Like many people at this time of year, Leo Currie has a decorated tree in his living room. But this one is a bit different, as anyone can open an online landing page and take control of the lights snaking through the branches.
The project – currently listed on the Hackaday IO community – started with a few strings of LED tree lights daisy chained together and wrapped around the branches of a tree in front of Currie's living room window. Facing the tree is a Raspberry Pi camera which live feeds the image of the tree to the online control portal.
Currie programmed an ESP8266 Wi-Fi microchip to accept UDP packets of RGB values for each LED on the string over Wi-Fi. The LEDs are mapped using a Python script, which is achieved by the software illuminating each "pixel" in turn and instructing the camera to take a picture, with the resulting coordinates stored in a pixel map.
To the top of the online portal is a drop-down menu screen that allows visitors to upload an animation, select a preset or choose a color and use a mouse cursor to paint custom designs on the tree itself.
You can try it yourself via the source link or watch the demo video below.
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