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Our electronics pals @ Design News just sent us this massive holiday project bonanza, check it out, they’re also running a contest.

..The neighborhood this holiday by turning your house into a real Elves’ Workshop and building the seasonally appropriate electronic gadgets listed below! Each project includes a parts list and complete build instructions to guarantee this December is one of endless fun for you and your family and friends.

  • Holidazzle Lights Flasher CircuitAdd some real flash to your holidays this year. This circuit allows you to create exciting flash patterns and sequences for the many light strings we know you’ll be planning to put up this year – Link.
  • Simple tester checks Christmas-tree lightsWhy is it that you always test 48 bulbs before you find the bad one in a 50-light string? This simple circuit allows you to divide and conquer, greatly reducing the time it takes to find the bad bulb – Link.
  • Flickering LED CircuitReproduce that warm glow this winter with this electronic flame flicker device that can be customized to achieve the realistic effect of a flicker candle, oil lamp, or campfire. Your local fire department will be buying your presents – Link.
  • Automatic Tree Watering SystemSleep peacefully this holiday season knowing that your tree won’t go up in flames like so much kindling. This electronic watering system includes a 1-gal reservoir and dc-powered pump assembly to ensure your tree stays moist and fresh – Link.
  • Blinking LED Holiday StickpinBe the center of attention at your next holiday party with this nifty holiday stickpin that features a low-voltage blinking LED. No lampshades required for assembly – Link.
  • Simple scheme saves string-light situationAs you enter the holiday season with strings of ac-line-powered lights hanging everywhere, do you ever wonder how bulb vendors overcame the frustrating problem of having an entire string go dark when just one of the series-wired bulbs failed? – Link.
  • Nonfailing light-bulb-string storyThe preceding article on how series-wired Christmas lights self-heal prompted some interesting reader responses suggesting alternative ways that a failing bulb does not cause an entire string of bulbs to fail. Apparently, some light strings use another mechanism, and we have some hands-on evidence to confirm this fact. This approach involves no software, no microprocessors, no logic gates, no nanosecond timing –just some passive light bulbs and clever materials engineering – Link.

Gadget Freak Elves’ Workshop Edition @ Design News – Holiday electronics projects – Link.