I need someone to explain this to me.

Bay Area Maker Faire 2010 in pictures

Just when you think it couldn’t possibly get any bigger and crazier, they manage to outdo themselves again. The Bay Area Maker Faire wrapped up Sunday evening, but we have so many story leads that we’ll probably be busy until next year’s event. In the meantime, here’s just a tiny, random sampling of the countless delights that greeted visitors this past weekend.

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Laser cut and printable cases

If you’re like us you’ve got quite a few prototyping tools that are bare PCB boards. If you’re using them a lot you might want to protect them with some type of case but the lack of mounting holes can make this difficult. One popular solution to this problem is to design a case for a perfect fit, then cut it with a laser or print it out of plastic. We’ve got examples of both.

[Stewart Allen] set to work designing laser cut cases for the AVR Dragon and the Bus Pirate V2go after seeing our post about on-the-go prototyping. We think this is especially important if you have an AVR Dragon as it’s been known to bite the dust if the bottom is shorted out. If you have access to a laser cutter you can download is DXF files and the models and cut your own.

If you don’t have a laser cutter but can get some time with a 3D printer check out the Bus Pirate V2go printed case and the Arduino printed case.

Our favorite XBOX to HTPC hacks

Let’s face it, the original Xbox is ugly. It might have looked cool when it first came out but now most would be embarrassed to display that old beast with the rest of their entertainment hardware. This is unfortunate because the old girl still has some life in her. If you have tools, time, and talent you can give the box a facelift and bring it back to see the light of day. We’ve got six of our favorite Xbox to Home Theater PC hacks after the break to inspire you.

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9 most popular of 2009

Happy New Year and happy hacking to all. We had a great time last year exploring the creativity in the hacks that make the Internet a better place. Below you’ll find the nine most popular posts of the year here at Hackaday. Now’s the time to get working on that great project you’ve had in mind. Let us know once you’ve pulled it off and maybe you’ll be on this list next year!

  1. Simple Xbox 360 rapid fire mod
  2. BackTrack 4 Beta released
  3. PSP 3000 firmware 5.03 hacked
  4. Black Hat 2009: Parking meter hacking
  5. How-to: USB remote control receiver
  6. PSP 3000 hacked
  7. Pandora’s battery (unbrick your PSP)
  8. Nintendo DS homebrew guide
  9. SheevaPlug, tiny linux server

CNC project roundup

We asked for CNC projects, and wow did you guys deliver!

First up is [J-J Shortcut's] MDF based CNC. He’s made three thus far, with the most recent costing about 180 euro and taking 2 months to build.

[Qwindelzorf] has also constructed a multitude of CNC machines including this industrial size router and this smaller miller.

Finally, [Mick's] large steel CNC which just made its first cut only a week ago!

Keep up the great work guys, CNC machines are not easy to build and your accomplishments are ones for the record books.

Bluetooth handset hacks

Cramming Bluetooth headset circuitry into an analog telephone body has become an extremely popular hack. With declines in the prices of these headsets, and older telephones being seen as storage-room-clutter this hack is just waiting for you to get started. Join us after the break for a look at what others have already accomplished.

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Clocks that only a geek could love

Alpha-Geek Clock

Oh this one’s good! This clock has a built-in WWVB receiver to make sure the time is always accurate. But with just one LED as the display we wish you good luck when reading it! A whole bunch of info (time, day, year, etc) is blinked out in binary encoded decimal. [Thanks Tymm]

Standard Time

Manual labor. This clock is an art installation in Rotterdam. In the video you can see that workers changed the segments of a four-digit display every minute over a twenty-four hour period. Since they filmed it we’d expect the ability to turn this into a video clock like the one we saw last week. [Thanks David]

International Clock

Low-tech but highly creative. The instructional video uses basic geometry and the workings from a cheap clock to craft an international clock. There are twelve labels corresponding to different time zones. Put the zone you want up and read the clock as normal. [via Red Ferrett Journal]

Princess and the Pea

There are few who will agree to have an air tank as part of an alarm clock. The Princess and the Pea concept uses compressed air to inflate an exercise ball in between the mattress and the box spring. Watch this video to see how it will roll you out of bed if the hissing air sound didn’t wake you first. At least it’s more gentle than the pneumatic alarm clock from last June. [via Neatorama]