We live in the information age. Your phone knows where you like to eat, computer programs know what movies you like better than you do, and going to a party can mean going in this life, or a Second Life. So why is your message of love still stuck in the 16th century? These days it takes more than a sonnet to melt a girl’s heart. This video tutorial shows step-by-step how to make a Valentine’s Day card for the digital age. The NerdKits team shows how to make an LED Heart Valentine’s card powered by a microcontroller. The heart features an LCD screen for a personalized message, and 20 LEDs around the perimeter that can be programmed to show any pattern. The code provided contains a “twinkle” function that randomizes the process to provide a true star-like twinkle.
DIY LED Heart – [Link]
Have you ever touched those gummy buttons on an old Sony Betacam recorder? Ever admired this warm glow beneath the play-button? Ever wanted to add some of these to your own do-it-yourself projects, only to find you can’t buy them nowhere? well here’s a cheap and easy way I found to make them on my own… [via] [photo]
Make your own illuminated buttons – [Link]
This is a really nice UV light box for making PCBs. It supports double sided boards, has a built in timer, and a safety switch to turn off the unit when opened. Looks like a great alternative to expensive commercial versions. [via]
I’m just toying around with this idea at the moment. If I start using photo exposure PCB type production, I’m probably going to need a light box. I have tried using spray on photo-sensitive resist and exposure to the sun. It was a complete failure. Presensitised boards, and a light box seem the way to go. I haven’t read much about this technique on the web, so I’m still a bit cautious.
DIY: UV Exposure Light Box – [Link]
The YBox2 is a DIY networked set-top box. Connect it to your TV and you can design customized content to be delivered direct from the Internet.
This project is great for people who want a new platform to experiment with. The video and Internet cores are ready to go and easy to work with. If you’ve ever been curious about the Parallax Propeller chip, the YBox2 is a perky little platform with tons of accessories. [via]
* Built using the new Parallax Propeller chip – 8 cores, 32KB of RAM running at 80MHz!
* Works with any NTSC or PAL TV that has composite (RCA) input
* Works with any network router that supports DHCP, just plug in an Ethernet cable and you’re ready to go
* Kit comes with an Internet-enabled bootloader, so you can upload new programs directly from your computer, without a special cable or prop-plug (Propeller chip programmer)
* IR receiver for using a TV remote control
* Full color status LED
* Piezo Buzzer for generating beeps, alarms, and tones
* Pushbutton for input
* Lots of examples programs to try out
* Fits in an altoids tin!
YBox2: DIY networked set-top box – [Link]
How to make your own OLED (organic LED) in a home laboratory? [image source]
An Organic Light Emitting Diode (OLED) is any Light Emitting Diode (LED) whose emissive electroluminescent layer is composed of a film of organic compounds. The layer usually contains a polymer substance that allows suitable organic compounds to be deposited. They are deposited in rows and columns onto a flat carrier by a simple “printing” process. The resulting matrix of pixels can emit light of different colors.
Your own homebrewed OLED – [Link]
The Rundfunker is a tabletop mp3 player that scans the WLAN for local audio sources and is able to play shared audio-files. It has a built-in 2-way speaker system, a LC display and a very simple yet powerful user interface. The device is independent of any external peripheral equipment – all hardware components are integrated into the appealingly designed housing including an exclusive aluminium front panel. All you need is 12 V DC power supplied e.g. by a mains adapter.
Rundfunker – WLAN mp3 player – [Link]
For around $30 in parts and a good amount of patience, you can have a completely open source and hackable mp3 player ready to go. It can be modified to accept serial commands, be embedded in an art project, used as the voice of your next smart talking robo-sidekick, or filled with music and used as is. Put in whatever size card you want, up to the theoretical limit of the MMC format! All the source and schematics are here for free as part of the Creative Commons. I have kits available if you don’t feel like scavenging for the parts yourself.
This player features a shuffle mode, basic track navigation, volume control, FAT32 support, fragmented file support, an unlimited number of files on the root directory, and high quality playback. Files at 256Kbps can be played without a hitch. Variable bitrate files are supported with peaks up to 320Kbps.
The World’s Simplest Open Source DIY MP3 player – [Link]
That’s a very compact nixie clock based on PIC16F84A and 74141 driver IC and MPSA92 high voltage transistors.
PIC16F84A Nixie Clock – [Link]
I work a lot with ESD sensitive stuff – ICs, transistors and other devices. And that means – if I don’t wanna kill em all I need to discharge often – which is quite annoying. But I happen to work with a computer, and a standard input device – the mouse. Which gave me a nice idea – use the Ground connection of the mouse to discharge me.
ESD removal mouse – [Link]
This circuitry allows you to control your computer with a simple remote, like the one you already use for your TV-set. It’s very useful when you want to control a DVD or an mp3 player without having to stay at the keyboard. Please note that this circuit is NOT IrDA compatible and it won’t help you to connect to your mobile phone or whatever IrDA device; it’s only good to control your pc with a standard remote control. I use it for VDR and now my pc is a full featured set top box connected to the television, capable to digitally record and replay satellite television, DVDs and every kind of digital content (mp3, divx). There are many softwares you can install to control this ciruit; for Linux you can use Lirc and for Windows you can use either Winlirc, Girder, IR Assistant or uIRC.
How to build a simple but cool IR receiver – [Link]