Grocery list scanner

Here is a recent project involving a Raspberry Pi that scans barcodes, then will populate a grocery list. So you scan the item when it is almost empty or just before you throw the item away. It will look the code up, populate the list, and you can teach it new codes, if none exist.

picture of raspberry pi

picture of scanner


Grocery List:
screenshot of grocery list

Procuring an oscilloscope

One of our members recently obtained an oscilloscope and modded/hacked it.

Below is his guide:

Step 1: buy oscilloscope

Step 2: upgrade oscilloscope

Step 3: there is no step 3

Click for actual instructions

Member interviewed on NPR Marketplace

Austin was on NPR as an "occasional regular".

We're not dead, just very quiet

First off, congratulations to The Forge on their grand opening! They seem to have a very large and nice community work space for the maker community in the Triad.

Anyone who has visited this site recently may have noticed we haven't updated the site lately with any new content for quite a while. The problem with a community made up of INTJ's is we aren't often motivated to say a lot, but FabLocker is still active and running as well as ever. It's still a small, close knit group of members who are invariably coming by to work on or get advice on various personal projects or just discuss like interests. We've been humming along quietly and consistently in the past year or so and mostly keeping to ourselves but still available to those in the community that have a need for a place like ...

Announcing Friends of Fablocker.

As most of you are aware Fablocker's funding is good enough to break even on rent and internet most months. We've been discussing a number of ways to increase funding so that we can have a general fund for tools, incidentals, and save up enough to finally get our 501(c)(3). With a full federal non-profit status we would be open up to grants, sponsorship, and generally be better able to solicit donations of tools and/or money from people.

Up til now we're funded almost entirely by membership dues. Our roster of paying members is also ever-changing despite the short amount of time we've been around. We've come to recognize that many people that come out to Fablocker either don't have the time or ability to take advantage of a full membership but would still like to support us in some way ...

FabLocker members feature article on ABS smoothing

Neil Underwood (founding member and admin for and Austin Wilson (FabLocker member and international man of mystery), took time off of their busy schedule of setting things on fire to perfect an original technique for ABS smoothing and recently posted a simple guide on the RepRap blog (and still managed to find a way to set something on fire in the process). In it, they present a cheap and effective method for using acetone to give 3D printed objects a "vapor bath"  resulting in an easily obtained smooth finish similar to that of injection molded plastic.

The article has been very popular among 3D printing enthusiasts, not just RepRap users. It has even been featured on Hackaday (UPDATE: and Wired!), so be sure to check it out.

PyPTUG PyHack Workshop #03


The Python Piedmont Triad Users Group (or PyPTUG) will be holding their second PyHack Workshop at FabLocker. The workshop is Saturday, Dec 8th @ 3pm. RSVP using the event link in the box to the right of this post.

The theme will be Python ICU (not the medical kind: I see you), and of course this will involve some webcams (and we will talk about the upcoming camera module from the Raspberry Pi foundation), the Raspberry Pi, and Python.

Along with the Pi and the webcam, we will be using Python and pygame. That's the main portion of the workshop, but we'll also use a phone, a web server and a web framework on top of that. And OpenCV if there is some time left. To do what? You'll have to be there...

PyPTUG PyHack Workshop #02

The Python Piedmont Triad Users Group (or PyPTUG) will be holding their second PyHack Workshop at FabLocker. The workshop is Saturday, Dec 8th @ 3pm. RSVP using the event link in the box to the right of this post.

A monthly workshop using the wonderful Python programming language to do cool hacks, bridging the virtual and the physical. Presented by PYPTUG, in collaboration with Fablocker. We invite anyone who is interested in learning Python to attend.

This month (December), we continue to feature the Raspberry Pi.

The theme will be Get Your Motor Runnin', and of course we'll connect some motors (DC and steppers) to the Raspberry Pi, and control them from Python. We'll explore more modules that help with hardware hacking, and we'll wrap it up with some interesting demo.

You don't know how to interface a specific motor? Bring it to ...