Hi, I’m Scott. I received my Blinks dev kit a couple weeks ago and am slowly coming up to speed with the environment.
I’m a dev for a mobile game company in SF. I was drawn to Blinks because I love the blend of digital gaming with the physicality of the tiles. A while back there was another tile-based gaming system called Siftables. I did some development for that as a side project. It was fun, but sadly the platform didn’t survive.
With Blinks, it seems my dev kit is different than others I’ve seen talked about around the site. I was given the six production Blinks, the programming rig, and a blank Blink for debugging. No magnetic enclosure to hold the programmer in place. I’m finding it quite cumbersome to hold the pins onto my Blink every time I want to program it.
It is also cumbersome to teach the sketch to my group of six other Blinks when I want to test en masse. This involves reinserting the battery in the blank, flipping it over, connecting it to the hive and programming the others. This debug cycle is long and I hope to discover some way to streamline this. Anyone have clever solutions?
An ideal solution for me would be a rig that securely holds the blank with the programming pins against the contacts, but does so with the tile face up so that I can program the other tiles without having to do the battery/flip thing. (I’m reminded of @Brett’s GDC talk about tools to remove pain points )
I’ve also been challenged by the inconsistent, or missing documentation. For instance, datagrams are referenced a couple places, but are not in the API Docs nor the Glossary. Thankfully this post describes them, and looking through the Darkball source code gives me enough information to use them.
I have also seen mention of using the serial port to print debug output, but haven’t seen a post describing exactly the hardware required to do so. I think part of the problem is that I’m new to Arduino in general.
Anyway, I’m excited to get to work on something! I plan to focus on single-player experiences. I have a couple ideas for games, but just today I struck on an idea that I really want to build. Excited!