Six legged crawler

This hexapod was sent to us on the tipline from [Jamie]. If you want to take the six-legged robot a bit farther than our earlier posts, here and here, this is the hexapod for you. The structural pieces were modeled, and cut out of 3mm thick plywood using CNC. He used TO-220 transistor nylon isolation mounts for the bearings, and bolts and locknuts at each joints. The main body houses eight servos, six for the legs and two for a camera head pan and tilt. There are another six servos, one for each leg, to lift the feet. The whole thing is controlled by an Atmel AT90S8515 clocked at 8 Mhz. The code was compiled using WinAVR free GCC GNU-C. He uses a PlayStation controller to help debug the walk cycles, and change parameters as needed. Watch a video after the jump.
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Flash sync port hacking


Reader [Adrian] picked up a couple cheap wireless flash triggers on eBay. Unfortunately, his Sigma EF-500 DG Super strobe doesn’t have the necessary sync port to make use of these. He popped the device open to try to figure out a way to trigger the device manually. The first idea was to use the test button to fire the device. Thanks to lag, it didn’t work for anything under 1/20th. The solution was to go straight for the optical trigger. [Adrian] has posted some teardown pictures that will help you determine the appropriate solder points for your own mod. The only bit that’s left is adding a 3.5mm mono headphone jack as a sync port. He also has a post on modifying the flash for greater head movement.

A very power suit Halloween


We spent our Halloween dressed as an irate traveler as we flew cross country, but it looks like a lot of people were having much more fun. [flaming_pele!]‘s Aliens power loader is one of the best costumes we’ve seen yet. He built it by referencing a 1/12th model kit and a lot of photos. The final costume is about 80% full size which gets it under their 8 foot ceilings. There’s a video of the suit embedded below. Our love of power suits was documented fairly well in our roundup post this summer. Make found two other related costumes: a Star Wars AT-ST and a generic mech constructed from packing foam. Did any of you dress as something truly nerdy for Halloween? [Read more...]

ShmooCon registration opens

November 1st means that registration for ShmooCon 2009 has opened. The DC hacker convention is entering the fifth year. They’re releasing the tickets in blocks; after today’s are gone the next won’t be available till December 1st. Today is also the closing of first round consideration for their call for papers, but you still have another month before the final deadline.

We’ve always enjoyed our time at ShmooCon. In 2008 we saw talks on cracking GSM encryption and recovering data from SSDs.

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