IoT Cookbook > Tessel

The Tessel

The Tessel

The Tessel is a microcontroller with built-in wifi which can be programmed in JavaScript.

Note: The materials below all refer to the first-generation Tessel. At the time of writing, the second-generation Tessel has not yet been released.


The Tessel is a microcontroller which can be programmed in JavaScript and aims for Node.js compatibility. It has integreted wi-fi and its functionality can be extended using modules that provide e.g. an accelerometer, a camera or audio input and output.

Interaction with the Tessel is via a command line interface which uses Node.js.

The materials on the Tessel website give a really good introduction to getting started with the Tessel.

In use, the Tessel is very much a version 1 product. Wifi is flaky, and in our experience it requires power cycling every few software iterations which are pushed to it. So: Nice to play around with, but nothing you'd ever want to use in production.

The Tessel 2 moves to more potent hardware, with full Node.js running on it, and OpenWRT as the operating system. This should make things more stable and a whole lot easier to work with.