Tag Archives: Hacks

Arduino Plays Timberman or how to cheat in video games

via Arduino Blog

timberman

Playing addictive and repetitive video games is a pleasure for some people but not so engaging for others. Valentin Haun found the solution to reach high score without getting bored: he made an Arduino Uno playing Timberman for him.

You can find the code and the circuit example for this program on Github

Take a look at the older and slower version made for iPhone

A garment transporter made with Arduino Robot

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garment-robot

Last March  RS Components, in collaboration with RobotChallenge, launched the Hack the Arduino Robot competition.

Jacob Glueck submitted a great hack for the Arduino Robot:

“A couple of years ago, I built an Arduino-powered shirt-folding machine which folds clothes. Using the Arduino robot from the RobotChallenge, I will build a device to remove folded clothes from the machine and to stack them. My idea is special because it will involve two Arduinos (the Arduino Uno in the shirt folder, and the Arduino Robot) which will have to communicate, and because it will be very useful. The robot will solve the real life problem of laundry folding by making the task easier and faster and by doing so nicely; the robot will use a custom-designed gripper to transport garments while keeping them perfectly folded.”

On his blog you can look at the pictures of the construction  phase , and below watch the video of the final project:

Concrete Batch Plant using Arduino and LIFA in Bangladesh

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concrete plant

Arduino user Geotechbd wrote us from Bangladesh to share his experience:

Our company here in Bangladesh owns a quite old concrete batch plant, which had full manual control requiring an operator to control 14+ switched and observe 3 mechanical scales (dial gauges). I was successful to upgrade this plant to an automated unit requiring minimal operator input using custom made Arduino Uno compatible board and LIFA. Wiring is still messy which I shall take care in the near future.

concrete plant

On his blog he then details a list of tools, components, and at the end of the post, thanks all the people and communities who supported him in this challenge:

My gratitude goes to my lovely wife for keeping me sane and my brother for arranging for ICs not available locally. My sincerest thanks goes to the Arduino community for helping me to remedy EMI problem and LIFA community for I2C communication troubleshooting. I must thank the developers of Arduino/LIFA/Fritzing for making electronics more accessible to the general masses.

My electronics and Arduino knowledge was gathered from websites as tronixstuff.com / jeremyblum.com / arduino.cc, so thanks to excellent contributors of these sites. I had support personnel (a very patient electrician and a plant operator) here who helped me with wiring high voltage lines, and plant operational knowledge; thus, they also deserve thanks.

It’s cool to see how open source creates collaborations among people all over the world!

Pokemon X and Y: a Fully Automatic Shiny Finder made with Arduino Micro

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Pokemon Nintendo

How to enhance performance in gaming from an engineering point of view? dekuNukem created a hands-free finder  built using Arduino Micro to accomplish the task of chaining fishes at full speed and without fail at a touch of a button:

The fishing keeps going without human input until a shiny shows up, at which point it stops and sound a buzzer to notify the user.

It took 81 chains to catch a shiny in this case, but during my other tests it’s usually around 50, and sometimes even less than 20 chains get you one.

Watch the detailed video below and check the code:

 

 

Some notes from Hack the Hackathon London

via Arduino Blog

HacktheHackathon-London2013

 

At the beginning of July Arduino was in London to participate to Hack The Hackathon event. We had a great time and a lot of enthusiasm about Arduino: at least 60 hands went in the air when Russ Klein, from HTH,  asked on Friday night who had never seen Arduino. And by the end of the weekend, 5 projects were developed using the technology and 26 people emerged with hands-on experience. Here’s a summary of the projects and some pictures:

 

MEDITEL
Katie Bibbard, Edwin Senjobe, Duncan McKenzie, and Julian Carstairs created a method for rural healthcare workers in Africa to monitor and report a patient’s vital signs, diagnose the patient’s condition, and take appropriate action. A portal allows the readings to be communicated to experts in other locations who provide advice and guidance. Arduino and GSM Shield were used to collect physical data and upload via USSD or SMS but also program reminders to deliver medicines. This is their presentation on Prezi.

 

ICE BUDDY – AID CONVOY
Hoi Lam created a local communications system to be used when there is a report of disaster. The system sends the coordinates to users of local team within a specified radius then asks, “are u ok?” Arduino makes the system easy to use for small teams of people (for example a United Nations Convoy) which may not be able to communicate with the outside world but which can communicate locally among team members. Arduino provides visible cues to help rescue and reconnaissance workers coordinate efforts.

 

PEPITA
Alex Gonzalez, Carlos Miguel, and Gianfranco Cecconoi created an inexpensive device that functions as a remote control unit to help elderly and learning disabled people access basic communications functions without having to learn a complex system of menus and other user interface options. Arduino is the controller giving support technicians a reduced set of possible issues, fewer distracting features, and fewer ways that the end user can get lost or confused.

 

SAFE @ HOME
Matthias Buchting created a way to detect critical injury at home. Elderly or infirmed people living on their own sometimes suffer catastrophic injury and cannot call for help. Using Arduino and sensors such as temperature for fire, sensors at the door to see if a person is walking in apartment, motion and sound to detect the absence of movement, abnormal readings can be sent as notifications to healthcare or emergency response personnel.

 

SMARTWELL
The team composed by Omkar Vadpathak, Munya Mutikani, Thura Z Maung, and Javier Madrigal worked on a project that tests well water in rural areas of India and Africa. Water wells are far apart and regular testing is difficult or impossible in many areas.
Before going to the well, user can send an SMS to request info and the well answers back delivering some environmental parameters and, most importantly, if there is water and if it’s drinking water. Arduino is able to measures the temperature, water level, toxicity, oxygen content, and other vital readings to determine whether the water is safe to drink. All the wells are sending info to authorities allowing them to monitor the level of pollution and understand if reclamation is needed.

 

HAPPY CYCLE
Javier Madrigal created a sensor-based safety system for use by bicyclists. Using proximity and other sensors, a cyclist is alerted of approaching vehicles and other obstacles. Arduino acts as the data collection device and communicates with the cyclist’s phone or other audio or visual warning system. The system focuses on blind spots, darkness, and other cycling hazards.

 

Vintage radio hacked into a docking station

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Vintage radio hacked into a docking station

Mr. Oyvind from Oslo sent us a cool  hack of a 75-years-old radio into an iPhone dock using an Arduino.

On his website you can read the complete tutorial or download the code and below you can have more details on the way he used the board:

the Arduino is used to read the state of the dual potentiometer that controls the volume and then translate this value into a certain number of LEDs being lit on the volume indicator.
I am using a Duemilanove. The code for the project is very simple and can be found here:http://www.build-electronic-circuits.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/radio_ino.zip
  •  An overview of the inside of the dock (very messy, I know ;) )
dock overview
  •  I am using a dual potentiometer (2 pots in one). Here you can see one pot connected to the amplifier on the left to control the volume, and the other connected to the Arduino on the right to read the position of the pot.

dock pot amp arduino

  • Here you can see the 4 wires used to control the volume display connected to digital input 2, 3, 4 and 5 on the left side of the board. And you can see the potentiometer connected to 3.3V, analog input 0 and ground on the right side of the board.

dock connections

DIY farm hacking takes off

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Farm hacks

 

Steve Spence, an amateur organic farmer in Andrew, South Carolina, has a smart way of irrigating his vegetables. He uses water from his pond and the fish waste to fertilize his plants, a technique known as aquaponics. But the critical balance between the makeup of the water and soil means Spence has to know exactly what’s going on in both. Real-time information about the pond’s make up is imperative to know he’s giving his veggies the best drink of water.

This is the beginning of a post published on ModernFarmer a couple of days ago. Click here to keep reading about nice stories and real examples (+ 5 farm hacks!) on how to use Arduino for farming and what happens when farmers  start  embracing the modern trends of DIY tech.

Fake bathroom window using Arduino

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Virtual bathroom window

Are you a student living in a closed dorm? Ever wished for a window on a blank wall but maybe the house owners would not allow you to build? All of you would have seen tutorial about moodlamp with RGB LED strips and Arduino. This seems to be the perfect application for it.

For this tutorial the maker used Superlight LEDs and an Arduino  which provides an effect directly corresponding to the preset daytime light outside.

Arduino time library is the core of the project.

For a very detailed tutorial on how to make it by yourself at home, head here!

Something is rotten in Denmark (Bio-Hacks)

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Labitat, 3/2013

Massimo and I had the chance to visit a Labitat makerspace in Copenhagen. I have to thank Martin Markus to let us in on a non-visit day and move underground, where the lab is.

The main reason of our visit was getting in touch with the Bio-Hackers and Maker Community meeting there, get them involved in the Call of Makers for the upcoming European Maker Faire in Rome. We had a good time in talking with them about the strange situation we are witnessing here in Europe: many languages, many nations, one big movement of people tinkering around stuff. Get everybody to know about this event and the chance to meet and talk to each other is a massive task. But we are going to overcome it!

Labitat, 3/2013

The place is just super. I’ve been involved in the making of a makespaces in the last three years of my life, but I have no words in describing the feelings I had in witnessing the massive amount of contents that basement kept. No joke.

I tried my best in recovering those objects, those feelings and this odd XXIst century knowledge in a pool set of Flickr, where I tried to describe and follow the different projects I’ve seen.

 

Why visiting makerspaces is to me just like standing on giants shoulders? Basically because I know the problems and I see better, streamlined solutions answering (better than ours in Fablab Torino. You guys feel free to comment and make me feel naiv about the Fridge,  Bio Hacks, the communication billboards, and the AtMEGA 16u2 hack from Dennis.

 

Enabling F-bus communications with Arduino

via Arduino Blog

It’s always nice to see how creative makers approach communication issues in DIY projects, and today we would like to highlight the approach followed by Alex, from InsideGadgets.

On his website, he provides a detailed tutorial on how to use an old Nokia 6110 (or any derivatives) to send SMS messages by exploiting the Nokia’s F-bus, a simple bi-directional and full-duplex serial protocol.

After considerable reverse engineering work, made possible by useful online documentation, Alex finally managed to send a SMS from his Arduino board, connected to the phone, thanks to AVR libraries made available by AVRFreaks.

More information can be found on InsideGadget.

[Via: Inside Gadgets]

An Arduino-based ADB-to-USB adapter for NeXT keyboards

via Arduino Blog

Have you ever wondered to use your old-fashioned NeXT keyboard with your current, non-ADB computer? The main issue that needs to be solved regards how to interface this ADB keyboard (standing for Apple Desktop Bus, an old protocol used in former NeXT and Apple computers) with a standard USB interface.

In this nice tutorial, Ladyada and Pt describe the approach they have used, based on an Arduino Micro board and… some luck in searching for the right information about the scancode table of the keyboard  ^^.

More information can be found here.

[Via: Adafruit Learning System]

 

Project feature: Accessing YQL from Arduino

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The ethernet shield opens up lot of possibilities for Arduino. One of which has been explored by Sudar. He has found a way to make YQL calls and even parse the JSON response using Arduino and Ethernet shield.

So what is YQL?

YQL stands for Yahoo Query Language. It is an expressive SQL-like language that lets you query, filter, and join data across Web services. You can read more about YQL from the Yahoo Developer network page.

Checkout the tutorial and the source code at his blog hardwarefun.com.

He is a Research Engineer at Yahoo Research Labs India, by profession, and a hardware hacker by passion. More of his projects can be found here.

Product feature: Arduino based loo-information service

via Arduino Blog

Ever had to wait outside your loo, in a long queue during office hours? Wished that you had not left your desk un-attended when your boss was on rounds? Avail the new feature from the Indian company Webchutney.

It’s an interactive loo service which removes the queue from the loo. The service allows anyone in our office (Webchutney-Delhi, India) to check the status of the loo, ring a bell if engaged and get notified when the loo gets vacant, all this remotely sitting at your desk.

Contact them for more details! ;)

Disclaimer: This project was submitted as a part of our community contribution feature. The correctness of the information is the sole resopnsibility of the contributor.

Exceptionally Hard and Soft meeting at Berlin 28-30 December 2012 (Part1)

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Ever wished for a really geeky end of the year? Wondering where to get all the latest awesomeness in the hardware world and get to see the people behind it? Reach out for Exceptionally Hard and Soft Meeting (EHSM) 2012 in the beautiful city of Berlin.

Here is a list of confirmed speakers to give you an insight into why you must attend:

The keynote speaker is Will Jack a 17 year old who apart from building a nuclear fusion reactor, recently built a writing pen for himself because he wanted one.

ICs are really small and badass but you can learn the technique of Reverse engineering it from John McMaster. His work can be seen on siliconpr0n.org.

Wires are the veins of an electrical circuit and Adrian Lelong would teach you wire characterization and diagnosis using various methods which is essential for the critical applications.

What new can be innovated in the technology behind music? Kaspar Emanuel would share his experiences behind a startup AlphaSphere doing the exact same job. AlphaSphere is a new musical instrument designed exclusively for electronic music. He would talk about the approach of open Innovation behind it.

If film deposition, plasma etching, linear particle accelerator, electron beam microscope, electron beam welding, molecular beam epitaxy are your favorite words, then you would surely enjoy the talk by Sylvain Radix and David Rochelet where they describe their success and failures in electrolab while building high-end vacuum systems the step 1 for various purposes stated above.

Coding and debugging without Java? Yes, using the web browser, also you would learn to tweak the CPU with Yann Guidon and Laura Bécognée and demoing YASEP.

A talk by by Stefan Sydow and Sebastian Koch would be on software defined radio with aircraft radio transponders head to metafly to see its live application.

Don’t have a complete idea on all the above technologies? Want your child over 7 years of age to start with her first tech at the conference? Your beloved arduino might be there too, to take a workshop on ‘Getting started with arduino’ for children and beginners.

Head over here to read about more amazing people or wait for part 2 for more announcements on the speakers.

Heard enough already? Head here to book tickets now!