The Button Badge

So, I’m quite fond of all those fun little tech badges that people wear to tech conferences. People get really creative with them.

So, this particular badge came to be because of my love of e-paper screens and the fact that once the image is presented to the screen, they don’t require power to maintain it.

This little badge normally sits by my R2-D2 cam when not in use.

It has a Pimoroni button shim soldered neatly between the pi-zero-w and the e-paper display, giving me a low profile 5 button input that I was able to program to call different python scripts on the pi that change the output on the display. When the pi receives power, the button shim will flash briefly after the boot-up sequence, letting you know when it is ready to use.

The LED on the button shim also provides a good status indicator for when it is done updating the e-paper display (the refresh rate is slow and it can take up to a full minute to execute a change). Since we are running this headless (without terminal or monitor), we don’t have the feedback displayed on the screen to know when the processes are finished being executed. In my scripts, I have included the button shim library, and I have it turning the light off on successful completion of each activity.

Anyway, I plan on putting up a video of the badge powered up and in use, as well as a link to the repository on github and instructions on how you can make one of these for yourself.