Drawdio is an electronic pencil that lets you make music while you draw! It’s great project for beginners: An easy soldering kit with instant gratification. Essentially, its a very simple musical synthesizer that uses the conductive properties of pencil graphite to create different sounds. The result is a fun toy that lets you draw musical instruments on any piece of paper.
-Runs on a single AAA battery for many hours (even ‘nearly dead’
batteries will work)
-Ridiculously fun for all ages
The suggested donation for the workshop is $30, to cover supplies. All of the events, classes, and workshops hosted and run by the Parts and Crafts Collective are free, or are priced on a sliding-scale. Donations greater than the suggested amount are deeply appreciated and help us create our projects and run our programs and allow us to work with people who could not otherwise afford to come to our events. No one will be turned away based on their lack of ability to pay.
Will Macfarlane co-founded Camp Kaleidoscope and founded the Parts and Crafts Collective. He’s taught hands-on science, technology, and engineering to students of all ages, elementary to graduate school, as well as to artists and designers. Apart from teaching, he also writes software for MOS architects, a small, experimental, architecture firm.
So Halloween is upon us again and I really wanted to use the Arduino I had. I went to the halloween store and found a skull with a hinged skull and that was the spark that began this project. I knew that it would probably be easy to have a servo move using the arduino and have it move the skull jaw up and down.
Had Vizzini of “The Princess Bride” lived to relate a third “classic blunder” beyond land wars in Asia and competing with Sicilians, he might have urged start-ups to avoid hardware-dependent strategies. Hardware, after all, can be expensive to build and can’t match software for ease (and cost) of distribution. So, is hardware a bad idea for start-ups? Or are we just thinking about hardware in the wrong way?
Open me up, find software/services inside. Gadi Amit of NewDealDesign suggests that the hardware business, long shunned by Silicon Valley VCs for its costs and complexities, may be getting easier due to ready-made manufacturing capacity in China, which is driving down the cost of building hardware.
Sequence of events:
-Detect motion (IR sensor)
-Trigger Silly String (servo)
-Play sound (funny laugh on a $4 Wal-mart toy recorder)
-Transmit RF signal to second Arduino
-Second Arduino receives RF signal
-Wifi shield sends tweet (follow on Twitter: hackolantern)
-Wait 20 seconds before it can shoot again
Google’s Energy Monitor allows householders to monitor energy use and greenhouse gas emissions, thereby reducing consumption and saving money. Google may be best known for helping you find things on the web, but the online search company’s latest move is a bid to make futuristic low-energy eco-homes a reality. Launching for the first time in the UK today, Google Powermeter is an online tool that allows householders to monitor their home’s energy use and greenhouse gas emissions via the web, and so reduce their consumption and save money.
Some history – The open source Tweet-a-watt project was announced and released before the Google Powermeter, after the release we applied to Google’s program so the Tweet-a-watt could work with the Google Powermeter API, we received a generic form-letter response, and then later a Google engineer commented on our site…
Hi,I’m an engineer on the Google PowerMeter team. I think Tweet-a-Watt is a really cool project! We’re excited by all the interest around Tweet-a-Watt and other do-it-yourself energy-monitoring projects, and we’d love to have all kinds of devices working with Google PowerMeter. Please stay tuned. Comment by Ka-Ping Yee — April 28, 2009 @ 4:45 am
That was about 6 months ago. We’ve sent additional requests through the Google powered device form, but they’ve been ignored. There are thousands of people out there using the fully open source energy monitoring system based on the software (and hardware) of the Tweet-a-watt, which also uses Google’s app engine, it’s not clear why Google isn’t working with any of them or opening up their API so other power meters can use it.
Lastly, another Power meter maker wrote in a few months ago.
It’s almost 2 month later and our situation is like yours in April 2009. We are metering device manufacturer, we applied to the program and did not get any response from Google, not even stay tuned. The powermeter API seems to be something virtual. Comment by Robert — June 18, 2009 @ 5:27 pm
Xerox researchers have invented a kind of ink that can conduct electricity and be used to put electronic circuits on top of plastics, film, and textiles. That means in the coming years we’ll be able to wear or bend our electronics. You could even print out your electronic gadget on plastic sheets, as if you were printing a document. Silicon chips have long been too expensive or heavy to use in devices that are extremely lightweight. The Xerox team solved this fundamental problem with lighter materials, and it plans to sell the new materials to other businesses that could make wearable electronics.
We have a Xerox solid ink printer, we’d love to be able to drop in a block of silver and print up some hardware
Contraptor is a DIY open source construction set for experimental personal fabrication, desktop manufacturing, prototyping and bootstrapping. Various сartesian robots can be assembled from Contraptor and used as a prototyping platform for projects such as XY plotter, mini CNC machine, 3D printer etc. You can make components of the Structural + Basic linear motion subsets of Contraptor at home for about $300 in parts and materials, plus shipping, taxes and time. Sketchup models of Contraptor components are hosted on Google 3D Warehouse while the DXF exports and SVG templates are hosted on Thingiverse, a cool new site for sharing hardware designs. If you like the set but don’t want to make it, we’re working with Hines Design Labs to fabricate a small quantity of Contraptor subsets, and then release the design/manufacturing files under an open source license, so that anyone with Shopbot could do the same. The initial kits are planned to be sold at or below cost – $150 to 250 depending on the subset. We need 10 committed buyers for Structural subset kit ($200) and 10 for Basic linear motion subset kit ($250).
Tonight is our weekly “Ask an engineer chat” 10pm ET. We are back from a non-stop 72 hour trip to San Francisco, CA and back for the 2009 EFF Pioneer awards. We’re exhausted, but we’ll be answering all of your engineering questions and more tonight! We have some photos from the event here, thank you to everyone who attended this wonderful event and fundraiser for the EFF!
Over the weekend I added a new menu option called “set scnd”, short for “set seconds display”. It has three choices: “yes”, “no” and “fast”. If you pick “yes”, the Ice Tube Clock looks exactly the same. If you pick “no”, seconds are not displayed and a blinking dot is added between hours and minutes. If region is set to US, any leading 0 from hour is removed, and an A or P is added at the end of the clock to denote AM or PM. If you pick “fast”, then every display segment is used like this: HH.MM.SSxx where xx are hundredths of a second, so they scroll by really fast and look pretty nifty. I’ll post the modified firmware in a little while, it’s on my laptop which is at home and asleep, wife is going to wake it up for me when she gets back