Folks have been using Raspberry Pi devices and other small, cheap, and low power computers to build smart mirrors for the past few years. But Ben Roe’s Magic Mirror E Ink project stands out in a few interesting ways.
First up, it’s not really a mirror, per se… it’s more of a smart picture frame that can display calendar appointments, weather forecasts, news updates, incoming messages, and other information.
Second, it uses a low-power, high-contrast E Ink display. And third, most of the components seem pretty easy to source and assemble.
All told, it looks like an interesting project for makers on a budget — you could probably build your own using less than $100 in parts.
There are really only a few pieces of hardware involved: a Raspberry Pi Zero W ($10), a 7.5 inch Waveshare E Ink display ($50ish), a microSD card, and a micro USB power adapter — which you may already have lying around.
The trickiest part may be building a frame for this E Ink picture frame — if you’ve got a 3D printer you can use that. Otherwise you may have to come up with a more creative solution for making the mirror look like more than… well, an LCD screen plugged into a Raspberry Pi.
As for the software, the project uses the open source MagicMirror2 platform to do the heavy lifting, but Ben Roe has also written code that adapts the software to run on black and white E Ink displays. It’s available at Github, along with instructions for installing all the software (if you’re a visual learner you may want to head over to maker-tutorials for instructions with more pictures).