“I finally finished that morse code oscillator I was working on. It works okay for what it is, but I have some serious heat dissipation issues I need to look into for next time. The caps going to ground get real hot if I keep the morse keyer depressed, and, the pitch gets higher as it heats up too. That 500 ohm pot is REAL hot to the touch. I think with beefier components (I was thinking of replacing the ceramic caps with tantalum), and a diode in between pin 7 and pin 2 of the 555 timer, and a zener diode between pin 2, and the 15 K resistor will bring down the heat a bit. The diodes were suggested for a more stable duty cycle anyway. “ [via] – Link.
“This can be made to be just a headlight or both a headlight/taillight bike light system.
My NiteRider light was off getting fixed at the factory and I needed something for my daily commute. I have used it in a 45 minute pouring rain commute on the way in to work and it worked like a champ.” – Link.
Related bike illuminating projects for your bicycle:
HOW TO – Make the ultimate 18v Bike Light! – Link.
-soapy writes in noting that after many months the tiny CMOS camera challenge was figured out -
“Just for closure, here’s the discussion forum thread that tells you the answers, as this was reverse engineered after a little more than 5 months.” – Link.
The contest: “This is a 640×480 pixel resolution CMOS camera used in the Samsung E700 cellular phone. While 0.3 mega pixels may not sound like a lot, this module is one of the smallest, lowest cost CMOS imaging modules currently available to the embedded market…We would like to announce a $200 prize to the first user capable of capturing an image on the new CMOS digital camera. This 640×480 camera is extremely small, low cost ($19.95), and based on proven cellular technology.” – Link.
In the forums someone is trying to get it to work with a Gumstix, and an ARM+AVR combo!
Popular Mechanics 1948, back when 3 years old drove around more…
“Driving his own gasoline-engine tractor, three-year-old Gus Dobert of Nashville, Tenn., is the envy of youngsters of his neighborhood. Made by his father, a machinist, the small tractor has a two-cycle washing-machine engine. Power is transmitted by a V-belt and sprocket chain. The gear ratio insures lots of power but little speed. The clutch pedal tightens the belt on the pulleys.” – Link.
John dug up some pics of his lego birdcam, one of the lego cams has a pan/tilt function.
Way back in 2002, a couple of pigeons decided to make one of our flower pots their nest, so I took a couple of Lego Cams, one motorized, one not, and documented the laying and hatching of the eggs. The cool thing about it is that the birds thought of the cams as part of the family! - Link
Artist Ola Pehrson turns data from the stock market into sheets of music for a choir to sing…
” A vast amount of information in the shape of index graphs is constantly being created at the different stock markets of the world. In the project “NASDAQ vocal index” the graphs of companies listed on the NASDAQ are transformed into music. Computer software converts the graphs to sheets of music, and the scores are presented online on a projection screen, to be read and sung by a member of a local choir. Every company has got its own voice and together the choir vocally interprets the current situation on the market.” [via] – Link & video.
Lifehacker’s Rick Broida show you how to replace a dead power supply in a PC, he writes -
“Power supplies die. You never know when it’s going to happen, but it’s always at the worst possible time. You hit the power button and your PC just sits there. Idle. Quiet. Dead. At least hard drives have the courtesy to make that wrenching death-rattle when the end is near. But not power supplies: They just give up the ghost. Poof.
Fortunately, it’s not impossible to replace one on your own. It’s tricky, yes, and a bit time-consuming, but it’s something any self-respecting lifehacker should learn to do. Plus, it’ll save you upwards of $100 at the local computer shop, and that’s always a good thing.
Here’s how to extract and replace a power supply and, in the process, resurrect your fallen PC.” – Link.
Related (other things you can do with a PC power supply):
A PC solderless power supply for experimenters – Link.
HOW TO – Make a microcontroller based DC power supply – Link.
DC Power Station for a lot of Cell Phones? – Link.
Building The Perfect PC 2nd Edition – Regardless of your technical experience, Building the Perfect PC will guide you through the entire process of building or upgrading your own computer. You’ll use the latest top-quality components, including Intel’s Core 2 Duo and AMD’s Athlon X2 CPUs. And you’ll know exactly what’s under the hood and how to fix or upgrade your PC, should that become necessary. Not only is the process fun, but the result is often less expensive and always better quality and far more satisfying than anything you could buy off the shelf – Link.
Derek writes in with this awesome ribbon controller that could be hiding in your wallet… -
“Using the magnetic strip on the back of my driver’s license to make a ribbon controller which then controls Autofilter in Live 6 via MIDI.
5v is connected to one side of the license’s mag strip, ground to the other. The 3rd alligator clip is connected to one input of an ADC0808 8 bit parallel ADC with is being clocked by a Ubicom SX microcontroller, the other end to the silver tape on the license (the sliver tape is metal tape for duct work, etc., available at Lowe’s, Home Depot, etc.). Bridging the tape with your finger makes the ADC “see” the voltage at that point.” – Link.
Check out his other great videos too! Paper, pennies and other MIDI controls! – Link.
Nathan from Spark Fun Electronics writes in with some great hackery on the Nike+iPod device…
“In the tradition of ‘you buy it, we’ll break it’, we’ve gotten our hands on one of the nifty running accessories for the iPod. You put a small widget in your shoe, plug a piece of plastic into your iPod, and your iPod will tell you how far you’ve run. Sound simple? Well the hardware is actually surprisingly simple!”
They even made a great mod…
“…A USB to serial adapter to talk directly to the Nike+iPod receiver. Now we just have to wait for the PCBs to come in…
I like this idea a lot. Where RFID requires you to physically get near a reader, this active foot pod can transmit over 10-20ft. You don’t need to think about getting an RFID card out of your wallet, you just let your shoes do the talking.”
“I developed my 4-channel, dual-purpose EEG/ECG box between September 2003 and March or April of 2004 with the gracious help of David Rosenboom at Calarts for use in my Medi[t]ations sound performance series. We combined schematics from his book Biofeedback and the Arts (available thru Frog Peak Press) with schematics from the article “Computers On The Brain” by Steve Ciarcia (in the June 1998 issue of BYTE magazine). We are also indebted to Ronald Kuivila who was instrumental in unlocking the mystery of how to get the low-frequency audio signal into my computer and subsequently into SuperCollider…” Thanks Dave! – Link.
“This is a kit that will allow you to do many soldering tasks in the field, cost about $8.00, and it all fits in an Altoids tin! I’ve used this same set of stuff for years now and was inspired to share it based on a recent instructable on soldering (an outstanding one). This instructable goes one step further in building a portable helping hand, solder dispenser, and assembling all the other tools that you will need to get things done in the field.
Let me add at this point I know this not the best way to solder and this method has its limitations. It is however the best way to fix surveillance equipment at 3 a.m., in the back of a van, in the dark. I can testify to that. Good times. I was a tech for an undercover narcotics unit for five years and this method came through for me many times.” – Link.