Speech controlled garbage can

This speech controlled garbage can was sent in via the tip line by [Amnon]. The garbage can will come to you following a black line and stopping when it sees a cross in the line, then waits for another voice command. It can then return to where it belongs or go outside following the line. The system is based on a microchip PIC 18F4431 and uses three 18 volts cordless drill motors and their batteries as the power source. “In the near future the line sensors will be replaced with UV line sensors and the black line will be replaced with clear UV color.”

When you call the system “Pach Zevel ” (garbage can in Hebrew) the system go to standby and the LED’s light up.  After the previous stage if you say “ELAY” (to me in Hebrew) it will drive on the black line till the first crossing.
This adds new meaning to taking the trash out.

Geeky tree ornaments

tree-ornaments3

Geekware.ca has some ideas for geeky tree ornaments. This is a great way to add some personality to your holidays as well as recycle some of that electronic junk you have laying around. From RAM stars to floppy disk ornaments there are certainly some quirky ideas here. They would make great last minute gifts for someone who can appreciate your nerdiness. GeekAlerts also has a couple interesting ideas too.

Machining custom robot parts

cncrobotparts

Robot Magazine has a great article about how to machine custom robot parts. In this article [Matt Bauer] shows the basics of making custom robot parts and skeletal brackets for his humanoid robot creations using a CNC mini-mill. He uses a custom jig overlay designed to make cutting thin sheet stock much easier and to protect his equipment. This template concept creates a platform for many other custom parts going forward. [Matt] includes the .nc g-code files as well as a “how-to” PDF  in a ZIP file.

Hack-o’-lantern

[Todd] sent in his Hack-o’-lantern just a bit late for Halloween. He did a good job of working with the logo considering the difficulty it poses for pumpkin carving.  We would have been proud to have that on our porch for the kids to steal and smash in the road. Since others in the past have also done Hack a Day pumpkins, maybe this will spawn a Hack a Day pumpkin carving contest next year. If he had enough time to get the green LED working, it would have been that much sweeter; everything is better with electronics.

Six legged crawler

This hexapod was sent to us on the tipline from [Jamie]. If you want to take the six-legged robot a bit farther than our earlier posts, here and here, this is the hexapod for you. The structural pieces were modeled, and cut out of 3mm thick plywood using CNC. He used TO-220 transistor nylon isolation mounts for the bearings, and bolts and locknuts at each joints. The main body houses eight servos, six for the legs and two for a camera head pan and tilt. There are another six servos, one for each leg, to lift the feet. The whole thing is controlled by an Atmel AT90S8515 clocked at 8 Mhz. The code was compiled using WinAVR free GCC GNU-C. He uses a PlayStation controller to help debug the walk cycles, and change parameters as needed. Watch a video after the jump.
[Read more...]

Electric bicycle


[garygadget15] in the UK has an interesting youtube page showing an electric bicycle. On his page titled, saving money the “green way” he has replaced his commuter car with one of these electric bikes. He then videos the commute with both to compare the results. The DIY electric bicycle kit he uses is made by Cyclone comes in multiple wattage’s ranging from 180 watts to 1500 watts where they do a great job of showing the conversion steps. They’ve got enough detail that you could fab your own from salvaged parts if you felt like it.

Passively cooled computer

This came in on the tipline: [Ville 'Willek' Kyrö] wanted to build a fully passively cooled computer. That means no fans at all. He started with scrap aluminum heatsinks, ripped apart a cpu heatsink to get the copper heat pipes, and began surrounding the boards with heatsinks to form a case. Cooling down the powersupply was the hardest part, as it did not lend itself to the flat surfaces of heatsinks. Any passive case with powerful components will inevitably be huge and heavy; this one weighs over 20 kg. He says, “It might not have been worth it, but it sure was weird watching the computer boot up with no sound at all”.

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