Hackaday Podcast 237: Dancing Raisins, Coding On Apples, And A Salad Spinner Mouse

This week, Editor-in-Chief Elliot Williams and Kristina Panos gathered over the Internet and a couple cups of coffee to bring you the best hacks of the previous week. Well, the ones we liked best, anyhow.

First up in the news, we’ve got a brand-spankin’ new Halloween Hackfest contest running now until 9AM PDT on October 31st! Arduino are joining the fun this year and are offering some spooky treats in addition to the $150 DigiKey gift cards for the top three entrants.

It’s a What’s That Sound Results Show this week, and although Kristina actually got into the neighborhood of this one, she alas did not figure out that it was an MRI machine (even though she spent a week in an MRI one day).

Then it’s on to the hacks, which had a bit of a gastronomical bent this week. We wondered why normies don’t want to code on their Macs, both now and historically. We also examined the majesty of dancing raisins, and appreciated the intuitiveness of a salad spinner-based game controller.

From there we take a look at nitinol and its fun properties, admire some large, beautiful Nixie tubes, and contemplate a paper punching machine that spits out nonsensical binary. Finally we talk about rocker bogie suspensions and the ponder the death of cursive.

Check out the links below if you want to follow along, and as always, tell us what you think about this episode in the comments!

Download and savor at your leisure.

Episode 237 Show Notes:


What’s that Sound?

  • Congratulations to [David Smith] who knew that those scary noises belong to an MRI machine!

Interesting Hacks of the Week:

Quick Hacks:

Can’t-Miss Articles:

7 thoughts on “Hackaday Podcast 237: Dancing Raisins, Coding On Apples, And A Salad Spinner Mouse

  1. Normal users don’t code; they also don’t know what a file system is anymore. Much has been abstracted away and muddled to the point people are reduced to performing “magic” actions on their computing devices they don’t understand. Without understanding WHAT they are doing, teaching people to “code” only means teaching them more magic incantations to replicate out of memory (or google search, or having an AI spit out the code to be copy/pasted).

    1. Point being, the so-called “digital natives” only know to use “apps” as given by whatever ecosystem or platform you have, and what you know of one doesn’t translate to another because there’s no sense of the underlying structure. What a thing like LabVIEW or NodeRED does, or the GUI of your file browser, doesn’t conceptually translate to anything else than what it is by itself. You read a tutorial, replicate the steps, magic happens. The idea that you could script an action like moving all the CSV files from folder A to B doesn’t exist, because the idea that there exists a hierarchical file system underneath it all doesn’t exist. The files are “just there” in the app.

      It’s slowly approaching the level of understanding that your old grandmother used to apply, when switching from IE to Firefox meant that the “internet is missing” because they couldn’t find the familiar icon. Using the internet meant mechanically replicating the actions of “click here, type this there, press this, magic happens.” There was one generation of people for whom it all made sense: today the mother knows what’s up because they had to deal with it, but the daughter doesn’t because their iPhone or Android tablet abstracts the difference away and that’s all they’ve ever known. It’s back to square one.

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