February 18, 2017: Arduino Programming 101 (Intro to Microcontrollers and C)

February 6, 2017

 uno 2

Buy Tickets here


Important: Bring your own Arduino! If you don’t have one, we may potentially sell one to you, but let us know ASAP

If you have an Arduino from the soldering class, please bring it!


Class Description

This is a class for absolute beginners to the Arduino, microcontrollers, embedded systems, computer architecture, and C programming language.

However we try to make it interesting and challenging enough for people who are already somewhat familiar with the above topics.

Topics you will learn in this class

• What is binary? What is hexadecimal?

• What is a CPU,RAM,ROM,Computer Architecture

• What does computer (microcontroller) hardware do under the hood?

• Quick and dirty intro to Assembly Language (Going between C and Assembly)

• Detailed Introduction to C

• Detailed intro to the Arduino and the Arduino IDE

• Quick introduction to electronic sensors (More detailed in class 4)

• How to use a breadboard

What you will do during the class

• Install and configure the Arduino IDE

• Program an Arduino to control a small toy traffic light

• Detect toy cars at an intersection using sensors and control the traffic light

• See live demonstrations of cool projects some of our members have done using Arduino. Robots, musical tesla coil, 3d printers, etc.

Materials you will receive

• Custom toy traffic light with LED’s (3d printed by HackPGH) See image above.

• Toy car

• Small breadboard

• Resistors, photoresistors, capacitors, jumper wires, etc

Required Materials

• Arduino (Uno, Mega, Due, anything you can attach an Uno shield to)

• Laptop

Lunch at noon

Bring $5 a person for Pizza or whatever else you like. We decide as a group.

This is class 3 of the HackPittsburgh Electronics/Microcontrollers Learning Tracks

Class 1: Intro to Basic Electricity

Class 2: Learn to Solder

Class 3: Arduino 101

Class 4: Sensors

Class 5: Motor Control

Class 6: Basic Electronics 2 (Semiconductors)

Class 7: Advanced Arduino Programming


January 14,2017: Liquid Nitrogen Ice Cream/Miracle Berries Flavor Tripping

January 6, 2017
Copyright Wikipedia

Copyright Wikipedia

Who doesn’t like home made Ice Cream? The only part that sucks is waiting for it to freeze. Well, we have came up with a solution… LIQUID NITROGEN of course!!! Come down on Saturday and take in the festivities! We will be doing a demo on Liquid Nitrogen as well as making some cool treats! Bring a recipe for your favorite ice cream and a project to work on if you’d like!


In addition we will be hacking our taste buds with a Miracle Fruit tasting party. The Synsepalum Dulcificum (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Synsepalum_dulcificum) produces a berry that temporarily alters your taste buds into making sour and acidic things taste sweet. We will be providing tablets that contain concentrated miracle berry powder (easier to ship than fresh fruit) and a few things to sample. We encourage you to bring along things to try and share with the group also. Possible suggestions include:

– citrus fruits (especially lemons)
– unsweetened coffee or espresso
– dark beers (Guinness is supposed to taste like a chocolate shake.)
– Brussels sprouts
– any other cabbage-based veg or lettuce
– hot sauce
– mustard
– vinegars
– goat cheese
– salt and vinegar potato chips
– pickles

Doors open at 7pm, the event starts shortly there after. We’re located at 1936 5th Avenue, in the garage around back on Watson Street


January 7,2017: Learn to Solder Class (Make your own Arduino)

December 21, 2016
Photo credit: Tyler Cooper

Photo credit: Tyler Cooper

This class will teach you to solder or help you practice your skills if they are a little rusty. We will guide you through the process of building an Arduino from a kit. Kits will be provided and in the end you will go home with your brand new DIY Arduino ready to make your project dreams come true.


January 7, 2017 10AM-2PM

Visit Eventbrite  to buy ticket for this class.


HackPGH Members get 10% off! Thats $36 for an Arduino + soldering skills

Email info@hackpittsburgh.org for Discount Code

Recommended Age Group: 8-99 (kids must be accompanied by adults)

This class is in a series of  upcoming monthly classes at HackPittsburgh:

• Basic Electricity and Electronics (if you missed it, will be repeated eventually)

• Learn to Solder (This class)

• Basic Arduino Programming (Sometime in February)

• Advanced Arduino Programming (TBD)

• Sensors Sensors Sensors! (TBD)

• Motor Control (TBD)

• Basic Electronics Part 2: Semiconductors and op-amps (TBD)


November 16, 2016: Holistic Brain – Startup Funding 101

November 16, 2016


Pittsburgh is a terrific place to start a new company or try to grow one already started. Even bootstrap operations require some kind of funding, and Wednesday we’ll discuss where these funds come from and how much do they really cost a business going forward. We’ll cover from out of pocket, friends and family all the way to exit to public funding including recent innovations in crowd sourced capital.

Holistic Brain is a think tank project for economic development in the greater Pittsburgh region. Starting with its strengths in Eds & Meds, Holistic Brain wants to take it a step farther with focus on natural and artificial brain sciences. In collaboration with HackPittsburgh, we’re also looking for opportunities for makers to become the critically skilled labor force in 21st century manufacturing.

Event starts November 16, 2016 at 7:30pm at HackPittsburgh


Awesome Classes coming up in November!

October 24, 2016

This November HackPGH will be hosting two classes for absolute beginners!

One is for beginners in Electronics and the other for beginners in Programming (Python)


November 5, 10am-2pm

Basic Electronics Class: Make your own Piano

Cost: $40

Buy Tickets Here! 


Interested in Electronics? Want to build cool gadgets? Want to make your own Robot and take over the world? Come to HackPittsburgh and learn all about the basics of electronics, and build your own electronic piano!

Topics which will be covered include:

What is electricity?
Essential concepts like: Voltage,Current, Resistance, Power
Ohms Law
Series and parallel circuits
Capacitors and Inductors
Electronic Speakers
555 timer IC chips
How to use a breadboard
How the electronic piano works.

This is a 4 hour course with lunch at noon. You get all the materials (including breadboard), and detailed instructions on how to build the piano. We will make sure that everyone has their piano working before you leave! Of course you get to keep the breadboard and everything you built.

Recommended Age: 10 and older. Some very basic algebra will be covered. Kids must be accompanied by Adult (18+)

Prior knowledge: Basics of elementary school chemistry and physics, pre-algebra

This is part of a series of courses at HackPittsburgh designed to educate the general public about science and technology. The course series consists of:

Basic Electricity and Electronics
Learn to Solder
Basic Arduino Programming
Advanced Arduino Programming
Sensors Sensors Sensors
Motor Control

More courses may be added in the future. If you have an idea for one and want to learn something, let us know!


November 12, 1pm-3pm

Introductory Programming in Python

Cost $35

Buy Tickets Here! 


This is an INTRODUCTORY class for people wanting to start learning how to program computers. It is intended for people who have never programmed anything before; we can’t cram an entire college-level programming class into one evening, but this class should leave you in a good place to keep learning on your own or attend one of our classes on more advanced topics.

The class will cover:

* Getting set up with a programming environment
* Basic input and output
* Logic, math and decision making
* Structured programming with functions
* How to make a basic calculator program

The class is taught in Python, an easy to learn but very powerful programming language, widely used in fields as diverse as scientific programming, web development, scripting, and video games. There will be follow-on classes dealing with more advanced programming, and on interfacing with the Raspberry Pi computer to control electronics systems such as robots.

You will need:

• A laptop! Or some other computer. Windows or Mac or Linux, anything will work.

• Python! Download it from https://www.python.org/downloads/ and install it on your laptop ahead of time.

• A text editor! I recommend Sublime Text (http://www.sublimetext.com/2) or Notepad++ (http://notepad-plus-plus.org/), both of which have functional free versions.

• Your brain!