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Smart board Using distance meters.

Hello! My name is Muneer. I was wondering whether this concept of making a smart board would work(shown in image). The idea is to use two distance meters to measure distance ‘a’ and distance ‘b’ from the transmitter in the pen to the top corners. Distance c is fixed and known. Using the distances, the x and y distance should be workable from the formulas(shown in image) I guess. I have a few concerns and require your expert opinion, a. How can we construct the distance meter (IR? Ultrasonic? Any available schematic...etc) b. Converting the x and y distances to pixel information c. Interfacing the board to a computer, possibly giving the input from the smart board directly as a mouse input. or if you could suggest other practical ways. Could you please help me with this? Thanks.

Topic by muneersn    |  last reply


Re-using Smart TV board from dead TV to make another TV smarter...

Hi, I have just bought LG 47GA6400 TV but I damaged LCD screen (CRD31092201) when I was assembling it.  I couldn't find low cost LCD to replace and I started wondering how I can reuse any remaining parts of this TV. Actually there are many people like me wondering what to do with dead Smart TV. Few years ago you would receive a standard advice – throw it away. But today Smart TV parts are powerful and with your help might be re-used again... Here is an example: My LG TV has mainboard with dual core CPU,  Google TV inside and cool remote controller with QWERTY keyboard and tons of applications.... I wish I could reuse it with other, not so smart LCD TV I have.  The only problem, how to connect Smart TV mainboard to a HDMI.  It doesn't have HDMI out, it has only input ports and one LCD interface cable.... Is it a crazy idea to convert LCD interface back to HDMI or VGA ? Can you create an instructables to show how to do that ?

Topic by alexgontcharov    |  last reply


Anyone familiar with sb 600 smart boards?

I recently bought a smart board from a school auction, the school is shutting down only problem is it doesn't have the pen tray and from what research I have done that seems necessary. I was just wondering if there were anything else I could wire it to just to make it turn in to see if it works thank you ahead of time for any and all comments.

Question by rickcern    |  last reply


My RC car circuit board

Hi, i need some help. A few weeks ago i took apart a RC (remote controlled) car circuit board but some of the cables couldn't hold and just broke off so i'd be so thankful if one of you smart people out there could tell me (or draw on the picture) where everything is supposed to go (including the antenna :-) and the forwart and backward motor. thanks Kacper

Topic by kacper00100    |  last reply


Help with JARVIS-like Smart Home

Hey guys, I am planning to do a project with Smart Home theme. I would like to create JARVIS-like application, which would be able to recognize my voice and then do appropriate action. Example: Temperature Sensor Me: "Jarvis, Show Temperature" Jarvis: -"Temperature displayed sir" I am planning to buy a very cheap Tablet, on which I would like to write an Android Application, which would create "jarvis" and other activities. For example, if I say "Show Temperature" the activity would pop up, where the temperature will be displayed. I will messure temperature with a Thermometer (DS1280 most probably). And I'd like to use a Bluetooth module to communicate Wireless with them. Temp. Sensor -------- > Arduino board ------------> Tablet All of the above are on different locations. I need help with this project, so if anyone could do an instructable on how to do this - would be really awesome! What do I need ? - Temp. Sensor - Bluetooth Module - Arduino Mega - Speech regonition software (BitVoicer probably) - anything else? Also, is the TFT display (http://www.geeetech.com/wiki/index.php/3.2TFT_LCD) good enough to replace the Tablet ?  Meaning, can I write such an Application to this display ? Thanks, David

Topic by DavidDaVinci    |  last reply


SoHa SMART's October 2014 Build Night with DODOcase

Getting down to business with DoDo Case at our recent board meeting where we were graciously given DoDo Case VR glasses by Instructables. http://www.dodocase.com/products/google-cardboard-vr-goggle-toolkit  for a build night!  It was a fascinating way to experience virtual reality on your smartphone and you know what they say; all work and no play...  We also created an Instructable in which one of our board members Ben Finio addresses the issues we though could be made better with the directions. Thank you Instructables team and DoDo Case VR for the great night and we look forward to many more!

Topic by Bullock STEAM MakerSpace    |  last reply


using Smart TV board from dead TV to make standalone player

Hi everybody, recently I hired a new ISP company (italy) with a SO AWESOME VOD TV service, like netflix and also live tv, , the app works very great and with a good quality, the problem it's only available for LG and SAMSUNG smartTV, no way to watch it on PC; mobile, chromcast.... So... i have 2 more Sony TV and a 4k Projector and i don't find a dam solution to watch this app on rather than buy another 2 LG/SAM tvs and throw the projector (which is not an option hehe) So I wonder if I  can just buy a broken LG/SAM TV (even a new one) and use the smart TV board as player, I think, it's pretty easy to just unattach the board and put a power supply, but i wonder what kind of video interface this board uses, I will need any kind of magical WHATEVER to HDMI converter, and also it need to have audio aswell  I read most of the TV use proprietary interface / connector to send image to the panel, the app it's compatible with more than 200 models from LG and Samsung, maybe you guys know the exact model i shloud find to "hack" the board in most easy way Thanks! 

Topic by srcastor    |  last reply


How to take the project off of the arduino board? Answered

So i have been looking for a long time for a way to "take the project off of the arduino board" (unsure what else to call it so that hampers my search) in order to reuse the board without buying a new one, or dissemble the old one each time i do a new project. Then i stumbled upon this instructable https://www.instructables.com/id/Convert-2-LED-Lamp-to-50-Smart-Lamp/ i see how he just used the arduino only to program it. How do you design this circuit?? i was unaware that the pins on the arduino correspond directly with pins on the chip, without extra parts between the chip and the pin. is this correct or am i mistaken? in theory if i have the blink program loaded up on the arduino and then i take the chip out and wire it up with power going to it and the correct leg of the chip wired "directly" to the resistor and LED would that work?   TL;DR I want to be able to program a different IC (assuming the correct model of chip is purchased) and use that in the final project so that i can then reuse the arduino. Are there instructables for this already? and i dont mind doing footwork, i just need to know what to search for.

Question by bpwmd    |  last reply


Build a small & light digital camera using old smartphone parts?

I want to build a small and light camera for my RC helicopter since it doesnt have a  camera. I have an old phone which has 2 cameras, but the phone's battery doesnt work anymore, so i figured i could use the camera to build what i want!!

Question by HishamE3    |  last reply


I found a Bluetooth transmitter and receiver, does anyone have any idea how I could use it to control other stuff?

I found a Bluetooth transmitter and receiver from Smart Technologies Smart Board (WC6-R1), does anyone have any idea how I could use it to control other stuff? Or what to do with it? It's the Option 4: Use a SMART Wireless Bluetooth Connection on this link, and the gadgets on the image: http://smarttech.com/us/Support/Browse+Support/Support+Documents/KB2/001295.aspx

Question by Chu Guk    |  last reply


university clear smartboard

Https://www.facebook.com/ (on this date, they have a vid on opening page) hit pause at 47 second mark of vid transparent smartboard? what university? http://technologywithoutborders.blogspot.com/2011/02/making-your-smart-board-transparent.html awesome stuff.

Topic by Toga_Dan  


What should i make for a cool instructable?

I dont have many chemicals around my house and dont know how to put electronics on a circuit board. I am very smart but i need help with a little bit of the stuff.

Question by agspy1    |  last reply


Freezer panel home build

Some time ago I was approached by an old friend who got very lucky money wise.He wanted to build a really energy efficient house for himself - in terms of being well insulated.Should be easy to build as well he said...So with a few beer we got together one day and tried to figure out what options are available that the usual building companies won't or can't offer.Quite soo we realised that freezer panels seem to be the ideal solution.Sturdy, ralatively high load rating and additional supports, mounts and all are readily available.Funny enough there are even the right thicknesses available to be a perfect match for EU style tripple glazed windows and well insulated outside doors.And as always the initial euphoria meant we totally went over board here.Getting dimensions for selected doors and windows, calculating how many freezer panels are required to make the outside walls and roof...Even starting on 3D models to design the whole thing.Needless to say the dreams ended with an equiry at the council for a building permit for the dream home.Turns out that despite proper ratings on overthing a house can not be built with freezer panels for walls.Only bricks, wooden/steel frames and approved building materials...Either way we kept going as a theoretical game for the hope in a few years regulations around here might change.And you might be lucky to have your property somewhere with no such stupid regulations.One of the biggest problems we realised such a well insulated home would have is moisture and fresh air.Possible solution here is to use a heat exchange system for basically everything inside and outside the house.Options for this already exist for purchase and installation so nothing would need to be designed or developed from scratch.These system combine airconditioner, heating, hot water and air exchange in a quite compact unit size.The required ducting is a different problem though that should be included in the early design stages already.Solar panels double up as additional heat shields so to say and with enough roof space left it could be turned into a green and living roof to help with the carbon footprint and inside temperatures during the summer.So far for the easy part...All this would be impossible without home automation and integration.Sensors monitor conditions, a computer system decides on the right operating parameters and allows for user adjustments.Home automation isn't a new thing either, so called smart-homes are already in the portfolio of most good builder out there - at a price though.Using this technology to our advantage means the smart part now doubles up for the required input and sensor data.For a smaller home you would ideall opt for a rotating home that follows the sun...For a really big home you would aim for enough solar and wind power to make it self sustaining...Battery technology is on our side here and using Li-Ion tech is almost affordable as old style lead-acid batteries for this purpose.So why are there only so few people going this route?Would be very easy to create freezer panel styles that look like wood or bricks to be conform with local appearence...The real problem seems to be that it violates what we are used to.For starters it would be hard to explain why you should live in a big fridge with windows.The next problem is that such homes would be very easy and quick to build.You select your style and design features, pay for it and production starts.In time for the finnished foundations, plumbing and such the parts arrive and come together in a day or two.Connections are finalised and can move in within a week of commencing to build the actual house.Thausands of tradies would be jobless if this would be the general way to build new homes.Same for all those companies that currently supply the standard building materials, frames, roof tiles and such...Just imagine a tornado just turned your home into dust.Wouldn't it be great to be able to move into a new one within a few weeks instead of months?Even better if the new one would still be mostly unharmed after the next tornado....Living in a possible flood zone?Nothing easier than to add some barriers for doors if the house is fully sealed otherwise...Stay dry while the water is right under your window, just don't open the door...In other parts of the world so called kit-homes are already widely available but mostly only in mild climates.The benefit of using freezer style panel for homes in desert or cold climates seems to obvious though.Same for possible disaster zones like tornado alley.Is it time to re-think how we define a home?

Topic by Downunder35m  


Scarpar All-Terrain Powerboard (video)

Scarpar's all-terrain power board has been in development since the 90s, Engineering and design organization EDAG have been helping with the production.Basically its like a skateboard but with tracks underneath that are as wide as the board itself. A high powered motor drives these tracks and you hold a remote in your hand that control's the speed.You can carve around like on a snowboard/skateboard/surfboard and the board can go over snow, sand and rough ground, if you watch the video you will see it concur an entire tree trunk !scarpar.com has loads more info They also have a Scarpar twitter and Scarpar facebook pageWatch the video !

Topic by =SMART=    |  last reply


hey i have purchase a rc car circuit few days ago but its all wires has been broken

In my rc car circuit all the wires has been broken from the circuit board(1,2nd motor wires,antena wire,batterywire) so any one of you smart people plz help me i would be thankful for that

Question by sahilnarang    |  last reply


Ideas for parts laying around

I have some old circuts and parts laying around the house and alot of it is just small simple stuff like a broken screen here, broken screen there. Over loaded capsitors etc etc. I was looking for the best idea how to use them all together I have a steam link that has no power input  (got pulled out but other than that, mint condition) 2 laptop mother boards with all parts, No heat sink PS3d tv controller board couple smart phones laying around with a few spart parts and cords from desktops and laptops. Just looking for ideas, i can post pictures latter on in the day

Topic by JuggaloRydax420    |  last reply


How to correct bent cpu pins on motherboard in CPU socket? the pins are of motherboard not on cpu...(INTEL)?

There are several pins that are bent on the new INTEL MB that i recently purchased and found it to have some bent pins. I tried to get an RMA but they deny it. However the pins were not so much damaged as they are now. I've read a post here abt correcting CPU pins that are on CPU. But this one is even trickier. Its on the board, in the socket, the pins are thinner than that of CPU and its hard to take a knife or a smart  card in that area... I really need help on this topic as this is a new Board and I dont know how to react. Please help...

Question by safarneo    |  last reply


Humane Trap Ideas? Answered

Okay, so we've got critters in our attic...Probably Wolf Rats or something....I've tried using a large bucket with a board ramp. On top of the bucket I've got a towel laid across the top. For bait, I've used bread with peanut butter. My trap idea just doesn't seem to work.... The animals steal the bread without fallin' in ! They're smart .... Any other ideas? Thanks! :)

Question by Nikki213    |  last reply


Humane Trap Ideas

Okay, so we've got critters in our attic...Probably Wolf Rats or something....I've tried using a large bucket with a board ramp. On top of the bucket I've got a towel laid across the top. For bait, I've used bread with peanut butter. My trap idea just doesn't seem to work.... The animals steal the bread without fallin' in! They're smart.... Any other ideas? Thanks! :)

Topic by Nikki213    |  last reply


Homica - The remote-controlled 'smart house' using Arduino, iPhone and Apple Watch

Homica is a project that thanks to a smart web platform allows to control in a remote way (using an iPhone and Apple Watch) sensors and actuators installed on the Arduino boards. Homica not only allows to monitor our home in all its aspects through a multitude of sensors but also to perform actions on the whole installed actuators. Moreover, Homica is able to execute actions as results of events. This logic will be called "Homica Profile". Below there are just few examples of "Homica Profiles" that can be created using Homica. If we are not at home and we want that the acustic alarm is activated and all the lights goes on and an email is sent when a motion sensor detect the presence of someone in the house. If our garden has an humidity below a certain value, then we have to water it until the soil humidity will be a specific value. If we want to be notified by email if there is a gas leak. If we want that a number of lights goes on if we clap our hands once and we want to turn them off if we claps twice. If we want that all the lights or some goes on or off with a simple action. If we want that some lights goes on if a motion sensor detects a motion. If we want that some lights goes on when night comes and off when becomes day. If we want that an electric kettle and some lights goes on at a specific hour The most interesting aspect is that we can create all the profiles we need directly using the iPhone application called "Homica Remote" without any Hardware changes.   Complete Project Video https://youtu.be/s520dv2i9Rg Remote controlled by an Apple Watch Video https://youtu.be/ZwCsdlMXShk Remote controlled by voice (Speech Recognizer) https://youtu.be/ixZyjLN6izU

Topic by MicheleC5    |  last reply


Control Garage Door with WeMo Help

Hi everyone, I am a beginner with anything that has to do with electric circuits and I need your help. Recently a WeMo light switch came to my hands and I thought it would be a good idea to use it as a wifi remote and as a regular switch, of course, for my garage door. I thought maybe someone on this forum could guide me to install the switch to the circuit board of the garage door. i have also attached some pictures of the garage door circuit and the switch. Thank you for your help

Topic by dark0mlks  


How to keep backlights on from a vizio e3d320vx?

Hello all, So heres the deal, i found someone trowing out a vizio smart 3d tv and i think to myself surely i can salvage something. One of the thing i want is the cfl tubing back light. When i plug it in the back light will flash but not stay on and im pretty sure this is due to the control board needing to tell it to stay on, seeing as how this isn't working i was looking for another way to power the back light purely from the power supply. Is there anyone that cold please help me? 

Question by MarkH449    |  last reply


Hey, let's invent this immediately!!!

OK folks, how hard can this possibly be?Yeah, yeah, I know. Probably REALLY hard. But if we all team up and combine our gray matter, can't we overcome any technological obstacle with our collective geekiness?I want to see an affordable, open-source doodad that can turn an LCD from a dead laptop into a working external flatscreen monitor. It should accept digital & analog signals and allow us all to hack up beautiful screens ready to embed in our brilliant projects, while keeping LCD's out of the landfill.punish3r valiantly went down this road: https://www.instructables.com/id/Laptop-Converted-to-2nd-Monitor/but then ended up "cheating" (his words, not mine) by using software that does most of the work (plus he started with a functional laptop!). Discussions I've read usually end with "you'd have to buy a controller for that specific LCD, which would cost almost as much as a regular flatscreen so what's the point?"I reject this (resting on my laurels of ignorance)! If a controller truly exists for every LCD on earth, don't they share lots of common features? And if so, can't we come up with a generic one that could be programmed or dip-switched or soldered or otherwise persuaded to play nice with any LCD on the playground? Even the weird one by the monkey bars who smells like cheese? (Sorry; stretched my metaphor too far and it broke)I envision a circuit board with PC or even TV "in," an amazingly versatile multi-pin adaptor or cable that would replace or connect to that flimsy little ribbon cable sprouting from the LCD. The board would have a USB plug for programming, and a chip smart enough to remember what you tell it. Some smart person will write a nifty app that talks to the board, and vast legions of techies across the globe (or rogue employees of the LCD manufacturers, perhaps?) will upload specs for all of their LCD panels that will be used by other smart people to create a profile for any given panel that can be dropped onto the board.It would have to be really low-cost to make sense, but I envision a cottage industry: package it up as a kit, or we could build goofy-looking monitors out of e-waste and sell them!Somebody else could probably strengthen the argument in favor of this invention by providing a list of terrible LCD ingredients that would be re-purposed out of our trash heaps and water supplies and cat food... I'll leave that up to the experts.What do you think, folks? Is this a pipe dream, or a viable idea? Either way, let's do it!(and if anybody manages to make one, I get dibs on a prototype!)Thanks for reading!Mike

Topic by mikecraghead    |  last reply


Small wireless module, would you buy it? Answered

Hello fellow instructablees! I recently found a cheap product carrying a sender - receiver pair of an Xbee-like module. They transmit on the 2.4gHz range and have a range of 10m.  Would it be smart for me to buy the whole stock of these devices and sell them? would you buy it from me and for how much? Thanks EDIT: Just found some extra info on the back of the board. the wireless module has the following pins: -GND -IRQ -MISO -MOSI -SCLK -CS -CE -VCC -OSCO -OSCI perhaps that could make it more usable? The module is from a wii-nunchuck transmitter - receiver pair

Question by dunnos    |  last reply


PC half dead - not good

Machine will not POST - no beep, BIOS smart fan-control not engaging, PS2 keyboard has no power, monitor reads "no signal" Board does have power - things spin (like the CPU fan which shouldn't until it gets hot) Preceding clues(?) - I thought I'd developed tinnitus, but found it was the PSU (I think) making a high-pitched ringing noise, half the day unplugged and that seemed to go away. Display not engaging properly on start-up: If I waited until the machine got to Windows login and then switch the monitor on - no problem. Switching the monitor on before this point - black sort of standby mode. I think I might try the PSU first, then think about the mainboard. So far I've plugeed and re-plugged things, tried with 0,1 & 2 strips of RAM with no difference. Any suggestions welcome I spent a lot of time replacing 1 cap' in the PSU, then I replaced the PSU (logic being that if I've tampered with it an the thing still doesn't work I should replace it regardless) Then I bought a new board. I was a bloody-sod, CD/DVD still doesn't work... L

Topic by lemonie    |  last reply


i am trying to make a remote controlled truck?

Well the idea is to use a smartphone and get skype working on that smart phone why skype? video and mic + audio(analog input) from skype as the signal to control the arduino board(ie i will have to make a simple application which will make specific distinct sound when i press the keys) well the reason why i am using audio is because i cant think of other way to control the arduino from the smartphone well i have heard of people hooking up the arduino using otg cable ,but i am exactly  not sure how that works  WELL THE DESIGN IS STILL ON PAPER ,I STILL DONT KNOW IF THE ANALOG THING WILL ACTUALLY WORK! i would like suggestion from people!!!!

Question by cthaliyath    |  last reply


micro alternator airborne / out runner balance charger for large scale rc aircraft

Using the same concept as diesel trains. As they drive / pull on electric. The drive train is actually electric . The noise we hear are the generators charging the power banks. . Electric are far more efficient than diesel or gas engine direct  to the drive train. That being said. How can we set up micro scale generator on board 1/3 scale electric rc airplane. concept : connect 40 size os max rc nitro engine direct to 700 kv E. out runner shaft , rectifier bridge /  12 volt SMART lipoly charger, all this to enhance primary lipoy bank on large scale electric rc planes. ( increase flight time dramatically) sounds stupid I guess, but the concept apparently works in real world cargo trains. Can anyone help wth the system set up of rectifier bridge components to give this a shot ? I have no electrical expertise.  Thanks Jeff

Topic by JeffR135  


A Pi-powered Portable Experimenter's Bench, PEB

We are appealing for your support for our startup project, to turn our vision into a reality.  Our vision also includes anytime, anywhere, hands-on learning for STEM topics.  STEM = Science, Technology, Engineering (Arts) and Math. We are a small startup operation building a new resource for hobbyists, or electronic hobbyists-want-to-be--a smart experimenter's platform that removes the sometimes difficult bits and bytes, and relies on your PC, tablet, or smartphones for user-interface. For instance out of the box, our PEB, allows experimentation like Measuring speed of Sound, Locating source of a sound, Determining direction and distance of a Sound, etc.  with our PEB, configured with Ras-Das-1 and Audio Explorer board, totaling for less than $150, plus shipping. See--http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/254558907/data-acquisition-system-for-raspberry-pi and our website http://www.WattminderInstruments.com, for details. We need to have minimum funding to get PCBs and assemblers under contract to produce them, and on  a portal  like Instructables  to help us distribute them around the world.   Please let your  members know about our product and future plans and invite their support to make it a reality.  Electronics is the gateway to science learning. Thanks for your kind consideration and support. -Steve  and team

Topic by syang8    |  last reply


Trying to run my sony Cybershot from an external 12V supply. Need help

Background: I am currently trying to build a housing that will turn my Sony DSC W-55 Cybershot Camera into a time lapse camera (Automatically take a photo every X Seconds for an extended period of time). I have already built the enclosure that houses the camera, circuit board and actuator that presses the shutter release button ever 15sec. (Adjustable). Pictures below Problem: I Need to run the camera for very long periods of time (current baseline is >8hr, but indefinately would be nice). The camera uses a Sony G-Type Li-Ion Battery that does not provide the runtime I need for this application, so I am trying to hook the camera up to an external supply. The battery has three terminals as follows [+] = ~3.9V    (No surprise here) [C] = 3V         (This is weird) [-]  = 0V I accepted that the extra terminal was strange, but figured it would not be hard to simulate. I used an LM317 Adj. Voltage regulator to simulate the 3.7V [+] Terminal and a voltage divider off of the 3.7V bus to get the 3V required for the [C] terminal. I double checked everything and plugged it in with no success, the camera will not turn on. My question is, what smarts are in the battery that I need to simulate, or is there something wrong with my current set-up. Any help will be appreciated. Thanks, John

Topic by John Culbertson    |  last reply


Ethernet Shield and Projects What can Basically Be Done Online

If you are looking around for answers on whether you can do anything with electronics project online? The answer is yes, absolutely as the real time limiters can use you current skill as well as available resources along with your imagination. With the help of an Ethernet Shield you can create micro controller board that is used to serve files for the website or to turn to a web client.  In a different case you will find that the final application you put into the place is basically dictated by the design. Though we all know that the Ethernet Shield is quite a fun to play with to check out what you basically get to do. But, when you came down to designing your final projects as well as applications the basic that lies to your success is to find out something that interests individuals as well as people are quite fascinated in using that. There are basically several number of hand held applications that are available in the moment and many that are generated on a regular basis. The tablet as well as smart phones is being used by the owners on a regular basis to determine any nearby restaurant, anything related to movies or evening out plans. Therefore, getting hold of a hand held mapping device is something that is much more than just your love for electronics that is quite useful and therefore, it could be a start of a prototype business.  The whole idea of the web is that it allows you to go free. The same can also be assumed for home electronics design. Undoubtedly the two that are combined are a counterpart that could easily be made.

Topic by protopicuk  


I need a compressor that can blow up balloons VERY FAST what compressor is best to do this?

I tie balloon for kids for free. I believe kids need a break and so I have a saying; put down a beer to spread some cheer. I tie all my balloons now for Free using all my money I use to spend on booze. Can someone help me find a compressor that has a VERY high CONSTANT output to blow up hundreds and hundreds of balloons> I did have a King Canada compressor 4 gallon model. I can blow faster than it can, almost. But not efficient. Would any one care to take a stab at helping me? The season is gettnig busy and I have many kids to tie for. A HUGE FOLK Festival FULL Of hundreds of kids and tons of balloon displays to blow up round balloons to do a dazzling display is coming fast. Plus the Ride to Conquer Cancer is coming up and many World Championship races that I announce at. There are many cycling Championships I attend and people that count on me to do some dazzling displays for kids. I also go to skate board parks to tie balloons too! FREE for the rest of my life to help kids be happy and teach them to choose smart. I hope someone knows or can steer me right. Thanks so VERY SINCERELY ! Crazy Larry Banff,Alberta Canada

Question by Crazy Larry    |  last reply


Printer disconnecting or USB port disappearing in Windows

First I thought to make an Instructable out of it but realised there are too many different printer models out there, so this time no images. What is this about you might wonder? Well, let me tell you my story first and you might see similarities to your problem. It all started with me getting a new PC as the old one got memory problems (RAM modules failed). After a few successful prints I noticed errors coming up in the log window. Mainly things like communication problems and that some data is sent again. Realised that on my new PC I did not check the speed settings for the COM ports, so I adjusted them to match the printer board and moved on without even bothering to check the logs. Then, half way through a bigger print, it all stopped and I could not even connect to the printer anymore. After a power cycle on the printer all was fine again but the error kept coming back every now and then. At this point I started to read up on the problem and the most common recommendation is to print over SD - too bad if your printer does not support it and too bad it does not address the issue at all! A few more technical answers pointed to the Logitech drivers, especially mouse, keyboard and 3D vision. As I was using the same outer hardware as before and also the same drivers (and same version numbers) I simply ruled this one out too, although it might be a vital clue for others. When starting to get frustrated and after opening a cold blonde I remembered that I had a similar issue a long time ago and that it was related to loose wires on the screw terminals for the power connection. Measured it all but according to my trusty multimeter all was fine. Now comes the fun part: I friend of mine with a HiFi fetisch was here when I testing the connection and he started laughing at my attempts. He explained that ALL his connections, no matter if power or audio signal are oversized! Here I started to wonder if he is up to something and looked up similar circuit board mounted power plugs. To my surprise they are all rated for anything between 1 and 5Amps. Even without a heated bed powered by the printer board I think everyone will agree that a max 5A connections is not enough. My frined then offered to check the plug and connector at his place - what a great thing to have friends :) He used a signal generator and small speaker with the plug as a connector between them. With an oscilloscope connected to both input and speaker you could see, while moving the plug, that the audio signal become somehow unclean - there where spikes and missing bits everywhere depending which way you wobble the plug. After taking the whole thing apart the destructive way we saw the cause: overheated contact areas with discolored surfaces. I replaced the plug now with a 250V/20A one from an old laser printer and had no USB or connection issues ever since. Ok, what's the thing with power and USB problems on a 3D printer? Almost all printer boards have the ground connections bridged to avoid interference on the USB signals. This mean, in case of a faulty power connection or one that is "dirty", the USB port on the computer can receive back EMF signal or even a voltage spike. In return a smart bios either disconnects the port or disables it until the problem is solved, in our case by restarting / reconnecting the printer. But even with no obvious signs of power problems you can get  a so called "dirty" connection. Dirty covers all from corrosion, worn springs for battery compartments, overheating or in the old days burnt relay contacts. For our printer it usually means that either the soldering connection on the board or a screw came loose, in rare cases like mine an undersized connector can burn out due to being unable to handle the currents. The bad thing is that you can not always spot these problems the easy way... Is there an easy way to tell that my USB problem is caused by a faulty power connection? Yes and no. Some boards offer indicating LED's, you connect power and the LED stays on even if the printer is disconnected from the PC. If it is more than just a Power on" indicator" this LED will be off after the printer stops working and in the device manager your serial port for the printer is gone. You might also hear the warning sound from Windows in regards to a device being disconnected. If all the above is true than most likely your power connection has a problem somewhere - if in doubt replace all screw and plug connectors for the power. Sometimes the problem is less obvious. Your print software might show communication problems in the log window or re-send a lot of commands. If the speed selection for the com port is the same as for the firmware of the printer board and as set in the printer software, it could also be a power connection problem. But to be on the save side try a shielded cable with ferrite cores on both ends first for the connection between computer and printer. Can I take any measures to prevent the problem? Sure, you could solder everything and make sure the wires are fixed in place so they won't move. But a simple indicator might be enough: Solder a piece of LED strip to the power connection on the circuit board - if the connection has trouble the LED's will show it in most cases by changing light levels or flickering. On top they act as a nice light to see what's happening during a print.

Topic by Downunder35m  


K'nex Challenge 1: 13th Aug - 4th Sept - RESULTS ANNOUNCED

As likers of knex and engineering, Gmjhowe, =SMART= and myself decided we'd start a little knex competition. Each month we will pick three items that we'd like to see redesigned in knex and invite you to have a crack at remaking them, with added functionality if you can!To start with the prizes will be patches, designed by gmjhowe and awarded by him, =SMART= and myself. If it takes off, who knows there may be better prizes in months to come. The patches that will be awarded for 1st - 5th place are below.Here are this months challenges, we've included a smaller project for those of you with less pieces available.Monitor Stand: A stand to replace the base of a monitor. It should be able to twist from left to right, tilt the screen up and down and allow the user to turn from portrait to landscape. Adjustable height would be a bonus!Knex Chess Set: An 8 x 8 chess board with knex pieces.Sellotape Holder: A Knex sellotape holder, for you knexers with less pieces. It should hold the reel and allow the user to pull and cut sellotape one handed. (some suggestions to expand this option: make a large reel tape holder for bigger sellotape rolls, make a wider one for parcel or duct tape, make an adjustable width holder for different tapes, make a hand held tape gun like those they use for packaging - link.)Dock: Somwhere to dock any kind of gadget from phones and ipods, to laptops and external harddrives. It can dock one kind, or all if you're a genius.If this becomes popular and we get a few of each of the above designs submitted, we might add some more challenges to this competition. Rules:- To enter, write up a full instructable of your construction process with clear pictures and descriptions. Post the link here.- Starting and closing dates are GMT.- What the judges say goes!- Have fun!- Judging - 5th Sept - 12th SeptAccepted Entries:Mini Tape Dispenser by jollexPSP Dock by jollex2 in 1 Knex Chess/Checkers Set by knexsuperbulderfreakUniversal iPod Dock by lioneaterUniversal iPod Dock by Killer~SafeCrackerNano K'nex Ipod Dock by BartboyKnex Chess Set by I_Am_CanadianDS Lite Docking Station by TigerNodUniversal Ipod Dock by knexsniper1Fold up phone dock by smileeKnex Tape Dispenser by knex gun builderUPDATE: This is now closed. We will announce the winners when we've had a look through the entries and judged them.RESULTS:1) Knex Chess Set by I_Am_Canadian2) Mini Tape Dispenser by jollex3) DS Lite Docking Station by TigerNod4) 2 in 1 Knex Chess/Checkers Set by knexsuperbulderfreak5) Universal Ipod Dock by knexsniper1Patches for the winners will be awarded soon and we'll be having a think about what to post for our next competition!

Topic by Jayefuu    |  last reply


Few questions about coil physics and capacitors.

Hello.  Hopefully there's some smart electromechanical and physics guys on this board. Long story short I have been working on a coil gun project for about a month now. Originally I was using disposable flash camera circuit, a simple push button, and a coil I took out of a fan. The coil itself is roughly 42 gauge wire, wound an inch long with about 14-18 layers. I achieved best results from this coil, about 4% efficiency, using a 200v 470uf capacitor and a magnetic projectile. However when I used a more powerful capacitor rated at 400v 820uf efficiencies were much lower. I realized the coil was limited and the capacitors energy wasn't being maximized. So I bought some 16 gauge magnet wire to wind a new coil. I wound a coil 40mm long, 3 layers thick around a 1 cm pvc pipe. The coil works but once again there is a huge loss of efficiency at higher energies.  So I need to wind a new coil.  Now here are my questions. 1.  I have read that a coil should be about 33% longer than the projectile.  Is this accurate? 2a.  Is there a magical equation to determine the number of layers a coil should have if all other factors are known? 2b.  How many layers of 16 gauge wire should I use for a coil wrapped around a 1/4 inch barrel to maximize efficiency with a 400v 820uf capacitor?  What about a 200v 1200uf capacitor? 3.  Could someone please demonstrate how to convert farads into amps? My main objective is an optically triggered multi stage coil gun with kinetic energy transfer of above 30 joules. I've moved away from flash camera circuitry and am now using dc to dc converters to charge the capacitors.  I need to find out how to convert farads into amps to figure out what kind of transistors I need for the trigger switch.  Any help is truly appreciated.

Topic by MurdaMastaMike  


LED panel lights with water damage - other uses?

We had a slight roofing problem at work and as a resul a lot of our recently installed LED panel lights got flooded.Now, I though: How hard can it be to fix them....Surprisingly these flat replacements for flouroscent tubes are actually manufactured in a way that you can take them fully apart if you dare.Like some old computer or flat TV screens they use a row of LED's and then some sheets to direct and distribute the emitted evenly throughout the entire panel - like a backlight with no screen.What was a surprise however is the size of the LED's and how they are "soldered".Obviously a mass production in a reflow system.First problem for me was that the LED's used are right between two commonly used SMD sizes.So a 0204 is far to big while a 0102 won't even touch the solder pads.For once I did the smart thing and decided to try to remove at least the clearly faulty and correded bits first and did not order a bunch of LED's...A drop of glue is used to hold the LED's in place until they are soldered.But unlike any glue I encountered for this purpose the stuff won't come off.You can use proper double sided soldering tweezers or a heat gun to soften the solder but the LED itself won't come off.Last resort was to increase the temp of the soldering equippment to soften the glue or to even fully melt it.Lets just say the plastic film making the acutal connections like a circuit board does not tolerate the heat required...I have now a bunch of useless lights, some still working LED power supplies...Was wondering if anyone ever tried to make a backlight screen or one of these panel lights work in reverse?Meaning using natural light on the panel to "collect" it at the thin bit where the LED's were located.Might be useful with some fibre optics or solar cells.Are there other good uses for these films, foils and sheets in a backlight system?Don't want to toss them out only to realise a few weeks later these things are actually good for more things...

Question by Downunder35m    |  last reply


Crowdfunding

We love seeing our authors transform their ideas into a reality, and we want to help in whatever ways we can. Below are some of the campaigns our authors are working to get funded. We'll do our best to keep this list current, so please check out their projects, and help fellow makers in our community find success!  Current Campaigns i-mimic the animation made easy, Device capturing human motion directly in 3D animation software in real-time & without plugins. by Instructabler nawres102 Open Source DIY Automatic Tail Light, A fun and easy to assemble light sensor kit.  By Instructabler Solarcycle Tiq probe, it defines a new category of electronic debug & test tools for makers & professionals - filling the gap between DMMs & 'scopes. By Instructabler markhen57 If you have a project you're trying to get funded, let us know!  Completed Campaigns  Doughnut Safe, Turn your spare tire into a strong box.  By Instructabler Mrballeng The fumeFan, The fume Fan is a soldering fume extractor, work lamp, helping hands tool and a project organiser for hobbyists, makers and creators.  By Instructabler hertzgamma SOLARPAD Open Source 5 Watt Smart Phone Solar USB Charger, Strap this water-resistant solar panel and battery to backpacks or mount it to tripods for camping, hiking, and cycling.  By Instructabler Solarcycle Fish Bone, A no knots cord tightener specifically designed for paracord by author Mrballeng - Funded by almost 9000% of goal! Would you Woodwork, a funny and informational woodworking webseries by author Few Bits - Funded by 100% of goal!  Zero to Maker, a re-skilling guide for new makers by David Lang - Funded by almost 2000% of goal! Arabic Alphabet Fun Flashcards, cute and kid friendly learning tool by author acraftyarab - Funded and met goal! PIXEL: Interactive LED Art, an interactive LED-based display for retro pixel art by author alinke - Funded by over 600% of goal! Blinky Fish, a tiny fish-shaped board that fits on an Arduino to help teach, by author marc.cryan - Funded by almost 600% of goal! Chipper, the ATtiny Programming and Prototyping Shield, by author Hammock Boy - funded by over 1000% of goal! Piranha, a follow-up knotless gear tie for paracord, by author Mrballeng - funded by over 1400% of goal! The Question Block Lamp, a Mario-inspired, interactive lamp for your inner geek, gamer and child, by author bduxbury - funded by almost 150% of goal! Out of Time - A patina weathered I-Beam with moving gears by Instructabler hack818 Maker Kase - Universal Maker cabinet. Perfect for 3D printers, model makers, small CNC machines and open frame Bitcoin Miners by Instructabler bmc.loughlin Have you started your own Kickstarter or Indiegogo to help fund your project? Let us know! Please leave the link in the comments, along with a brief description. We'll add your project to our up-to-date campaign list above, and promote it across our channels. If you have any questions, or want to add any additional info, please email me at khoward@instructables.com Thanks!

Topic by kazmataz    |  last reply


I need some expert mac help!!

Okay, I got a bit of a story, and a bit of a question (Las Vegas, I know you can help me). I've been transfered to a new highschool (not that new to me, I've been to it before) and I've been there for about 3 weeks now. I was given a thinkpad R51 by the school board while I was out of school to use for school work and to take to school. That's all fine and dandy, but the restrictions on their disc image are unbelievable and it makes it next to useless to me other than a gigantic calculator with a shitty battery life. So I wiped it of course, repartitioned it with a 30 and 10 gig partition (respectivly both NTFS, the backup partition, the 10 gig one, is currently in fat32 as I forgot macs can't write to NTFS). So everything works fine, when I got transfered to the school, I asked the so-called "head" techy teacher person of my school for the wep key for the wireless network in my school so I can print my work out in class instead of waiting till I got home (teachers don't like that sometimes). Since I've been to school he's made up excuses like "I know I have the wep key wrote down somewhere, but I know it'll take me like an hour to find it so I can't right now - I've been told that on 4 different occasions on 4 different days. Funny thing is that both he and I know that their wireless isn't actually pure wep mode. It's a wpa enterprise mode of some sort with a required username/password combination to log into it (that's fine though, it'll still work if I have the password). Oh yeah I forgot how I took my ibook to school one day, then the next day (no not the day I was showing him my ibook) he tells me that the wireless will work on my ibook, but not the thinkpad, which, like every other fucking laptop in the school, is a model R51 type 1829 with the odd old R40 laying around. It's excuses after excuses, my mother wanted to call in and give them hell for leading me around but I told her no, I'm curious to see how dumb this teacher thinks I am (and so far I've been playing dumb). NOW he tells me that I need to now, re-image my thinkpad with their school disc image they use on their machines, which I don't have to agree to doing because the laptop didn't come from this school and so it's not theirs. There was absolutely no reason it would not work as I even used the exact same wifi drivers/software and even the same profile management software they use on theirs. Now, I'm almost done but let me explain the last bit of why I'm even posting this lenghty (and possibly waste of time) post. I recently re-reformated as somehow I contracted a nasty trojan downloader onto it, and it was due for a clean up anyways. Well wasn't that a rough ride, since the reinstall I've had to wrestle a video driver onto it, fiddle around with all the other drivers to get them installed, and I still can't get a wifi driver to install. Even if I force install one from the "manual" option when XP asks for drivers (yes XP does have generic Intel Wifi lan drivers for my card) and it wouldn't go, just gave me an error 10 code (device cannot startup). Okay, so the driver isn't compatible? Well Lenovo only has 3 different wifi driver packages for different wifi internal cards for my "one" model/type of laptop (the type "1829" is lenovo's numbering system basically for revisions, and when I went on their site for drivers, it askes me for this, model, and a specific 3 digit number on the bottom (order code I think). So why it can't just tell me the specific card in my revision (as I'm sure there's probably only one card for my revision) is beyond me. I downloaded all three, the first two were just small driver/utility packages (I think they were only 802b drivers too, at least one of them was). When I tried to install them, no luck, first appeared to install it, although the drivers never installed apparently. So I uninstalled what (still) there, and tried the second, same thing, except nothing installed, but it appeared to install. So I went on to the last one, it appeared to be succesful. Not, for some reason, windows could list me all the ap's around here, but couldn't connect to them, or mine, and I know I put the right key in. And when I tried to use Ibm's utilites to connect, it kept crashing, and it was even crashing the wireless zero config windows service thing every time I tried to power on the wifi or such. However I don't even care about windows right now at this particular time or fixing the drivers, for all I know there was a scratch on the install cd and it's botched (very unlikely as I know the install would halt and say it can't read) Now because my teacher has been literally screwing around with me (I'm not assuming here that he's lying to me and making excuses, I know he is because it's just too obvious, you guys tell me). Plan? Install mac os x on the thinkpad and ask him again if it'll work and if he says no, I will probably rip him a new asshole right there on the spot, seeing as he's told me multiple times it will work on my mac, but not the thinkpad, so if I have mac software on there, shouldn't be a problem (hehe). I really want to do this to get back at my teacher because he doesn't believe anything I tell him and he thinks he's pretty smart, just generally another guy with a too-big ego for one person to handle. I downloaded the iAtkos disc image as directed by instructions I found through google (yes, torrent, illegal, don't harp on me for it, jobs makes enough as it is with ipod sales). It's supposed to be pre-patched, and also supposed to include additional driver packages of some kind (that's a plus). And to boot, it's supposed to boot off the dvd (lawl) without any tricks (like usb drives and that smutz). It all seems pretty sweet, and it did boot when I popped it in, but It went to the mac loading screen (the white one with the grey spiny thing) and just sits there with absolutely no activity. I booted it with the -v/-s command(s) and this is what comes up when it stops loading and sits: "Extension "com.apple.driver.ACPI_SMC_PlatformPlugin" has immediate dependencies on both com.apple.kernel and com.apple.kpi components; use only one style." My understanding is that the plist file might be missing some components the driver is calling for, but the "use only one style" part doesn't make sense so I know it's something else. Although it didn't say, I presume the kernal was already patched as it was supposed to be a pure pop-in-and-go image. I was hoping to try installing the EFI patch after too if I can get it going in the first place. And yes, I did quite a bit of googleing before I came to here. I could find information on R40's with mac os x installed on them (or was it x40?, I know those are newer, the r40's are old) and other models inbetween but nothing on thinkpad. I don't even care if it's fast or works 100%, I just want to do it, I do also know that the atheros chipset in my wifi card is native compatible with tiger apparently and should show up as a standard airport card. I don't know if I'll be amazed or not when I post this finally and see how many pages long it is, but I do really need a hand, because this will be the final step before I go to the VP and tell him that this guy has been screwing around with me and blowing me off. I deserve and education dammit!

Topic by Punkguyta    |  last reply


The Middle East and the Global Hackerspace Movement

Please follow me and imagine this. You're in a city and are taking a rattling train somewhere to the edge of town. The buildings get shorter as they get wider. You are entering the industrial area where the jobs dried up long ago. Where there are more broken windows than whole ones in each building. You pass the streets your parents warned you about and a street covered in "DO NOT CROSS" tape. Two stops later you get off at the stop your friends told you about questioning your sanity and wondering why your friends brought you out there. The graffiti is beautiful though, and somewhere in the distance you can hear the thump of heavy bass. The address your friend gave you can't be right, you look up and see a massive complex thankfully this one seemed to have more of it's windows intact. You push the rusting door noticing the rough texture and surprising heft. You walk in and see a roughly refinished hallway. The drywall isn't yet painted but it appears that this massive factory has been transformed on the inside. You pass a few drywalled off artists studios on the first floor and they smile at you with plaster in their hair. It smells like lavender and you notice you just passed an artist making candles. The "hackerspace" your friend told you about is on the second floor. So you walk to the cargo elevator and push the call button. It makes a horrifying rattling sound as it descends to meet you, instead of a door it has a grate. You take it up and as it slowly moves you can see concrete, then wood and suddenly the thumping bass get's louder - Hello Skrillex. It's too much to take in at first, you only notice the chaos. There are tools everywhere and in every state of operation. A wall of computer monitors lines the back wall. There's someone binding books in the corner, and what appears to be a viking with knitting needles sitting in what appears to be a lounge, he looks up and smiles at you and says "welcome to Scrumspace*!" you've arrived at your first hackerspace. Notice an open basket of dollar bills and place a 2 dollar donation in the basket near the fridge and grab yourself a drink from the fridge in the kitchen. You walk into a common area painted like a scene from Super Mario with what appear to be server racks painted as the tubes. Finally you see your friend. He walks in with a scorched shirt and you see his eyes twinkling through the welding goggles. "Told you this place is awesome!" he says. Hackerspace Values and Culture Hackerspaces like this exist almost all over the world. These places collect (and perhaps helps inspire) people who are passionate initiators. Walking into one you might find someone who wants to share a new iPad application which monitors the GPS on the weather balloon they've released -"It's over //CHINA// right now!!". People in hackerspaces are happy to share, it's a part of the culture! Interacting with them is often uplifting and inspiring. They are building and creating things they think is amazing. They may be playing with technology or science or art without concern for the categories. The only apparent question they ask themselves is how AWESOME is this!? It's a contagious atmosphere of capability where people learn from each other constantly. They can't help it! People are so passionate about what they are doing, they inadvertently teach. The other feature of a hackerspace which is more important is that they give people a venue. It's an open space that is owned by the members. Need a place to host a workshop on hat felting, it's yours! Need a place to build the first prototype of your product? Just make sure you pack it in the lockers when you're done working on it! The atmosphere is fundamentally collaborative. It can't be anything except participatory because of the way the spaces are most often organized and run. There is no single owner. Everyone pays for a portion of the rent, and more importantly everyone brings something new to the table. They might bring with them a new tool, their coffee machine, a desire to set up a program to run a STEM program for children. The spaces become a snapshot the local community of amazing people and their projects. Many of these people started developing their projects during their final years in university. But their is a gap between a school project and feeling capable to take it and turn it into something yourself. I'd love to start here. With these fresh graduates. These young people who (perhaps not coincidentally) are also the driving force behind the revolutions of the middle east. This is a great place to start. These are the young people changing their countries today. They feel empowered to change long standing traditions and the culture of oppression in their governments. Perhaps it's also time to give them the tools to do the same for their local communities. Where they have the ability to have a more direct impact. Who the heck cares about the government if you are free to repave your roads, create alternative energy from solar power, clean your own water and start your own online webstore distributing products that are rapidly prototyped and drop shipped to other places around the world. Sure you might call this line of reasoning anarchistic. But when the systems around you are falling apart, banding together to pick up the pieces is the admirable thing to do. Social entrepreneurship in the states often focuses on countries outside the states. They basically act as for profit NGOs. Non profit organizations as they operate in America don't exist in the middle east. Thus I'm beginning to think that the concept of social entrepreneurship might just be a great way forward for these countries. Doing well by doing good! This concept is a development hack, and one that could possibly have it's roots in the Hackerspace scene. There are features of hackerspaces that I see can give rise to more DIY social entrepreneurship in the middle east. They are: 1) The culture of good. Make something wonderful. Share it with others online and off. Be inspired and inspiring. 2) The availability of tools along with the docracy culture. If you want to see it, do it. 3) A supportive global and local community which has within it stories of other successes to emulate. Where does this culture come from? It appears to be derived from the open source movement. Open source technology is often spearheaded by a few individuals but is maintained, built and supported by a global community of makers who want the tech for themselves as well. Do you want to see that feature? Write it? But don't edit the program and keep it to yourself! Share! That's a doocracy combined with the culture of sharing that the internet helps so much to support. All of this seems to be directed by the common value for people of all ideologies. The golden rule. Do for others as you wish to have done for yourself. Do you want free tools. Freedom. Access to clean water? A cheap space to build projects? Free vector drawing software? Be a doer. Be a part of the change. And then share with others. Your vision is what makes the future. These are some of the amazing features of these spaces. This is why I am in love with hackerspaces, open source technology and makers of all types. They are beautiful people who come from all types of backgrounds who get together to create a culture of sharing and collaboration that enhances their local communities and connects them globally. If you have not visited your local hackerspace yet, visit it. If you live in a place without a space, put your name up on hackerspaces.org, I'm sure you will find like minded people who crave this type of community. Hackerspaces in the Middle East Now that we have described hacker culture and hackerspaces can a space like this become a the hub and home of amazing people in the Middle East? Does the west have a monopoly on awesome. Absolutely not. Are middle easterners creative Heck yes! Are they inspired to work collaboratively? Heck yes! Are they educated? Heck yes! Do they want to fix the problems they see around them? Heck YES! Are they powerful? Heck YES! Again and again I've seen example after example of the young people in the middle east (yes, those that are 30% unemployed) showcasing example after example of incredible projects. And talking to them a message I hear over and over is that they want to show the world that in Beirut, Baghdad, or Cairo things other than violence is created. They want to create positive news that goes out to the world. They want to reach out to the world and participate in sharing! Here's a short list of incredible people I've met personally in my two short trips to the middle east: Bassam Jalgha Tarek Ahmed Ahmed Tohamy Salma Adel Rami Ali's Smart Breadboard Marc Farra Maya Kreidieh Cairo Hackerspace Book Scanner Project An awesome home automation system in Baghdad Iraq Mustafa Elnagar Furkan Alp Pehlivan Hind Hobeika's Butterfleye Project Jad Berro's Tank Robot Mounir Zoorob Octocopter! Here's a video of Munir's octocopter: Beirut is beautiful:   One incredible graduation project by Cairo Hackerspace organizer Salma Adel is one that focuses on the very heart of the maker movement and looks at the artisan as the creator of value. How do you take new design, match it with old technology and create amazing new products. I'm proud to know she's an active memeber at Cairo Hackerspace:  I hope I have shown you that there are already "hackers", makers and entrepreneurs there in the middle east. People with the open source attitude Arabs with the culture of sharing and collaboration. There are many here that work with the Google Technology User Groups or other open source initiatives. Linux user groups. Tons of coworking spaces. And some incredible incubators and entrepreneurship cultural development projects. Android phones are more popular in Egypt than the iPhone from my own small survey. It might have initially started as a cost issue has turned into a passion with Ubuntu, firefox, Android and other open source technologies really taking off. A few things were missing though. If you read hacker news you will begin to think that anyone with a desire to make foursquare mashups is an entrepreneur. In the middle east we have incredibly skilled people languishing after college while their counter parts in the west are out attempting to recreate Facebook. Why?! I think it has to do with the lack of proper story telling about entrepreneurship in the Middle East. Wamda seems to be helping greatly in that regard, but we need more publications talking about this issue! This also comes in concert with an inability to find cofounders. Why? A lack of collaboration? Why? A lack of self initiated projects? Solution? Do stuff. Just do it. Where? Here. At your local hackerspace. Do you have an interesting idea you want to try? A drone to take ariel pictures of the pyramids? Or a service like Utlub which delivers soap to bathers who are wet and realize they ran out of soap. Well in a space like a hackerspace you can do it! The tools are there. But more importantly you will find collaborators! People who are willing to jump on board to help!al Patterns of Propagation The Arab world is not just ready for Hacker culture, hacker culture is already there. My work with GEMSI is simply to connect the right people together and showcase the awesome possibilities hackerspace afford their communities and attempt to create the right environment to allow these amazing people to take their own future into their hands like they already are, but to do it not only politically, but financially, and with direct community education and organizing. Before I went to the middle east I was privileged to participate in the rise of the hackerspace movement in the United States. In 2007 there were very few (if any self identified) hackerspaces in the United States. That same year Mitch Altman, Bre Pettis, and Nick Farr went on a trip to Germany visiting the hackerspaces that were there. Being filled with inspiration and the realization that these spaces were created by PEOPLE who wanted to set them up. They came back to the states and started Noisebridge, NYCResistor and HacDC respectively. Due to the culture of sharing, they started putting up projects online. They shared the process of creating these spaces. And slowly at first people started noticing that they too could start their own local community spaces for creation and we started seeing them grow rapidly. The mathematical name of the function that describes this type of growth is exponential. The more spaces that existed that have this culture of sharing the more people heard about them and wanted them in their own cities. Then something wonderful happened. The economy collapsed in 2008 which had two very positive effects on the development of hackerspaces:  People were freed from their jobs  Space was becoming cheap as tons of manufacturing facilities were abandoned. Check out this chart which shows the rapid growth of hackerspaces and the acceleration around 2008/9. Hacker culture is an attitude that anything can be done by any resource available. MacGyver will make you a mouse trap from your sunglasses and your underpants. A hacker would use it to make a one way privacy screen for your cellphone. But how do you transmit a culture? This is why a space is so important. Having a place where people can sit with others and recognize the possibilities. To see the value in the stuff they know, to share it with others and to build together. The first few hackerspaces that are being set up in the middle east have the same property of viral transmission as we saw in America. Istanbul Hackerspace and Base Istanbul are both hackerspaces in Turkey. Istanbul Hackerspace being in the European part and Base Istanbul in asian section. As widely spread apart as they are, they both have something in common. Both founders had visited a hackerspace, one in Japan and the other in Germany before coming home and deciding they wanted to start one there. It's kind of incredible to see the same pattern repeat in the middle east. This appears to be a universal need, the need for community, creativity and having a open space to build your future. The pattern has been proven in Egypt as well. Alexandria's hackerspace initiative was galvanized after a delegation of students visited  Cairo Hackerspace two hours to the south. It's exciting to see the very same forces at work that took the hackerspaces from being a concept barely known to having a large impact on the American Entrepreneurial and cultural landscape in five short years years at work in Egypt. Cairo Hackerspace currently is without their space but is actively seeking a new one and it's one of my current goals to help in any way I can. Let's conclude with the list of hackerspaces just starting up in Egypt and Beirut. This is just the start. Keep an eye on these guys and know that there will be many many more to come: Egypt: Cairo Hackerspace El Minya Hackerspace Alexandria Hackerspace Mansoura Hackerspace Egypt Fablab (Same idea ;) Lebanon: Beirut Hackerspace (link coming soon) If you'd like to talk more about the global development of hackerspaces. Let's continue talking online at GEMSI's facbebook group. *Scrumspace does not exist as a hackerspace. If you like the name take it!

Topic by lamedust    |  last reply