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Lightning Bug / Firefly Circuit

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llamachant

New Member
Hello,

I'm very new to the electronics world but I want to try a small project. I'm looking to create a randomly blinking soft led firefly.

I can tell you that I want it to be battery powered and as small as possible. Other than that - I'm really not sure where to start. I look forward to the advice of the experts.

Thanks!
 

Sceadwian

Banned
For compactness a small 8 pin micro controller would probably fit your needs, and you can set the fading and randomness of the lightning to taste. Many micro controllers can directly power a single LED, thought you do need to know a bit about programming and purchase a programmer to set the chips up.
 

KMoffett

Well-Known Member
Last edited:

Mikebits

Well-Known Member
New to electronics and you expect the person to get a download board, install the right software, and learn bit banging code. Jeez, surely there is a easier way...
 

Sceadwian

Banned
For his practical purpose Mike, no not really. For persons generally computer literate it would be easier to adapt or learn some basic LED blinker/fader code than to from a limited electronics background do a whole circuit from scratch.
 

llamachant

New Member
Good news.... I'm actually a programmer. I just don't know how to do the electronics side of things.

I looked at the forum mentioned and saw a lot of components but I'm not sure which items I would need to buy. Can someone provide me with a diagram of what parts I would need and how to put it together? I just need something to start from.

Thanks!
 

Sceadwian

Banned
You might wanna do a little research first, there are a large number of choices out there. Is this a one time only project or are you intending on getting into electronics a bit more? What people recommend as far as devices/programmers go is really going to depend on your intentions for the long run. PicAXE would do fine for a one time project for the cost, but if you want to continue developing this stuff and learning you're going to want a real programmer, the cost would be a bit more still relatively inexpensive either way though.

Also for a basic electronics primer I'd recommend going to allaboutcircuits.com and reading up they have a very nice chapterized basic electronics page, although I prefer the forums here.
 

llamachant

New Member
I will read the chapters of the site you mentioned. At this point this is a one time project to see if electronics is my thing or not. If this goes well then I will look at investing more but for now I just want to try a small project.
 

Sceadwian

Banned
For the price one of the PICAXE starter kits will suit your needs. The site Kmoffet linked has an online store.
 
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