LEGO host for all of your prototyping projects

[Deadbird] decided to use a LEGO 8880 Super Car as a host for all of his electronic tinkering. Throughout his blog (translated) you’ll find the vehicle with an Arduino MEGA interfacing various prototyping bits. It starts with the motors for locomotion, closely followed by a servo for steering. From there we see the addition of a breadboard and graphic LCD screen. So far he’s worked out the use of a PS2 keyboard as a controller and, most recently he’s interfaced a Wii Nunchuck.

We’re more used to seeing NXT kits adapted for wider use, but if you’ve got a nice kit like this one it makes a great base onto which you can add your own robotic elements.

Auxiliary scoreboard reads status directly from memory

[StaticChanger] built a scoreboard to display his kill statistics from Halo for the PC. Yes, we’ve seen kill counters before, but we like the way that he gathers the data. This project is reading the score directly from an address in memory.

Using a program called Cheat Engine, the memory used by a program can be sniffed. After a few passes, the program will help you find a static memory address for your desired data. Once you have that it’s just a matter of using a pointer to that address in your desired programming language. In this case, a C# program polls the value and instructs an Arduino to display the value on a couple of 7-segment displays. Voila, the number appears next to your screen as you see in the image above.

1 Watt laser engraver

This laser engraver was built using printer parts, a CD-ROM carriage, and some homebrew electronic boards. The laser diode is a 1-Watt model similar to what we saw used as a weak laser cutter back in August. When the width of the material changes the focus of the laser is affected so the diode was mounted on a CD-ROM carriage (in the Z axis) for easy adjustment. The X and Y axes are made using parts from Epson Stylus 800 and Epson Stylus Color II printers. After the break we’ve embedded a video of the machine engraving some wood using EMC2 software on an Ubuntu box. It also boasts the ability to cut paper and some plastic but it can’t compare in power to a CO2-based unit.

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Python library for Emotiv EEG

Want to control things with your mind? The Emotiv EPOCH EEG is one of the best pieces of hardware you can get that is ready to be hacked into your project. Too bad the entry-level SDK will set you back $500. Or you can take advantage of [Cody Brocious'] work by using his Emotiv Python Library. He sniffed around the data coming in over the USB connection and discovered that it’s encrypted. With a bit of trickery he extracted the key and built the 128-aes decryption routine into his package. So far this just pulls raw data from the unit so it’s up to you to figure out how to properly filter the signals and differentiate which sensor corresponds to each data stream. But it’s a start, and hopefully it’ll lead to more mind controlled doo-dads.

Analog style LED clock

Almost named this LED analog clock, like others have... the first comment would have corrected us.

We spied this pretty LED clock this morning and were impressed with how cleanly it was constructed. It was built to mimic an analog clock, so you have the typical hour markings and a minute and hour hand. The minute hand stays in each position for roughly 2 to 3  minutes. The brains behind all those LEDs are a PIC 16f877 with a DS1307 realtime clock. Over all, [WellyBoot] soldered 169 LEDs into place, and did it in a nice clean fashion. We suspect that if we had done it, it would resemble a spaghetti pile. You can see the schematics and build pictures on his site, or watch a video of it in action after the break.

[via HackedGadgets]

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