Hacked Gadgets Forum

April 14, 2012

Open Vision Control – Tracking Software

at 11:36 pm. Filed under Complex Hacks, Computer Hacks, DIY Hacks, Electronic Hacks



If you are working on a vision system project that needs to track something your life just became a bit easier. Willem Schwalb just sent in a link to his open source software tracking system, Open Vision Control that can be used to control things such as automated turrets. You can also see lots more videos of the system in operation here.

“Open Vision Control was initially created as a tracking solution for various university projects, as well as the desire for an automated turret/sentry gun. Rather than just having one solution, for example , tracking people and outputting to some controller, it was decided , to make a general tracking software with various features, allowing for various automation and control projects.”


April 13, 2012

Wireless Motor Controller

at 3:24 am. Filed under Complex Hacks, DIY Hacks, Educational, Electronic Hacks



If you need to control some motors wirelessly this Wireless Motor Controller project by PyroElectro might be just the thing to get you kickstarted. The project uses SN754410NE chip to drive the motor and a XBee module to make the project wireless.

“The purpose of this project is to build a system that can independently and wirelessly control two DC motors. To do this, the system will need 4 core components: an input system for the transmitter, a wireless transmitter, a wireless receiver, and a motor controller connected to the receiver.”


April 11, 2012

DIY Turntable Photography Project

at 11:29 am. Filed under DIY Hacks, Electronic Hacks



A picture is a great way to show off a product, you can even take some pictures of the back and sides so the potential purchaser can see the product from other angles. How can you improve on this? Why not take pictures all around the item and play it like a 360 video. That is exactly what our friend Muris did. Check out his DIY Turntable Photography Project where he made a rotary turntable where you place an item, a camera is setup so that it can be remote triggered and some custom computer software controls the action. It is based on this system, you can see a typical example of the results he will get here.

If someone is interested in the project and would like to lend a hand translating the program into English I am sure Muris would appreciate the help!

“After entering the number of required photos (usually 30-40 is enough for a smooth animation), the application will calculate how many steps it needs to make and the process can start. As the camera is making pictures, they automatically appear at the bottom of the application (the white space) and after the process completes, a single click will copy all photos from that session to a custom directory. This allows a certain amount of automation especially when you need to photograph many products in series.”


The Ard-Vark – Simple iPhone iPad interfacing to Arduino

at 8:41 am. Filed under Cool Gadgets, DIY Hacks, Electronic Hacks



Check out this new project called The Ard-Vark. If you know someone who is interested in getting into microcontrollers but programming is a bit daunting this system might be just the thing for them.

Thanks for sending this in Kerwin and good luck with the project!

“Kerwin Lumpkins wrote:
Hello. A new kickstarter tech project for DIY folk that would like to add electronics and motor control to a project easily and be able to control it from their smart phone or tablet. 

I found that I was re-inventing the same thing every time I wanted to add a motor to something to make it move or add lights or whatever.  Finally, I made a permanent circuit board design, wrote the code and then put it in a durable case, and then I wrote a smart phone app to control it remotely. It is Arduino compatible, hence the name, Ard-Vark”





April 9, 2012

DIY Laminar Flow Water Fountains

at 2:28 pm. Filed under Complex Hacks, Cool Gadgets, DIY Hacks, Electronic Hacks


Watch the video above for a nice description of what needs to be done to make a DIY laminar flow water fountain on the cheap. There are lots of different DIY designs and ideas from the community that are variations on this idea. See other ideas below.




Kanal von Magicmastera has made quite a few videos documenting his Laminar Flow Water Fountain build process. The installation and effects of his final design look great! He designed a great cutter mechanism which lets the stream get stopped and started smoothly with just a small disruption to the straight flow.



  has put together a video showing the steps he took to make his laminar flow fountain. The built looks very nice and should last a long time.  He has also added some RGB lighting to his stream, looks like his dog must love the new toy!




Zacharysc100 has made these two videos which demonstrate his DIY Laminar Flow Water Fountains construction method. He has put some serious thought into his design. Drinking straws like the others are his main weapon to make good flow.





Portojbc has made quite a few videos showing how his build works. The video above shows how his cutter works. He uses two solenoids to pull the cutter in and out of the water stream quickly. The results are quite good.


April 8, 2012

Name the Thing Contest – 201

at 9:05 pm. Filed under Contests


The prize this week is a non contact AC test pen. This pen can be used to test if AC voltage is present in a wire without needing to touch the bare conductor. This contest will run for one week (April 8 – 13, 2012). Ending time is based on central standard time. To enter, identify the item above and what it can be used for.

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 of the correct entries.


Added April 17, 2012

The item to guess was a oxygen sensor or lambda sensor

The winner is Daz (there were 138 entries)


Below is a picture of the prize.



DIY Android Portable Media Player

at 8:54 pm. Filed under Cool Gadgets, DIY Hacks, Electronic Hacks


Check out this DIY Android Portable Media Player that the guys over at The daily life of a DIY person put together.They took a cheap FM radio and hacked in an Android device to make it into a very functional media player. This reminds me a bit of the Chumby.  I could see using this to listen to a podcast before going to bed and waking me up in the morning with some soothing music.

Thanks to Alex from the Android Blog for sending this one in.

Via: Android Blog

“So I had this idea about combining a cheap FM radio with my old HTC Hero mobile, so I could have a wifi radio for our kitchen”


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