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The growing number of Internet-connected devices and the increasing availability of affordable microprocessors is opening up limitless possibilities in the Internet of Things (IoT). Developers and makers now have a fantastic opportunity to bring their IoT ideas to life. However, getting started with an IoT project can be challenging given all the numerous boards, chips and sensors available. Getting everything connected and streaming data makes the job even more complicated.
We set out to help people get started in the world of IoT by partnering with Losant, an IoT developer platform out of Cincinnati, by hosting an IoT Hack Night last week. The IoT Hack Night provided folks with an opportunity to get hands-on experience building a simple, connected project using an ESP8266 NodeMCU microprocessor and the Losant cloud platform.
Our hackers used Losant’s purpose-built IoT Builder Kit and their step-by-step tutorial to send an email triggered by a tactile button, control an LED triggered by a virtual button, and monitor and visualize ambient temperature – all via the Internet. The Losant team was on hand to help guide folks and answer questions.
Losant’s CEO Charlie Key sees their kits and workshops like these as an important part of helping more people to get started building IoT projects. “We want to empower people to build solutions by providing an easy-to-use platform that works with just about any hardware or sensor you can find. We developed our builder kits to take a lot of the investigation and guesswork out of the physical part of IoT, so people can get right in to building reactions and visualizing their connected data.”
Did you miss our IoT Hack Night? You can still build your own IoT project by grabbing one of Losant’s purpose-built kits at store.losant.com – and use discount code FIRSTBUILD for 15% off! If you already have a microprocessor, Losant’s blog has a plethora of tutorials for all kinds of hardware including Arduino, Raspberry Pi, ESP8266, Tessel 2 and more.
If you’re looking for more opportunities for hands-on hacking, be sure to join us for our FirstBuild Mega Hackathon “The Future of Cooking” on September 24-25. It’s another great opportunity to turn your ideas to life – all in the span of two fun-filled days. Awards include cool new hardware and cold, hard cash!

Did you miss our IoT Hack Night hosted by Losant? Lucky for you, there are online tutorials and Builder Kits available to ship. Grab one at losant.store.com – use discount code FIRSTBUILD for 15% off. Or use your own hardware to build a project using a tutorial from their blog. No hardware? Build your own IoT powered personal weather station using a virtual device with this tutorial.

*Special thanks to the Losant team for such a great event and for providing the images.

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