Pranking a hackerspace IRC for April Fool’s Day

face

Like most hackerspaces, when the folks at DIYode, the Guelph, Ontario hackerspace, aren’t in the workshop, they’re on IRC. It’s a great way to build a community, complete with a bot that collects and catalogues to-do items, meeting topics, posts events to IRC, and even does a bit of text-to-speech so members currently at the DIYode can listen in on the IRC room. There’s also a webcam for the DIYode space that members check constantly. [Simon] thought it would be a great prank to freak out those members that constantly check the webcam, and we’ll say he succeeded with a little help from the Alabama Face Guy.

The build listens for a specific phrase in the IRC room – “Hey, someone just entered the shop without the doorbot noticing” – and sends a command via Python to an Arduino to raise and lower a cardboard cutout of a sneering face in front of the web cam. For an April Fool’s build, this is probably one of the most creative and creepy we’ve seen this year.