Shovel…guitar?

We didn’t believe this hack at all when we saw it, or rather heard it. Surly a guitar made out of a shovel couldn’t sound decent. But the video (after the jump, skip to 2:40 for the jam) to our untrained ears sounded pretty rad. Could be the supremely well done wood work, proper use of tools, high tech pickups, or maybe Russian magic, we don’t know.

In fact, if you continue the video it doesn’t stop there. The creators also made a 2 string bass and a few other instruments from shovels. Do I smell a new shovel hero?

Related: Guitars made out of things that should not be guitars.

[Thanks Paul]

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Live fire Half-life

We don’t know how we missed this when it first came out, but there is a hack out there that combines a .22 caliber pistol with the video game Half-life. Simple is best and that motto is in use here. A wall was built down range to use as a projection screen. Accelerometers mounted on the drywall report vibration data from the bullet strike which is used to triangulate its location. This targeting data is then sent to the game interface.

As you can see in the video after the break this works like a charm. The [Waterloo Labs] personnel that developed this are also responsible for that iPhone controlled car. The antics we witnessed in that project carry over to this one as they illustrate using the setup to play Half-life with a couple of shovels at 2:12 into the clip. [Read more...]

Robot that shovels snow automatically

Those of you that live in snowier climates will drool over the I-Shovel, a battery powered robot that shovels the snow off your driveway, saving you countless hours of backbreaking labor over the course of a single winter. Its inventors claim that, despite its relatively underpowered motor, it keeps the driveway clear even in heavy snowfall; the trick, apparently, is that the robot constantly monitors the amount of snow on the driveway and springs into action whenever a significant but manageable layer has built up. Unfortunately, the I-Shovel is still a prototype, but with any luck you’ll be able to actually buy one soon. If you’re impatient, of course, you could always try building your own.

[via Toolmonger]

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