Cornell Students Have Your Back

Back problems are some of the most common injuries among office workers and other jobs of a white-collar nature. These are injuries that develop over a long period of time and are often caused by poor posture or bad ergonomics. Some of the electrical engineering students at Cornell recognized this problem and used their senior design project to address this issue. [Rohit Jha], [Amanda Pustis], and [Erissa Irani] designed and built a posture correcting device that alerts the wearer whenever their spine isn’t in the ideal position.

The device fits into a tight-fitting shirt. The sensor itself is a flex sensor from Sparkfun which can detect deflections. This data is then read by a PIC32 microcontroller. Feedback for the wearer is done by a vibration motor and a TFT display with a push button. Of course, they didn’t just wire everything up and call it a day; there was a lot of biology research that went into this. The students worked to determine the most ideal posture for a typical person, the best place to put the sensor, and the best type of feedback to send out for a comfortable user experience.

We’re always excited to see the senior design projects from university students. They often push the boundaries of conventional thinking, and that’s exactly the skill that next generation of engineers will need. Be sure to check out the video of the project below, and if you want to see more of this semester’s other projects, we have you covered there tooContinue reading “Cornell Students Have Your Back”

Visual Guide to the Best Hacker T-Shirts

Head out in the normal “civilian” world and look at the shirts around you. I don’t want to be too nasty about about it, but let’s face facts — the T-shirts you see will be boring and uninventive. Now compare that to your favorite hacker cons. We wear our shirts like they’re oil paintings.

Going into the weekend of SuperCon I had no intention of writing this post. But then I saw a really awesome shirt and already had the camera in my hands so I asked if I could snap a picture. A bit later that day it happened again. Then I don’t know what came over me. Here are my favorites, but I’ve curated an epic number of great garments for your viewing pleasure after the break.

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New and improved old hackaday store!

I am going to start off by saying our zazzle store was pretty sad. The prices were just way too high. I put that store into place because frankly, the one I was running was a pain in the butt.

The good news is that I’ve got a new system in place. It is bright and shiny and looks much easier to use. Not only that, but since we’re not using someone like zazzle, we’re keeping the cost down! Or standard shirts are $18. We have stickers too, and this time, we have both standard stickers as well as the custom cut vinyl decals everyone loved before.

Several products have not yet arrived. Since this is the grand opening and I feel a little bad about how expensive the zazzle store was, I’m running a special. $16 for shirts if they’re ordered before August 31st. 

I’m talking to other people about offering some products besides shirts and stickers in the store. Stay tuned to see what we’ve got going on!

Portal…shirt?

[Ben Heck] is in the Halloween spirit with his Portal inspired “see through” t-shirt. That is, a thin lcd is mounted on [Ben’s] chest, with a not as thin camera mounted on his back; when the system is running, everything behind him is captured by the camera and displayed on the LCD. The concept isn’t exactly new by any means, often by the name of “gaping holes” or “hole through body” or more, but the project goes to show that a creative costume isn’t always the most elaborate, expensive, or even a new idea. Catch a video of how to make your own Portal shirt, after the jump. Oh, and you can win the Portal shirt here.

[via The Daily What]

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How-to: DIYDTG

For those unaware, the little acronym above stands for Do-It-Yourself-Direct-To-Garment printing. In layman’s terms, printing your own shirts and designs. Commercial DTGs can cost anywhere from $5,000 to $10,000 which for the hobbyist who only wants a few shirts is ridiculous. So you would think this field of technology would be hacked to no end, but we’ve actually only seen one other fully finished and working DIYDTG. So we took it upon ourselves to build a DIYDTG as cheaply and as successfully as possible. Continue reading “How-to: DIYDTG”