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The SparkFun micro:climate kit is a full weather station kit that is built on top of the weather:bit carrier board. Unlike previous weather kits we've carried, the micro:climate kit includes our tried-and-true Weather Meters and Soil Moisture Sensor, so whether you’re an agriculturalist, a professional meteorologist or a hobbyist, you will be able to build a high-grade weather station powered by the micro:bit. You can even talk via wireless communication between two micro:bits with this kit to be able to monitor the weather without being exposed to it!
Inside each micro:climate kit you will find all the components required to build your micro:bit into a go-to weather sensor; the only parts not included are two AAA batteries and the micro:bit itself. Simply add your own micro:bit to the provided weather:bit, assemble the kit, and you will be ready to start sensing. The SparkFun micro:climate kit is a great way to get your feet wet in high-grade sensors --- just not literally; that's the weather:bit's job!
The kit does not require any soldering and is recommended for anyone curious about weather-sensing technology or the micro:bit platform.
The micro:bit is a pocket-sized computer that lets you get creative with digital technology. Between the micro:bit and our shield-like bit boards you can do almost anything while coding, customizing and controlling your micro:bit from almost anywhere! You can use your micro:bit for all sorts of unique creations, from robots to musical instruments and more. At half the size of a credit card, this versatile board has vast potential!
Note: The SparkFun micro:climate kit does NOT include a micro:bit board. The micro:bit board will need to be purchased separately.
Whether it's for assembling a kit, hacking an enclosure, or creating your own parts; the DIY skill is all about knowing how to use tools and the techniques associated with them.
Skill Level: Rookie - Basic hand tools are required and instructions will allow more freedom. You may need to make your own decisions on design. If sewing is required, it will be free-form.
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If a board needs code or communicates somehow, you're going to need to know how to program or interface with it. The programming skill is all about communication and code.
Skill Level: Rookie - You will need a better fundamental understand of what code is, and how it works. You will be using beginner-level software and development tools like Arduino. You will be dealing directly with code, but numerous examples and libraries are available. Sensors or shields will communicate with serial or TTL.
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If it requires power, you need to know how much, what all the pins do, and how to hook it up. You may need to reference datasheets, schematics, and know the ins and outs of electronics.
Skill Level: Rookie - You may be required to know a bit more about the component, such as orientation, or how to hook it up, in addition to power requirements. You will need to understand polarized components.
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Based on 2 ratings:
The equipment that came with the weather station is pretty good, a little plastic-y, but ok. The documentation, for a novice, however, is not great. I’ve had to cobble together information on how each piece works and figure out how things are interconnected. I’m still trying to figure out how to collect and aggregate the data from the unit. This might be elementary for someone that has a lot of programming experience, but it is a little frustrating trying to figure it out. But...I’m not giving up yet, and it is helping a bit with learning how these things work. It would be nice if all the information was available in one place, so it wouldn’t take a month to get this dang thing going! One other thing: why isn’t the enclosure listed as a piece of equipment that should be bought? I would have paid for it, but now I’m going to just use a Gladware container to spite you! ;-b
The kit goes together in less than 15 minutes. That’s easy but then you wonder how am I going to read the tiny scrolling LED display way up my roof? A data logger is included so removing a microSD card from a six pin header perched on a ladder everyday seems not so great. The picture depicts the unit attached to the rain gauge with a twin AAA battery pack. None of this is weather proof and I’m not sure how often the batteries will need replacing.
What’s missing: 1. waterproof enclosure or long enough sensor wires to bring the unit inside (though you would lose outdoor temp/humidity/pressure 2. Power. Good combo would be a LiIon with attendant solar charger available from SparkFun 3. Display/wireless data transfer. The description mentions using a second micro:bit to receive data from the first but that doesn’t seem ideal. First reading 3-8 different sensor read outs on a scrolling LED display is tedious. Second, once you have the data you can log it (that’s where I would use the logger) or upload to underground.
In short good kit for beginners, definitely incomplete. The coding is just hard enough for beginners to be challenging but not overwhelming.