Balancing cube looks more like a star

This art-meets-robot has the grueling task of standing on one foot all day long while other robots get to bend to their heart’s content. It balances on that single point by adjusting its center of gravity with six pendulum-like appendages. To make the system more like the Borg, each of those six modules shares sensor data with the rest and work together to keep the unit upright. Give in to loving the design because resistance is futile.

[Via BotJunkie]

Arduino based EATC replacement

The Electronic Automatic Temperature Control Module on [Dan Mattox's] 2000 Ford Taurus bit the dust. The junkyards in the area didn’t have a matching replacement and a new one is pretty hard to come by so he built an EATC  replacement from an Arduino Mega. It includes a solenoid controller board for the vent selector, blower control, and new switches to control the power windows. He’s got the system up and running which is important because after removing the broken EATC the car was stuck blowing 90-degree air at full blast. He’s put together a demo and an installation video which we’ve embedded after the break but there’s also a photo album you can page through. The sketch that we developed to control the system is up at pastebin so get it while it’s hot.

[Read more...]

Shredding to Street Fighter

Strumming to punch and changing frets to move, [Alan Chatham] plays Street Fighter using his guitar. It’s been modified to use OpenChord, an open source guitar controller package he developed. This was originally meant to be used with Guitar Hero and the like but as he mentions in the video after the break, it is open source so you can do whatever you want with it. In this case, he’s patched into a PS3, showing yet another way to use your own hardware on that console. Unlike alternative guitar-like interfaces you won’t have to relearn how to play. You just need to adapt your favorite songs to fall in line with butt-kicking controller combos. For the adventurous you can build your own but [Alan's] got kits available too. [Read more...]

Cramming more pixels into a Thinkpad

Not willing to settle for 1400×1050 on his Thinkpad, [Lawrence Sheed] set out to upgrade the LCD screen. He ordered a 15″ replacement screen that brought the eye candy up to an impressive 2048×1536 QXGA format. The replacement fits perfectly for a nice factory look. Other than some delicate disassembly you might need to flash the EDID but in [Lawrence's] case it wasn’t necessary. If you’re going to haul around a full-blown laptop it might as well have some killer resolution and now you know how to make that happen.

Solder station hack adds temperature control

Take that cheap fire stick you call a soldering iron and turn it into a real tool. [Giorgos Lazaridis] turned his 30 watt soldering iron into a temperature controlled soldering station by adding a thermistor just above the tip to monitor how hot things are getting. A MAX6675 takes care of the thermocouple and shoots a digital temperature value off to the PIC 16F88 which controls the unit by taking user input from a potentiometer and displaying the settings on an HD44780 character display. His use of a dissected ‘wall wort’ inside of the ATX power supply carcass used as the case for the station is a clever hack. See it melt some metal in the clip after the break.

This makes a nice upgrade to our solder station guide, which had a temperature controlled iron but lacked the sensor and automation seen here. [Read more...]

32 LED POV globe

Here’s a slick version of a POV globe(google translated). Created by [Riko], this globe has 32 LEDs and is powered by a rotating coil. The layout looks fairly solid in operation, with the POV effect showing up very nicely on camera.  You can get the schematics and source code from the project page.

We found this project, just like the previous fantastic LED globe on Apparently someone linked to this project in the comments. That is fantastic, that is what the comments should be for. Please help keep our comments polite and helpful as well, even if you are just linking to a project that you think is better.

Mister Gloves, gesture input

This two handed glove input setup, by [Sean Chen] and [Evan Levine], is one step closer to achieving that [Tony Stark] like workstation; IE, interacting with software in 3D with simple hand gestures. Dubbed the Mister Gloves, the system incorporates accelerometer, push button, and flex sensor data over RF where an MCU converts it to a standard USB device, meaning no drivers are needed and a windows PC can recognize it as a standard keyboard and mouse. Catch a video of Mister Gloves playing portal after the jump.

While amazing, we’re left wondering if gesture setups are really viable options considering one’s arm(s) surly would get tired? [Read more...]