Measuring pressure in the Internet tubes

Computers & Mobile
Measuring pressure in the Internet tubes

After Professor Fzz’s wireless base station died, he found himself continually looking at where it use to be to monitor the activity lights during downloads. He wanted to replace it with something else to help him visualize this data — the Internet Pressure Gauge was born.

The electronics are probably overkill for this application, but they work well. A Devantech USB-to-I2C convertor takes commands from the Mac over USB, and sends them via an I2C bus to an SD21 21-channel servo controller board. I’m only using one channel at the moment, so expect more computer controlled hardware in the not too distant future.

The software is pretty trivial, comprising a 40 line program in C to send commands to the servo controller, and a 30-line script to get the network statistics and call the C program.

Too bad you could do pressure gauges for blog comments, with a pressure valve whistle that releases when things get over-heated.

Internet Pressure Gauge

4 thoughts on “Measuring pressure in the Internet tubes

  1. anachrocomputer says:

    How about something made with an Arduino, that could monitor the Arduino forum postings?

  2. jammit says:

    That would be a bad idea. It would be like crashing the internet by using google to search for google.

Comments are closed.

Discuss this article with the rest of the community on our Discord server!

Gareth Branwyn is a freelance writer and the former Editorial Director of Maker Media. He is the author or editor of over a dozen books on technology, DIY, and geek culture. He is currently a contributor to Boing Boing, Wink Books, and Wink Fun. His free weekly-ish maker tips newsletter can be found at

View more articles by Gareth Branwyn


Ready to dive into the realm of hands-on innovation? This collection serves as your passport to an exhilarating journey of cutting-edge tinkering and technological marvels, encompassing 15 indispensable books tailored for budding creators.

Escape to an island of imagination + innovation as Maker Faire Bay Area returns for its 15th iteration!

Buy Tickets today! SAVE 15% and lock-in your preferred date(s).