For our White House Maker Faire application, please scroll down to the bottom of this page
Follow us on Twitter! @TheGrid2014
The Grid is a development platform that can be used for a wide range of purposes but it is primarily used for gaming. It is made up of 64 individual tiles that interlock and communicate serial data to each other and a master computer. The Grid can facilitate games for up to 8 people, who will walk and step on the tiles to play the game. We intend to program games including a Rush Hour type game and packing puzzles along with the platform's release title Flow.
Flow is a puzzle game where players have to work together in order to connect their circles while filling up the whole board. The game play for Flow begins with a blank grid. One player is chosen for each color to be used in the game. The game grid is set to a new game. Players enter the grid and chose one of the two tiles displaying a circle that matches the player’s color. Once all players have selected their starting circle tile the game can begin. On a signal from the game operator players begin making their way toward their matching circle. As the players advance, a colored LED trail is illuminated to indicate their path. Paths cannot cross. Players must cooperate to insure that all matching circles can be connected without crossing paths. Players can retrace their path to choose alternate routes. The game is over when all pairs of circles are connected or the allotted time expires.
In order to create a platform that is interactive, we built tiles that have an Arduino and a weight sensor in each in order to allow them to communicate with each other and control LEDs within the tile. This ability will allow the tiles to react to a player stepping on it. Tiles send information to each other and to a central laptop.
With 16 tiles, we went to Maker Faire: Bay Area. Maker Faire is a premier event for American innovation that is held in multiple locations each year. People bring projects of all sorts and over 100,000 people
attend each year. The exhibition was a great experience and we even won 2 Educator's Choice ribbons. Our project was very well received and we met a lot of interested people. Even though The Grid was not fully up and running, people responded enthusiastically and the younger kids loved to play on it.
Based on the response we worked during the summer to complete all the tiles and develop the programming. We then exhibited our full platform at Maker Faire: New York. It was really well received and we had alot of fun talking to people about our experience. We also won several Editors Choice awards.