Built-in patterns?

edited December 2013 in BlinkyTape Fun
I received my tape today. There were no printed instructions included (were they not sent?), so I went ahead and charged the battery, plugged it in and turned it on. It came on with a nice, bright, very simple, repeating pattern. So far, cool! So, I tried to figure out how to access the several built-in patterns that were described on Kickstarter.
I found a very tiny button near the USB port and pressed it a few times. It changed the intensity of the lights a few times, but not the pattern of lights displayed.
What gives? How do I expand the repertoire beyond the one boot-up pattern without coding my own? What am I missing?
Please HELP! Thanks!


  • Hi Warren,

    Sorry for the confusion! The best place to get started is with PatternPaint:

    It's a standalone program, where you can draw your own animation and upload it to the BlinkyTape without any programming. For the DiscoParty and AmbiTape examples, there are tutorials here:

    And of course, the forums are a great place to ask questions!

  • OK. That was a helpful start. I got the program working, hit "Upload", thinking I would upload some predefined images into the program. There were none. Instead, it "Uploaded" the blank screen to my tape and turned it black, no lights, nothing.
    Now, I've located some of those little, square .jpg and .png pictures from elsewhere on this forum and uploaded them to the tape and now got it to light up again, albeit with less exciting patterns and, I guess, no way to get the "factory default" patten back, right?
    What I don't understand, and I'm probably being a very dense newbie here, but how would the lights on the tape look anything like these little pictures, except for showing a stream of the colors in them? The tape is like one single row of "pixels". Do you need to buy 50 "lines" of pixels (Blinky tapes) and stack them up to actually look like the photos or images? If not, what am I missing here?

  • Hey Warren;

    I think what you are referring to is making your blinky tape display like this:


    or this:


    That's actually accomplished by taking a still photo, with a slow shutter speed, while moving the BlinkyTape on a wand so as to give the effect of whatever image is loaded onto it is scrolling across the photo.
  • Interesting, but I'm just trying to understand how - actually if - the sample .jpg images, such as the small chevron or Christmas tree, can ever be displayed in a way people know what they are looking at when the is only one column of LED lights available on a Blinky tape.
    I'm not trying to show people time-lapse photographs of a Blinky Tape, I want to use the actual tape to display the image, if possible.
  • Hmm, unfortunately not without either more LEDs, or without cutting your BlinkyTape, and resoldering it into a small square configuration like this: http://blinkinlabs.com/blinkytile :-\
  • Hey guys -

    Sorry for the confusion. Actually, these images are for "light-painting" -- have a look at this page for a bit more detail: http://blinkinlabs.com/light-painting/

    Basically, you load the image on the strip, and then you can use it to make patterns in long-exposure photographs. I think we owe you guys a better tutorial on this, but that link should give you the basic idea.
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