Here is a quick project for an electronic Halloween pumpkin. With a bit of hacking a $1 plastic pumpkin is upgraded: a sensor embedded in the nose detects when people get close and will play scary sounds and animates LEDs on the face. The sounds are stored on an SD card so its easy to change and customize what the pumpkin says, while the code is written for an Arduino so it's easy to modify the behavior. I'm going to have this pumpkin outside my door to freak out the little kids who go to daycare nearby. Boo!
The NeuroDreamer Sleep Mask by Cornfield Electronics is a meditation device that flashes colored lights at your eyelids and plays brainwave beats for your ears to help you fall asleep, have lucid dreams, or for meditation. We decided to open one up to see the details of its construction and figure out how it works.
Sous vide is rapidly becoming an important cooking technique in many of the very best restaurants in the world. It combines principles of molecular gastronomy with industrial temperature controls to precisely manage the chemical reactions of cooking. We love good food as much as we love science and technology, so we had to build our own sous vide controller. This project turns an inexpensive rice cooker into a precision cooking instrument. Join the high-tech cooking revolution by building your very own sous vide controller!
This tutorial by John De Cristofaro (johngineer) aims to teach you how to take photos of your hacks and projects for sharing on the web, and perhaps even in print. It focuses on smaller items, less than 6”x6”x6” in size. Bigger projects present their own unique problems that are beyond the scope of this article. However, you can always “scale up” the methods presented here to take pictures of larger subjects, at least to a point.
When I first saw the Drawdio at Maker Faire I knew it would be a great project for beginners: A lot of fun with instant gratification! Essentially, it's 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.
This is actually not any sort of product or public project (!) - its something I designed to help me evaluate solar panels and how they act when charging batteries. Normally this requires a lot of multimeters and its a bit of a pain to do if you have to constantly change out panels. So I decided I would build a specialized tool that would assist me.
A good front-light is essential, not only for being seen, but to see the road. LED lamps will not illuminate the road, and they can be too dim for cars to see you (1W or better LEDs are quite nice as headlamps.) I offer here a simple (but high-quality) design to build your own 5 or 10W halogen lamp, which runs off of a rechargeable 7.2V or 7.4V Lithium Ion battery pack.
The Brain Machine provides you with a fun, easy way to meditate, all the while being very photogenic! They work with lights and sounds that pulse at a 14-minute-long meditation sequence of brainwave frequencies. Your brain synchronizes to this meditation sequence, and you meditate. It's that easy! And the beautiful colors and patterns you vividly imagine along the way make it fun and enjoyable.
In 1970, John Conway came up with a 1-player game called Game of Life. The Game of Life is a mathematical game that simulates 'colonies' that grow or die based on how crowded or lonely they are and is known for the way it creates a beautiful organic display out of randomness. Here is a design for a simple electronic project that plays Conway's Game of Life. Make one kit and keep it on your desk, or attach multiple kit modules together to create a large display.