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 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 10, 2013 / Comments: None

SPiBot r/c tank uses Raspberry Pi for recon surveillance

SPiBot is a remote control platform with tank-like tracks.  It’s a work in progress, but will be fitted with a rotatable camera, microphone, and distance sensors.  It is to be controlled via the web on either a phone, tablet, or laptop.

The base for the platform is a Raspberry Pi.  WiFi is used for communication.  The HTML interface is served up using nginx and PHP.  Motor control happens via PWM from the Pi to motor drivers.   Video and pictures will be done with some combination of raspivid, vlc, ffmpeg, and raspivid.

It looks like the project is pretty far a long, but not quite finished.  Hopefully the author has some pets he can terrorize when it’s finished.

Source code on GitHub, and the original project link here.  It’s not in English so here’s the google translate link.  Video of the control test after the break.

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Published on: October 2, 2013 / Comments: None

DIY Skee Ball Machine

With the help of  “Because We Can”, creator fungus amungus made his own Skee Ball Machine. The game was built from 3/4″ plywood cut to shape on a ShopBot. Everything appears to fit together like a puzzle with a few screws to secure the parts.

The brains of the game is hosted on an Arduino UNO and it uses 5cm Optical Distance Sensors to detect when the balls go through the holes.  The traditional rules were tweaked a little to include among other things the ability to score bonus points for combos.

Check out the video and links above for more details.

 

Published on: September 24, 2013 / Comments: None

Do-It-Yourself Raspberry Pi Tablet

Raspberry Pi CameraIntroducing DukePad. A Do-It-Yourself Raspberry Pi tablet running JavaSE Embedded 8. The DukePad design includes a 10″ LCD Display (1280 x 800), a Raspberry Pi, a Raspberry Pi Camera, WiFi, a motion sensor and more which are all encased in an acrylic enclosure (PDF). The parts to build your own open source Tablet will cost you about $370.

The creators are quick to point out that DukePad is demo quality. So don’t expect any ground breaking features out of the box. However, the beauty of open-source is you can make it your own. If you don’t want to buy everything individually be patient because a kit is in the works.

Who knows… maybe you can add your own fingerprint reader for security!

 

Published on: September 23, 2013 / Comments: 2

Hacking iPhone 5S TouchID

Think your iPhone 5S TouchID is secure? Think again. The biometrics hacking team of the Chaos Computer Club (CCC) has successfully bypassed the biometric security of Apple’s TouchID using the How to fake a fingerprints? process they wrote about back in 2004.

“First, the fingerprint of the enroled user is photographed with 2400 dpi resolution. The resulting image is then cleaned up, inverted and laser printed with 1200 dpi onto transparent sheet with a thick toner setting. Finally, pink latex milk or white woodglue is smeared into the pattern created by the toner onto the transparent sheet. After it cures, the thin latex sheet is lifted from the sheet, breathed on to make it a tiny bit moist and then placed onto the sensor to unlock the phone. This process has been used with minor refinements and variations against the vast majority of fingerprint sensors on the market.”

Nothing good could ever come from storing your fingerprints on your smartphone.  Just don’t do it people! You can read more about the iPhone 5s TouchID Hack here.

Published on: September 19, 2013 / Comments: None

Solar powered temperature logger using Electric Imp

The Electric Imp is a WIFI module with a brain.  In some use cases it’s used to help connect your device to the cloud, as one of those ‘internet of things’.  On other cases (like this one), it is the thing.  Marcus has a cool little project that takes temperature readings and pushes them to the cloud.

Since the Imp is pretty power savvy, Marcus was able to power the project using a solar panel and charger.  From there it uses a TMP36 analog temperature module to pull readings from.  The temperature is read using the ADC and turned into an actual temperature number.   The imp handles the rest by using the ThingSpeak api, which then collects and graphs the data.

Source code and schematic included on slickstreamer.