[Jacob Christ] writes in with a hack that’s going to be this summer’s fidget spinner. Why? The favourite toy of his youngster’s generation is a Glimmie. And while fidget spinners were useful for, well, spinning, the small animal-like Glimmie seems to have an unexpected property, they can function as logic gates.
They form an optical inverter, in their head is a phototransistor and in their belly an LED which goes on when the head is in the dark. He’s found through experimentation that they can be combined to form an AND gate, and thus a NAND gate with the addition of a further inverter. Since all logic functions can be made from NAND gates, it should therefore be possible to go as far as to make any device based upon logic, even up to a fully functional computer. He estimates the cost of a single gate at $16.30. A computer would require in the region of 80,000 Glimmies to work, but maybe someone with deep enough pockets will be foolhardy enough to give it a try.
You can see the AND gate in action below complete with camera work from a youngster, and if unexpected logic gates are something that’s caught your attention you can take a look at the battery booster pack logic we brought you a while back.