How can I generate a power source via EMF waves around us without using any other power source?

Tell simply and more efficent way while dealing with it. Also it must work and practically available as well as possible.

Question by asim164   |  last reply


What is Google "broad core" algorithm update?

Can anyone have technically knowledge about Google "broad core" algorithm?

Topic by kbihmdigital   |  last reply


Broad-tip calligraphy pen form skewer? Answered

I'm wondering if you can make a calligraphy pen from a bamboo skewer. Gratias, josh1324

Question by josh1324   |  last reply


Mechanical vs Electrical Engineering? Answered

What are the primary differences between the two? Which is a more rewarding career path? Which major is better for someone who wants to get a broad understanding of engineering? Is it feasible to get a double major?

Question by Chikpeas Brother   |  last reply


CREO, SolidWorks, Catia, Etc.?

Sort of a broad question here - if it deviates too much from the theme of these forums, my apologies. I was just curious to know, of those of you who use manufacturing design software, which do you prefer and why? 

Topic by PlasticPanama   |  last reply


WHO STOLE MY LITTLE GIRLS TENT?

I HAVE TWO WEB CAMS AND I NEED TO KNOW HOW TO SET THEM IN A WINDOW SO I CAN CATCH WHOEVER THIS IDIOT IS WHO WILL STEEL A PUP TENT FROM AN 8 YEAR OLD GIRL IN BROAD DAYLIGHT.

Question by    |  last reply


i dont get internet in windows 7. what i do? Answered

#     dell vostro 230 slim tower #     pentium dual core #     broad band internet #     3gb ram #     windows 7 ultimate  (64 bit) these screenshots are helpful

Question by aravind r p   |  last reply


how to kill the loud annoying boom boom from cars?

i am wondering is there a way of over riding speakers to play my own music or just stop the boom boom coming out the car in front at traffic lights? i remember a broad band am frequency was mentioned once at one place of work but need your knowledge.?

Question by patternbill   |  last reply


Mini Maker Faire in Lubbock, TX April 28, 2012

Yee-Haw!!  For all you Makers out there who are stuck in the midwest and cannot travel to one of the big Maker Faires this year, there is a one-day event in Lubbock, TX on Saturday April 28, 2012.  Wear your robot -shirts and a broad-brimmed hat.  See y'all there!  http://lubbockmakerfaire.com/about/

Topic by CatTrampoline   |  last reply


Kite design for aerial photography?

After getting a little KAP rig together, it weighs in at just under 300g. In fairly low winds (5mph say) What sort of kite is able to lift that mass? Will my current delta do the trick? (100cm span). I know that this is a very broad topic for discussion and it is full of complexities, requiring me to use my initiative - I am up for the challenge!

Question by DELETED_zoltzerino   |  last reply


Earth Ground?

           Well, it seems about time to add to my list of electrical theory questions with answers far too broad for one question, so:                          I understand that the Earth can act as a giant capacitor, conductor, etc.  What I don't understand is why.  For instance, why would ac power from the hot wire dissipate into the ground?  (and, for that matter, will power from the neutral wire not do so?  If so, why?)   

Question by mad magoo   |  last reply


What to salvage from oven

We're getting rid of our electric oven/ range today because 3 out of the 4 burners don't work. I  figured that in that whole oven, there must be some useful materials, So what should I pull from it, and if you have any ideas, what could I do with it? As you can imagine, search results were very broad when I looked for "Oven" and "Stove". Any suggestions are welcome.

Topic by Bando_Red   |  last reply


Thoughts on a prototyping device

Hey I'm a college student trying to create a specialty extruder to aid in prototyping, possibly to be used along side a 3D printer.  Attached is a CAD mockup but we're in the process of building this.  The applcations are fairly broad at the moment and if you think of a cool way to use long pieces of plastic for modelling, crafts, art, whatever, please let me know. This is my kickstarter and I'm trying to get any feedback you have, thanks! https://www.kickstarter.com/projects...?ref=discovery

Topic by saudade-pigeon 


what is the difference between trade mark and copyright? Answered

Title says the first question but also i want to know where and what i would do to establish a company name and also where i could get a patent and what a patent protects you from in terms of copying because i have a very broad motorized skateboard idea and want to know if its even worth getting it patented since there would be tons of ways to probably get around it 

Question by BIGHAIRYDUDE   |  last reply


HACK FOR AN HP FOLDABLE KEYBOARD MODEL G750?

I've got a leftover FOLDABLE KEYBOARD for an HP iPAQ (circa 2002) -model G750- that I'd love to use with my current laptop (an HP). This is a wired device with a broad, flat connector - not a USB terminal.  Anybody had any success in converting this or this type of device for use with full-sized current model laptops?  Maybe its a conversion plug or an adapter??  If you know where to get one these I'd like to know. Thanks, KEY~

Question by KEYTURNER   |  last reply


Programming compilers?

Hi guys! Well, I usually program using Microsoft's visual studio suite; however, I'm getting tired of my programs requiring the .net framework to run. Basically, I was wondering what compilers programmers use to write their programs. I really don't care what the language is, I have a fairly broad knowledge of programming languages, and I could always pick up another if need be. Anyway, could anyone point me out a few names of compilers? I would be very grateful. (Particularly if they were free) Thanks!

Question by transistorguy   |  last reply


February will be Tool Tips month

We wanted to give you, the forum readers, an advance notice of what will be happening for the month of February. February will be Tool Tips month here at Instructables and we want to see people documenting how to use their favorite tools. The tools that can be written about are pretty broad. This can be a cordless drill or a sewing machine. If you use it and have some advice, we want to hear about it. We'll be giving away patches and t-shirts at the end of the month. If you want to enter an Instructable, just remember to publish it from Feb 1 - 29.

Topic by fungus amungus   |  last reply


WANTED: Instructable on Acrylic

I've only seen the end result of a project.  My college woodworking teaher had an acrylic cube that had curved holes drilled in it.  I know how it's done but would like to see an instructable on it.  I've searched and searched.  I only found a very broad article on the steps to do this but not detailed enough for me to attempt it. If someone knows how this is done OR has experience with acrylic, please let me know if you write an instructable on this process.  If you have worked with acrylic before but do not know the process, I can explain it. THANKS!

Topic by Squash   |  last reply


Can anybody give an explanation to help me understand more basic concepts of electricity?

I know about Ohms law and some of the terminology on electricity and electronics (i.e. voltage, ohms, coulombs).  What I am in need of is a way to kind of put all of the knowledge together to help me better understand the way circuits work and how to follow and read schematics.  I understand that this question is quite broad, but any help would be very appreciated. I thank anyone and everyone that can contribute knowledge to help me better understand. I am a beginner and I have taken quite an interest in electronics.

Question by An_Amateur622   |  last reply


How can I program my computer to type data from notepad? Answered

Basically, I need to type data from a notepad file to a program that only input data that you type from a key broad. The hardiest thing is that the data is created by excel so it look something like this: A B C D E F G H I J K L But I need it to type like this: A¶B¶C¶D¶E¶F¶G¶H¶I¶J¶K¶L¶ So my question is: is it possible to program my computer to do so or it is just impossible?

Question by Shizen   |  last reply


How to make Paper Mache...

I have spent   'more than a little time' over the last few days,  seeking...    I have not found what I am looking for.    I dont want 'this is how you can do this'...    I want to find,   'this is the different ways to make paper mache, this is how use the different types, and this is what the pros and cons are of these'... I looked in the likely places, and on the Instructables site, and didnt find it... help... regards... dnorm ps.    pls dont think me rude to  'cut you off'   ...   I am Not seeking a specific solution for a given application...    I am seeking a website which provides a very broad ,    and   in depth,   description and understanding of the versatility of the craft. in spite of that...    any response is most welcome, truly... d.

Topic by dnorm   |  last reply


Bad power board replacement? Answered

I have a BenQ FP731 monitor with a bad power board. I'm waiting for the spares to arrive so I can repair it, but is it possible to replace the entire board with this one? http://cgi.ebay.com/Power-48-L9002-A14-BENQ-FP767-FP737S-Without-Audio-/250745267419?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item3a619524db the only thing scaring me is that its got four of those little white connectors for the lamps, while mine has just two broad connectors with three wires each. I guess its for two lamps and a ground on both of them, while on the one that I just posted, its separate connector to each lamp..... Would It work if I hack the connection to the lamp and use the new board?

Question by pro2xy   |  last reply


Could one re-purpose a respirator to prevent noxious fumes from escaping?

Hi there! I have had this idea in my head for some time, especially now that I am looking into metal etching. But I am an apartment dweller, with a cat. Now, I know that this is pretty broad. So I will give a specific example: if I build this https://www.instructables.com/id/Electrolytic-Etcher/. Can I build also a tank using say, these acid-gas cartridges http://www.mcmaster.com/#5834t66/=walor0 in-line with the exhaust of a vent system to clean out the chlorine? Would this work? Would it be safe? Would it allow the relatively slow out-gas of hydrogen to disperse, or would it concentrate it? Any thoughts at all? Thanks! Ernest.

Question by eruger   |  last reply


Nanotech makes white LEDs 5x brighter than before with warmer light.

New research with nanocrystals has created a new LED that gets 300 lumens per watt. Even better, the light is a warm white and not the cold blue-tinted white that we all know.The crystals absorb some of the LED's blue output and emit their own red and green light. That combines with the remaining blue light to produce a soft white glow.Existing commercial white LEDs are also based on blue LEDs. But they use a phosphor coating that converts some blue light into a broad spectrum of yellow light. When mixed with remaining blue light the result is a harsh blue-hued white. Link

Topic by fungus amungus 


My Laser Sailboat!

Well, as not very many of you, my family owns a sailboat - a one man racing sailboat called a Laser. I just thought I'd show it to you guys. Its a blast to ride, you can go very fast, all at no cost to the environment! Hope you enjoy it. IaC 1: Rocking it pretty fast. The boom smashing through the water is slowing me down a bit though. 2: I got caught in irons on a bad tack here, the wind was really going too. 3: Dry roll time! When the boat flips, you can hop over the side and stand on the daggarboard to right it. f you do it right, you wont even get wet. 4: Cruising on a broad reach. Good times!

Topic by I_am_Canadian   |  last reply


Free Design Course This October

I thought this looked like something that would appeal to other members of instructables. This coursera course  "Design: Creation of Artifacts in Society" is run by Professor Karl T. Ulrich from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. It is totally free and runs for 8 weeks from Oct 21st 2013: https://www.coursera.org/course/design?utm_classid=971091&utm;_nottype=course.newsession.signup&utm;_notid=1166&utm;_linknum=1 "This is a course aimed at making you a better designer. The course marries theory and practice, as both are valuable in improving design performance. Lectures and readings will lay out the fundamental concepts that underpin design as a human activity. Weekly design challenges test your ability to apply those ideas to solve real problems. The course is deliberately broad - spanning all domains of design, including architecture, graphics, services, apparel, engineered goods, and products"

Topic by yellowcatt   |  last reply


Looking for inexpensive source of RGB (Star) Luxeon LEDs.

I have an upcoming project that requires lighting a 10' x 10' matrix of 12" square LED driven lightboxes. The only requirement is the capability to display a broad range of color - hence the need for RGB LEDs. I'd like to go with more of a high-output Luxeon star mounted LED (1 or 3 watt) versus using several standard RGB dome LEDs. I figure that I can get away with using 1 Luxeon instead of 6-8 standard LEDs. My question is... does anyone have a reliable source for purchasing these LEDs inexpensively? I've seen several projects where people are getting 1W white units for around $3, but the Tri-color are selling online for around $14-$16 each. Any ideas?

Topic by upgrade-are-failed   |  last reply


Any Sydney-ers here want to share art/craft/tinkering shopping spots?

I'm trying to compile a list of rather disparate resources that can be found in Sydney: hobby shops, art stores, gadget-component stores, etc. I'm looking for places that carry specialized or uncommon items like: Electronics parts (switches, capacitors, etc) Jeweler's size tri-wing screwdriver Loupe Small calipers Glass etching paste Soapstone Pencil torch Low-cost soldering iron (i.e. one that's not meant to be used often) Half-hard sterling wire Carbon fiber rods & others (I'm sure people who are more familiar with different crafts will be able to list tools/materials unique to their area, and I might as well try and collect a broad range of sources.) & Yes, I have looked online.

Topic by ryzellon   |  last reply


Anybody know how to build motorcycle safety wheels?

I want to build some "training" wheels or safety wheels for my motorcycle.  Arthritis is giving my left knee and hip some trouble and I worry about tipping or stopping. I have an idea to build a set of wheels that will allow me to stop without fighting to stay up.  Being five foot two does not help anyway. Mainly, I am looking for some input.  I have a concept, all the tools I need, and the material is easy to access.  The pre-made sets are way over  my budget...but I am a handy old broad and can do it.  If you have plans or some ideas, let me know! Summer is coming soon and I want to get out on the road the first pretty day. THX-

Question by eccentric57   |  last reply


I Need Help In Understanding Electric Motor Dynamometer Testing AC and DC

OK extremely long time reader but first time poster. I need some help understanding dynamometer for electric motors. I would like to test motors under load up to 5HP. I have several motors and I would like to use a selected motor as the generator load. I understand this is a very broad question but I have to start somewhere.   What are some things I might need? Here are some things I have. Motor speed controller  Motor torque controller Electric motors off all sizes 1/3 to 20HP Some have a brake installed. Would I need to use a motor with a brake and apply the brake as the load? I don't want to use water or any fluids as a braking system. Also regenerative would be great also. I thank you for the help.

Topic by d-stan1987   |  last reply


Art as an investment vehicle.

I find it hard to say anything nice about the The Artist's Pension Trust (via the BBC) and I'm finding it equally difficult to completely denounce it. I suppose many of my misgivings may have more to do with the general state of art within contemporary culture than with the trust itself. Anyway, decide for yourself at their official homepage. Or just take the New York Times' word that the Artist's Pension Trust is infused with "a healthy dose of socialism.""Such informal trading systems, where young artists swap their own work for art made by others, has always served this dual purpose of combining pleasure with diversified financial security. The idea is that at least one of the group will become a recognised and valued artist, and as such a broad arts portfolio is likely to contain at least one valuable work of art. Now, a multilingual globetrotting financier has formalised the system, making a quantum leap in the process, in the form of the Artist Pension Trust." -- BBCHowever, if you really want to make a good investment, let the BBC show you How to Spot a Banksy for fun and profit.

Topic by randofo   |  last reply


Take a Black and White Photo, Get a patch!

 Hello again. It's time for another photo contest! This month the theme is a nice broad one, just to get things going after the first one last month. Black and White This months theme is Black and White. Try and focus on those distinctive shapes and defined shadows that make black and white photos pop. Get into the mindset of what will look good when in black and white. A good contrast is normally a good basis for a black and white photo. Any black and white photo is allowed, digital or analogue. Nearly all modern digital cameras have a black and white mode. The one stipulation is that you have to go and take a new photo! Not just upload an old photo. The idea is to encourage you to take some new pics, opposed to showing off what we have done before. Attached are a couple of shots I took today! Every black and white photo uploaded gets a Patch! If I missed giving you a patch last month, let me know in your comment, and I will send you one of each to make up.

Topic by gmjhowe   |  last reply


There's a shower coming.

From my inbox:The annual Perseid meteor shower peaks on Tuesday, August 12th. The best time to look is during the dark hours before dawn on Tuesday morning when forecasters expect 50 to 100 meteors per hour. Get away from city lights if you can; plan a camping trip! The darker the sky, the more meteors you will see. The source of the Perseids is Comet Swift-Tuttle, which has littered the August portion of Earth's orbit with space dust. The dusty zone is broad and Earth is already in its outskirts. As a result, even before the peak on August 12th, you may see some "early Perseids" streaking across the night sky. Photos of these early arrivals will be featured in the days ahead on Spaceweather.com as part of our full coverage of the Perseid meteor shower.Being on holiday, I will be spending most of the shower either under city lights or in the wettest (and hence cloudiest) part of Britain, and unable to lay out large tarpaulins to catch rainwater.So, I won't be able to go fishing, or get time out to watch them. I wonder - will you?EDIT: I have, as predicted seen nothing. Rain, rain, rain, rain, rain, rain ...

Topic by Kiteman   |  last reply


Learning Lifestyle

Here's how I describe Instructables in 10 seconds: The world's biggest Show & Tell, where people share what they do and how they do it. I've found this to be the best way to quickly introduce new people to the site and give them a sense of what's there. The phrase "Show & Tell" reminds people about the best part of grade school: there's entertainment, inspiration, and usually some unexpected, surprising, and most importantly fun learning.Instructables falls into a broad category I've started calling the "Learning Lifestyle" - it's the way creative, curious people approach life. Just like a grade school Show & Tell, a Learning Lifestyle can be entertaining, inspirational, and educational. The best kind of education is serendipitous -- you simply keep your eyes open to opportunities, and are excited and surprised by what you find. The Instructables community lives the Learning Lifestyle. We have Instructables on subjects our community is passionate about, and because people's passions are so diverse, the Instructables they produce are inherently entertaining, inspiring, and surprising. It's great when someone can search the site and find a specific useful project, but I absolutely love it when someone is inspired by the projects on Instructables to create -- and share! -- their own projects. The Learning Lifestyle is all about inspiring viral creativity.So, the next time your run into someone else with a Learning Lifestyle (usually easy to spot; I always find them to be the most interesting people at parties), invite them to join you at the World's Biggest Show and Tell.

Topic by ewilhelm   |  last reply


Insanely Cool Multitouch

So now all I need is $100k and I'm ready to rock. watch the videoJefferson Y. Han likes big computer monitors. If a screen is large enough, four or five people can work at it together, rearranging blueprints, say, or editing photos. But they can't do that if they're taking turns at a keyboard and mouse. The answer, which Han demonstrates on a 3 x 8-ft. monitor in his lab at New York University, is multitouch input. It allows any number of users to lay hands on the screen as if they were manipulating real objects. On the monitor, recently dubbed the Media Wall, Han uses his hands to spin a virtual globe and then zoom into the canyons of Manhattan. "A mouse is an indirect pointing device," Han says. "You're working with an object that's not on the screen. Multitouch computing is direct manipulation."Han, the son of Korean immigrants, drew inspiration from the way light diffuses when you touch a glass of water. It's a phenomenon known as "œfrustrated total internal reflection." Han attached LEDs to the side of a piece of clear acrylic ”his screen" and mounted an infrared camera on the back. Light traveled through the acrylic. When Han touched the screen, some light diffused out and was captured by the camera. He then designed software that allows the screen to be used for operating mapping programs, handling photos and drawing animated figures. Perceptive Pixel, the business Han started with an NYU colleague, builds custom multitouch computers for private industry and military clients (and, now, to anyone with $100,000).Multitouch computing isn't new: the concept has been kicking around since the 1980s, and two Breakthrough Award-winning products, Apple's iPhone and Microsoft's Surface, use versions of it. Han's special contribution: Beyond his varied applications for multitouch computing lies a broad vision of how it can empower people to work together in new ways.

Topic by fungus amungus   |  last reply


Instructable Filing System

Dear Fellow Forum Readers, A while ago, I posted an idea/request asking about the possibility of making the names of Instructable  PDF files conform to a certain standard for ease of filing. I found my own best solution. If anyone can use this idea, please do! What this project does is to add symbols to the titles of instructables which indicate awards and featured status for each downloaded Instructable. I am using a Mac and purchased the app "A Better Finder Rename 9". Within a parent folder entitled 'Instructables Downloads' I created a group of folders with the symbols corresponding to the featured/awards symbols of the given Instructables. For example, if there is one star for an Instructable, I designate that this way: (*). If there is a star and a goblet, it is designated like this: (*+). I make a folder for each of the combinations of stars and goblets and then as I download (I download many at a time) I just save them to these folders. Then afterwards, I use "A Better Finder Rename" to add the designations as a suffix to the Instructable titles. When I want to quickly pick out the most awarded Instructable out of several options for a given project, I can see right away which one is most recognized as excellent. Finally, I made a master Instructables folder with broad catagories within which to sort my downloads, e.g. Electronics & Computer Instructables, Maker & Prototyping Instructables, Gardening & Homesteading Instructables, etc. Now I have a nice library for portability and offline use! Will many people want this? I doubt it. But it makes my substantial collection easy to go through and saves time when I want to look for recognized excellence among many choices of projects. Besides, it's fun and 'therapeutic' for me to idly sort, rename and file these great projects on a lazy afternoon (not enough of those!). Helps me mull what I'll work on next, too. :-) TN

Topic by timnugent   |  last reply


Overclocking of my Intel Pentium 4 CPU 3.00GHz 2992 Mhz Processor. How can it be done?

A friend of mine introduced me to the idea of over clocking my processor. He said it can be dangerous due to over heating issues. I am willing to add new fans into my PC so long as the speed can be controlled. I will not be able to obtain a better heatsink however (My heatsink is pretty beefy already). Ive done some research but have only been able to find very broad forums. I need to know how to do it, what to do and what not to do, how far past factory specs i can push it beyond and if my mother board with withstand it.. Also i have a follow up question I notice that the system summery stes that i have 1.57GB Avilible physical memory but i have 2.50 GB Installed physical memory. is there any way to overclock the RAM as well? SPECS: OS Name Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate Version 6.1.7600 Build 7600 Other OS Description  Not Available OS Manufacturer Microsoft Corporation System Name FASTCAR123-PC System Manufacturer Dell Inc. System Model Dimension 8400 System Type X86-based PC Processor Intel(R) Pentium(R) 4 CPU 3.00GHz, 2992 Mhz, 1 Core(s), 1 Logical Processor(s) BIOS Version/Date Dell Inc. A09, 7/7/2006 SMBIOS Version 2.3 Windows Directory C:\Windows System Directory C:\Windows\system32 Boot Device \Device\HarddiskVolume1 Locale United States Hardware Abstraction Layer Version = "6.1.7600.16385" User Name fastcar123-PC\fastcar123 Time Zone Eastern Standard Time Installed Physical Memory (RAM) 2.50 GB Total Physical Memory 2.50 GB Available Physical Memory 1.57 GB Total Virtual Memory 4.99 GB Available Virtual Memory 3.57 GB Page File Space 2.50 GB Page File C:\pagefile.sys

Question by fastcar123   |  last reply


The use of gas generators in the home.

Available pluses home gas generators: * Rate per se gas generator compared with the price affordable euro GASOLINE. * The price of fuel is lower than that of the generator on diesel or gasoline. Available Cons: * Gas ​​is considered the most volatile than diesel or gasoline. * Appeal from the gas and the installation of equipment for gas processing requests for special and separate permission. Our legislation prohibited the installation of systems and gas processing equipment in the absence of a suitable plan or agreement. * Most of all, on our market, there are gas generators made in China. * Gas ​​generators are made on the basis of a gasoline engine, the method of adjustment of fuel injection system and fuel carburation. In accordance with this resource from the generator corresponds to the resource gasoline engine. * Later, the acquisition of the gas generator of small capacity, the buyer is faced with a specific limitation on work: a maximum of 6 hours per day. The resource identified by the manufacturers of gas generators, with the first glance quite broad. However, do not understand the root cause of its increase. On average, the share of gasoline engine, out of which gas engines, floats in the range up to 2000 HOURS. This common resource for the euro generator. Imagine the Chinese gasoline engine, the resource is constant. Next, suppose that the resource oposlya changing gasoline engine to natural gas will not decrease. (Our real change of cars with fuel gas indicates a reduction of the resource engine, which originally was made for 1-octane gasoline, well, and subsequently applied for another). 1 of firms offering gas generators, a guarantee in 2000, machine hours, or one year, although with the limitation, at least 6 hours per day. The appointment of such a generator is not clear. As a source of constant power, he will not do, as backup - as well as the first blackout since most 6 hours (which happens often) determines the total loss of warranty. It is reasonable to imagine that the buyer, which turned off the light of day, will not sits all day in the absence of light, zhdya coming the next day. In general, in fact, a similar limitation on the work looks pretty amazing: It seems as clear that the miniature generator with cooling air is not able to operate around the clock. While that still causes inconvenience to cool the generator, for example, for 1 hour, and then resume his work? In solid power installed thermal disconnector, which simply will not allow too much power to warm up, and therefore, the decision on mode of operation.

Topic by saylar 


The Crucible is looking for instructors

The Crucible, a nonprofit arts education community organization is currently seeking instructors for motorcycle maintenance, properties of metals, wood working, stone carving, and kinetics. If you have experience and interest in teaching fine and industrial arts to the community, we encourage you to apply! If you're qualified to teach classes like these, we want to hear from you!Properties of Metals & Materials Entry-level class What causes work hardening in metal? Why does work hardening go away when the same metal is heated? Why does glass need to be annealed? This class explains physical occurrences that you will observe in classes at The Crucible. Examining these phenomena at the atomic level will help you better understand metals and materials. There will be no math, labs are incorporated into the class, and there are no prerequisites. Everything you need to know about demystifying the behavior and use of materials will be taught in class.Clay AnimationEntry-level class Create and build your own claymation characters. Learn quickly how to draft and organize a storyboard, then build your own scenario. During production, you'll apply colored lighting to your action scene and then learn how to shoot frame by frame to give life to your creation. You can collaborate with other students to develop a more involved group project. For this class, you must bring your own digital camera and tripod.The Art of Motorcycle Maintenance & RepairEntry-level class Learn how to repair your motorcycle and avoid paying the top dollar that motorcycle shops charge. If you have a bike that you want to learn to fix or are interested in owning a bike and don't want to rely on someone else to keep it on the road, this is the class for you. Generally motorcycles are simpler and easier to work on than cars. In this class we will cover a number of different bikes. With the consent of the instructor, you will be able to work on your own bike in class or choose to work on one of the bikes provided by the instructor. If you choose to work on your own bike, you must buy any materials needed. The Crucible faculty is comprised of Bay Area artists, tradespeople, artisans and educators who teach innovative educational programs to students of all ages, experience levels and areas of interest. The Crucible seeks a staff of broad diversity and strongly encourages women and people of color to apply. For more information, visit our website: Job Opportunities at The Crucible

Topic by plasmajan   |  last reply


building a HD Audio front panel for my PC. Audio circuit?

Hi! I have problem with my computer. the motherboard has HD-Audio but the front panel is the usual AC97 standard. You can change the BIOS config so the front panel audio connector acts as an AC97 one, but then the problem is the speakers connected to the back keep playing even if you connect a set of headphones to the front panel. The reason is the audio jacks used for HD-audio are different from regular jack connectors (and very rare to find!). While the insertion of the plug in a regular jack connector results in breaking a circuit (and so, physically muting the loudspeakers), in an HD Audio jack, the insertion of the plug results in closing a switch (sending a signal to the driver ordering to mute the speakers by software). I managed to create a sort of HD audio Jack by combining a regular jack connector and a zero pressure micro-switch so when the plug enters the hole, a tip inside the hole closes the micro-switch. I wanted to make a good quality front panel so instead of just wiring the jack connectors (and micro-switches) to the cable, I decided to add an EMI filter. I took the circuit from this doc: http://www.formfactors.org/developer/specs/A2928604-005.pdf and more precisely from fig 6 at page 25. The circuit uses two 220 pF capacitors and two inductors for each jack connector. In this aspect the circuit is identical to that proposed for AC97. The problem is I have no idea what inductors to use or how to ask for them at the shop. All the diagram says in a footnote is: ZL should be 600 Ohms or greater @ 100MHz with a low Q (broad Impedance curve over frequency) but not even the guys at the shop knew what piece to give me. So what I did was to cannibalize the inductors from two cheap promotional radio receivers with jack connectors for the headphones and use them for my circuit. After all, they perform the same function: filter the audio signal at the headphone connector so I supposed they should have the correct values I needed. But my circuit is very noisy! headphones have a constant electronic background noise (that seems to react to things like mouse movements, hard disk activity or whiteness of the screen) and microphone has a lot of noise (of course I'm using very good quality mic+headphone). The cables are audio cables for front panel audio so they are supposed to be correctly shielded so the problem is in the circuit at my custom board. I would like to make a tutorial (including HD Audio connector construction) once the front panel is working properly but I don't know how to fix it. Any ideas?

Topic by jedikalimero 


Potentiometer/Variable resistor with AC advice

I'm a computer store tech who knows how to solder some(but DC stuff only) and who also enjoys cooking, so my ? is: What's the best choice of pot. for use with US household current to actually control the cooking temp of my hotplate? End result is to eliminate the annoying "heat spikes" you get due to lack of a pot. in the design, IE literally everything sold these days turns on at full current/temp until it reaches X temp, basically it's just temporally defined by how far you turn the knob, and your pancakes wind up crispy black around the edges and gooey in the middle  instead of golden brown and amazing all over. I want it to turn on at X current until X temp (like electric frypans/burners did if you're old enough to remember.) All I need to do ( I think) is add a pot/VR into my burner's element  "line" the right way, it already shuts off at X temp just fine. Incidentally, that's the "click" you hear when any home electric cooking device (sold in North America, at least) hits temp or turns on, the temp. control switch thingee connecting. It's NOT a VR/pot, just a pair of electrodes JUST barely touching strapped very tightly to some ceramic discs. It uses thermal expansion of the discs/electrodes to make things just a tiny bit bigger and separate the tiny little electrode spoons  But all that boring geekspeek affects in this configuration as basically just temporal heating, IE no reduction of the amount of heat in my frypan, just the cooking time. Science says if I reduce the amount of electrons flowing thru it just slightly as well,  it'll be colder but still hot and still shut off when it's hot enough. A pot/VR wired in the right way will do exactly that, won't it? After some research I'm thinking something like a 30-50K "B"-taper pot. wired with 2 of 3 traces (https://www.instructables.com/id/Wire-a-Potentiometer-as-a-Variable-Resistor/), I'm looking for a "broad" response range while turning with a tight  "pinch" effect at low end for amazing banana-brown-sugar-pinch-of-nutmeg pancakes with coffee on the tiny balcony/fire escape in the morning but I have no idea how the numbers work for AC currents. Does 120vAC mean a different pot or a diff config/approach altogether? Or should I be looking into AC variable resistors, instead? I know an awful lot about "base" science, enough to get me this far, right, but AC throws me for a loop a lot, and there's a gap in my knowledge/experience, between the basic stuff and how it applies to stuff like my application, I don't get a lot of the numbers/formulas and how to use them.  A VR would the ideal tool here, but they are hard to get in the right form with the electrical qualities I need, whereas pots are usually "turning switches", right?

Topic by MattH68   |  last reply


building a HD Audio front panel for my PC. Audio circuit? Answered

Hi! I have a problem with my computer. the motherboard has HD-Audio but the front panel is the usual AC97 standard. You can change the BIOS config so the front panel audio connector acts as an AC97 one, but then the problem is the speakers connected to the back keep playing even if you connect a set of headphones to the front panel. The reason is the audio jacks used for HD-audio are different from regular jack connectors (and very rare to find!). While the insertion of the plug in a regular jack connector results in breaking a circuit (and so, physically muting the loudspeakers), in an HD Audio jack, the insertion of the plug results in closing a switch (sending a signal to the driver ordering to mute the speakers by software). Since I can't find this kind of jacks anywhere, I managed to create a sort of HD audio Jack by combining a regular jack connector and a zero pressure micro-switch so when the plug enters the hole, a tip inside the hole closes the micro-switch. I wanted to make a good quality front panel so instead of just wiring the jack connectors (and micro-switches) to the cable, I decided to add an EMI filter. I took the circuit from this doc: http://www.formfactors.org/developer/specs/A2928604-005.pdf and more precisely from fig 6 at page 25. The circuit uses two 220 pF capacitors and two inductors for each jack connector. In this aspect the circuit is identical to that proposed for AC97. The problem is I have no idea what inductors to use or how to ask for them at the shop. All the diagram says in a footnote is: ZL should be 600 Ohms or greater @ 100MHz with a low Q (broad Impedance curve over frequency) but not even the guys at the shop knew what piece to give me. So what I did was to cannibalize the inductors from two cheap promotional radio receivers with jack connectors for the headphones and use them for my circuit. After all, they perform the same function: filter the audio signal at the headphone connector so I supposed they should have the correct values I needed. But my circuit is very noisy! headphones have a constant electronic background noise (that seems to react to things like mouse movements, hard disk activity or whiteness of the screen) and microphone has a lot of noise (of course I'm using very good quality mic+headphone). The cables are audio cables for front panel audio so they are supposed to be correctly shielded so the problem is in the circuit at my custom board. I would like to make a tutorial (including HD Audio connector construction) once the front panel is working properly but I don't know how to fix it. Any ideas?

Question by jedikalimero   |  last reply


Instructables' Alternate Reality Game. Why not?

While I was at work I hit on an idea.  The instructable's community if filled with people with broad expertise, talents and interests from all over the world.  This is the key element in both creating and solving alternate reality games.  For those who may not know, an ARG is a game that is played by hiding clues around the world for people to find and solve.  These clues can be extremely vague or even downright unbelievable.  This sounds daunting and like it wouldn't work but it actually works better than you could believe.  ARG's have been used to promote movies, products, etc by engaging players in a reality within our own and attracting press attention.  Some better known examples are: A.I.(The Beast) - This site also includes some other examples Star Trek - this one is unbelievably complicated but with thousands of dedicated fans it was pretty much solved. The thought is we, the community here at instructables.com, could run an ARG to draw in people and the media to promote a topic of our choice using the people and talents found here.  If we work together we might be able to succeed at something amazing and promote instructables or even environmentally friendly lifestyles and technology.  I don't know if I personally have the time to fully dedicate myself to something as big as this and I have never had the chance to participate in one but with the right group of instructable members this could become a reality. Story example:  Messages from a future where the world is coming to an end due to widespread global disasters begin to appear all over the planet warning and guiding its players through efforts that might be able to prevent such a future.  It might even be possible to run the game over several years/decades and never let people know if it is real, just a game, or even who is doing it.  If done right, this might even cause people to affect evironmental change in their area. This would work kind of like the biggest, longest stealth flash mob ever created : )  The benefit is the costs would be significantly lower than traditional ARG's since we are all over the world and know how to do/build amazing things and love doing so in our free time. Any thoughts? I would suggest that specific details should be kept out of public forums like this one to prevent an information leak if this becomes a reality. UPDATE:  I have setup a webpage(http://arg.42dotservegame.org) to help manage the different aspects of a multi-user project like this.  The page is restricted to only those that have been invited to join.  To get an invite, please PM me and I will get you setup with an account.  The username will be the same as your instructable username to prevent confusion.  This is to limit access initially until everything gets rolling.  Later, active users will be given rights to invite others they think will be good resources.  As of right now there are still some things that need to be worked on within the page but I think it is functional enough to be used.  Features that are provided are: -Integrated chat -Forums -Wiki -News -Calendar -Limited/restricted file uploads and downloads

Topic by critterfluffy   |  last reply


Sennheiser audio question?

So I've owned a pair of Sennheiser HD555's for about 4 years now and while they haven't broken in any way, I'm looking to buy another pair of Sennheisers that are more portable than the HD555's (10 ft. cable and bulky 1/4 inch jack + open design -_-)   I've been considering 2 choices in the Sennheiser 400 series.  The HD439's and the HD449's While I know they are both very similar, there are big differences in my opinion.   HD 439's: I really like the detachable cable on these, and I've always been in love with the cloth ear pads from my 555's, so i know these would be super comfortable.  Also these present a bit more bass than the others in the 400 series, which i don't know if I'll enjoy, because I really only have the HD 555's to compare audio quality to. HD449's: These headphones are apparently a bit more powerful than the 439's because of stronger magnets in their monitors, which is a plus because I mostly listen to music on my laptop, phone, or zune (YES I SAID IT AND I SAID IT PROUD--ZUNE).  Also I'v e heard that they have a better range of sound quality not just regarding the bass and treble.  The one thing that scares me to death about these cans is the pleather or "leatherette" material for the ear pads.  While i know that these are better at blocking outside noise, I can't help but feel like they'd be very uncomfortable.  The only other cans i've used with the pleather are the Bose AE2's, so one question is how do they compare? also to beats leather pads? In general, I listen to a broad range of music from classical to rap to indie rock.  Pretty much anything but country.  I like to have a bit more bass and high tones than mid, but not too much.  For this reason, I think the HD439's would be better in regards to sound quality and better design/comfort.  The only thing that keeps me looking back at the 449's is the offer of more powerful magnets and better sound when playing from a mobile device or something with a low power output.  I also really like the fact that even if i do like lows and highs better, I can always put an equalizer on the HD'449's to tailor their more balanced sound to my wants.  But I'm still afraid of the comfort the 449's offer compared to the cloth pads of the 439's.   Again I own a pair of Sennheiser HD55's and love their sound quality and comfort.  I also own a pair of AKG K181DJ series, but those are mostly for listening to house, dubstep, and drub&bass.;  I've owned the Bose AE2 (second edition) and have used beats studio for a time.  These are really all of my reference points for sound quality and comfort. Anyways, I digress.  I'm very torn between the two and I've given all of the info I can.  Any suggestions/ratings/opinions would be greatly appreciated.

Question by bobert610   |  last reply


The Social Problems That Plague Instructables - A Discussion for Everyone

Disclaimer: Nothing I say relegates to any sort of EULA/terms of service instructables may have. This is strictly concerning a matter of taste and public interest. I don't really know anything about the "legal" matters here, in fact, I could care less - I'm just seeking a practical solution. Before I begin my ranting and raving, I'd like to begin with these few questions. I don't expect you to respond tit-for-tat in list answer form - these are broad questions that you may choose to answer in your response I suppose, but the purpose of them is to get you thinking a bit: 1. Do you feel as though the quality of an instructable is important? 2. Does it bother you when you read an instructable that is very sloppy and appears as though no effort was put into making it appealing to the reader? 3. Does it bother you when you see instructables that tell you how to create things that appear to be ostensibly simple, as if you are being instructed on doing some menial thing? 4. Do you ever feel as though people post instructables in order to gain attention and don't seem to care about the instructable itself? If so, does that bother you? It appears to me that many people feel as though the content of Instructables.com is crummy at times. It looks as though more often than not as of late, people are posting a lot of negative comments on certain instructables. The populace is simply becoming frustrated with the amount of poorly-written, lame duck, perhaps "half-assed" instructables that are popping up on the site. Allow me to purge a bit before I create a storm: I am a man who preaches "For each, his own." I usually fall towards a laissez-faire policymaking attitude and I seek to just "let it lie" if necessary. I find that things work better uninterrupted. This is why I think I have held back here for a while about my thoughts on Instructables I didn't appreciate. Usually I would just mark it with a "-", leave a comment about what could be improved, and flag it if it was inappropriate. The problem is, I started to do this too much over time. Maybe I just became too acquainted with the functions, but it feels to me as though it is the quality of the instructables that have waned. I am evidently not alone with this feeling. I have remained as reserved as I can, but I think it is time to speak out about something because other people are starting to shed light on it. Perhaps we should be a little more conscientious about what we post. As the site grows, I think it is important we keep it tidy and nifty looking. There will be tons of new instructables every day, but I think we should reduce the number of them that many of us find pretty crummy. Perhaps a more overt ranking system. Instructables is a really awesome site that has a very strong backbone - it was founded by people who really cared about it's potential. They actively upgrade the website to our whims and make it as best as they can make it. At the least, we owe it to these people to post our best and brighest works and make instructables look like a decent site. My personal opinion: I hate to sound like an elitist jerk, but there are a lot of trashy instructables... they're not worthy of being labelled as instructables. It seems like every day the number of atrocious posts increases. At times, it seems as though instructables is no longer treated as a decent site, rather, it's just a landfill for people to post their junk. I won't name anyone or any specific instructables, but honestly, there are some that are just there to garner attention and get our juices flowing. It's not fun. Tear this to shreds, gents. G'nite ;).

Topic by mikesty   |  last reply


Acer laptop, what mother board does it use?

 I have a acer aspire 5542, And would like to know the mother broad it uses Thanks for your help Brand Acer Model Aspire 5542 Operating system Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit Processor / Graphics AMD Athlon II Dual-Core M300 2.00 GHz ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4200 Series Memory 4 GB Dual-Channel DDR2 SDRAM 667 MHz Hard drive SATA 500 GB HDD 5400 rpm Display / Resolution 15.6-inch HD 1366×76 resolution high brightness Acer CineCrystal TFT LCD, 16:9 aspect ratio, 8 ms response time, 60% color gamut Removable Storage 8X DVD-Super Multi double-layer drive Wireless Support Atheros AR5B93 Wireless Network Adapter 802.11 n, b, g Communications Broadcom NetLink Gigabit Ethernet, HDAUDIO Soft Fax Modem with SmartCP, Acer Video Conferencing with Integrated Acer Crystal Eye Webcamer featuring 640×480 resolution, Bluetooth 2.1 Input Devices Full-size keyboard including number pad, Synaptics touchpad with Multi-Gesture support Power 6-cell Li-ion with up to 3 hours of battery life Accessories Extra battery, external USB floppy, extra AC adapter Security software/features Acer Backup Manager1, Acer Bio-Protection1, Acer eRecovery Management, McAfee® Internet Security Suite 2009 Trial, MyWinLocker®, Nortonâ„¢ Online Backup Other Software Acer Arcadeâ„¢ Deluxe featuring Acer CinemaVisionâ„¢ and Acer ClearVisionâ„¢ technologies, Acer Crystal Eye, Acer GridVistaâ„¢, Acer Launch Manager, Adobe® Flash® Player, Adobe® Reader®, EarthLink®1, eSobiâ„¢, Google Toolbarâ„¢, Microsoft® Works with Office Home and Student 2007 Trial, NetZero®, NTI Media Makerâ„¢, Oberon GameZone, WildTangent® Memory card reader Media Card Reader supporting SD, MMC, RS-MMC, MS, MS Pro, xD Accessible memory slots 2 slots Maximum Memory Expansion Up to 4 GB Ports Headphone/speaker/line-out jack with S/PDIF support, Microphone-in jack, Line-In jack, Ethernet (RJ-45) port, Modem (RJ-11) port, DC-in jack for AC adapter Additional Ports None Audio Dolby®-optimized surround sound system with two built-in stereo speakers, Optimized 3rd Generation Dolby Home Theater® audio enhancement, featuring Dolby® Digital Live, Dolby® Pro Logic® IIx, Dolby® Headphone, Dolby® Natural Bass, Dolby® Sound Space Expander, Dolby® Audio Optimization, Dolby® High Frequency Enhancer technologies10, True 5.1-channel surround sound output High-definition audio support S/PDIF (Sony/Philips Digital Interface)11 support for digital speakers, MS-Sound compatible Built-in microphone ENERGY STAR Qualified Energy Star 5.0 Weight 6.16 lbs (2.8 kg) with battery Dimension 15.1 x 9.9 x 1.03 to 1.5 inches, 383 x 250 x 26 to 37 mm Thinness 1.03 to 15 inches, 26 to 37 mm Network Card Broadcom NetLink Gigabit Ethernet, HDAUDIO Soft Fax Modem with SmartCP PC Card Slot None Webcam Acer Crystal Eye Webcamera featuring 640×480 resolution Multimedia and Entertainment Acer Arcadeâ„¢ Deluxe featuring Acer CinemaVisionâ„¢ and Acer ClearVisionâ„¢ technologies, Acer Crystal Eye, Adobe® Flash® Player, NTI Media Makerâ„¢, Oberon GameZone, WildTangent® Warranty Limited 1-year and 90 day warranty options available depending on country, 1-year limited warranty on primary battery. Optional HP Care Pack Services extended warranty

Question by andreblue 


Autodesk: Art Residency of Generosity

I’ve had the good fortune to participate in many art scenes over the last 15 years. These range from making large-scale fire installations at Burning Man, in proto-hacker spaces (2001-2003), a rigorous MFA program at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (2004-2006), and a professional and international new media art career (2007-2012). What fuels my creativity is an ongoing quest for communities that support new modes of engagement: repurposing new technologies for art, encouraging others to make and asking why it is important for us not to simply be cultural consumers. I strongly believe we need ongoing DIY culture coupled with critical thinking to keep our society vibrant. In 2012, I took a break from my usual new media art practice of showing in museums and galleries. I felt like the art world — for a variety of reasons — was sequestered and wasn’t reaching as wide an audience as it could. A friend of mine forwarded me a job posting for a New Media Exhibit Developer at the Exploratorium. I applied for the job and got it. At this world-famous science museum, I learned about interfacing my art ideas to the public sphere. I worked with scientists around ideas of data visualization in Life Sciences. I designed exhibits that would last for the long-term rather than a 1 month exhibition. This changed my art practice so that I begin thinking about work that had a broad appeal: from school kids to the elderly, and above all else to value curiosity. After my fixed-term position at the Exploratorium was over, I began a residency at Autodesk, which intrigued me because it was my first artist residency in a corporate environment and they also had unbelievable resources. I expected to be in an amazing shop environment but also to be interacting with suit-and-tie corporate types. I certainly got the former but the Pier 9 environment surprised me. Everyone from the engineers to other artists to the marketing folks were curious about creative uses for 3D technologies could be used. Pier 9 was more a laboratory than a shop. With the Instructables-writing directive, it was also one where people shared their ideas rather than hoarded. Within my first week, I adjusted my expectations. The secret about Pier 9: It’s not about the tools but about the people. Yes, the water jet is amazing and I’ve fallen in love with 3D-printing, but more than anything there is a cross-section of smart and kind people, ranging from traditional artists, new media artists, various flavors of makers as well as engineers. Everyone has some sort of skill, ranging from drawing to fashion design to 3D modeling. No one knows everything. We all check our egos at the door. “What are you working on?” is the question we all ask one another. Each day, I’m surprised by someone’s ideas. The enthusiasm in the space is infectious. In those rare moments when I’m alone at Pier 9, I can gaze out the window at the Bay Bridge, where I feel connected to the rest of the world. I’ve been amazed by my co-resident’s projects ranging from the Playa-inspired costumes by Mikaela Holmes and futuristic fashion by Anouk Wipprecht to the playful work by Paolo Salvagione to the material experiments by Andreas Bastian. There are many more...too many to call out everyone. We work very, very hard. Yet, the environment is casual. When you have an problem there are people to help, and conversely, when someone is stuck on a project, I’ll drop whatever I’m doing to help them out. I never wear my headphones. Generosity fuels this community. There is no single type of artist that comes to this residency, which makes for intersecting circles. I’ve listened to many others. I’ve had to explain my conceptual practice. I’ve been (happily) forced to re-conceptualize my own artwork. I still don’t have the answers to my concerns about art-sequestering, but this is the right place for me to be. With this residency, I’ve found the path that I’ve been long searching for. Thank you. Scott Kildall

Topic by scottkildall   |  last reply


New Instructables Categories and Channels

What's new Over the past few months, one of our big projects has been building new categories and channels for Instructables.  We're doing this to make it easier for users to find content and to make more compelling products for advertisers.  Much of the existing content has been recategorized by algorithm or by someone here at the lab, but we'll need your help both in making sure we (or the robot) got it right.  So, I wanted to give you a heads-up before the new scheme goes live, explain why we think it's important, and ask for your help! Why we're updating categories The existing categorization scheme with its 18 channels has served us well, but we've outgrown it.  First, the channels are too broad to meaningfully help a new user find more of the content they are excited about.  Should a new user arrive to a knitting Instructable from a Google search, they often have trouble finding other knitting Instructables within the Craft channel.  Related Instructables are helpful, but aren't clicked as often as we'd like, and don't give an immediate sense of the variety and number of knitting Instructables we have available.  The primary and secondary channels associated with an Instructable put yet another stumbling point in this new user finding more great content.  To new users, it's not immediately obvious that we allow multiple channels per Instructable, so when they are browsing through the Craft Instructables, it can be confusing to see a project with LEDs or a home repair project that happen to have Craft as their secondary channel.  This has been a similar point of confusion for our advertisers, who don't understand our current channel system. I'll be sad to see our two-channel categorization scheme go, but it's a necessary change to improve the way the site functions.  It feels a little bit like we're growing up! How the new categories and channels work To address these issues, we've created five new top-level categories and, within each category, lots of new channels.  Each Instructable will be placed in a single category and a single channel within that category.  The new categories are Living, Outside, Play, Technology, and Workshop.   • Living has all things related to crafting, decorating, cooking, parenting, and organizing. • Play has all things related to fun and games. • Workshop is everything one might do in a workshop or shed: home improvement, woodworking, and working on cars or bikes. • Technology and Outside are very similar to the existing Outdoors and Tech channels. Only five top-level categories might seem like too few, but remember that the vast majority of new visitors come directly to an Instructable via search - these folks will see other channels related to the Instructable they're viewing. For example, someone first coming to Instructables via a search for a sewing project will see that the project is in a sewing channel, that we have a knitting channel, and that both are in our Living category. Someone who has an account on Instructables is smarter than the average internet-searcher (in my opinion), so our community will quickly learn how to navigate the new structure. Hopefully we'll all discover lots of new Instructables in the process! How to recategorize your Instructables Log in, and go to your Instructable.  Click the "Change Keywords, Category(s), License" text in the Author Options box, and you'll see a section called "New Categories."  Pick a top-level category from the upper drop-down menu, then select a channel from the second menu.  Hit Update, and you're done!  When the new organization scheme is visible on the site in a few weeks, this is the category and channel your Instructable will appear in. We're still working out the kinks in this new system, and expect to be creating and combining channels as needed to make finding things on the site easier.  While you must pick a category, if you don't see a channel that matches your project, you may choose to leave it unsorted.  We'll keep an eye on unsorted projects, and will either sort it or update the channels as needed. Thanks for your help!  We hope this new scheme makes it easier to find the projects you want to see on Instructables.

Topic by canida   |  last reply


An idea for highly directional and loud loudspeakers

I am currently playing around with vibration experiments.Mainly in the ultrasonic range though.But when messing around with some vibration speakers I found a not so well documented misuse for themEveryone wants a big TV these days but once you have it the sound often turns out to come from a tin can.Those with a good entertainment or at least stereo system won't mind hooking the to it.The rest usually opts for a sound bar or how I like to call them shredderbox.Sooner or later they just fail to produce the sound you had on the first day - or they cost a small fortune.What is the secret to a powerful speaker?Firstly efficiency.Secondly the design.You need the right material to produce a more or less even reaction at all intendet frequencies.The design makes sure those frequencies that need extra attention get more volume output, like by using a little pipe for the low frequencies.Some even include a dedicate speaker for these low volumes.What if you could just build you own soundbar on a budget?If you have a failing soundbar with the actual speakers as the problem you could salvage the electronics.In case you can make do with headphone input or RCA connections than any cheap amplifier will do.Leaves the speakers...Vibration speakers are still underestimated for their uses...I tried the the usual approach of using a glue on vibro speaker:Place it on surface tha gives a re more or less decent sound.The thing is though that there is no ideal surface for them.A table can sound like the highs are missing, a hardwood desk might not produce any low frequencies while a window or plaster board wall bring the problem of wiring and vibrations.To check the reactions of sound on different media I, one day, mounted one speaker under a big tin can.Right in the center.The fun hit me when my tests with water were over and tried to play a song with the empty can.Of course there was some degree of tin can sound but the directional qualities together with the wide frequency spectrum made me experiment.The key is to find the right material and shape!You want something that is hard enough to vibrate properly but soft enough to allow for lower frequencies.I tried pipes, boxes, old plastic containers....But nothing seemed to provide a broad and even sound spectrum without distortions.If you vibrate a surface then only at certain, resonant frequencies destinct patterns will form if some dust or similar is place on the surface.In all other cases there is only chaos.Preventing the harmonics to form prevents harmonic vibrations to build up to distortion levels.Like it or not but waste seems to work just fine as a speaker ;)I made a plug to fit reall tight into a 2 liter juice bottle neck.The original plastic cap is just too soft.A vibro speaker glued onto the plug and the bottom of the bottle cut out and the soun was quite impressive.Proper use is however limited as the speaker would need to be mounted upright.Next thought was to utilise the bottom of the bottle too.By cutting a round hole in the side of the bottle I got an even more directional speaker with a better response to low frequencies.Placement of said hole of course affect how certain frequencies travel and where nodes can form.The size might also matter as the hoe itself, or better the material around it can get resonant at certain frequencies.You can cheat at bit though by using sticky tape, duct tape and so on as dampening meterial in badly affected areas.Especially with a wall mount for the speaker and the bottle hanging down behind the TV the effect is good compared to a standard shredderbox. The above design is certainly not for everyone although I think it has a wow factor to it if you show a decent sound coming out of a juice bottle ;)My next step was trying to find out how more fancy designs could work.So just stop reading here unless you like the idea of creating speakers that should not even work.Back in the old days we had more than just the speakers with magnets and cones.Anything that can vibrate can produce sound.It all depends on how much of it we can actually hear.My first exotic idea to really misuse a vibro speaker is a vibrating harp.Does not need to be in the classic shape though.A string in a resonance box, like a harp, guitar, violine and so on will start to vibrate at the set note.This is true even if the force for the vibration is external.You might remember the old school experiment with the two pitch forks on their boxes?Hit one and the other starts to swing too.If you make a resonance box for a vibro speaker with internal or external wire strings at different tensions or lengths you can amplify the sound for the notes that correspond to the strings.Make a relatively large box with some sturdy wires for the frequencies between 60 and 100Hz and you have a really powerful subwoofer from just 20W of input power...I think you get the idea on how to use amplifying strings now ;)My second and total misuse is the xmas tree.If you are a sparky by old trades then you might remember the mechanical frequency meters for generators or other things that required a stable supply.Well, if not than you should know the little wind up toys that play a melody with a drum and tiny forks.Imagine you would replace the glue plate with a rod.Depending on material and length harmonic nodes will form at various places and frequencies.Between those nodes the swing is maximised while the node itself appear to be stationary and without and vibrations at all.For example a steel rod of 1.2m would have a single standing wave at about 1kHz while a copper rod of the same lenght will be much lower in the frequency for a single standing wave.The xmas tree assumes that the rod is of such material that no single standing wave can form below 200Hz and that it won't swing too much at other resonant frequencies.Since aluminium is easy to work with and available in flat and thin bars already it would be my first choice for the branches of the tree.The required length is calculate based on the speed of sound in aluminium - you find online calculators for that.You want the lenght so that you end up with an even fraction of the wavelength you want to "play" with that strip.This allows for the rod to be placed right in the center of the strip where the standing wave movement is zero in the node.Make a lot of thin strips to get a broad frequency response.Placement on the rod can now be crucial.The best option I found so far is using a threaded rod and tapping the holes in the strips.The strips swing quite violently if long and at certain frequencies.And those not in resonance will still transfer their momentum to other strips.This can cause unwanted harmonics.Most evident when a single strips swigns violently at a certain frequencies.Adjusting the angle by turning it is often enough to get out of the overlapping harmonics.With enough strips it then really looks like a tree with flat branches.The sound might not be as loud and impressive as a plastic bottle as the virations are going up and down.But if placed in the right spot it not just looks nice but also makes people wonder where the sound is coming from.Last but not least my yet to be tested hidden speaker system - due to renting restrictions :(If you own a house of the standard frame design then you have plasterboard walls and ceilings.With a large enough surface of the right material, one or two vibro speakers can cover a really wide frequency range at good volume levels.So far I could only do tests in an old wooden window frame but the priciple works the same way between the wooden frames of a wall or ceiling.In my experiments a standard plasterboard sheet needs to be 100 x 100cm to get a more or less decent response for the lower frequencies.Before you rip your walls down use a stud finder and place your vibro speaker on the plasterboard between two studs or beams.I found that two speakers for the lower frequencies and three or four for the higher ones make a good sound.That is per channel and if you have the right size plasterboard sheet in the right place.No point if your left side is further away from the TV than your right.Ideally you replace the entire sheet with the speaker in the right spot on the new sheet but on the back.For obvious reasons this is far from being a perfect solution.But if you plan a full renovation anyway...A way out for older houses is the wooden floorboards.They make excellent resonators for low frequencies.The directional speakers could then still be hidden in picture frames of the right thickness and design.Anyways, I hope I gave you some ideas here ;)

Topic by Downunder35m 


New Homepage

I know the staff, and some members, are tired of hearing criticism of the recent changes the site has undergone. Some is probably valid, most is just knee jerk. I don't want to pile on, more than I already have, but after seeing the homepage today I have to say something. I've attached a screen shot of the current home page full screened on a 23" monitor. Lets say I'm visiting Instructables for the first time. Is a giant, scaling, Radio Shack advert really the only thing you want to show up? (Since the ad scales with the window yo would need a huge screen to be able to see anything else on landing, also if you aren't full screen it is literally all you see besides the header.) Sure there are a links to the categories but what if I'm new and don't know those are the categories or what they mean. What if I'm a regular but don't know what category the thing I'm looking for is in? Search you say, just use the search bar. Right, ok, just as soon as I find it. Oh you mean this giant thing in the middle of my screen that typed out like it's a non-usable flash animation when I first landed? What if I don't know what I'm looking for, lets call it browsing. Looks like there are some featured projects down below. *scrolls down* One project with a picture large enough to discern it's subject, three with shrunken down thumbnails, and 8 more in a wall of text with no pictures to give any context to the titles. This home screen is no longer a hub for the site. It's 50% add, 25% blank space, and 25% links to specific things. With the giant ad filling the entire screen the stuff below feels like it is tacked on as an afterthought. It really feels like it was designed around the ad. You have to know what you are looking for for it to even be remotely useful. Over 3/4 of the time if I'm am looking at a project on Instructables I found it by browsing ALL the categories, at once, on the old homepage. Unless I'm looking for something specific I'm not going to spend the time to click through every catagory just to see what's up. I have broad interests and jumping to 6 different pages just isn't going to cut it. It also makes it feel very disjointed. You go from a page with almost no content to a page filtered down to 1/6th of the sites content, at most. This isn't just bad for people browsing either, this will directly impact authors as well. With only one decent sized picture and only 4 pictures total what are the chances your project is going to make the front page? Average case I would assume people might click through half of the six categories in the current format. Right there that's a probable 50% drop in eyes even seeing your project, click through rates will decrease that number further but those could actually rise (as a percentage of the total people that see the project. This doesn't cancel out the first decrease though). A 66% decrease is also plausible and of course roughly 83% is worst case. If the browser doesn't win and the author doesn't win then who wins? Unless Radio Shack has paid for all the space on the top of the home screen, in which case the Autodesk balance sheet wins, nobody does. It causes me some concern that the reasoning given for the major format changes to the Instructables themselves was to really emphasize the pictures, and I believe the same ting was said about the previous homepage update, but now pictures of projects have almost entirely been removed. The motivation here is fuzzy at best. I would love to hear from someone on that staff that knows the actual reason behind the change. If it makes sense I'm willing to listen and adapt my usage habits but if this is simply a numbers game in the ledger book then this probably signals the end of me browsing other peoples projects. (Unless a staff member will actually come out and say it's a money grab in which case I appreciate the honesty and maybe we can all work together to find a way to generate more income. The last thing we want is Instructables to go under.) EDIT: Interestingly it's not as bad in IE8 (The ad that is. The lack of projects is still quite apparent) but there is a little issue with the scaling of the "search bar". Maybe the ad size is a bug, as there is at least one other FF bug already spotted, see below. Also the image comment system seems to have reverted to the old style click and drag, at least here in the forum. Maybe it nerev changed, I don't post photos here much.

Topic by bwrussell   |  last reply