Hackaday links: August 22, 2010

EL back-lit keyboard

A couple bucks worth of EL wire gives a nice green glow to [Mark Shasha's] T400 Elite. Hopefully [Jeri Ellsworth] has some time to pull those how-to videos together so that we can make our own EL wire to replicate this hack.

Mini kaboom

This tiny cannon is right out of Night at the Museum. It works just like its much bigger brothers would; fill with powder, insert cannon ball, and light with a fuse. Both the introduction and the follow-up videos document the destruction of various objects using the diminutive weapon. [Thanks Thorsten]

Don’t close that browser

We use Google Chrome quite a bit because it tends to be more responsive when opening massive numbers of tabs while researching featured hacks. But there’s some things we don’t like about it. Lack of built-in PDF support under Ubuntu comes to mind, but a smaller thorn in our side is that closing the last tab will also close the browser window. [Ted Schaefer] got tired of the same thing so he wrote an extension called Last Tab Standing to trap that last browser tab, opening the default window instead of closing the browser.

Amiga demo winner

This 4K demo for the Amiga AGA is the top ranked submission from Breakpoint 2010. [Osgeld] tipped us off about this and made the point that although it’s four times the size of those 1K JavaScript demos, the Amiga code doesn’t get to take advantage a pre-existing framework like Java does enjoy the benefits of running inside of a browser . Is this doing more with less?

Transformers balloon sculptures

If you’re having trouble finding that art piece to fill up your dining room you should consider building transformers out of balloons. The sculpture above is a free-standing Optimus Prime but the artist has also turned out Megatron, Grimlock, and others. [Thanks W01F]

Comments

  1. sneakypoo says:

    Jeri has already put out a couple of more vids on the diy EL Wire:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h4O3BGjxd5I&feature=channel

  2. sneakypoo says:

    Now where’s the edit-button when you need it… That was supposed to be two links, not one embedded vid and one link, oh well.

  3. The Cageybee says:

    Balloon art? Is this hackaday?
    /pinches self to check not dreaming.
    No, I did just see that.

  4. ugh says:

    Java != JavaScript.

  5. Firestryke31 says:

    Hate to nitpick, but JavaScript != Java. Hope that was a typo.

    I would like to try that EL wire thing on my laptop, might make using it in the dark a little easier.

  6. svofski says:

    @Firestryke31: the contest they mention is a JavaScript contest. Click the link ffs.

  7. Bartzilla says:

    @svofski

    Dial down the flames. What Firestryke31 was referring to was “the Amiga code doesn’t get to take advantage a pre-existing framework like Java does” in the post, implying that a Javascript demo would be using the Java framework. That’s pretty incorrect, Java and Javascript aren’t really related in any way and I’m a little surprised that a HAD editor would make that mistake. A more accurate phrasing would be “the Amiga code doesn’t get to take advantage the browser capabilities like Javascript does”.

  8. Mike Szczys says:

    @Bartzilla: Nope, that’s my fault. I understand that Java and JavaScript are different, but I made a mistake in thinking that JavaScript would have an overhead like Java does. I stand corrected.

  9. Fallen says:

    Fill with powder not power. ;)

  10. octel says:

    why EL wire and not an EL panel??

  11. Leithoa says:

    I imagine he used EL wire for a couple reasons. The first being it’s probably less work to just snake some wire in between the keys than it is to drill a keyboards worth of holes and individually refit each key on its housing.
    Depending on the quality of the keyboard it may not be easy to remove and refit each key.

  12. dopplershift says:

    Is it just me, or is there no actual link to the EL wire keyboard project? My friend Google can’t seem to find [Mark Shasha's] project either.

  13. Hirudinea says:

    I love that little cannon, I was just thinking about raising a regiment of mouse artillery too!

  14. Mark Shasha says:

    OMG I GOT ON HACKADAY I LOVE MY LIFE YESSSSSS :):):)

  15. FB says:

    I recall Chrome having that feature built in a while ago…

  16. egåroht says:

    java is to javascript what car is to carpet

  17. Drew says:

    Ah! A way to finaly give my IBM model M backlighting! Awesome!

  18. The Cageybee says:

    Hmm. For an article title ‘Links’, I’m a little perplexed as to why there’s no link to the EL back-lit keyboard build/page.
    Any chance we could have one?

  19. max says:

    Didnt gigafide do an el-wire keyboard video the other day?

  20. svofski says:

    Heh, ok. I clicked the JavaScript contest link and didn’t notice the mistake in the actual article. I’m rather amused that HaD has mentioned demoscene as such, a rare occasion. But then again, this particular demo is a rare gem, an immediate classic.

  21. Lynge says:

    I, for one, absolutely LOVE that Chrome closes when I close the last tab.
    I use all browsers in my daily work, and I always curse when I cant click my mousewheel to close Firefox completely when there is only one tab left.

    Oh well, each to his own I guess, but I really hope chrome never adopts a different default settings for that :)

    Great links btw

  22. Mark Shasha says:

    hello, to answer your questions

    1. i used el wire insted of el paper because cutting holes for all the keys to fit in the el paper dident really work. el wire i just snaked through the bottom of the keys and put them back on. all the keys press fine.
    2. i hid the el wire inverter in this slot on the side of my computer that i never use (dont know what its called, but its BIG)
    3. there is no build page, i dident bother documenting everything mostly because i am lazy.
    4. its a 3v inevter, and after going around my mobo with a altmeter i saw 2 leads and jsut solderded.

    hope this answeres your questions.

    regards

    mark shasha

  23. zeiris says:

    Google documents has a very, very nice online PDF viewer. There’s a Chrome plugin for it.

    Lazy loading means it requires some care to work offline, but it’s pretty much the bees knees otherwise.

  24. JK says:

    > Is this doing more with less?
    Not to mention that, to my knowledge, the 1k JavaScript demos have not music/sound whatsoever, while the 4k Amiga demo is accompanied by a sweet soundtrack (which gave me the creeps when watching it on the bigscreen).

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