Hacked Gadgets Forum

June 26, 2007

Kanazawa Station Water Jet Clock

at 5:25 am. Filed under Complex Hacks, Crazy Hacks, Insane Equipment

John from The Hacker’s Bench has put together a selection of crazy clocks, this water clock that is located in Kanazawa Station is my favorite. It uses jets of water to either display the time or messages. If you know where we can find some more details of the build I would love to hear from you. Make sure you watch the last 5 seconds of the video to see it close-up.

Video after the jump.


June 25, 2007

The Best Beer Robots

at 9:45 am. Filed under Complex Hacks, Crazy Hacks, Funny Hacks, What Were They Thinking


Robots make our life easy. They perform repetitive tasks for us without complaining. If I only had an industrial robot laying around that I could convert into a beer opener! Have a look at the Hacked Gadgets top picks of Beer Robots. What is your favorite?



Build a Paper Rocket

at 5:36 am. Filed under Toy Hacks

This Paper Rocket Kit looks like fun, just print and build!

“Still looking for something to shoot into the sky on new year eve? Here it is:
Build your own little paper rocket – it comes complete with a pneumatic launch pad.

Using pressurized air as it’s only fuel, the rocket might rise as high as five meters. No fire and no explosives are used – it’s perfectly safe for indoor use.”

Thanks David

June 24, 2007

Computer Controlled Room Ambilight Controller

at 11:15 am. Filed under Complex Hacks, Computer Hacks, Cool Gadgets, Digg, Electronic Hacks

Check out this Computer Controlled Room Ambilight Controller that Mike built. I didn’t realize that there was an open source program that would perform the same screen analysis as the Phillips Ambilight system, this gives me some ideas…

Video after the jump.

“What it basically does is, it waits for info from the PC through the RS232 interface and then controlls the brightness of the different collors. I then wrote a programm which sends bytes to the cotroller depending on where the mouse is positioned on the color triangle.

The second program is a opensource program called BobLight (http://www.xs4all.nl/~loosen/elektron… ). it looks at the screen and then sends the dominant colors through the comport. I modified it a little so it would only look at the top left corner of the screen. the I made a plugin for winamp that produces plain colors depending on the beat of the music. That’s about it. then I made some LEDclusters and strips and mounted them in my room.
Thats what I’m doin right now. I haveto wire more strips to put them all over my room.

Oh yeah the Programm also works when whatching movies, which then turns my whole room into one big ambilight :)”


June 23, 2007

TTL to RS232 adaptor Explained

at 1:25 pm. Filed under DIY Hacks, Electronic Hacks

When building microcontroller projects it’s often desirable to connect them to a computer. Most RS232 computer ports are able to read 0 and 5 volt TTL data levels however there are some computers that require voltage levels that are closer to the true RS232 spec. Most people use a MAX 232 chip when there is a need to follow the spec. correctly, but it’s possible to build your own circuit. uC Hobby has an article that shows and describes a circuit that does just that.

“The basic problem we have to solve is that the uC UART is a logic level device and RS232 is not. To send data over RS232 the voltages need to be about +/-10V while the output at the uC will be 0-5V or 0-3.3V. To see a zero signal the receiving RS232 device needs to see a negative voltage. We also need to invert the phase of our logic signal so that a 1 (5V) is converted to the negative voltage (-10).

Typically the threshold for 1 vs. 0 in the RS232 receiver is slightly above 0V we can get away with using less then +/- 10V. +/-5V should be sufficient for almost any devices. We usually have +5V available in our electronics projects but the negative voltage is a problem.”

DIY Pneumatic Guns

at 5:34 am. Filed under DIY Hacks, What Were They Thinking


Warning, DIY Pneumatic guns can be dangerous. Be very careful if you attempt to build your own.



Name the Thing Contest – 9

at 12:53 am. Filed under Contests

Congratulation to all of the winners last week.

The prize this week will be useful to anyone who needs to do presentations. It has a laser pointer, LED light, ball point pen and extendable pointing rod.

This contest will run for this weekend only (June 23 – 24, 2007) . Ending time is based on central standard time. To enter, identify the item pictured above and give an example of what can be done with it. Please do not give the answer in the comments.


Send an email to contest @ hackedgadgets.com with “Name the Thing Contest” as the subject, and the message body consisting of:
* The name of the item in the above picture
* An example of what the item pictured above can be used for

The winner will be chosen at random from all the correct entries.

Added June 26, 2007

The device is a Relay. They can be used to switch large loads using a small amount of current.

The winner is Daniel D.
(There were 99 entries for this contest)

Thanks to all who entered.

Below is a picture of the prize, more pictures on page 2.

Internal Links:



Hacked Gadgets

Site Sponsors:

Nuts and Volts Electronic Labs Trossen Robotics Free Technical Publications Blue LED


Recent Comments:

More RSS Feed Options

Site Sponsors:


Interesting Sites: