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Jeff Highsmith

Jeff Highsmith

I enjoy inventing new and fun gadgets. I pick projects that are challenging, fun, and educational.

Latest from Jeff Highsmith

Kid's Room Spacecraft

I built a spaceship for my four-year-old's room. It has a control panel full of interesting displays and whiz-bang space sounds. A joystick controls lights and sounds for the engine and thrusters. The payload bay has a motorized hatch and and contains a robot arm for deploying payloads like toy... Read more »

Mission Control Desk Panel

I built my son a Mission Control console that closes up and works as a regular homework desk. It plays space-related sounds and has many lights, knobs and switches. Read more »


The CheerBot is a robot that roams the house and looks for certain colors using its camera. When it finds one of the colors I’ve told it to seek, it changes the color of the lights on my Christmas tree to match. It also submits the color to the Cheerlights... Read more »


I built a robot that controls the my Christmas lights and Christmas lights around the world by roaming my house looking for colors and tweeting them to the Cheerlights service. Read more »


The PiLarm is a an all-in-one alarm system that uses a Raspberry Pi, motion sensor, and camera. Pictures of intruders are tweeted and emailed before the revolving light, siren, and computer voice warn the intruder away. Read more »

Wombats are fast. Hey, let's go ride bicycles!

My Brainwave-Controlled Zen Garden is similar to a standard desktop zen garden in that you rake sand to calm yourself. In my version, though, the rake and resultant patterns are controlled by your actual brainwaves. If you are tense and worrisome, the rake moves randomly and quickly, scribbling odd patterns... Read more »

Computer Hair Trimmer Diagram

Part of what makes me a maker is that I prefer to do things myself when I can, including cutting my own hair. The tricky part, though, is cutting a good line across the back of the neck. I set out to build a trimmer that I could blindly run... Read more »