What kind of LED matrix does your vodka come with?

Medea Vodka comes with a bottle that includes a blue scrolling LED Marquee. OK, great? It’s an interesting marketing ploy but kind of a waste don’t you think? Friends, it’s up to us to repurpose this  hardware. It can’t be that difficult to hack into the programmable display and make it do your bidding. Our friend Google tells us that you can get your hands on this 750 milliliter bottle for about $40. That’s around $25 more than a passable grade of Vodka sells for, a mere pittance for the challenge of cracking open the hardware for fun and profit. Don’t forget to document your work and tip us off once you’ve accomplished something. See Medea’s programming instructional video after the break. Oh yeah, remember to hack first and drink later… cheap soldering irons get hot!

[Thanks LoopyMind via Idealize]


  1. grovenstien says:

    Ahhrgh perhaps this is the tackiest thing i have seen ever!

    Although it might be fun to get Tweet updates whilst sauzzled. Hang on i cant read!

  2. bob says:

    drink first, drink second… got it.

  3. anthonydi says:

    Hook it to a arduino to tell you when its time for another shot.

  4. Jess says:

    step 1: sample the vodka to ensure consistency… …step 4: sample the vodka again to gain confidence in your hacking abilities… … step 6: sample the vodka… … step 12: vodka…

  5. Skitchin says:

    Very tack indeed… How does the stuff taste? For $40 I’m going for the Grey Goose.

    For $40 I imagine you get re-branded Popov with Chinese black market-grade electronics.

  6. Mythgarr says:

    Hmm – add an accelerometer or orientation sensor to auto-increment. Voila! A shot counter.

  7. Xtalker says:

    If its like this one:


    It has a encapsulated chip, three buttons and a led matrix… good luck!

  8. Urza9814 says:

    Hack the hardware first, then drink, then do the software.

    Oblig. XKCD:


  9. Doug says:

    I notice that he couldn’t program “my place or yours” into the bottle after the 3rd drink…

    dude also sucks at pouring

  10. Coderego says:

    Some ideas:

    1) Temperature gauge! Add a thermometer on the inside and measure the temperature of the vodka.

    2) Measure contents remaining, Print out % of bottle left

    3) Create a drinking game out of this!

  11. david lawton says:

    lol hack first drink later

  12. NatureTM says:

    When I code for fun, I like to drink, so this could be a great project. A little pricey for an led matrix I think, unless this is really good vodka.
    The funny thing for me about drinking while coding, I often times write stuff that works great, but it makes no sense to me the next day. It ends up that when I want to modify the code I usually have to scrap it and start fresh. The sober code is usually a lot bigger but at least I know what’s going on. Hopefully I can get a job working @ home someday ;-)

    P.S. I’m drinking right now, but I’m from Wisconsin so it’s ok.

  13. Marco says:

    Every time some commenter on HaD complains about the widespread use of Arduino… take a shot!

    Once there’s no more flammable liquid in the bottle it’s time to pick up the iron (shouldn’t take more than a day or so..).

  14. ARDUINO!!!!!!! says:

    I bet someone will think WOW what a great idea lets slap an old ardunio on that bad boy…after reading HaD for awhile now and I still have no idea what it is nor do I care…

  15. Jason says:

    lol pure geek… instead of just having a drink and concentrating on the beautiful girl he has invited over, he is playing with his new toy…

  16. ThatO1Guy says:

    No what needs to be done is add the blood alcohol sensor from sparkfun http://www.sparkfun.com/commerce/product_info.php?products_id=8880
    Then add a electric valve on the top and let it cut you off when you are done. Refill as necessary. Maybe make it spew random stuff that it reads from twitter and let you figure it out. It could become its own drinking game.

  17. Matt says:

    Expensive soldering irons get hot too :P

  18. Ivan says:

    Empty it, make it waterproof, throw into ocean, 21 century message in (on) a bottle

  19. wes says:

    Will be going on the back of my bike seat.

  20. Hirudinea says:

    What kind of electronics should you have on a Vodka bottle? Easy, a Breathalyzer!

  21. t&p says:

    This might be a real deal! about $25 for a blue led matrix. Multiply the top with the side row of leds then take that number and multiply the price of what one of those leds cost (probably about $1 each) I counted from the topic pic a 17×5 matrix = 8 fucking 5 leds. $85 vs $25 plus another $25 to get plastered! FUCK YEAH!

  22. a says:
  23. Brock_Lee says:

    Better deal:

    Go to the local trendy club, find out how much they get to recycle these and offer a dollar more.

    Probably get em’ for a few bucks.

  24. Jason says:

    … until the SEE goes dry? Some Visine should fix that up for you.

  25. Radar_Monkey says:

    This would make an awesome bong.

  26. jeditalian says:

    vodka is not a flammable liquid. it’s usually only 40% flammable liquid by volume.
    better buy stock in these people BEFORE u make me want to buy their stuff:)

  27. MrWazoo says:

    Damn his english, he should have drank loads more vodka before making these comments in this movie haha

    i can tell for sure the guy is dutch from his way of speaking english, and i would have left my teacher with an hartattack if i spoke this way

    (and yet people may find errors in my english, but at least i dont sound silly

  28. Kimmo says:

    That flick is 100% absurd – I love it! :D A couple in a romantic setting, POURING DOWN VODKA and PROGRAMMING ELECTRIC COLLARS with CHOPIN playing in the background ..!

    “Pchrez the entaah baton ant zen..”

  29. Nameless says:

    Nice. And if you won’t be able to hack it, at least you can get drunk.

  30. Ron says:

    How do you love thee?

    lol thee? who uses that word

  31. Ben Ryves says:

    @Ron: Elizabeth Barrett Browning, for starters.

  32. yuppicide says:

    Their website shows you how to change the message:


    This is a great housewarming gift!

  33. Dennis says:

    Ordered 2 a few days ago. 1 for a gift and the other for play…

  34. dkavanagh says:

    I just got one today.. and my Arduino board is being shipped. Bwahaha!

  35. yuppicide says:

    Someone make this tweet every time a drink is poured.

  36. Bluemetal says:

    It’s a PIC16F628A with 4 x 74HC595 8-Bit Serial to Serial/Parallel ICs and a ATMEL AT24C16AN EEPROM. The leds are 120 ( 5 x24 ) SMD blue leds 1mmx2mm in size on a flexible film dual layer PCB. There are two CR2032 (not soldered so they can be replaced) at each end of the film (right behind the buttons) that fit into a deeper slot on the bottle.

    The whole thing is held in place by a transparent silicone sleeve and a smaller plastic frame to distribute the pressure on the PCB.

  37. Trevor says:

    just got mine from drinkupny (http://www.drinkupny.com/Medea_Vodka_p/s1001.htm). vodka is amazing, super cool.

  38. einstein says:

    vodka is great!!! dangerousthsthsth, can’t stop drinkig, upper version of Kettle one, if anyone is into vodka, knows immediately outstanding

  39. some1 says:

    lol a mini pong drinking game awsome

  40. Shran says:

    You really should have a look at their Beer-barrels.
    They’ve got an 46 inch HD-TV wrapped around ‘m.

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