Hackaday Links


hello peepdizzles. im writing from JERSEY right now and have some great links for you all.

checks these out for size and freshness!
RFID tags exploding in the microwave. $1000 down the drain. [je]
The motorola IMFREE lives…sorta. [john]
Lamp o’ CDs. Very Tight. [Steve]

Freedos embedded style. Cool? Yes. Useful? No. [h4rm0n1c]
GPS Jammer stuff. [ilovehacks]
Cheap-ass IR goodies.

And of course we have some Lego hackaday love from [Lee]

Only the coolest of dorks rock a Hal 9000 webcam [paul]
Non-DRM eBook rockage! YES. E-INK 4 LIFE.

I also can’t resist. You will soon be able to get a .XXX domain. HACKADAY.XXX. RAW AND WET.

16 thoughts on “Hackaday Links

  1. this has been on the web for years. The effect has nothing to do with RFID. It’s the metal strips in the bill, in the fabric, to attempt to foil (pun intended) counterfeiters. Totally passive, unlike RFID.

    Microwave metal, it gets hot, destroys the bills. Gee.

    Anyone really desperate to replicate these “results can mail me all the cash ahead of time for testing in my exclusive wallet–er-laboratory. :P

  2. I’ve used FreeDOS. It’s pretty much the only thing that I can get to run on that old laptop of mine (with a broken screen, so it isn’t much of a laptop anymore). I liked being able to change just about everything by editing a text file. Yeah, that was neat. But embedded? I did no such thing.

  3. well, i just tested the exploding money link by microwaving every bill in my wallet (including many 2004 print US$20’s) and not one did anything like this story says. i’d like to hear from anyone that tries this and has it work. i still feel better knowing that anything that mmight have been in the bills.

  4. Re: Comment 2

    If you’d actually read the whole page you would have seen that they tried this on a European note and had exactly the same thoughts as you – that it was the metal. However, if it was the metal, it would do the same thing every time it was microwaved. It only ever happened once, at the same point.

  5. Re: Comment 2

    If it were just the counterfeit strips, the burns wouldnt be in the middle of a new $20, they are on the left side of the bill, in between the 2 and 0 so even if they were to burn, it would burn the left side of the bills, not Jackson’s face.

  6. The reason the money ignites is that certain of the black features are printed in a magnetic ink. this is the same kind of ink that your checking account number is printed with. magnetic ink is used on certain features of the bill so it can easily be read by a machine, which is how dollar-bill changers work, and why they don’t get fooled by color xerox copies of currency.

    in a microwave oven the magnetic ink also demonstrates another property: conductivity. the rf energy from the microwave oven induces current eddys in contiguous parts of the magnetic ink. the principle works in exactly the same way a transformer works. so these eddys now have current flowing in them, and if there’s a small enough gap in the ink between two eddys, (and a large enough induced voltage,) the current will arc across it. 1300 watts of 2.2GHz rf power is an awful lot of juice, and is certainly capable of inducing much current in even the tiniest conductors. Such a gap probably exists in Jackson’s portrait. i suspect his eye — it’s a superlative example of the engraver’s art.

    when i was a child, i microwaved some food in one of my mother’s good china bowls, the kind with a gold foil rim. i remember being in awe of the sparks dancing around the rim of the bowl, and how mad my mother was that her gold foil bowl now had black scorch marks all around the edge. for a more modern demonstration that won’t get you in trouble with your mother, try putting an unwanted CD in the microwave for a few seconds (along with 8 oz of water to act as a load.) the spark show is amazing, (and the stench is unholy.) the same principles are at work in the $20 bills.

    regarding the mylar strips that are embedded in the bill: they have “USA 20” printed on them in an aluminium sputtering process, adding to the metallic components of the bill. However, they have no real RF properties to speak of. they may still react when in the direct path of 1300 watts of radiated power — most conductors do.

    Many conspiracy theorists have long confused the aluminized mylar strips in the bill with some kind of RFid tracking tag.

    what can one person do? smack every crackpot conspiracy theorist on the side of the head, and say “you’re an idiot who doesn’t understand physics?” (it doesn’t help.) fools will always believe what fools want to believe, despite evidence to the contrary.

  7. oh, and regarding why the sensormatic EAS sensor detected his wad of money: next time you buy an eas-tagged item from a place like home depot, check out the security tag. the ones i’m thinking of are a small plastic rectangle, about 1cm by 4cm. it contains three pieces of oddly shaped metal.

    how do they work? in the presense of the the pulsed rf signal emitted by the door transmitters, the ferrous strip absorbs some of the signal until it’s “saturated”, and then it abruptly stops absorbing any more signal. the receiver antenna sees the received signal drop for a bit, and then abruptly recover after the amount of time it takes for the material to become saturated. when this pattern of reception occurs, the receiver sounds an alarm.

    Then how are they deactivated? the strip of metal is ferrous, which means it can be magnetized. when it’s magnetized, its already saturated, and so the door sensor no longer recognizes it transitioning from unsaturated to saturated. the deactivation pad is nothing more than an magnet that slightly magnetizes this strip of metal.

    Libraries use these systems for their books. When you check the book back in, the librarian will pass it through a degausser, which demagnetizes the strip. it then reacts to the rf field just like it did before, taking a certain amount of time to reach saturation.

    what does this have to do with a stack of $20 bills? well, place them together in the right orientation, and the combined area of those magnetic ink spots could certainly take that same amount of time to become saturated.

    the paranoid guy in the article could probably have saved himself the cost of a roll of aluminium foil by simply rotating every other bill 180 degrees, flipping them over, or folding them differently. But no, he has to go imagine that it’s some vast secret government plot to track his cash. fine, if he wants to wrap his wallet and his hat in tinfoil to ward off the rays from the government mind-control satellites, he can go ahead and do that. what i think is far worse is that he then infects other gullible people with his particular brand of stupidity.

  8. I DID that! (With the CD I mean.) I didn’t put water in, but it was still pretty awesome to watch. Then, after 10 seconds, my old coaster had a big ol’ spider web of scorch marks on it, burnt all the way through to the other side! I still have it, but the paint’s flaking off now. Definitely a nasty smell, though. My brother and I kept fanning the door for 10 minutes so Mom wouldn’t freak when she got home.

  9. I like the little infrared project. I wonder if that could be done using a usb aswell? I could use somethinglike that. Place it on my server and create some software that turns on the tvs in the house on change channels, turn volume up and down. That would be good to have pre setup like so when Im out of town my items will come one and off at a certain time. Or even control it from the internet.

    If anyone is interested I have created something for the PSP I shall have it up shortly.It maybe a day or two. Relative of mine is sick so Im off to visit.

  10. The tv control thing sounds interesting, i wanted to do something like that, but i couldn’t find any .wav files for my uk Toshiba tv.
    My idear was to make a page that’d have some sort of boring blog on it, and then just play the sounds, would give people a shock.
    About the .xxx domains, isn’t it just gunna maker more illegal underage sites? its like saying o, lets aproov .warez or .hck.
    I’m going to try the cd thing, the mum is the only tricky part.

  11. If you want to zap an RFID chip without the burn marks, try a few kV coronal discharge. To avoid confusion, that’s high voltage off a sharp edge, no direct return path, very little current. Kills most semiconductor devices, little or no lasting effect on most other materials.

Leave a Reply

Please be kind and respectful to help make the comments section excellent. (Comment Policy)

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.