Over the past 15 years  I have had maybe a total of 4 Halloween costumes. Halloween is no doubt my favorite holiday and it was time for something new.

Halloween 2010: an excuse to build something electronic.

Lately I’ve really wanted an excuse to play around with the Arduino boards. I really love that whole movement. I’m pretty hardcore as far as electronic design goes, so I was a little apprehensive about sinking some cash into a development board aimed at ‘beginners and artists’. However, I found some “Shiftbrite” units (I2C shift register controlled, tricolor LEDs) from Adafruit.com and since these would make a great costume,  and since there was some arduino sample code that would save me hours of register programming, I picked up an Arduino Uno and 6 shift Brites.

After soldering the headers onto the shiftbrites, I connected it up to the UNO board. I did however melt one of the LEDs in the process. Damn unregulated soldering Iron…:( After downloading the Arduino IDE, I loaded the sample code,  compiled, and loaded into the Arduino. Within an hour [while listening to podcasts] I was up and running.

They weren’t kidding about the Brite part…

Next, I got a huge box from work, cut it down and added some decorative paper (actually Kerra did all that) and mounted all the junk in the box.

I also added a switch for mode changing and a bunch more little green LEDs to take up the rest of the idle ports on the Arduino.

The final result:

Dance Master 5000