How-to: Bus Pirate probe cable

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Update, Saturday July 4th, 2009: All preorders are closed.

A probe cable makes it easy to connect the Bus Pirate to a circuit and get hacking. Good test clips make quick connections on cramped PCBs without causing short circuits. We made two cables for the Bus Pirate v2, keep reading for an overview of our designs and list of part suppliers.

Friday, July 3, 2009 is the last day to pre-order a Bus Pirate. There’s only two days left to get your own Bus Pirate, fully assembled and shipped worldwide, for only $30.

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Prototype This premiers tomorrow

Discovery Channel’s new show Prototype This premiers tomorrow night at 10e/p. Every week the team will construct a new piece of unique machinery. The schedule for the first six episodes has already been published.

  • Mind Controlled Car, October 15
  • Boxing Robots, October 22
  • Traffic Busting Truck, October 29
  • Get Up and Go, November 5
  • Waterslide Simulator, November 12
  • Six-Legged All Terrain Vehicle, November 19

We initially reported on the show in August because it featured Defcon badge designer [Joe Grand].

UPDATE: [Joe] will be posting all of his schematics, source code, development notes, etc.

Comcast announces 250GB bandwidth cap


Today, Comcast updated their Acceptable Use Policy to cover exactly what they feel is “excessive use”. When the Comcast cap starts October 1st, they will contact people breaking the 250GB per month transfer limit and ask them to curb their usage. While it’ll be hard for most people to hit this limit, we still wonder if policing 0.1% of the customer base is worth the effort. At least Comcast has bothered to state the limit instead of just secretly rewriting the meaning of the word “unlimited” like some providers.

[via DSLReports]

[photo: monoglot]

Make a stretchy fabric USB cable

Stretchy fabric USB cable
If you’ve been puzzled over a discreet, durable way to sew wiring into your clothing, then puzzle no more: [Plusea] has put together a writeup detailing how to make a USB cable partly out of stretchy cotton fabric. Although the design as detailed doesn’t give much practical use for the invention, we can think of several very effective ways of exploiting this toy. Imagine, for example, placing a USB battery pack into one pocket of a jacket, a portable digital audio recorder in the other, and a lavalier microphone in the lining, thus enabling dozens of hours of covert audio surveillance.

Pegboard cable organizer


In our integrated desk post, we mentioned using pegboards and zip ties to organize cables. Lifehacker has a collection of pictures from their readers that are using this solution. We especially love [Steve Price]‘s fliptop solution pictured above. It may not look too attractive, but we’d do pretty much anything to avoid crawling under a desk.

This week in (our) history


Time to look way back into the Hackaday archives, well back to 2005 at least. This is a new feature to follow up and revisit some of our favorite projects of the past. Our first installment includes the week of May 24-31 2005.

Pictured above we see one of the amazing cable braiding machines from UK based Cobra Machinery. This link was found on a post about creating your own high end speaker wires from cat5 cable. At the time we hoped to find a DIY braiding machine. No such luck today but we did come across and interesting site in the process. diyAudoProjects has a ton of great how to guides for all things audio. They even have a few walkthroughs for creating your own speaker wires.

We looked at the robotic dexterous hand from The Shadow Robot Company. Browsing through their high rez image gallery its pretty clear to see the product has been progressing nicely: 24 degrees of freedom complete with force feedback and a GPL based software package.

Three years ago we covered the Nokia 770 internet appliance and it’s upcoming SDK. The device has now been replaced by the Nokia N810 (pictured on the right). However, open source support from Nokia has continued to develop. We found a blog from software developer Ari Jaaksi where he talks about Nokia’s involvement in the community. Recently he discussed the latest news from MAEMO, the platform used for open source development of Nokia internet tablets and other Linux-based devices.

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