Beautiful papercraft retrocomputing models to print and love and hang from your tree

Rocky Bergen creates gorgeous, downloadable papercraft models of retro PCs, from the Commodore 64 to the Apple ][+ to the Amstrad, with different screens to print celebrating classic 8-bit games, and accessories like tiny floppies in tiny paper sleeves. As Waxy points out, these would make stunning Christmas ornaments. Read the rest

Argentine hacker mods Furby so it quotes Borges, creates a "Borgy"

Argentine hacker [Roni Bandini] modded a 1998 Furby so that it responds to stimulus by rattling off a random quote from Jorge Luis Borges. He calls it "Borgy." Read the rest

Literal breadboarding, with toast and Vegemite

Vegemite has enough salt to be conductive, and is viscous enough to draw distinct traces with on suitable medium (say, toast that has been cooked such that most of the water has evaporated, making it a good insulator), as Luke Weston has ably demonstrated. Read the rest

$30 plug-and-play kit converts a Bird scooter into a "personal scooter"

When scooter companies like Bird started illegally deploying their gadgets in city streets, there was intense interest in both the street value of the components to be found within each of these VC-backed ewaste-in-waiting devices, and tactics for hotwiring them. Read the rest

An annual Christmas craft tradition: the Die Hard Air Duct ornament

Combine a paperclip, tin foil, a cereal box, and a print out to make the Die Hard John McClane Air Duct Christmas Ornament. PS: Die Hard is a Christmas movie. (via Kottke) Read the rest

3D printable Walkaway bookmarks!

Joel Bonasera liked my novel Walkaway so much that he made a 3D-printable bookmark based on Will Stahle's amazing cover art! Read the rest

A closer look at the new Raspberry Pi 3 Model A+

Raspberry Pi is a line of inexpensive ($5 - $35) single board Linux computers. The latest model is the Raspberry Pi 3 Model A+, which costs $25 and is quite a bit smaller than the 3 Model B+. This episode of ExplainingComputers takes a look at this new edition to family. Read the rest

Watchmaker takes apart and compares watches with Swiss and Japanese movements

Ryan Jewell is a professional watchmaker in New York. In this episode of Wired's Deconstructed series, Jewell (good last name for a watchmaker) takes apart two Carpenter watches, one with a Swiss movement (~$825) and one with a Japanese movement (~$595). It's interesting to see the different tools he uses to take the watches apart without damaging the tiny delicate components. Read the rest

Creepbay: the gothiest stuff on the net

Creepbay is a beautifully selected catalog of online "creepy and cool" merch, skewed heavily to Etsy, though not limited to it: it's full of stuff that will probably end up in my house, eventually (this planter will look great in the tiki bar we're building; this is next Christmas's door-candy; and someone in my life surely needs this) -- better yet, there's RSS, so expect more from this feed to show up here in the fullness of time. (via Metafilter) Read the rest

Astronomea: a gorgeous, handmade, astronomy inspired desk lamp

Art Donovan (previously) writes, "Delivered. A very special design commission for the Project Director of NASA's James Webb Space Telescope. A 'white glove' delivery, in fact. The first lamp in 28 years that I simply could not trust to survive the ravages of FedEx." Read the rest

NASA's hand soldering guide

Did you know that Rusty Blazenhoff, who writes for us here at Boing Boing, has a wonderful newsletter called Rusty's Electric Dreams? You can subscribe to it here. The current issue of the newsletter (which is guest edited by Doctor Popular) has a link to a hand-soldering guide from NASA. The photos are excellent. Here's the (large) PDF. Read the rest

TV-B-Gone inventor Mitch Altman's rad new $30 DIY Music Synthesizer!

Boing Boing pal and maker superhero Mitch Altman, creator of the amazing TV-B-Gone, spent several years designing a simple-yet-powerful DIY music synthesizer that he could use to teach creative electronics and also digital signal processing to kids and adults. The result is the ArduTouch Music Synthesizer! And it's only $30! Demo videos below. Mitch wrote about the method behind his maker madness in IEEE Spectrum. From his essay:

As a kid with a lust for music, I was rocked by the Moog synthesizer sounds of 1968’s Switched-On Bach. I needed to learn how to make those sounds! Thus began a lifetime of learning and synthesizer making while I made my way in the tech industry, where I ultimately created the TV-B-Gone, a gadget that lets you turn off almost any model of remote-controlled television. Since the popular success of the TV-B-Gone, I’ve created many fun, open-source, hackable hardware kits for the maker workshops I give around the world. In these workshops, newbies learn to solder, tinkering their way into electronics and microcontrollers. Remembering my own youth, I wanted to provide them with a kit that was simple to assemble [PDF] and use but still a fully fledged music synthesizer.

The result was the US $30 ArduTouch. This project incorporates, on a single board, a touch keyboard, an ATMega328P (the same processor used in the Arduino Uno), and an audio amp with a speaker. It also has a software library that can serve as an entry point into the world of digital signal processing.

Read the rest

150-piece Fallout 76 Pip-Boy 2000 construction kit

From Thinkgeek, the $150 Fallout 76 Pip-Boy 2000 Construction Kit, a full-sized, wearable replica of the Pip-Boy 2000 Mark VI, in a vegan leather case, with a "completely in-world instruction manual." (via Wonderlandblog) Read the rest

Man restores rusted cast-iron vise to pristine condition

The host of the My Mechanics Youtube channel bought a rusted Gressel vise for $20 and made it look brand new again. It was fun to watch him restore this ugly boat anchor into a good-as-new vise. The rust was so severe that he had to make a tool to open the jaws. He also used lots of WD-40, an impact driver, a hammer, scrapers, brushes, a lathe, sandpaper, a grinder, a welder, a file, a drill press, a hand drill, a tap and die set, an oilstone, a screw extractor, and end mill, a sandblaster, degreaser, and paint. He also made some parts that had been missing from the original vise.

[via Core77] Read the rest

Distracted Lego boyfriend

Iain Heath writes, "I recreated the 'distracted boyfriend' meme using LEGO bricks." You certainly did, Iain, and very well, too! Read the rest

Here's the new $25 Raspberry Pi 3 Model A+

The Raspberry Pi Foundation announced a new model in its line of very inexpensive Linux computers: the Raspberry Pi 3 Model A+. It has many of the same features as the top-of-the-line 3B+ (including a 1.4GHz 64-bit quad-core processor, dual-band wireless LAN, and Bluetooth 4.2/BLE), the main exceptions being 512MB of RAM instead of 1GB, and one USB port as opposed to four. At $25, it looks like a very cool single board computer. ETA Prime has a good informational video about it. Read the rest

Kickstarting a Da Vinci-inspired, programmable, mechanical drawing robot-arm

Robert Sabuda (previously) writes, "It has long been a dream of the Leonardo da Vinci Robot Society to bring one of the Renaissance Master’s creations back to life. 2019 is the 500th anniversary of da Vinci’s death and the Society has chosen to honor his memory and celebrate his life through one of his best known inventions - the Robot Knight. This robot is an early proto-computer android whose read-only programmable memory allowed it to perform many actions. And it was also rumored that the robot’s arm could also perform an extremely complex task…draw a picture!" Read the rest

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