Amp Hour interviews [Joe Grand]

The Amp Hour, a podcast of electronics enthusiasts and professionals alike, just did an epic interview with [Joe Grand]. Along with hosts [Chris Gammell] and [Dave Jones], the discussion runs the gamut of points of interest in the hardware hacking world. The first vignette explores the rise, run, and fall of Prototype This, an engineering-centric TV show that [Joe] did along with a group of various engineers for the Discover Channel. He politely discusses some of the goods and bads of the TV business and how that affected the team’s ability to go into great detail about the projects they were building.

From there the guys discuss the development of Hackerspaces through the years. [Joe] has some concerns about the injection of corporate sponsorships in these DIY spaces and what that may mean in the long run. He then talks about the impending release of his 3-year-long laser range-finder project (we’ve seen a project using a prototype of this sensor). The show is rounded out with discussions about hardware fab houses that [Joe] uses and has used over the years for projects like the Defcon Badges (we loved his Defcon 18 badges).

It’s a great episode so download a copy and set aside about an hour to listen to the whole show.

Björk teaches you about electronics

As we often suspected, [Björk] is quite the technical mastermind. In the video above, she teaches you about the ins and outs of her television. We think she’s making a strong bid as the next person to join Prototype This! Her hacking philosophy is the same as ours: “You shouldn’t let poets lie to you.”

Prototype This schematics posted

As promised, [Joe Grand] has uploaded the schematics from his part of last night’s episode of Prototype This. The device monitors the driver of a demo derby car and shuts it off if he becomes too enraged. He’ll be posting schematics for every episode as they’re released. The really interesting thing is that he scanned all of his development notes too. If you missed the episode, you can watch it on Discovery’s site. You can also grab a version that doesn’t idiotically force you to watch in full screen browser window from The Pirate Bay.

UPDATE: [Joe] has been responding to your comments.

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.

New Discovery Channel show starring hackers


A new Discovery Channel show titled Prototype This! will debut on October 15, 2008. Hoping to capture the same demographic as Mythbusters‘ audience, the show is about designing and creating robots, gadgets, and other things that nerds will love. Prototype This! is hosted by four wide-ranging experts: [Zoz Brooks], who’s got a PhD in robotics, [Mike North], who also has a PhD, in material sciences, [Terry Sandin], a special effects veteran of the Hollywood film industry, and [Joe Grand], who we’ve covered recently for his Defcon badge work. [Daniel Terdiman]‘s glimpse behind the scenes reveals some interesting projects, from a stair-climbing robot to the creation of a pyro pack. We’ll be sure to set our DVRs to record.

[via Zero Day]

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