Raven Adventure Part 1 of …

I have lots of incredibly lofty plans. I bought a harmonica, even though I have no musical talent. I want to set up my old X-Box in my basement to stream movies to it while I play table tennis. I want to tear up my carpeting and install hardwood floors.

I want to do all of these things, but I never have. Another thing that I bought and have never used is an AVR RAVEN. Someday I imagine my house completely automated via a series of small, wireless electronics I position carefully throughout my home. So far, I have a Roomba, and not much else.

But, back to the RAVEN. Atmel makes a bunch of cheap electronics. So, for about 80 dollars I bought a RAVEN. That includes a USB stick, so my computer can talk Zigbee (Zigbee is like Bluetooth, but lower power). Plus I got two little stand alone chips that have LCD screens, speakers, temperature sensors. They’re pretty neat pieces of technology.

Unfortunately, what the RAVENs didn’t come with was a power cord. So, after about 3 hours, I started fearing for its (battery) life. So, my solution? Wire up a USB cable to feed 5 volts into the raven.

Step 1: Take one Raven

Step 2: Take one USB cable

Step 3: Tools


Step 4: Cut the cable with the wire cutter. Strip the expose the wires

According to the internet, Red and black are the positive/negative voltage wires, and the white and green are the actual data wires. We only care about the power.

Step 5: Solder the two wires on to the board.

And blamo, magical power from anything that has a usb port. Pretty cool, if I do say so myself. Now I just need to figure out how to actual do something with it…

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