Your source for daily hacks

Published on: October 29, 2013 / Comments: 1

There’s still time for these Halloween hacks!

Halloween isn’t over yet, there is still time to make something cool for Halloween.  Here’s a few to inspire you.

First up is Halloween Prank.  While not a completed project, this is a good base for Arduino powered scare tactics!  The build uses an Arduino, an Ultrasonic distance sensor, and a servo.  By detecting ‘someone coming to your door’ possibly, the servo is triggered.  In Jacob’s build the plan is to drop a bunch of spiders on people walking up.  That sounds like fun.  You could also make it actuate something to jump out at your unsuspecting victims.

Source code for Halloween Prank is available here on GitHub.  There are more pictures and a test video on Jacob’s site.

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Published on: October 22, 2013 / Comments: 2

The Happy Birthday Box

Everyone usually agrees that home made gifts are usually more heart felt.  So instead of buying a gift,  Christian decided to make one for a friend.  Not too far from a musical birthday card, the Birthday Box, will present a message to the receiver on an LCD screen, and sing the song happy birthday.

The Happy Birthday Box uses a piezo buzzer for a speaker generated by an Arduino.  The text message is displayed on a standard 16×2 LCD screen, and powered by a battery pack.  There is a small roller switch as well, I assume everything turns on / off when you open and close the box but it wasn’t specifically stated as the functionality.

Keep this project bookmarked, and add a few LEDs for that valentine of yours.

Check out a quick video after the break;  Source code and more pictures on Christian’s blog.

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Published on: October 17, 2013 / Comments: None

Animatronic Rats do the spooky dance – Ratsberri Pi

Found this one while looking around for more Halloween inspired hacks.  Hari picked up a bunch of rubber rats at the dollar store and decided to make a Halloween project out of it.

A Raspberry Pi connected to a Pi Cobbler breakout board, and a 16 channel i2c PWM servo controller puppet an array of rubber rats.  Everything is powered by a pair of hobby LiPo batteries and 5v regulators.   The rats eyes were swapped out for some bright red LED’s giving a pretty authentic haunted house look.

There’s still time to put something like this together before Halloween!

Published on: October 14, 2013 / Comments: None

The Tricorder project is about making discoveries with sensors

When you hear the term Tricorder, you might think of Star Trek but I assure you, this is no toy prop.  Keeping with the same concept of the Tricorder used on the TV show the Tricorder is about reading data, _lots_ of data.  And that is what the Tricorder project aims to do, develop handheld devices that are fitted with lots of diverse sensors in order to observe them.

So far the project has produced a few different versions.  The Mark 1, the Mark 2, etc.  They are currently working on the Mark 5.  Each version is pretty different from the other, and they all contain a wide variety of sensors such as atmospheric temperature, humidity, pressure and electromagnetic field, color, infra-red.  And the obvious like GPS.  They’re even working on developing their own sensors like this 3d printable mini spectrometer.

The project is open, and there are tons of pictures, and schematics on the tricorderproject’s web site.

Published on: October 7, 2013 / Comments: 1

Biometric security toy box is awesome

bombox2Taking a ploy from the upcoming TouchID feature the new iPhone will have, Grant was inspired to make this really neat toy box for his son’s toy car collection.

You would think getting a fingerprint reader would be the most difficult part, but apparently Adafruit has ‘em for sale!  So Grant got a fingerprint reader, a hobby servo, pushbutton, and some batteries and hooked it up to an Arduino UNO.

Looks like a fun project, especially for something like a jewelry box.

Check out the source code and other details on Grant’s site.

Check out the video after the break.

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Published on: October 2, 2013 / Comments: 3

DIY Watch uses OLED screen and ATMega328

With the advances of shrinking technology it’s becoming more and more easier to roll your own every day items.  Ever thought of making your own watch ?  Sure you have, it was probably going to turn out larger than you anticipated too huh?   How’s 1.5mm thick sound ?   Sounds pretty good to me too.  Zak has a really awesome writeup of him rolling his own watch.

The display is a 0.96″ OLED display (128×64 pixels), it uses a DS3231M RTC, 2 LEDs, a buzzer, a 3 way switch and runs off of a 150mah LiPo battery.   Impressive!  Features of the software include, window animations, up to 10 alarms, games, stopwatch, and flashlight mode.

Power consumption numbers are decent too.  6ua in sleep mode, and 10ma with normal on.  That means depending on how much time you spend with the screen on will dictate how long your charge will last.  This puts you anywhere between 15 hours and 3 years.  With those sort of numbers and a modest use of your watch you should be able to get 15-30 days out of a single charge.

The Schematic and source code are available on Zak’s web site, a long with more photos of the build.  Enjoy a video and a few more pics after the break.

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Published on: September 27, 2013 / Comments: None

DIY RF control system for R/C Vehicle using Arduino and nRF24L01

With the advance of affordable 3D Printers, the home brew R/C vehicle community is booming with people making and designing their own parts.  However, making your own RF controller is a different story.

Armed with a pair of Arduinos and nRF24L01 modules, Mujahed has a good start on one.  On the transmitter side he’s reading a joystick module with an Arduino Uno and transmitting with one of the nRF24L01 modules.  On the receiver side is another wireless module feeding an Arduino nano that is tied to a few servos.  Everything on the car side is running off of a standard r/c car style 1800mAH battery.

More info and wiring diagrams on Mujahed’s site. Check out the video after the break.

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