Your source for daily hacks

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 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.


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.


Published on: September 13, 2013 / Comments: None

Build a Tiny Laser Turret

Ranking up there in the category of possibly over engineered cat toys, is the TinyLaserTurret.  This will probably keep you _and_ fluffy entertained for at least a few hours.

The brains of the operation is an ATTiny85 microcontroller.  The unit is controlled by a Wii Nunchuck (using the WiiChuck adapter).  Pan & tilt are made available via servos.   Then there’s a 5v red laser module for that mysterious dot that fluffy can’t seem to ever catch.  Because of current requirements the laser is driven with a transistor.  Everything is mounted on a 3D Printed frame.



Published on: September 10, 2013 / Comments: None

Jack the Ripper is an automated DIY disc changer

Andy had a problem that a lot of us have, we’re ready to move into the future and stream all of our movies (that we legally own of course) to our XBMC media center (or equivalent).  But who wants to take the time to rip your entire collection?  Not me.  So Andy started to rip his and came to the same conclusion.

So he built a robot to automate the boring process of taking a disc from the stack, putting in the drive, taking the disc out of the drive, put it in the finished stack, and repeat.  The build uses mostly 3D printed parts and servos.  The process is controlled by a Raspberry Pi and a laptop.

While the original source function for this is for ripping DVDs, I don’t see why this couldn’t be adapted to ripping audio CDs, or automated cd burning by inserting cd blanks, or direct-to-cd printers, you know to get that freestyle demo of yours out!


Published on: August 7, 2013 / Comments: None

Project sentry gun, you know … for personal protection

Project sentry gun is an open source project for people who like to make sentry guns.  From the looks of it the most popular flavor is for paintball guns, but you could adapt this design to anything — as all the basics are there.  The project is powered by an Arduino or a custom Sentry controller, some servos, webcam, and some raw materials.

The site has everything you need, part’s list / BOM, places to order the parts, schematics and source code.  They also have the design for their standalone controller.  You can even buy a complete setup.

Cool project, looks like it could be a lot of fun.

Published on: July 29, 2013 / Comments: None

Meet Frank, the Arduino robot

Matthew is back making some cool stuff, this time we got frank and his little obstacle avoiding robot.  He’s roaming around, looking around, avoiding things.  He’s even got some LED’s and plays music!  A fun little project to build I’m sure.

Matthew was nice enough to put up his source code in case you want to build something similar.