These Ornaments Measure Christmas Cheer

The ornament projects we post around here tend to be simple, stand-alone projects. We are, however, well into the era of the Internet of Things (like it or not) and holiday ornaments need not be single, unconnected blinking objects. For Christmas this year, [Sean Hodgins]  came up with some connected DIY ornaments that respond to Christmas cheer.

[Sean Hodgins] had some beautiful PCBs done up in festive shapes and he hand-pastes and oven-solders the SMD components on both sides. Each one is battery powered and controlled by an ESP8266. LEDs and a button on the front of each ornament comprise the user interface. When the button is pressed, data is sent to a Phant server and a “Christmas Cheer” counter is incremented. Other ornaments, so long as they can connect to the Phant server, will periodically check the counter. If the Christmas Cheer has increased, the ornaments will play a tune and flash some lights.

The ornaments are open-source — [Sean Hodgins] posted the code and PCB designs on GitHub. They look great, and would be a good way to let people know you’re thinking of them over the holidays. Check out this light-up menorah or these lighted acrylic ornaments for more holiday fun!


9 thoughts on “These Ornaments Measure Christmas Cheer

    1. If there is constant cheer being sent they will only check and sing every 5-10 minutes. I recommend people put the battery in on Christmas morning. That way everyone can send each other cheer, but it isn’t driving everyone nuts. Just letting them know we’re all connected in some way.

    1. Haha, Yes. Thanks!
      I got them done through PCBWay They have a number of options and this project gave me a chance to try a bunch of them out. Still need to check out yellow, white, matte black and matte green. The matte colours are quite a bit more in cost though.

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