iPad external battery case forced to work with a non-iPad tablet

[Carnivore] uses a Pipo Max M1 tablet. It’s an Android device that is very responsive thanks t the 1.6 GHz dual-core processor and it runs Jellybean (latest version of Android OS). The one thing he wasn’t so happy with is battery life. Under heavy load it lasts about three hours. When reading an eBook that use can be stretched to 10 hours. His solution was to add an external battery. It turns out the 9.7″ screen makes the body of the device almost exactly the same size as an iPad, so he made an iPad external battery case work with the Android tablet.

[Carnivore] started the hack by disassembling an iP6000 case which houses a 6000 mAh battery. He removed the dock connector and fitted in a 2.5mm power jack. Luckily the buttons on the Android tablet are in nearly the exact same place as those on an iPad, with the power button hole needing just a bit of enlargement. The case charges itself and the tablet’s internal battery using a microUSB port which means he no longer needs to carry around a special power cord. The new hardware increased the battery life by about 75%.

Whatever a phobia of fingers is called, this is it.

Touched is a project by [Rebecca Strauss] that integrates servos, strings, and felt into a horrifying kinetic sculpture made up of a dozen mechanical fingers straight from a Boschian nightmare.

The fingers are made up of segments of wood articulated with the help of a small string. Each pair of fingers is controlled by a single servo, and the tips of each pair of fingers is controlled by a second servo.

After covering them in felt, [Rebecca] wrapped conductive thread around each of the fingers. When some of the fingers are touched, they all recoil as if controlled by a demon living just under a mountain of felt.

[Rebecca] brought in another kinetic sculpture using her servo controlled fingers; in the video up at the top and after the break, you can see the inner workings of this floor-mounted version. When the IR proximity sensor goes off, the fingers recoil but can be coaxed out again by gently stroking one of the phalanges.

Continue reading “Whatever a phobia of fingers is called, this is it.”

Nixie suduku and on-die LEDs

The best booths at Maker Faire draw you in with something unbelievably cool or ridiculously absurd, and bring out a state-of-the-art technology just as your curiosity for the main feature starts to wane. [John Sarik]‘s booth for a class he’s TAing at Columbia – Modern Display Science and Technology - is one of these booths.

The main feature of the booth is a suduku board filled with 81 Nixie tubes. As shown in the video below, you control the cursor (the decimal point of the Nixies) with a pair of pots. After moving the cursor to the desired location, there’s a keypad to change the number at any one of the 81 locations on a suduku puzzle.

[John]‘s presentation then continued to what he’s working on up at Columbia: he’s working on a project to put arrays of LEDs onto silicon, just like any other integrated circuit. He demoed a small LED display built in to a DIP-40 package with a glass (or maybe quartz) window. Yes, it’s a really tiny LED matrix display with a pixel pitch probably much smaller than a traditional LCD display.

Video of the suduku machine after the break, as well as a gallery of the LED matrix on a chip. The matrix was very hard to photograph, so if [John] would be so kind as to send a few more pics in, we’ll be happy to put them up. There’s also a proper video from [John]‘s YouTube showing off the Nixie Suduku puzzle solving itself with a recursive algorithm.

Continue reading “Nixie suduku and on-die LEDs”

Escape from New York: Hackaday edition

Woo we’re home from Maker Faire! The Hackaday boss man [Caleb] and [Scott], [Phil], and [Andrew] from Squidfoo are back in Springfield, Missouri. I’m safely back in the bosom of Appalachia in Pensyltucky, and we hope every one else at Maker Faire NYC 2012 made it back home safely.

Don’t think this is the end of our coverage of Maker Faire, though. Honestly, the Internet situation was terrible at Maker Faire, and between tethering on my droid and a MiFi, I was lucky to post what I did. There’s more stuff coming down the pipe, and now that I have a decent connection we’ll be posting more videos to the Hackaday YouTube channel.

Of course this wouldn’t be a proper Hackaday post without a hack, therefore I will humbly submit something I discovered around the Delaware Water Gap: Every GPS unit has a setting to avoid New Jersey. All you have to do is enable the ‘avoid toll roads’ setting. Yes, it’s an easy modification to preserve your health and sanity, lest you accidentally find your way into a suburban swampland.