Great Scott! A Flux Capacitor Notification Light

If you are into your social media, then you probably like to stay updated with your notifications. [Gamaral] feels this way but he wasn’t happy with the standard way of checking the website or waiting for his phone to alert him. He wanted something a little more flashy. Something like a flux capacitor notification light. This device won’t send his messages back in time, but it does look cool.

He started with an off-the-shelf flux capacitor USB charger. Normally this device just looks cool when charging your USB devices. [Gamaral] wanted to give himself more control of it. He started by opening up the case and replacing a single surface mount resistor. The replacement component is actually a 3.3V regulator that happens to be a similar form factor as the original resistor. This regulator can now provide steady power to the device itself, as well as a ESP8266 module.

The ESP8266 module has built-in WiFi capabilities for a low price. The board itself is also quite small, making it suitable for this project. [Gamaral] used just two GPIO pins. The first one toggles the flux circuit on and off, and the second keeps track of the current state of the circuit. To actually trigger the change, [gamaral] just connects to the module via TCP and issues a “TIME CIRCUIT ON/OFF” command. The simplicity makes the unit more versatile because an application running on a PC can actually track various social media and flash the unit accordingly.

9 thoughts on “Great Scott! A Flux Capacitor Notification Light

  1. Look for radar gun calibration testing tuning forks. Plenty of them on eBay. They typically come in a pair marked 35 MPH and 88 MPH. I assume the forks are struck then held in front of an active radar gun to check that the speed display reads 35 or 88 MPH.

    Someone should mount an 88 MPH tuning fork to the front of a DeLorean…

  2. What about using modified IN-9 tubes?
    These look very similar to the flux tubes in the film but with some minor modification involving driving both ends from out of phase AC with a ground strip the “flux point” moves along the tube.
    I accidentally made one of these with an IN-12 by running it with very low current and it looks pretty strange.

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