HomePi – connecting the Pi and the LED board

After setting up the LED board (HomePi – Starting with the LED board) and proving that it is actually working, it is now time to connect the Pi with the LED board. In this blog Post, we will talk about:

  • The Raspberry Pi GPIOs in general
  • How to connect the two devices
  • Download & use a software that allows to control the GPIOs/LEDs

First things first: The GPIOs

GPIO stands for General purpose input/output. We find them on the Raspberry Pi. A very good source of information is https://www.raspberrypi.org/documentation/usage/gpio/ where we find an image explaining the PIN numbering and location on the board.

The GPIO pins are a physical interface between the Pi and the outside world. At the simplest level, you might think of them as switches that you can turn on or off (input case) or that the Pi can turn on or off (output case).

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HomePi – Starting with the LED board

As discussed in earlier blog-posts, I will show you how to build an LED controller to be ultimately controlled by the Google Home device. This article is the first in the series that actually talks about the components and we will start with the LEDs connected to our RaspberryPi.

LEDs

First of all we need some electrical engineering fundamentals (based on https://electronicsclub.info/leds.htm):

I own several red and green LEDs, so I will use them for my demo. Every LED must have a resistor connected in series to limit the current flowing through the LED, to prevent it froming burning out instantly. The Resistor value can be calculated with a simple formular

R = (VS – VL) / I 

R = resistor value in ohms (ohm).
VS = supply voltage.
VL = LED voltage (2V generally, or 4V for blue and white LEDs).
I = LED current in amps (A)

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HomePi – What we will build

As announced before with my post , I am doing my first blog series about building a sample DIY home automation for everyone to copy.

But what will we actually build?

The general idea behind this series is to show you which steps are needed to connect a google home to you raspberry Pi. It may sound like a small thing, but actually some components are involved

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