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Andy Piper
Andy Piper

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MicroPython: EuroPython 2022, PyScript, Arduino, and more! 🎁

It's about time I posted an update on what has been going on around #MicroPython, so here goes!

My talk at EuroPython 2022 🇮🇪

Back in July, I was privileged to be able to attend and speak at EuroPython, held in Dublin this year.

I used my experience from the early months of the year, when I was really digging in and learning about the current state of MicroPython, to inform my talk - including some of the projects and discoveries from my DEV series. The video was published recently.

(there's also a photo from the talk, here)

One of the things I showed off was a Raspberry Pi Pico W running a webserver on an ad-hoc network hotspot:

You can find the code demos here and the slide deck here.

MicroPython monthly meetup 🇦🇺

I've been continuing to attend the MicroPython Monthly meetups with the crowd over in Melbourne, Australia - the timing works out that it is first thing in the morning for me here in the UK while they are all getting together on a Wednesday evening there. It is a friendly group, and Matt Trentini always does a fantastic and thorough round-up of the latest boards and news. Most recently, Damien (MicroPython creator and project lead) showed a demo of MicroPython in WebAssembly, aka PyScript.

Shortly after the meetup, Anaconda published a longer piece about PyScript and how MicroPython can be used as a runtime to enable Python applications in the browser. Check this out:

When you apply MicroPython to Wasm in its default configuration, something new and exciting emerges: With a total size of 303KB, this new runtime loads instantly and starts executing MicroPython logic in less than 100ms.

This all connects up to the opening moments of my EuroPython talk, thinking about how Python scales up to run in cloud environments, and also down, via MicroPython, to run in all kinds of other places as well.

Talking of which, at the October MicroPython meetup, we also got a full presentation and demo of PyBricks, which I was only able to briefly touch on during my presentation in Dublin. Python running on LEGO bricks! Super cool.

MicroPython... in Arduino?

A snippet of news from the past week or so is that Arduino just announced that MicroPython is joining their ecosystem, via a new experimental "Lab" MicroPython IDE. I've had a quick play with the current build of this IDE and it seems nice and familiar from an Arduino perspective, but it is clearly at an early stage so far.

Arduino currently offer MicroPython firmwares for their Nano 33 BLE and BLE Sense, the Nano RP2040 Connect, and Portenta H7 board - so it is important to note that you're not about to be running MicroPython on an Arduino Uno - but given the range of available libraries for the language and the relative ease of learning, it is exciting to see even further adoption. I hope to be able to have more of a play with this, soon.

About the community 👥

Over the past six months, there have been a few significant changes to the shared community spaces around the project:

More to come! 🌐

  • I'll be talking to Laura Langdon on Twitch tomorrow, about all things MicroPython.

  • If you're interested in this area you should definitely be subscribing to the Adafruit Python on Microcontrollers newsletter, which is published weekly and always covers a range of cool projects.

  • finally, I'm looking forward to playing with my Pimoroni Galactic Unicorn - look at all the opportunities for blinky lights!

A dark black/blue box with the text "Galactic Unicorn" in white text, with the subheading labels "Wireless Desktop RGB Matrix, 53x11, 583 LEDs, Audio Amp, Pico W Aboard". There is a blue grid on the cover of the box.

A long wide grid of LEDs on a black circuitboard. The text "Galactic Unicorn" is printed at the top left corner above the white grid of LEDs. The text "Pimoroni" is at the top right corner in gold. There is a blue, black and grey keyboard in the foreground.

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