The Sounds Emitted By Plants Are Real But They Are Still Not Talking

A recent paper published by researchers at the university of Tel Aviv in Cell on the sounds they captured from ‘stressed’ plants had parts of the internet abuzz with what this meant, with some suggesting that this was an early April Fools prank. The fun part here is the news item is not that plants make noise, but rather that this was the first time (apparently) that the noise made by plants was captured by microphones placed at some distance from a variety of plants.

This research is based on previous studies dating back decades, such as Tyree and Sperry who reported (PDF) in 1989 on the vulnerability of the plant xylem (water transporting tissue) to cavitation and embolism. Since the xylem’s function is to carry water and dissolved nutrients to the upper parts of the plant, having air bubbles form would be a negative thing for the plant’s survival. When and how cavitation occurs in the xylem is relevant as it directly impacts how well plants grow. Continue reading “The Sounds Emitted By Plants Are Real But They Are Still Not Talking”

Building A Quiz-show Style Buzzer System

Theses are the team buzzer boxes which [Philippe Chrétien] built for his mother. She’s a big fan of quiz shows (we’re thinking Jeopardy and the like) and he thought she’d enjoy a proper setup for home gaming.

Each unit consists of an arcade button and one LED, both housed in a project box. He uses telephone wire to connect each buzzer to the base unit. We like that idea since we’ve got a lot of old telephone cable lying around and our RJ-45 crimp includes an RJ-11 slot. This is perfect for making our own cables.

The base unit houses an Arduino board which polls the buttons to see which is pressed first. The LED on the appropriate buzzer box is illuminated so the players know who got in first. One special feature of this setup is the ability to choose from 30 different buzzer sounds.

There are several other quiz buzzer projects kicking around Hackaday if you’re interested. One of our favorites is this system which uses plastic bowls as the buttons.

[via Adafruit]