This tutorial is for those with some DIY hardware experience, though advanced beginners may find it a fun challenge. Also, experienced users might find it fun to set this up for beginners to learn from. To make this board without the SparkFun IoT Starter Kit with Blynk Board[1], you'll need sensors and other components to complete the built-in projects. For instance, the SparkFun Blynk Board comes with onboard WS2812 RGB LED, so you'll need a similar module[2] to make projects using the device. You can purchase the components individually from Sparkfun[3]

I organize workshops in my local community to introduce people to open source hardware platforms such as Arduino and Raspberry Pi. With all the buzz around the Internet of Things these days, everyone wants to start tinkering and prototyping. The enthusiasts are usually designers, web developers, or students, and most want to get going with little coding.

ESP8266-based Blynk Boards come with preloaded projects and are ideal for introducing Internet of Things and basic electronics concepts.

About the hardware

The ESP8266 [4]is a great chip with built-in WiFi. It was originally used with Arduino boards to WiFi-enable hardware projects but soon became a cheap standalone Arduino-compatible development board. It comes in many shapes and forms and is most famous in development boards such as NodeMcu[5], Adafruit HUZZAH[6], or the SparkFun ESP8266 Thing[7].

David Egts[8] wrote this terrific article about the ESP8266[9].

While the ESP8266 is great open source hardware for getting started with the Internet of Things, Blynk[10] is an ideal platform to control Arduino, Raspberry Pi, and the like over the Internet. Essentially, Blynk includes three components: a Blynk

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