Engineer/hero/entrepreneur Limor "ladyada" Fried was kicked off Facebook and no one will tell her why

Limor "ladyada" Fried (previously) is one of the great hardware hackers of her generation and is the co-founder of the pioneering open source hardware company Adafruit; she's also not allowed on Facebook anymore. Read the rest

Ladyada and Adafruit featured in the latest issue of Make:

I had the pleasure of writing the cover feature, on Limor Fried (aka "Ladyada") and her company, Adafruit, for the latest issue of Make: (Volume 57). Since a lot had already been made about the company's impressive and popular open source product line and Limor as a successful female entrepreneur, I decided to focus on what I think is another rather unique aspect of the company: the fact that the open source ethos that informs the design of their hardware also informs their corporate culture.

There's a openness, a spirit of sharing, educating, and supporting, that is shot through the fabric of Adafruit Industries.

They open-source many of the details of how the company is run and post the details of what they're learning (as a company) on their Adafruit Learning System and in their newsletters. They use the feedback and ideas from their substantial online social community to crowdsource product development. And they're attempting to create a corporate culture where employees feel respected, cared for, and given room to grow. As the Founder Collective put it on Twitter this morning: "105 full-time employees, $45M in revenue, no venture capital. Adafruit is a great case study in efficient entrepreneurship."

Founded in a dorm room in 2005 by MIT engineer Limor “Ladyada” Fried as an online learning resource and marketplace for do-it-yourself electronics, Adafruit is now a highly successful community-driven electronics company, educational resource, and maker community thriving in SoHo, Manhattan.

Limor sees three keys to the success of the company: “Being focused on others, having an unconditional belief that you can be both a good cause and a good company, and seeing risk-taking as your friend and your only real competition as yourself.”

It is these high-minded tenets that make Adafruit something special.

Read the rest

Andrew 'bunnie' Huang and Adafruit's Ladyada: an in-depth interview

The legendary hardware hackers speak for two hours about gender, participation and representation in tech, teaching electronics with papercraft, and the joys of open source hardware. Read the rest

Call for submissions for Disobedient Electronics

"'Disobedient Electronics' is a zine-oriented publishing project that seeks submissions from industrial designers, electronic artists, hackers and makers that disobey conventions, especially work that is used to highlight injustices, discrimination or abuses of power." Read the rest

Nominate your Internet heroes for the 2015 EFF Pioneer Awards

Previous winners include Edward Snowden, Carl Malamud, Limor Fried, Laura Poitras, Hddy Lamarr, Aaron Swartz, Gigi Sohn, Bruce Schneier, Zoe Lofgren, Glenn Greenwald, Jon Postel and many others (I am immensely proud to have won one myself!). Read the rest

New episode of Circuit Playground - electronics for kids

Here's episode 6 of Circuit Playground, a charming show that teaches kids about electricity. It's produced by our friends at Adafruit. In this episode, Ladyada teaches Adabot about electrical grounding.

Read the rest

Internet of Things Bill of Rights

Pt and Limor write,

The New York Times asked Adafruit's founder and engineer, Limor 'Ladyada' Fried to contribute to an article series called ROOM for DEBATE. We believe Internet of Things devices should all come with a well established expectation of what they will and will not do with consumer's data. In the article we put together the start of what we hope will help this effort: Minimizing Risk Is Easy: Adopt a Bill of Rights

Read the rest

Circuit Playground: Make a lemon battery!

Hardware hacking superhero Ladyada explains how batteries work and how to make one from a lemon! "Circuit Playground: B is for Battery" Read the rest

Adafruit is making a kids' electronics puppet show!

The boundlessly wonderful folks at Adafruit are producing an online puppet show for kids aimed at teaching electronics. I could not be more happy about this without that I exploded.

Their new online show, titled Circuit Playground, will teach the essentials of electronics and circuitry to children through kid-friendly dolls with names like Cappy the Capacitor and Hans the 555 Timer Chip. Limor “Ladyada” Fried, Adafruit’s founder and chief engineer (and 2012 Entrepreneur of the Year), will host the episodes, with her team assisting with onscreen and puppeteering duties.

“We’ll have each component have a story, a song and something to do,” Fried says. “We’ll have live feeds in our factory on how things are made. It’s a little Elmo for engineering, a little Mr. Rogers for resistors and a little Sesame Street for Circuits.”

Adafruit is familiar with online broadcasts, hosting weekly “Show-and-Tell” and “Ask an Engineer” shows on Google+ and Ustream for over three years. Circuit Playground was a natural extension for them. “We saw the audience and the participants getting younger with more advanced projects, so we figured there was something there,” Fried says.

Adafruit to Teach Electronics Through Puppets in New Kids’ Show [Mike Senese/Wired]

(via /.) Read the rest

Adafruit's Limor Fried wins Entrepreneur's Entrepreneur of 2012

Congrats to our friend Limor Fried for winning Entrepreneur's Entrepreneur of 2012 award!

Recognizable by her signature vivid-pink locks, Fried (or Ladyada, as she is known on the internet) is one of the dominant forces behind the maker movement--a legion of do-it-yourself-minded folks who create cool things by tweaking everyday technology. Last year New York City-based Adafruit did a booming $10 million trade in sales of DIY open-source electronic hardware kits, so-called because project designs are free and publicly accessible, and customers are encouraged to modify or "hack" the final product. In addition to MintyBoost ($19.50), the online catalog includes in-house designs like the iNecklace ($75), a pendant shaped like an Apple gadget's "on" button, complete with a pulsing LED light; and third-party products that have earned the "Adafruit seal of approval," like the MaKey MaKey ($49.95), a device that can turn any object that conducts electricity--a coin, cat, banana--into a functioning touchpad or keyboard.

Read the rest

Ladyada's geeky coloring book for makers of all ages

Phil Torrone sez,

Ladyada's "E is for Electronics" is a coloring book adventure with electronic components and their inventors.

Makers of all ages can learn, color, and share common parts and historical figures throughout history. Explore the world of electronics with Ladyada as your guide!

This is the first ever open-source electronics coloring book! Adafruit's coloring books are manufactured in the USA by a family owned and operated business, we use non-toxic soy based, water soluble and environmentally friendly printing supplies. The equipment used is solar powered! Crayons not included.

Ladyada’s "E is for Electronics"

(Thanks, Phil!) Read the rest

Vote for Limor Fried for Entrepreneur of 2012!

Entrepreneur Magazine has announced its five finalists for their Entrepreneur of 2012 award. Our friend Limor "Ladyada" Fried, founder of Adafruit Industries, is one of the finalists! Limor is not only an entrepreneur (and the only female finalist in this contest) -- she's an engineer, hacker, activist, and open source superhero! Voting is now open. You know what to do. Vote for Limor Friend for Entrepreneur of 2012


Limor Fried on the cover of Wired - Boing Boing Babelfish: Adafruit's Arduino-based RFID flash-cards for learning ... Fun skill patches offered by Adafruit - Boing Boing New app from Adafruit: Circuit Playground - Boing Boing FLORA, Adafruit's new wearable electronics development platform ... Free Kinect drivers released; Adafruit pays $3k bounty to hacker, $2 ... Read the rest

FLORA, Adafruit's new wearable electronics development platform

Our friends at Adafruit Industries just announced FLORA, a new wearable electronics development platform.

For the last few years Ladyada has been thinking about everything she wanted in a wearable electronics platform for Adafruit’s community of makers, hackers, crafters, artists, designers and engineers. After months of planning, designing and working with partners around the world for the best materials and accessories, we can share what we’re up to. The hardware is now in the hands of our staff and testers!

Announcing the FLORA, Adafruit’s wearable electronics platform and accessories Read the rest

Make your own Pong-clock: MONOCHRON

MONOCHRON - open source retro clock from adafruit industries on Vimeo.

Phil Torrone sez, "Hardware hacker 'Ladyada' has released an open source retro arcade style table tennis for two clock called the MONOCHRON. According to MONCHRON project page they 'wanted to make a clock that was ultra-hackable, from adding a separate battery-backed RTC to designing the enclosure so you could program the clock once its assembled.' It includes a ATmega328 processor (with'Arduino' stk500 bootloader for easy hacking). It's completely open source hardware, all firmware, layout and CAD files are yours to mess with."

MONOCHRON (Thanks, Phil!) Read the rest

EFF fundraiser/Pioneer Awards Ceremony Oct 22 , San Francisco

Rebecca from the Electronic Frontier Foundation sez, "Join the Electronic Frontier Foundation on Thursday October 22nd at the Web 2.0 Summit in San Francisco in a fundraiser honoring the 2009 Pioneer Award winners. Awarded every year since 1992, the Pioneer Awards recognize leaders who are extending freedom and innovation on the electronic frontier. This year's winners include hardware hacker Limor 'Ladyada' Fried, e-voting security researcher Harri Hursti, and public domain advocate Carl Malamud. EFF will also present a 2009 Cooperative Computing Award to Mersenne Research, Inc., Great Internet Mersenne Prime Search, for finding a record breaking prime number. Tickets are $60."

I am a previous Pioneer Award recipient and was doubly honored this year to be a Pioneer Judge. Congrats to all the winners on their much-deserved honor!

Join EFF for the 2009 Pioneer Awards fundraiser honoring:

Limor "Ladyada" Fried, Harri Hursti and Carl Malamud

Previously: Nominations open for EFF's Pioneer Award - Boing Boing EFF announces Pioneer Award winners - Boing Boing EFF Pioneer Awards tomorrow night in San Diego at ETech - Boing Boing Nominate for the EFF Pioneer Awards! - Boing Boing Tonight in San Diego: EFF Fundraiser/Pioneer Awards at ETech ... EFF Pioneer award winners announced - Boing Boing Read the rest

HOWTO make a vacuum fluorescent display clock

Phil Torrone writes:

Ladyada has just published a complete how-to, with design document, on making your own open source Russian vacuum fluorescent clock. The vacuum fluorescent tubes aren't as dangerous as (high-voltage) Nixie tubes, and there seem to be more of them available in the world. If you're not interested in building a clock from scratch, you can also pick up a kit version. All the schematics, source code, and files are available on the project's page.

Read the rest