Upcoming: RFID on Raspberry Pi

Annika Backstrom
in Technology, on 19 February 2015. It is tagged #raspberry pi and #rfid.

The Raspberry Pi 2 launched earlier this month and I was lucky enough to snag one right away. With a spare Pi on hand, I can finally do a project I've had on ice for ages: an RFID-controlled, Pi-powered music player.

I've always wanted a child-friendly way to queue up music, something simple and durable that gives my kids control over their environment. I've picked up an RC522 RFID reader/writer and other goodies for the prototype and I can't wait to put it all together. If I can manage to read and write the RFID cards, I'll shift to writing an RFID-controlled music player.

This will be my first real electronics project so hopefully I won't blow anything up.

Screenshot of a list of items ordered on Adafruit.com

Update 2015-03-05

My first attempt (not blogged) was stalled due to unforseen problems: the RC522 reader won't actually work unless you solder the pinouts to a header. Skip this step, and there isn't a stable electrical connection from the RPi to the reader, and you get a lot of garbage errors. (Maybe there are pins that actually fit this pinout, but I don't have them and can't find them.)

Not ready to give up, I watched a YouTube video on soldering, bought my own iron, and managed to solder the header in place without destroying anything! Here's my shoddy soldering job and console output of reading my first tags.

soldering job console output

I've placed an order for another batch of RFID cards, and I'll start working on the software soon.