The SparkFun ESP8266 Thing

The Thing + the Blynk app = a match made in internet heaven.

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We're coming up on the first birthday of one of our favorite releases from 2015 - the SparkFun ESP8266 Thing. This little board packs a major punch in the realm of web-connected and IoT projects, and some of our favorite projects have used the Thing as their foundation. The ability to communicate wirelessly across the globe with this tiny chip has opened up a delightful slew of low-cost project possibilities, and along with the functionality of a solid app like Blynk, the ESP8266 has provided us with a great sandbox to put our best wireless skills to the test. In fact, we love it so much, we made a nifty infomercial.

There's a lot of great information packed into one minute and 19 seconds – remote motion detectors, LED clouds, bread sandwiches, a map of the internet, the phrase "an internet" – and while it's all true, useful and a little overwhelming (where do you start when you can connect to ANYTHING?), we're guessing you were a little distracted by the grand finale: the INTERNET-CONTROLLED PROPANE CANNON. Don't worry; despite our best judgment and the advice of our moms and lawyers, we're going to help you try this at home.

Nick has - for better or worse - written a tutorial for those of you who have decided a propane-fueled, internet-controlled flamethrower is a thing you can't live without. Please use this knowledge for good, not evil, and also don't set yourself on fire.

ESP8266 Powered Propane Poofer

March 15, 2016

Learn how Nick Poole built a WiFi controlled fire-cannon using the ESP8266 Thing Dev Board!

In our Thingfomercial, you also saw Nick use the Blynk app to control the color of our RGB LED Clouds (which you can also build at home). You may have also seen Shawn use the same app to control the clouds in their Fellowship of the Things video debut. The Blynk app is a handy application that allows you to set up virtual dashboards to control your project via WiFi, and we've paired it with the Thing in multiple projects, with great success. In the video below, Sarah will show you how to get your Thing board hooked up to Blynk and use it to turn on an LED...the gateway project.

Combining the Blynk App with any our ESP8266 Thing boards – the Thing, the Thing Dev Board and the WiFi Shield – is an easy way to get your thing into the Internet, of things. And, if you've been counting, we said "thing" twelve times in this post. Go forth, and spread the gospel of Things (thirteen).

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