Hacked Gadgets Forum

February 14, 2006

Wireless LED Color Shifting

at 11:24 pm. Filed under Cool Gadgets, DIY Hacks, Electronic Hacks

Nathan True constructed a neat color shifting orb project. He was inspired by a Ask Slashdot question and looked at the Ambient Orb for design ideas. His initial idea of using a Parallax Basic Stamp was discarded since color mixing needed a faster processor. The solution was to go with a Microchip PIC16F84A, the 16F84 still has a large following since there are vast resources available on the internet for programming it. Many hobbyists today are shifting toward the cheaper and more powerful 16F628 and 16F88 microcontrollers. Read Byron Jeff’s article about why the 16F84 is obsolete. Nathan has developed an interesting method for the PIC to “set and forget” the color settings of the LEDs, there are some 555 timers and 7491 shift registers that handle that. If tackling complex color mixing wasn’t enough Nathan also added wireless communication so that the system could be controlled by a remote computer system! Total cost for his project came out to about $44. Want to build your own? Take a look at the schematics.

February 11, 2006

Power Glove Mouse

at 4:53 pm. Filed under Computer Hacks, Electronic Hacks, Insane Equipment

Want to use your Power Glove as a mouse? Look no further, this is an interesting project to do just that.

“The first step in making the pMouse is, of course, taking all the goods apart. I started with the component of the powerglove on the back of the hand. Once the black plastic casing is removed you can see the circuit board inside with lots of wires going to both the fingers and the arm portion of the Powerglove circuitry. If you can manage to flip the board over without dissconnecting any wires, you will be able to see where the finger sensors are connected. Basically, all the fingers are are variable resistors. When a finger is bent the resistance through the finger is increased.”

February 8, 2006

Creating a Battery from Pennies

at 10:57 am. Filed under Digg, DIY Hacks, Electronic Hacks

The Superpositioned site has an interesting article about making a battery out of some pennies, an ice cube tray and a few paper clips. The battery is shown powering an LED.

“In order to turn pennies into batteries, another electrode and an electrolyte are needed. In this case, dimes (zinc) are used as the positive electrodes and salt water is used an electrolyte. Copper wire, galvanized nails, and lemon juice are also popular and cheaper solutions. Such a battery produces a differential of about 0.5 volts.”

via Digg

February 6, 2006

RFID Chips in Food?

at 12:23 pm. Filed under Funny Hacks, What Were They Thinking

Now that RFID tags are a measly .005 x .005 inches and is 7.5 micrometers thick. A host of new tagging options are available. Gone will be the day when you ask for a check at the end of a meal at the restaurant. Simply order what you want, eat and get scanned at the cash register on the way out. Mixed in with the pepper on your hot dog will be a few grains of hot dog identifying RFID tags. As an added benefit, restaurants will not have to worry about the dreaded dine and dash. Dashers will be met by an electronically locked door when a scanner by the door recognizes that unpaid RFIDs are attempting to leave the premises.

The Whiskey Bottle PC

at 3:16 am. Filed under Computer Hacks

Janos Marton wanted a small, low power computer system. Most people would buy something like a Shuttle computer. Well I guess there is no fun in buying a case when you can make one! Janos took a 1.5 liter Ballantine’s whisky bottle and had a large slot and a few holes cut into it. For the guts he bought the following:

  • Intel P3 733EB processor
  • 256MB notebook RAM
  • 40GB notebook HDD
  • 60W mini-ITX PSU

After the mod was complete he had to mount a small fan in the bottle neck to keep the system cool.

Take a look at the details of the build here.

Via Boing Boing, submitted by a forum Guest.


February 4, 2006

Touchless Light Switch

at 9:00 pm. Filed under Insane Equipment

Anigmo has revolutionized the concept behind a light switch. This new design does not require physical contact to operate. Hand movements in front of the plate is all that is required. Gone are the days of clap on clap off…

Click here to see how to work the lights.

Source : I4U

Home Automation to the MAX

at 3:00 pm. Filed under Complex Hacks, Cool Gadgets, Crazy Hacks, DIY Hacks

After outgrowing the capability of his Homeseer home automation system this guy decided to build his own. The system consists of a wide variety of hardware, everything from off the shelf X10 to custom build modules. For example to monitor his electricity consumption he is counting the number of times his meter flashes in a minute. What does it monitor? The easier question is what doesn’t it monitor…

Currently it is monitoring:
– Energy Consumption
– Water Consumption
– Gas Consumption
– Phone Calls (including caller ID)
– Weather
– Security Cameras
Toilet flushes (look on the main page right column)
Fridge Opens
– Washer and Dryer
Door Bell Rings (also captures a picture of who was there)
– The list goes on and on……

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