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Maker Shed weekly wrap-up

Craft & Design Music Technology

It was another fun week in the Maker Shed. We managed to sneak in a few builds even though we spend the early part of the week at the 2009 NYC Toy Fair. Next week I am going to continue my How-To Tuesday series on programming the Arduino [part1, part2] and we will feature more new products in the Maker Shed.

The week started out with a quick video build of the Aurorarium by Gakken. It’s a really easy to build kit that puts on an interesting light show.

Create your own aurora-like effects with this awesome device. Leave the cone on and enjoy the soft changing lights, or fill the tray with water and see the amazing aurora lights on your wall or ceiling. Instructions are in Japanese but features highly detailed assembly pictures, sorry no English translation at this time. Easy to build.

In the Maker Shed: Gakken’s Aurorarium

Later in the week I did a video build of Gakken’s EX-150 Electronic Experimental Kit in honor of Alessandro Volta. This is by far my favorite electronics learning kit. It features 150 fun and educational experiments.

The Gakken EX-150 kit is a series of educational electronics kits produced by Gakken in the late 1970s. The kits use denshi blocks (also known as electronic blocks) to allow electronics experiments to be performed easily and safely. Over 25 years after its original release, one of the main kits from the series was reissued in Japan in 2002 and now you can get it here! Instruction Manual Included is in Japanese. English PDF Instructions available.

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More about Alessandro Volta & the EX-150


Next we checked out one of the modified Maker’s Notebooks that I had in my studio. I couldn’t decide on what stickers to use so I added an LCD and displayed them all!

Put your own ideas, diagrams, calculations & notes down in these 150 pages of engineering graph paper. We’ve also included 20 bonus pages of reference material, from useful stuff like electronics symbols, resistor codes, weights and measures, basic conversions and more, to really useful stuff like the amount of caffeine in different caffeinated beverages and how to say “Hello, World!” in various computer languages. The covers of this hardcover book are printed in cyan “Maker” blue with a white grid debossed front and back. Grab one today!

More about Modifying the Maker’s Notebook


I wrapped the week up by checking out the Thing-a-ma Kit. It’s a really cool DIY synthesizer that I can’t wait to build and customize.

Make, mod, hack, and bend your own analog noise monster! The Thing-a-ma Kit is a DIY analog synthesizer that you control in a different way. The amount of light falling on its photocell eyes change the pitch and modulation, allowing to you use it LEDacles, or any changing light source, to created audio madness! If none are in stock, take note, more are on the way!

In the Maker Shed: Thing-a-ma Kit

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