BBC micro:bit Creating an EddyStone Beacon

There’s multiple uses for beacons, if you own your own shop you can use a beacon to give special offers, and maybe even vouchers. Small independent art galleries could use beacons to interact with guests to show them a snippet of video on each piece. By using the BBC micro:bit you can easily create your own for not so much money!

Plug in your BBC micro:bit, and head over to Espruino and download the latest micro:bit hex file, or download 1v95 below.

Download “espruino_1v95_microbit.hex” espruino_1v95_microbit.hex – Downloaded 349 times – 681 KB

Drag and drop it on your micro:bit to install it.

Next pick yourself up the mbed driver and install it. Next in Chome you need to use Espruino.

Once opened click the little plug icons in the top right and select mbed Serial Port.

You can use this Eddystone URL Generator to direct to your own URL.  Make sure you also shorten your chosen URL too! You can use Here’s mine below using -5 Tx power. Paste your code between eddyStoneData = [ and ];

eddyStoneData = [
 0x03, // Length of Service List
 0x03, // Param: Service List
 0xAA, 0xFE, // Eddystone ID
 0x13, // Length of Service Data
 0x16, // Service Data
 0xAA, 0xFE, // Eddystone ID
 0x10, // Frame type: URL
 0xFB, // Power
 0x03, // https://

NRF.setAdvertising(eddyStoneData, {interval:100});

Click the upload button (in the middle, the chip with the arrow) and you should be done! Check your phone and you should receive a notification like this:

Stuck? Have a question? Feel free to contact me either using the comments below or @imwestm on Twitter.

Arduino Game Boy Printer Emulator

Brian Khuu (mofosyne) created an Arduino powered Game Boy Printer emulator; after picking up a couple of Game Boy Camera’s and finding a bunch of images on them he attempted to dump the images, and succeeded! Being a massive fan of both the Game boy and photography this project was for me. A while back I picked up a handful of super cheap (good quality but inexpensive with the CH340G chip) Arduino’s. It was hard trying to find projects that I really really wanted to do.

Luckily while browsing Hackaday I seen this article about the project. I quickly went to the good ol’ eBay to pick up a GBC Link Cable (from hellfire_trading) and had a rummage through my Arduino box. Decided on the Micro, it seemed perfect for the job. I had a Raspberry Pi GPIO breakout board which fit the Arduino Micro quite well.

Gameboy Original/Color Link Cable Pinout
|  6  4  2 |
 \_5__3__1_/ (at cable)
Arduino Pin      Gameboy Link Pin
unused           Pin 1 : 5.0V
D4               Pin 2 : Serial OUTPUT
D3               Pin 3 : Serial INPUT
unused           Pin 4 : Serial Data
D2               Pin 5 : Serial Clock (Interrupt)
GND              Pin 6 : GND (Attach to GND Pin)

Once you’ve got it all soldered you can upload your code to your Arduino. Plug it into your Game Boy, open up your Arduino’s IDE Serial Monitor (Ctr+Shift+M) and set the baud rate to 115200. Go to your image on your GB Camera and press Print. You’ll see a bunch of code coming through the monitor. Copy all of the code and open the gameboy_printer_js_decoder.html and paste in the code and press Click to Update Gameboy Tile.

Here’s an instructional video of the process.

A post shared by West McGowan (@imwestm) on

If you’re getting any errors feel free to contact either myself or Brian. We’d both love to see your pictures too!


EUR Game Boy Camera Frames

Pictures Taken By Me

Cheap Arduino Serial Driver

If you’re struggling to get a cheap Arduino clone to upload code using your IDE; the chances are that it’s not connecting via the COM port correctly. This maybe caused because your board uses a CH340G serial to usb chip, which Windows doesn’t recognise. Download the driver below or from the manufacturers website (in Chinese). Failing that, you could have bought a board without a bootloader. I’ll write a tutorial as soon as I get a board without one pre-installed.

Download “CH340G / CH341G Serial Driver - CH341SER.exe” CH341SER.EXE – Downloaded 473 times – 238 KB

Download “CH340 Datasheet” CH341DS1.pdf – Downloaded 421 times – 144 KB