Stranger Lights

If I searched hard enough I’m sure I could find some duplication of many/most of my projects (especially involving pop culture), but I strive to deliver primarily original content here. Still- when I set out to build some stranger things lights, it took me about 8 seconds to think… I bet somebody has done this and has the code posted already (since I’m perennially awful at coding). Sure enough- I took the easy route and used code posted here (thanks Jruben4!). I was also eager to find an excuse to utilize Neopixels (note the attention to detail in color sequence to match the show!). I didn’t manage to come up with a good reason to change the initial colors once everything was setup- so I’m kinda missing out on a good bit of tech potential, but pretty happy with the end result.

I also found the opportunity to have an interactive, relevant, neighborhood display that stays appropriate halloween thru Xmas to be too tempting to avoid.

So basically, to do this, simply buy a string of Xmas lights. I bought a string of 25– and amazingly enough they came with a spare “bulb” which is really just a covering to make your little light look like a c7 bulb. So, now I had a perfect 26 bulbs to match our 26 letter alphabet. Nice. Yank out all the lights, and replace with neopixels and an extra wire for sequencing and you’re just about done. Plug them into your arduino of choice and load this code. Now it will flash whatever message you want directly from the upside down world! Yay! We got to use another stranger things reference on our Falcor costume (the audio track for the video). I tried to go the extra mile and use a piece of 5’x10′ corrugated plastic board painted with 80’s wallpaper color/pattern to finish off the look and wall off our giant front window. Letters in a creepy scrawled font cut on the Cricut maker and that’s a wrap!