The Tally Light Project

The BBC micro:bit, MakeCode and the MakerBit

DIY electronics without the pain

Explore the possibilities of building an open-source hardware ARM-based embedded system that can be programmed to solve unique production and media control for special projects.

This Office Hours 2.0 DIY Lab will let the Office Hours community explore the BBC micro:bit and its programing language MakeCode. Using the Office Hours Lab model developed during the Raspberry Pi/Playoutbee project.

Roger Wagner, the creator of the MakerBit, will facilitate a building session of a “tally light” that is a remotely-operated light and signal system for use in video recording sessions, but which is also a starting point for your own digital/physical electronics ideas.

The construction of the Tally Light project will provide a tangible product while learning about micro-controllers (in particular, the BBC micro:bit) and the MakeCode block programming editor.

The MakerBit Tally Light is a proof-of-concept device that allows bi-directional communication between 2 or more devices with the setting of times for “standby” and “on-air”.

When started, standby counts down with a digital text display of the time, and an LED ring that shows a circular display of the time remaining. When on-air is started, there is a 5-4-3-2-1-0 number display on an 8×8 LED matrix.

Kit Price & Build Time:

  1. The price of the kit will be $95.00 plus shipping
  2. Project assembly: 2 hours
  3. Pre-written program can be downloaded and run: 15-20 minutes (exploring program operation)
  4. Learn-to-code: 2-10+ hours depending on interest and motivation

Note: No soldering or breadboard will be required for this project.

Project Overview
Assembling the Tally Light
Coding the Tally Light
What’s in the Tally Light kit

Buy The Kit