Brendan Dawes

Analogue + Digital


Using a Nanode to create a connected machine that prints feelings

A little sneak preview of a small project I'm working on that uses an Internet connected thermal printer and a Nanode to create a "Happiness Machine".

Of course the printer doesn't care what's being printed - it could just as easily be used to print if your train is on time, your schedule for the day or tweets that mention you. All the intelligence actually sits on a server, so it's easy to alter what text gets sent back to the printer.

Matt Webb from Berg wrote about The Social Letterbox  back in 2006 and people have been using old micro-printers and hooking them up with an Arduino for a while now. I've had a Citizen printer sitting on a shelf for ages, but I could never get it to work correctly. Nanode and this thermal printer make it just a little bit easier, not to mention more compact.

You can get these thermal printers from Cool Components or Sparkfun.