July 14th, 2022—
Instructables users Monserrath Velasco and Santiago Guerra have created an LED matrix that not only features classic Pac-Man characters, but also shows the current ambient temperature by coding it as the Ghost’s color which ranges from blue (cold) to red (hot).
The matrix itself was fashioned out of several WS2812B LED strips, which contain a total of 71 individually-addressable LEDs. After soldering them together using some wire and gluing them to a cardboard backing, the team connected the strip to an Arduino Uno along with a BME280 environmental sensing module. The final component was a single momentary pushbutton switch that gives users the option to change between the Ghost and Pac-Man figures.
With the hardware now assembled, Velasco and Guerra then moved onto the next step of constructing a small enclosure. This process involved slotting strips of cardboard into a matrix configuration and covering the entire thing in white translucent paper in order to diffuse the light. Buil;ding the housing required cutting small notches into another square of cardboard, attaching four side panels to each edge, and then placing the matrix onto the front face.
After loading the code into the Arduino, it was finally time to see the illuminated sprites in all of their glory. Pressing the side button begins the Pac-Man animation, while subsequent presses cause the matrix to switch to displaying the temperature-sensitive Ghost. You can read more about this project here on Instructables.