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[Bokononestly] found a lil’ music box that plays Stairway to Heaven and decided those were just the kinds of dulcet tones he’d like to wake up to every morning. To each his own; I once woke up to Blind Melon’s “No Rain” every day for about six months. [Bokononestly] is still in the middle of this alarm clock project right now. One day soon, it will use a *duino to keep track of the music box’s revolutions and limit the alarm sound to one cycle of the melody.

stairway-musicbox-alarm-clock[Bokononestly] decided to drive the crank of the music box with a geared DC motor from an electric screwdriver. After making some nice engineering drawings of the dimensions of both and mocking them up in CAD, he designed and printed a base plate to mount them on. A pair of custom pulleys mounted to the motor shaft and the crank arm transfer motion using the exact right rubber band for the job. You can’t discount the need for a hig bag ‘o rubber bands.
In order to count the revolutions, he put a wire in the path of the metal music box crank and used the body of the box as a switch. Check out the build video after the break and watch him prove it with the continuity function of a multimeter. A clever function that should at some point be substituted out for a leaf switch.

We’ve covered a lot of cool clock builds over the years, including one or two that run Linux. And say what you will about Stairway; it’s better than waking up to repeated slaps in the face.

[via r/engineering]


Filed under: 3d Printer hacks, Arduino Hacks

Handheld measuring devices make great DIY projects. One can learn a lot about a sensor or sensor technology by just strapping it onto a spare development board together with an LCD for displaying the sensor output. [Richard’s] DIY air quality meter and emissions tester is such a project, except with the custom laser-cut enclosure and the large graphic LCD, his meter appears already quite professional.

For his build, [Richard] used a Sharp GP2Y1010AU0F dust sensor. This $11 device has a little hole, through which airborne dust particles can pass. On the inside, an infrared LED and a photodiode are arranged in a way that allows no direct light, but only light reflected by the passing by dust particles, to reach the photodiode. An accurately trimmed amplifier within the sensor package translates the diode’s photocurrent into an analog output voltage proportional to the dust density. With a bit of software wizardry, it’s even possible to differentiate between house dust and smoke by analyzing the pulse pattern of the output voltage.

diy-pollutant-meterThe development board used in this project, a PDI-1 (which stands for Programmable Device Interface) is [Richard’s] own design. Manufactured in the UK, it isn’t the cheapest, but it’s the part that makes this build a breeze. It’s basically an Arduino Nano with a lot of onboard peripherals, including a large graphic LCD, some buttons, a speaker, plenty of H-bridges, and a few more.

After bodge-wiring the dust sensor to the board and taking the enclosure out of the laser cutter, the hardware side of this project was almost done. A little fan was added to ensure airflow through the sensor. Eventually [Richard] wrote a basic firmware to display a graph of sensor readings on the LCD. A first test in the exhaust stream of his car, cycling through idling and revving as shown in the title image, suggests that the meter works as intended. Of course, air quality and emission testing depend on more parameters than just dust density, but if you want to replicate and extend this build, [Richard] provides you with all the Arduino compatible source files.


Filed under: Arduino Hacks, misc hacks

Released in 1972, Pong was one of the earliest arcade video games to hit the scene and has since claimed its place in pop culture history. Whereas the Atari classic took the sport of tennis and brought it into the virtual world, a team of Makers led by Daniel Perdomo are taking it back to into the real world with an air hockey-like tabletop version.

As you can see in the video below, the “Pong Project” uses knobs similar to familiar arcade controls to move the paddles, which just like in the original, change the ball’s trajectory as it makes its way over to the opponent. The only difference is that it’s happening on a table instead of a screen. From the looks of it, there may even be a single-player mode with the other paddle seemingly moving all by itself.

To pay homage to the game, its creators gave the Pong Project some ‘70s flair with the iconic logo and play area, as well as neon lights along the sides that illuminate whenever the ball bounces off. Score is kept on seven-segment displays, while it would appear that at least a pair of Arduino boards are helping to drive the system. The team is currently seeking a hardware incubator and other Makers who may be interested in turning this into a final product. You can follow along with the project’s progress on Facebook.

Walking the streets of a highly-populated city, or even a crowded event for that matter, comes with certain risks like pickpocketing. Mindful of this, Maker TVMiller has come up with a clever system to prevent bag thieves from unknowingly creeping up behind you. Called the “Arduino MetroPhones,” the device consists of a Nano, an ultrasonic sensor, a digital potentiometer, a coin-cell battery, and a few other components, all housed inside a 3D-printed case.

The metropolitan in its natural habitat; unaware, oblivious, purposefully deafened and subsequent prey. To increase perception thus safety, we wed an Arduino Nano and ultrasonic sensor to regulate volume to proximity to someone behind you; easily deactivated per environment and rechargeable. Beyond this proof of concept, intention for apparel or accessory (purse, back pack) embedding is ideal.

This prototype of a prototype is a mono-version. A stereo version would merely require dual channels. Thus, imagine, you plug your head phones in to your purse strap which is embedded with a MetroPhone with Bluetooth that streams to your smartphone..

A variety of accessibility devices were on display at Maker Faire Bay Area 2016. Photo by Hep SvadjaWilliam Gerrey and Dr. Joshua Miele made the Blind Arduino Project to help those in the blind community expand their STEM and Maker education.

Read more on MAKE

The post Blind Arduino Project Proves You Don’t Need to See to Build Electronics appeared first on Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers.

Congratulations to Geoff Seawright for the following photo showing a cute dog getting angry with four-legged Arduino spider. He’s the last winner of our MKR1000 giveaway, which kicked off back on Arduino Day! Thanks to all the participants sharing their pics and mentioning our new official Arduino Instagram account!

Dog getting angry with 4-legged arduino spider…possibly it will replace him #arduinoD16 @Arduino.cc

A photo posted by Geoff Seawright (@geoffseawright) on

 

The Cloud” is an interactive lamp and speaker designed to mimic a thunderstorm in terms of appearance and entertainment. Created by Richard Clarkson, it not only provides users with an Arduino-powered, motion-triggered lightning and thunder performance, but serves as a music-activated visualizing speaker as well.

The Cloud employs embedded motion sensors to create unique lightning and thunder shows while providing entertainment value and inspiring awe. This is a kind of magic, not based on illusions and trickery, but on sensors and code. Featuring a powerful speaker system, The Cloud allows its beholder to stream music via any Bluetooth-compatible device and can adapt to any desired lighting, color and brightness.


The hybrid installation is suspended from the ceiling, and consists of hypoallergenic polyester fiberfill with a sponge casing that holds the Arduino, lights, sensors, speakers and other components. Users can control the Cloud through a small, wireless remote.

Clarkson tells The Creators Project:

“Acting as both an immersive lighting experience and a speaker with visual feedback, this hybrid lamp/speaker introduces a new discourse for what a light fixture could be. Advances in physical computing and interaction design hardware over recent years have created a new breed of smart-objects, which are gaining more and more traction in the design world. These smart-objects have the potential to be far more interactive and immersive than ever before.”

Seem awfully familiar? If it does, that’s because development of the project dates back 2012. Whereas the original model had subtle reactive light and sound elements, the latest iteration boasts a more robust design with a larger speaker system. And what’s even cooler is that multiple units are able to communicate with each other, creating a connected network of clouds right in your living room, office or wherever else it’s hanging.

You can check out Clarkson’s page to learn more about the Cloud, or even purchase your own for a few thousand dollars. You’ll also find cheaper versions with less functionality on the site, too.

(Photos: Richard Clarkson)

Hacked-knitting-machineYou can still use punch cards to operate knitting machines, but a few groups are now bringing the technology full circle by hacking knitting machines so that they may be operated digitally via an Arduino.

Read more on MAKE

The post How Punch Cards and Arduino Close the Gap on Hacked Knitting appeared first on Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers.

Everyone loves learning a new programming language, right? Well, even if you don’t like it, you should do it anyway, because thinking about problems from different perspectives is great for the imagination.

Juniper is a functional reactive programming language for the Arduino platform. What that means is that you’ll be writing your code using anonymous functions, map/fold operations, recursion, and signals. It’s like taking the event-driven style that you should be programming in one step further; you write a=b+3 and when b changes, the compiler takes care of changing a automatically for you. (That’s the “reactive” part.)

functionalIf you’re used to the first-do-this-then-do-that style of Arduino (and most C/C++) programming, this is going to be mind expanding. But we do notice that a lot of microcontroller code looks for changes in the environment, and then acts (more or less asynchronously) on that data. At that level of abstraction, something like Juniper looks like a good fit.

Changing up the programming paradigm for Arduino is an ambitious project, especially considering that it was started by two undergraduates [Caleb Helbling] and [Louis Ades] as a senior design project. It’s also brand new, so there’s not much of a codebase out there yet. Time, and your participation, will tell if it’s useful. But one thing’s for sure, once you’ve programmed in a reactive language, you’re not going to be able to look at a delay loop the same again.

What’s the wierdest language you’ve ever programmed a microcontroller in?

(The XKCD comic’s alt-text reads “Functional programming combines the flexibility and power of abstract mathematics with the intuitive clarity of abstract mathematics”.)


Filed under: Arduino Hacks

As fun as petting your dog can be, sometimes you’re just too busy to give it the attention it deserves — especially if he or she is needy. Luckily, there is now an automated mechanism that’ll give Fido a nice pat and reward him with a treat at the press of an arcade button. But that’s not all. Engineer James Cochrane’s “IOT Robot People/Pet Affectionator” allows your pup to reciprocate their appreciation, too.

The robot itself consists of an Arduino Nano, two H-Bridge motor drivers, two geared Pittman motors, and two geared hobby motors. The Kibbles ‘n Bits are delivered using a wooden spoon, while a button on the pup’s side enables them give their owner a nice rub of the head and a snack with a fork as well.



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