Adding Custom Animations to Your RGB Shades

So you’ve ordered your RGB Shades kit, assembled the LED glasses and now you are rocking with the bright animations that come pre-programmed on the Shades. You have cycled through the different effects and designs and probably have a couple of favorites by now. It’s likely you are going to think of an even better animation that you’d like to try for your next get-together (or in the meantime, Zoom call).

How do you get started programming new animations on your RGB Shades? After all, that’s a big part of why they are open source! This week, we’re reaching into the archives on Macetech’s blog for a starter guide to create new patterns on the shades.

Check out Garrett Mace’s article on creating a flickering jack-o'-lantern triangle eyes pattern, but there are some caveats and other important information not included in the article.

  1. Garrett walks you through using the now-defunct codebender to edit the code loaded on the Shades’ Arduino-compatible microcontroller. It was a great tool to streamline any Arduino programming, but it is no longer available.
  2. To get started, download and install the Arduino IDE. Alternatively, it looks like Arduino may have created a similar “code online” feature as codebender, but we haven’t checked it out yet. There are links to helpful resources on those pages.
  3. Access the RGB Shades codebase on GitHub. You can find alternate patterns created by Garrett and other customers. You will need to download the code to make changes locally on your machine before uploading them to your RGB Shades.
  4. Next, follow Garrett’s instructions on editing the RGB Shades files.
  5. Finally, attach the Shades to your computer with the short programming cable and transfer the code!

If you’ve made some of your own animations, we would love to see them in action (and potentially incorporate them into GitHub). Give us a shout or DM on instagram (@macetech_) or twitter (@macetech)!

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