Hacked Gadgets Forum

September 30, 2009

High Altitude Glider Project

at 12:05 pm. Filed under Complex Hacks, DIY Hacks, Electronic Hacks


Art Vanden Berg build a High Altitude Glider Project that has performed 5 flights to date. Have a look at the great documentation of the flight system and flight results. One of the issues we have seen with all of the near space balloon projects that we have featured lately is attempting to predetermine the landing zone and racing there to retrieve the cargo.  Having a plane that can fly back to a known location is a great idea that I think is sure to catch on.

Thanks Andrew.

"A small, self-guided glider, designed to fly at very high altitudes. The glider is carried up by its tail with a helium weather balloon to altitudes of up to 85,000 feet above sea level, and then released to fly back to the launch point. During the flight, it transmits down navigation data, some sense data, and low-res digital photos. It can also carry a 35mm film camera, or other instruments."

New ABB Robot Installations

at 10:49 am. Filed under Complex Hacks, Computer Hacks, Crazy Hacks, Insane Equipment


ABB has recorded some new behind the scenes video of their robots. You probably remember the ABB robots that we featured before. Have a look at these cake decorating and pancake picking ones. It almost seems that the pancake robot is doing the impossible!

"ABB Robots installed by RG Luma are helping specialist food company Honeytop to speed up its pancake production and improve health, safety & hygiene. "

GPS guided ATV

at 6:11 am. Filed under Complex Hacks, Electronic Hacks, Insane Equipment


Have a look at this complex GPS guided ATV project. I can just imagine a group of these things in an amusement park allowing automated carts to provide an automatic tour. More details can be found here.

Thanks Amnon

"This is a kids ATV modified to be controlled from a innovation first controller (Servo stirring and Victor 884 motor controller). The controller is connected to a laptop that in it’s turn connected to a compass and a GPS receiver. On the PC there is a virtual map of the test arena , and using ASTAR algorithm and the Data from the GPS and the compass the ATV can fined it’s route from any starting point in the arena to a preentered destination point. For better accuracy the WAAS / EGNOS GPS Augmentation system can be applied! "

DIY AVR Photo Frame

at 3:35 am. Filed under Complex Hacks, Crazy Hacks, Electronic Hacks


Photo frames are coming down in price as each week goes by. But what fun is it to go to the department store and pick one up. Have a look at this page for some info on a DIY AVR Photo Frame build.


  • DIY photo frame
  • Using AVR microcontroller.
  • Display on QVGA TFT 3.2” 240×320 pixel 16 bit color
  • Using BMP file format with out convert.
  • File store on SD card.
  • Keep small program size.
  • Fast display as fast as possible.


  • Atmega8,16,32 8 bit microcontroller from www.atmel.com
  • SD card
  • QVGA BL-TFT240320PLUS from circuitidea.com. It come with include SD card slot. 8/16 bit interface."

September 29, 2009

DIY Bullet Speed Meter for Coil Guns

at 4:45 pm. Filed under Complex Hacks, DIY Hacks, Electronic Hacks

Megavolts.nl built a speed meter that can monitor the speed of his coil gun bullets. The bullet trips an entry beam and an exit beam which are at a known distance apart, this allows the speed of the bullet to be calculated and displayed. The build is detailed and includes code and schematics. Here is a Google English translation. Big thanks to the creator for translating the project to English!

DTP-1000 CD Robot Hack

at 2:19 pm. Filed under Electronic Hacks


Ebay is a great place to look for some vintage tech. Have a look at this CD duplicating robot that TINYenormous got for only $11. Instead of ripping out and replacing the control electronics he lucked out and found someone who had details on converting it to serial control.

 Thanks Ross.

"I bought it intending to put an arduino in the place of the control board and probably have to do a lot of reverse engineering. The next day I happened upon this site where, amazingly someone has already opened one of these up and has instructions on how to enable serial control! I still am in awe of how lucky I got and really happy that DarkBane dropped all of that knowledge on the world."

Physical Laptop Security using a Thumb Drive

at 12:07 pm. Filed under Computer Hacks


If you use your laptop in public places LAlarm is a piece of free product that could help you (small fee for corporate use). This system is basically an alarm for your laptop, best of all it is packed with tons of cool features like sending an SMS message to you or destroying your sensitive data if it is stolen.

"The following procedure locks down a laptop to a table or other immobile object. It requires 1) a USB flash drive and 2) a neck strap (or similar material), which will be used to fasten to the USB flash drive one end and ties around a table leg or other immobile object the other end. It is useful when you do not have access to a power outlet.

  1. Fasten the strap to the USB flash drive. (see photo below)
  2. Fasten the strap to a table or other immobile object. 
  3. Plug in the USB flash drive into a USB port of a laptop.
  4. Lock the computer by pressing the Windows logo key and L key together.

When a thief pulls the laptop from the table, the USB flash drive will be disconnected from the laptop and then an alarm will go off."

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