Spin #2: Electric Boogaloo...

A project log for The ides of DEFCON: An Unofficial Electronic Badge

A wearable hardware badge, featuring blinky lights, sound, a sub-1Ghz radio, games, and more. Based on the Freescale KW01.

John AdamsJohn Adams 01/30/2017 at 07:450 Comments

Most of my weekend was spent laying out version two of the badge and working out issues with the USB battery charging circuit. The battery charger works now, and we have a new layout which will probably be much closer to the final version. I like it a lot, it feels nice in your hands, and the shape is modeled on a roman bath, which is entirely appropriate.

Here it is, minus the screen:

We've added some buttons for development work (they're only about 8 cents on Macrofab's house part list) and greatly reduced the size of the badge. It looks and feels a bit more like a PS Vita, but who's counting. I consolidated the LEDs as well; On the right side of the screen is a full system debug window, showing status of the charger, UART, Radio, and SD card.

We also won't be populating those test pins. They're going to be empty for the people in the hardware hacking village to experiment with the device.

We also discovered that one of the Macrofab boards was NG. An important SPI line was dead on an inner layer of the board, rendering it useless. Oh well. We learned what we needed to learn from our boards and the screen worked well on the other prototype.

At this point, our goal is to have a new prototype in hand with all of our issues repaired by March 1st. From there, we can make the go-no-go decision for the main production run.

Bill is still working on a better audio system for this board, possibly with a real speaker instead of the three-channel piezo hack we've got right now. More when we get that working!