The Johnny-Five team has begun work on a method of controlling previously incompatible components. Inspired by Adafruit, Johnny-Five backpacks are AVRs that we communicate with over I2C, opening up a whole new world of JavaScript-controlled electronics. Historically, certain protocols like SPI and software serial have been unavailable to Johnny-Five, which meant we couldn't support some really awesome components like addressable LED strips, ping sensors, and IR receivers.

Backpacks are programmed with a--typically very small--C++ firmware, with an I2C layer that Johnny-Five can use to send and receive commands and data. Backpacks are typically an Arduino Pro Mini or Nano, which can be purchased for as little as $2.

For a more detailed introduction to Johnny-Five backpacks, plus an awesome NeoPixel demo, follow this link.

To see the backpacks currently supported, check out:

Johnny-Five backpack wiring example

Derek Wheelden on August 25th 2015

Hi! The Johnny-Five community is building new projects every day. We made this newsletter to tell you about what's new, what's good, and what's next for Open Source robotics. Join us in exploring what we can make together.

Fork me on GitHub