Using an Arduino, a bunch of code and a little machine learning, Benn Hamm created a cat door to keep his cat from bringing dead--and sometimes live--rats and birds into his home in the middle of the night. It's not often that I'm down with bringing surveillance technology into homes but, as a former cat owner who's had to clean bird shit off a flat-screen TV, I have nothing but love for this project.
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XOD (pronounced "zode") is a visual programming language for Arduino and other microcontrollers. It looks a bit like Scratch (the visual programming language for kids) but XOD is especially made for microcontrollers and electronic components. There are XOD desktop IDEs for Mac, Windows, and Linux. In this Make Use Of video, you can see how to use XOD to control a servo with a proximity sensor. They are using this Elegoo Arduino kit ( on Amazon), which has the servo, LCD display, and proximity sensor, Read the rest
Daren Schwenke's 3D printed blooming rose embeds a capacitive touch sensor -- a magnetic wire -- in one of the leaves, which trips an Arduino-controlled actuator that changes the rose's lighting and causes the petals -- 3D printed and then shaped over a hot chandelier bulb -- to splay open or fold closed.
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How To Mechatronics has pulled together detailed instructions and a great video explaining how to make an Arduino-powered, 3D-printed wire-bending machine whose gears can create arbitrary vector images out of precision-bent continuous lengths of wire. (via Beyond the Beyond)
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Circuitmess's fully funded Makerphone kickstarter is raising money to produce open source hardware smartphone kits to teach kids (and grownups) everything from soldering to programming.
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LEDs are diodes (that's what the D stands for) and diodes are sensitive to voltage drops: when you blow on an LED, you make it ever so slightly cooler, and that causes an infinitesimal, but detectable voltage drop.
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The Casa Jasmina project (previously) is an automated smart house designed to be made of open source hardware, with the needs of the people who live there -- not the corporations who extract rent from them -- in mind.
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The first "wearable" computer I ever tried was a wrist-strap that let me wear my Palm Pilot like a huge, ungainly wristwatch; I tethered it with a thick cable to a CDMA phone that could emulate a 9600 baud modem and used it to dial into the WELL. Read the rest
The Elegoo UNO R3 Board is on sale on Amazon today for $9.34. I've used this board in a couple of projects, like my peanut butter mixer, and it has worked flawlessly. And if you need a kit of parts to go along with it, here's one for $18. Read the rest
Lucas Berbesson created this nifty homemade PixelStick, and he was kind enough to share the instructions, too. Read the rest
Arduino is on open-source electronics prototyping platform that lets you make interactive stuff without having a degree in electrical engineering.
For about $(removed) you can buy a credit card sized circuit board that has input connections (for buttons, knobs, light sensors, microphones, humidity sensors, fart detectors, Internet signals, etc) and output connections (for servo motors, LEDs, buzzers, speakers, stepper motors, vibrators, etc). You write programs on your computer to tell the Arduino how to process the input signals and how to activate the output components. This program is uploaded to the Arduino's microprocessor, making it self-contained. Read the rest
Redditor/machinist Spdltd was commissioned to create a steampunk, Arduino-powered electromechanical clock that uses a combination of belts, dials and needles arrayed across the wall to tell the time. Read the rest
"Oh my god, this is beautiful!," "What IS this?; this is SO cool!" It's not often you get such reactions (especially from non-techies) for a nerdy computer hardware and electronics book filled with esoteric-looking diagrams. But that's what happened when Alberto Piganti sent me a prototype copy of his ABC: Basic Connections book and I left it out on my dining room table. Alberto sent the copy because he's currently crowdfunding the book on Kickstarter (now with only 14 hours left to go!). UPDATE: The book is now available to pre-order on Indiegogo
Anyone who knows Alberto's work on his website PighiXXX knows that he creates gorgeous, free to download, and easy-to-understand circuit diagrams, pinouts, and other electronic schematics for the Arduino user community. His work is laudable for being exceptionally clean and clear, easy for non-techies to understand, and rendered in the most human-readable ways possible. And it's all just too dang purdy!
His ABC: Basic Connections book is a small 2-ring binder collecting (and adding to) the best and most useful schematics from the site. The idea is that the schematics are printed on sturdy pages that you can remove from the binder to use on your workbench (and updates will be available). He describes the impetus for the project:
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Back in 2013 I began designing my own and making them available for free on my website pighixxx.com. I have created so far more than 300 high quality circuit diagrams and pinouts that are used by more than 500,000 makers worldwide.
When Federico Musto engineered a takeover of Arduino, open source hardware fans were nonplussed, and not least because Musto was caught lying about having received advanced degrees from MIT and NYU. Read the rest
For $(removed), this is a really good starter kit for getting to know the Arduino electronics protyping platform. It has an Arduino Uno clone, a bunch of resistors, a capacitor, a photo resistor, a capacitor, pushbuttons, jumper wires, a speaker, a solderless breadboard, and a shift register integrated circuit (handy when you need more output pins than the Arduino supplies - see this tutorial). Read the rest
My daughter and I have set up a small maker space in our house and we are stocking it with components. Our latest acquisition: this 37-piece Arduino sensor and effector kit. It's a great deal at $(removed)
Here's what's inside:
Rotary Encoder Module
DS-3231 RTC Module
Ultrasonic Sensor Module
HC-SR501 PIR sensor Module
Flame Sensor Module
Linear Hall Module
Metal Touch Module
Digital Temperature Module
Big Sound Module
Small Sound Module
RGB LED Module
SMD RGB Module
Two-tone Color Module
7 Color Flash Module
Laser Emit Module
IR Receiver Module
IR Emission Module
Tilt Switch Module
Active Buzzer Module
Passive Buzzer Module
18B20 temp Module
Temperature and Humidity Module
Membrane Switch Module
Magnetic Spring Module
Water Lever Sensor
Power Supply Module
LCD1602 Module (with pin header) Read the rest
Hackster.io went to the Maker Faire in the East Bay, where they found Tien Pham sporting his latest creation: F.Lashes, interactive LED false eyelashes. Read the rest