $6!!! That’s what happened last weekend. I got the following:

  • Oreo Bomb
  • Mud Pie
  • Pumpkin Pie
  • Coconut chocolate chip (tastes like an almond joy)

They even gave me a free coffee mug!!!!

For the holiday season, they are also producing ice cream cakes and pies!!

You just have to try this stuff to understand how good it is!!!

Box Project Club – Halloween

In the very first meeting of the Box Project Club, we’ll build something that will scare the daylights out of trick-or-treaters, when they arrive on your porch this Halloween.

They’ll come to your house looking for candy, like they do every year – but they’ll get a little more than a “trick” from your pumpkin. It will work something like this, except we’ll be providing our own special “twist.”

You’ll learn how to program and wire an Arduino to accept input from a distance sensor and control a servo and a sound card.

This is one of those once-in-a-lifetime opportunities to make the neighborhood bully run off into the night – scared out of his mind. Even better, you can video the whole thing and post it to Youtube!

Students should  bring their own carved (and hollowed-out) pumpkin – but we’ll provide the rest.

**All proceeds will go towards supporting our mission – to bring unique STEM educational opportunities to the Stamford area. Last day to sign up is October 15th (so we can order the materials).

Reserve your space by visiting this page.

Ferguson Library MakeFest

We had a great time meeting a whole bunch of people at the Ferguson Library MakeFest on Saturday (16th)! More than ever, the people of Stamford are electrified about what they can accomplish with their own two hands – and a little bit of brain power.

A lot of people also expressed interest in our upcoming Box Project series. My advice to you is reserve your space as soon as possible, because spaces are going to go quick.

Ron and Mayoral Candidate Talk Biking Issues

Rippowam Labs’ very own Ron Morse led Stamford Mayoral Candidate Barry Michelson on a bike ride through the city streets last week. Ron is a huge advocate for bikers and the ride left Michelson with no choice but to experience what its like to get around Stamford on two wheels.

The event received national attention via everyone’s favorite biking blog

Will Michelson’s Democratic opponent, David Martin, take a ride with Ron as well?

Perfect shorts:  A machine sewing project for guys and gals.

The perfect pants also make the perfect shorts.  Ron Morse will help you convert your pair of well-loved (but possibly frayed) pants into the perfect shorts that are just the length you want.  This is a simple project, so we can also show you around a sewing machine if needed.   We have machines and thread to use, or you can bring your own.  You may also want to bring an existing pair of shorts for length reference.
The class will take place Sunday August 27th at 1 pm at our space – 425 Fairfield Avenue in Stamford.

Robot Dance Party

The students in this week’s robot class had a blast  coding their bots for a dance competition this morning.

These guys are really getting the hang of using code to control DC motors. Very Proud!!!

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