[Lou] sent in this amazingly simple hack that has been saving him money on special batteries for his dog collar. He uses an invisible fence system which gives the dog a shock if it passes beyond certain markers in his yard. The collars use special batteries so you’re not strapping multiple full sized cells to your dogs neck. This is especially necessary when you have a smaller dog that doesn’t weigh much to begin with.
What [Lou] found was that the $8 replacement batteries were simply a plastic shell on a battery he could buy for considerably less. All that was required were a few small cuts to the plastic casing to release the old battery, then he presses the new one into place. This tiny modification will be saving him a considerable amount since the unit burns through a battery in a few weeks.
Continue reading “Hacking Dog Collars To Save Money On Batteries.”
[Emi Tamaki], [Miyaki Takashi] and [Jun Rekimoto] at the University of Tokyo came up with a device called the PossessedHand that electrically stimulates muscles to train someone to play a the koto, a Japanese stringed instrument.
The PossessedHand ‘triggers’ individual fingers with precisely placed electrodes. Sixteen joints in the hand can be controlled independently by placing one electrode on the muscle that controls the joint and a ground electrode on the tendon of that muscle. Users of the PossessedHand reported no pain from the device when 30 Volts were sent though the electrodes.
The paper (PDF warning) goes into detail about the reactions of the users of the PossessedHand. While a few subjects thought the PossessedHand was scary, many enjoyed it – one subject even thought it was possible to fly a helicopter without training. While this isn’t downloading a rotary wing licence into your brain like The Matrix, the PossessedHand did prove to be a useful tool for learning the fingering for the koto. You can see a video of the PossessedHand in action in the New Scientist story.
[via New Scientist]
Gather your friends round the living room for a head-to-head quiz game. This one’s not quite as nice as you might think. Get an answer wrong and you’re going to get the Venkman treatment thanks to the stored electricity in a disposable camera flash circuit. [Israel] runs the game questions from a Windows machine, and uses a set of four USB joystick buzzers that let each contestant ring in. They all wear a cuff that houses electrodes for negative-reinforcement upon an incorrect answer. Since every contestant answers each question it won’t be long before you hear the uncomfortable yelp of failure from your guests. This seems a little bit more fair than shocking people for not calming their minds, but the video from that hack is still one of our all-time favorites.
Culture Shock II, a robot by the Lawrence Tech team, first caught our eye due to its unique drive train. Upon further investigation we found a very well built robot with a ton of unique features.
The first thing we noticed about CultureShockII are the giant 36″ wheels. The wheel assemblies are actually unicycles modified to be driven by the geared motors on the bottom. The reason such large wheels were chosen was to keep the center of gravity well below the axle, providing a very self stabilizing robot. The robot also has two casters with a suspension system to act as dampers and stabilizers in the case of shocks and inclines. Pictured Below. Continue reading “Intelligent Ground Vehicle Competition 2010 Day Two Report”
Reader [Eric] sent us a powerfully informative, yet super simple hack for the MindFlex toy. Don’t worry, it’s not another worthless shock ‘game’, And it’s using an actual interface instead of the built-in LEDs.
With two wires for the serial protocol, and an Arduino, you’ll be able to view “signal strength, attention, meditation, delta, theta, low alpha, high alpha, low beta, high beta, low gamma, high gamma” brainwaves. While it’s not medical grade, it’s a lot more intuitive than previous interfaces.
The original intent was for a system called MentalBlock, but we’re wondering what would you do with brainwave data?
We love to see eloquent hacks but this isn’t one of them. [Aaron] and his fellow sadists are using a Mindflex game with an electric shocker. If your brain is idle you’ll be fine, but too much activity inside the noggin and you’re in for nasty shock to the arm. Take a look at the video (bleeped but probably NSFW) after the break.
We’ve seen the Mindflex before, they’re using its interface in the same ways we’ve seen the Force Trainer used, by tapping into the LEDs. The shocks are provided by a Qkit, so hopefully there’s enough engineering behind it to keep the ‘contestant’ safe.
Hey, isn’t that the Tron Guy?
Continue reading “Using Mindflex To Shock The Heck Out Of People”
[Nuri] sent in his rather interesting gaming feedback device. The TrakonyaMutatorUSB is a USB based armband that’s designed to shock you when you get shot or killed in your game. I can’t comment on the safety of this thing, but I guess it could be a good gift for your enemy gamer.
Update: Just to clarify a bit, This is built by [Nuri]. He offers them for sale (via paypal I see), but it is his work. It would be nice to see the design, but I can see some reasons why he might not want to release it to the public.