John Baichtal is a contributor to MAKE online, and is good at explaining complex things to newbies. He's put this talent to use in his new book, Arduino for Beginners, which assumes nothing from the reader except for a willingness to learn. (Arduino is a inexpensive electronic prototyping platform.)
The Arduino projects in the book are presented in full color: a laser/infrared trip beam to protect your home from intruders, a Bluetooth doorbell, an LED strip coffee table, a plant-watering robot, an ultrasonic cat toy, a bubble-blowing robot, and more.
The book goes far beyond teaching you how to make cool things with Arduino. His chapter on maker tools (hand tools, power tools, laser cutters, 3D printers, design software, etc.) alone is worth the price of the book.
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Kevin Bates made this credit card sized video game player using a Barebones Arduino and a tiny OLED screen. It's just 1.6mm thick.
Arduboy: The Interactive Digital Business Card Read the rest
hooked up a MIDI-capable piano to the control inputs of classic fighting game Tekken, thereby synchronizing the on-screen action and musical performance. Then he recorded video of him doing online battle. He won!
This is the final product of my project for interaction design. Took the whole semester, to get this to work but it was worth it. How it works: The piano sends a Midi-Signal, which is transferred to an arduino. According to the signals, the arduino triggers transistors, which then trigger inputs on a paewang PCB (This is the PCB of an arcadestick). The paewang is connected to an Xbox360 (you can also use it on PS3).
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A couple of years ago inventor Steve Hoefer wrote a how-to project for MAKE called the Secret Knock Gumball Machine. You record a special knock pattern by rapping your knuckles against the case. After that, only people who enter the correct knock pattern get a gumball.
Recently Steve made a Secret Knock Drawer Lock and wrote a tutorial for Adafrut’s learning site.
Steve remarks, "I’ve built this project a dozen times and every single time I finish it, it makes me incredibly happy to see it work. Even though I know every detail of it, it still feels a little bit magical." Indeed!
Below, a video of the lock in action.
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Joly sez, "Maker navic09 demos a prototype trainable robotic arm, made from 3d printed parts, an Arduino, and Adafruit analog feedback servos. Inspired by the Baxter robot, this arm can be trained to move with your own hands. Once the train button is pressed, you move the arm and gripper as needed while the Arduino stores the positions in EEPROM. After that the arm will replay the motion as needed."
The gripper and arm are on Thingiverse.
Trainable Robotic Arm 1
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The Arduino is a low cost microcontroller that was made for artists and designers to add interactivity to their projects. If you are interested the Arduino microcontroller but have no experience with it, buy an Arduino
and a copy of Getting Starting with Arduino
. If you know a little about Arduino and are looking for project ideas, get Arduino Workshop: A Hands-On Introduction with 65 Projects
. You'll learn how to use the Arduino to control motors, interface with GPS an IR remote control, and connect to the Internet.
A digital thermometer that charts temperature changes on an LCD
A GPS logger that records data from your travels, which can be displayed on Google Maps
A handy tester that lets you check the voltage of any single-cell battery
A keypad-controlled lock that requires a secret code to open
An electronic version of the classic six-sided die
A binary quiz game that challenges your number conversion skills
A motorized remote control tank with collision detection to keep it from crashing
Arduino Workshop: A Hands-On Introduction with 65 Projects
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Last September, Doctor Kristen Stubbs -- a roboticist who makes sex-gadgets for her Toymaker Project -- released a video (NSFW) demonstrating her prototype pelvic-floor strength-tester, called "The Hammer." The Hammer has a bulb that is internally inserted, containing a squeeze-sensor, and a penis-shaped, light-up readout that protrudes between the wearer's legs. The harder the wearer squeezes, the more the readout lights up.
Right now The Hammer has two modes: the test-your-strength game, where the more you squeeze, the more it lights up; and a demo mode which cycles through all of the colors of the LEDs. Soon I hope to connect the Arduino to my Android phone, and then I’ll be able to do even more cool things!
I’ll be following up on this with more technical details over the next few weeks. (Update, 10/11/12: If you would like to hear me talk about how I made The Hammer, you can see some excerpts and my slides from my technical talk at Arse Elektronika 2012.) My plan is for The Hammer to become an Open Hardware project. This is still very much a prototype, but I would be thrilled if anyone else wanted to build their own.
The Hammer: A Muscle-Controlled, Light-Up Dildo
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Adafruit has announced "Gemma," a bite-sized, Arduino compatible board intended for use in wearable electronics projects. It measures 1" in diameter, and while it's not shipping yet, they're taking names for people who want to get 'em when they ship:
Powered by the ATtiny85 with 3 available I/O pins, one of which is also an analog input and two which can do PWM output*
Progammable over the micro USB connection*
Onboard 3.3v Regulator and power LED*
Works with our Flora NeoPixels (can drive about a dozen - not much RAM!)*
Super tiny design, only 1" (25mm) diameter & 4mm thick
Adafruit Gemma - Miniature wearable electronic platform
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I had a lot of time on my hands this holiday season and decided to get an arduino kit (I have solar panels I want to aim for max efficiency during the day, on a VW van.) A lot of intro titles seemed interesting but Simon Monk's 30 Arduino Projects for the Evil Genius grabbed my attention. Good title!
Sadly, this is no guide to building shark-mountable lasers. There are however a lot of simple, short projects that help you understand building with an arduino controller. Monk uses very clear pictures and schematics to show what needs doing. His text is precise and understandable. The steps are easy to follow and the thing you should learn from an exercise is blatantly obvious. Most importantly these projects are fun! I'm not just making an LED blink or a speaker chirp when I work with this book. Projects like the temperature monitor and computer controlled fan are giving me the foundation I need to aim my solar panels. The results and functions are easy to apply to the types of things I want to do with an arduino.
Lasers would have been nice.
30 Arduino Projects for the Evil Genius by Simon Monk Read the rest
The good folks at Darwin Aerospace have figured out how to use drones to parachute burritos directly onto your property.
Marc De Vinck says:
The Arduino Esplora is a ready-to-use, easy-to-hold controller that lets you explore the infinite possibilities you have in the world of Arduino, without having to deal with breadboards or soldering. Shaped like a game controller, it’s designed to be used out of the box without extra parts since it comes with many sensors and actuators already on it.
For the time being, it's available at RadioShack stores.
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The Braun Lectron was Arduino co-creator Massimo Banzi’s “Rosebud.”
Scanlime's Beth modded a remote control vibrator, replacing the interface with an Arduino-based sonar controller that she can activate with any part of her body.
Here's a cute way to gimmick a keyboard out of a grid of beercans, using Raspberry Pis and Arduinos.
Electromagnetic Field is a three day camping festival for hackers, geeks, scientists, engineers, artists, and crafters. From the 31st August to the 2nd September we'll be taking over a field in Milton Keynes and turning it into a place for makers and breakers to meet, build and learn from each other.
Throughout the event there will be talks and workshops on a huge variety of things, from gene therapy to welding, lock picking to electronics, DNSSEC to drones, and crocheting to carpentry. The camp is fully equipped with power and internet to every tent, and each attendee receives an Arduino-compatible wireless camp badge to hack on. We are encouraging people to set up campsites with friends, and we'd like to offer a limited number of discount tickets to Boing Boing readers!
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Katsideswide has modded her alpha-version Makie doll with a pair of expressive animal ears. She drilled holes in the head of her custom, 3D printed dolls, used the head-cavity to house a controller, and went to town.
Ok, i've just started tinkering around with some tiny servos to get Suekat expressing herself. I'm yet to get the drill out to perform amateur surgery on her skullcap but I'm hoping the results will be exciting! I don't want to promise anything yet but I've hooked up an arduino pro mini, and the conveniently sized head cavity means I think i can get a fair amount in there. It looks like there's a handy hole in the neck leading to what looks suspiciously like a space for a battery in Suekat's back. Unfortunately I can't get a standard 9V battery into the space! It's a fraction too small. I was wondering what battery it was designed for? And if there's any chance I can get 9V out of it?
(Disclosure: I'm proud to say that my wife co-founded MakieLab, manufacturers of the Makie dolls) Read the rest