FADO lamp IKEA Hack with Blinkt! (including Minecraft server monitoring)

For the summer I am hosting the Minecraft server of a friend that don’t want to let the computer run when he is away. But the server crashed a few times, so I wanted a way to monitor it’s health. Also, one of my kid want to know when user are connected to join them. So I needed to know if the server was OK or not and when OK how many user connected.

So once I had my Blink! and I saw the Men in Space counter, I decided to build something similar with the count of Minecraft connected user: Twitter post with video demonstrating the result

About at the same time, I went to IKEA and got a FADO lamp as suggest by @Pimoroni. I made two different version of color ball with a LED inside:

The Blinkt! version cost less and is not as bright as the Unicorn pHAT version. Blinkt! is sufficient for an ambiant light indicator.

When using the Blinkt! (or the Unicorn pHAT) it is best to display the same color on every pixels as they can not be distinguished. But my code to count the number of user connected to the Minecraft server could not be used. So I had to work on other way to display the number. After some hard blinking solution, I found that Fade in and out was the less disturbing way to communicate. And here is the result: Twitter post with video of the fade in fade out when two user are connected

The source code, instruction, documentation for the Minecraft monitoring Blink! can be found on GitHub:

If you like any of those project, please retweet them on Twitter. I posted many other project.

PS: There is one trick about internet connectivity of this. I use a Raspberry Pi Zero inside, but I power it with a Google Chromecast key power supply. That power supply has an ethernet port and is automatically detected by Raspbian. So with a single cable you have power and network delivered.


Great project, and a neat little internet connectivity trick. Is this the adapter you’re talking about? We’ve totally got to try this: https://store.google.com/product/ethernet_adapter_for_chromecast

Yes that is the adapter.
Really great for the PiZero and it reduce the cable mess as the Ethernet can be far from the PiZero.

totally going to try this for my A+. 850mA tops though, so will limit what blinks you can add.

Edit: err, won’t work with an A+, of course.

Great project, with regards to the power supply with ethernet, are you connecting to the power port on the zero, or backpowering through usb?

Ah just looked at the photo on the twitter link, through the usb.

With that in mind was there any special setup required?


Nothing special.

The Ethernet (on the Chromecast key power plug) is automatically detected as an ethernet interface by the PiZero (running Jessie or Jessie Lite).

So the Raspbian run the DHCP client, set it’s IP and advertise with “Bonjour”.

You only need to SSH ( using the name raspberry.local ) to it and continue the setup with well known default username password. This work best when you connect from a MAC that run Bonjour by default. Else you might need to install additionnal software on your desktop, or guess the IP addresse.