LED Disc-o Ball

At music festivals and other mass gatherings, it can be impossible to get cell phone reception, meaning if you get split up from your friends, finding them again can be quite difficult. To allow people to find him again at the recent EDC (Electric Daisy Carnival) event in Las Vegas, hacker Zach decided to made a “totem,” held up in the air with three lengths of 4’ PVC pipe.

In order to make his device visible, especially at night, he made the top of his totem out of a 3D printed structure. A number of CDs are attached to the outside, making it — as he cleverly puts it — “Disc-o” Ball. This Disc-o ball, measuring much larger than a basketball, features a programmable LED module sticking out of each of the circumferential-positioned CDs, which are driven by an Adafruit Trinket board. The results, as seen in the video here, are quite pleasing, with each module lighting up in several coordinated sequences.

If you’d like to make something similar, be sure to check out his write-up for more details on the build. Code is also available on his GitHub page, and the 3D model that he based his Disc-o ball on can be found on Thingiverse. Interestingly, Zach notes that he didn’t have any issues getting through airport security with this device, though he did decide to ditch the 3’ sections of PVC on his way back home in order to avoid extra baggage charges!

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