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Mar 14

about 1 year

First videos of the Trill phone are online!

In case you haven't heard already, we now have a GSM/3G mobile phone module for the ioNode (the module is a complete phone).

I've personally been using this phone for about 3 weeks now, and so far I'm very satisfied with this.
Moving away from my smartphone was a little disturbing at first, but very soon this was replaced by a great feeling of freedom :)

I finally took the time to make some quick videos of the phone in operation.
I will try to add more in the coming days.

Receiving a call:

Ring ring!

Replying to a SMS:

Ring ring!

If you're looking for more details on Trill, check out the documentation on

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Mar 06

about 1 year

Introducing Trill - an open-source 3G mobile phone

You read that correctly, I'm talking about a complete GSM/3G mobile phone, based on the ioNode!

As explained previously, I've been hard at work for the past half-year putting together this new "module" for the ioNode and writing all of the firmware libraries for it.


* 128 x 64 OLED display
* 16 buttons + 5-way mini-joystick
* Microphone & earpiece
* MicroSD card slot
* MicroSIM card slot
* MP3 decoder, headphone amplifier and 3.5mm stereo jack
* Vibrator


I also designed a basic plastic case using Blender.
My Ultimaker 2 Go printer did take quite a few hours to print all the parts, but the result turned out very satisfactory.

The documentation is available here.

I'll try to add more pictures and videos in the coming days.

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Feb 25

about 1 year

The new Fiddle includes WiFi, MicroSD & breakouts

I was really surprised by the overwhelming success of the Fiddle during the last Zürich MakerFaire, which attracted an unexpected amount of attention.

More importantly, the feedback from the community was very clear:

- WiFi is not an option
- Breakouts would greatly improve the product by making it directly expandable

I took this in and also decided that if we're gonna have the ability to talk on the network, we should also be able to store data.

MicroSD being very light in terms of physical footprint and integration, it seemed like a good option.

So I went back to Eagle with all this and started re-designing the Fiddle from scratch.

Soon enough, I had a new design sent to OSH Park for manufacturing.

As soon as I got the boards I started assembling and testing them... THEY'RE AWESOME!

Not only do they include A LOT more, but the breakouts (which make the Fiddle a tiny bit wider) provide a much better grip and just make the thing easier to manipulate.

The documentation has been updated, you can go check it out here.

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Feb 24

about 1 year

It's been a while! But I've got some good news...

Almost six months...

But I've been busy - building new hardware and improving the SDK pretty much every day since last year's MakerFaire.

Today, I'm finally ready to share some of this work with you.

So get ready for some exciting new stuff!

Yes, I've been silent for a few months.

After the 2017 Zürich MakerFaire, I was full of new ideas and couldn't wait to get started.

After significantly re-designing the Fiddle to include WiFi, MicroSD & breakout headers and improving the SDK Libraries a whole bunch, I was ready to move on to the next big thing...

Building a 3G mobile phone

It was around that time when @letootoot told me she was spending too much time on social media apps on her smartphone, and wanted to go back to a "not-very-smart" phone.

Surprisingly I discovered that, as FastSMS explains, more and more people apparently want to switch back to "dumb-phones":

Disappointed by the limited choice of dumb-phones available on the market, we had the idea to make a Dooba dumb-phone. One that anyone could build, hack and customize.

This resulted in Trill - an open-source dumb-phone based on the ioNode.

This thing includes:

- 128x64 OLED display
- 16 buttons + 5-way mini-joystick
- 2 front-facing LEDs (connected to PWM for dimming)
- MicroSD card slot
- MicroSIM card slot
- MP3 decoder, headphone amplifier and 3.5mm stereo jack
- Microphone & earpiece (for voice calls)
- Vibrator

Here are some pictures of the main board being assembled:

Check out the technical details here: Trill on

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Sep 13

over 1 year

Awesome weekend @ MakerFaire Zürich 2017

"The greatest show (and tell) on earth"

Last weekend, on September 9 & 10th, was the Zürich Mini MakerFaire - a "family-friendly festival for digital crafts and new technologies, with a focus on making, learning and sharing".

This was the second year the event was held in Zürich's Dynamo Jugendkulturhaus - a beautiful and atypical location on the bank of the Limmat river.

It was impressive to see how many people showed up for the event - way more than I had expected. Also impressive was the diversity of projects presented by the various teams, including 3D-printing, Steampunk contraptions, cosplay, electronics and DIY workshops.

Below are some pictures from the event:

@letootoot posing next to the giant maker lion

Some awesome projects presented during the weekend

The Dooba table, with Gadget Kits and Fiddles on display

Preparation for the event

The weeks leading up to this weekend have been quite intense for me, trying to get as many prototypes and kits ready for demo.

Printing enclosures & getting prototypes ready

Awesome feedback

Throughout the weekend, we received some very positive feedback regarding the ioNode, the Fiddle, and other products.

One of the key points revealed by this was the importance of Wifi connectivity. Many people indicated that while they appreciated the idea of a tiny gadget such as the Fiddle, they would have really liked to see some Wifi included in there. We received pretty much the same feedback for the kits.

I now know how to improve the Fiddle and have started working on a new version, a few millimeters longer, with Wifi and MicroSD included.

Working on a new Fiddle with Wifi and MicroSD

New libraries and tutorials

Now that I have a little more time to work on the SDK & documentation, I've started adding new libraries and tutorials.
Already available:

  • PWM (Pulse Width Modulation)

  • RGB LEDs

I've also completed the "client" part of the esp8266 library, offering quick and easy access to the internet through this very common Wifi module from Espressif (which is also the one that will be included in the new Fiddle).

I will continue to add more libraries and tutorials over time, so sign-up for the newsletter and stay tuned!