Maker Fair Detroit

There are some people (myself included), that have never been to a Maker Fair. I'm am planning on going to the one in Detroit, but I though it would be nice for all of you people who have been there before to help us newbies out. Here are some questions that would be good to answer, and feel free to add any more information (all is welcome!). Thanks guys! 1.) What can I expect? i.e. what/who will be there, how big is it, ect. 2.) If you have been there, what are your favorite things to see? 3.) Anything else fun to do in Detroit, or good restaurants? 4.) Are any of you fellow instructablers going?

Topic by splazem   |  last reply


Instructables Event. Windsor, Ontario Canada / Detroit, Michigan USA

Hey, is there anyone on here from the Windsor / Detroit area?......... I'm in windsor and it'd be cool to have an Instructables event around this area. I might be wiling to host it in Windsor or maybe someone from Michigan might be willing to host one in detroit........ or even Ohio somewhere. I'd set it up with the instructables people if you wanted me to host it........... but only if there are enough people in the area or traveling distance that are interested

Topic by chaoscampbell   |  last reply


Tips on Makers Fair Detroit? Answered

I am planning on going to Maker's Fair Detroit. I have never been before. I had some questions, and I figured this would be the best place to ask. So, here they are. 1.) What can I expect? i.e. what/who will be there, how big is it, ect. 2.) If you have been there, what are your favorite things to see? 3.) Anything else fun to do in Detroit, or good restaurants? 4.) Are any of you fellow instructablers going? Thank you in advance, and I hope to see you there!               -Splazem

Question by splazem   |  last reply


Maker Fair Detroit Vacation

Well, I'm back from my vacation. It was awesome. First, I hit Maker Fair Detroit. I saw some pretty cool things. They include (in no particular order): Life Size Mouse Trap, Diet Coke and Mentos, a bunch of people riding wacky bikes, Iron Pour, races with a whole bunch of different vehicles, all-around crazy people, and the instructables booth. The instructables booth was the best, of course. Taking several trips there, I met frenzy, zazenergy, wilgubeast, and ostomesto (he was working a shift at the booth). Everyone was so nice (they gave me sugru, a patch, and stickers), and it was awesome to see them and meet them. At the instructables booth they had the most useless machine, the mohawk helmet, and the robot-pirate flag. Also, at the first day of Maker Fair, I wore my robot shirt with a camera in the robot's eye (instructable hopefully coming soon). It was funny seeing Frenzy so worried. Right away he asked, "What happened to his eye?!?". It's o.k. frenzy and robot lovers, I was careful when I did the procedure. I was hoping to get some good shots of the Fair, but alas, I had never used the camera shirt before so most of the pictures were of the sky (but I guess clouds are pretty too). I also got an arduino starter kit, so expect some cool arduino instructables coming in a couple of months (I say months because as of right now, it makes no sense). The rest of my vacation was fun: I stopped by Bad Axe (say it a couple of times quickly and you'll realize how cool this town name is) to get a hat, went fishing, and found out I won in the Fitness Challenge while on my iPod in an ice cream shop. Well, that's about it. 

Topic by splazem   |  last reply


Detroit-area resources, stores, etc

Hello, fellow Michiganders! *points to palm*I recently learned about Silicon Alley Recyclers, a Warren (10 and Ryan) outfit that takes cast-off computers and stuff (mostly from corporate environments), refurbs the machines, and sells them (cheap). I've taken the opportunity to unload some of my old boat-anchors, and I've picked up some neat hardware too. Are there other similar outfits in the area?A fun place for supplies is Arts and Scraps in Ann Arbor, which carries all sorts of industrial offcuts, recycled whatsits, and nifty thingamabobs. I don't know how else to describe it. I had a few bushels of cellphone parts to get rid of, and A&S; took the keypads and cases off my hands eagerly. (They wouldn't take the PCBs, which I still need to dispose of.)Cranbrook's art school has a directory of metal suppliers in the area, and I've personally been getting stuff from Metal Mart at 13 and Dequindre in Warren, right around the corner. They're cool with small orders, and very laid-back about shopping. After saying hi, they'll generally just ask you to go back and browse until you find what you want. There's a nice rack of scraps and pieces up near the front, which usually has all I need.For electronics parts, ever since K40 on Van Dyke and Michigan Radio (the store, not the broadcasting service) closed I've been going to Abel Electronics in St Clair Shores, and once in a while I'll hit up RS Electronics in Livonia. I need to stop in at Galco Industrial Electronics one of these days, since they're also right around the corner. There's a new Grainger in Madison Heights on Whitcomb (13 1/2 mile) but I've never been in there.Okay, that's my braindump for now. If you know more suppliers, please reply to this post, otherwise start a new thread so this one stays on-topic and info-dense.

Topic by Myself   |  last reply


what is the peak sun-hours for detroit? Answered

I'm trying to determine return on investment for a PV system on my house in Ferndale, MI, a Detroit suburb. I need to better understand how much sunlight I can count on in a given year to determine if it's feasible to install a grid-tied PV system in place.

Question by hobbssamuelj   |  last reply


Edge Lighting Workshop, Detroit & Chicago

I'm teaching a series of workshops on edge lighting (like in this Instructable) at Hackerspaces in the upper Midwest over the next week.   It's a great, easy way to make a great effect (check out the comments section of the 'ible to see what other people have made)  The workshops will provide all the tools, materials, and information you need to make your own edge lit decorations, signs, displays or whatever! The cost is $10, and takes about an hour. Location and Times: OmniCorpDetroit Friday December 17, 7:00 pm i3Detroit Monday December 20 at 8:00 pm  (Sold out!) All Hands Active Ann Arbor: TBD Pumping Station: One, Chicago. Tuesday December 21 8:00pm Materials and tools are limited to the first 15 people, but learning without materials is free!

Topic by Grathio 


Any abandoned/decaying buildings in the detroit area?

I have been really intrested in going and taking some picture/exploring some older buildings in the detroit area but only know about 3 most of which are ones that know are either hard to get into or have more problems if you get caught..so any buildings at all that aren't just rundown houses.

Question by tubanator-2.0   |  last reply


Open Call: Detroit Maker Faire: eTextile Fashion Show

Have an eTextile wearable computing project to share at the Detroit Maker Faire? Then email me and get your garment on the runway at the Detroit Maker Faire eTextile Fashion Show! date: 31 July 2010 - 1 August 2010 location: The Henry Ford producer:  Lynne Bruning contact: lynne@lynnebruning.com Please check the website for more information. See what your Bay Area eTextile colleagues have been innovating: Bay Area eTextile fashion show video from ArtFuture http://bit.ly/aN9ZcJ Come on Detroit - you can do it better! Bring it on!

Topic by Lynne Bruning 


CHECK OUT MY IBLE' T-SHIRT

Hey so i just got my Instructable T-shirt. I'm gonna be representing instructables at the detroit maker faire with it. how do you like it

Topic by ostomesto   |  last reply


How would someone create a closet-sized, archival space (temperature controlled etc) in their house for less than $100?

The Detroit Sound Conservancy (@detroitsound and https://www.facebook.com/detroitsoundconservancy) is dedicated to preserving Detroit sounds and telling Detroit stories. To that end we are interested in enhancing and expanding Detroit's archival infrastructure when it comes to sound-related media. While we pursue the creation of our own archival space, we want to encourage our fellow Detroit music lovers in Detroit and around the world to take care of their own archives as well as raise-awareness about the need for archival practices when it comes to music history. So... what recommendations can we make to our allies and friends who might have personal archives and / or materials worth archiving? We are imagining ephemera (flyers, posters), various printed media (articles, newspapers, magazines), sound recordings (vinyl, cassette, eight track, reel-to-reel), musical instruments, and digital files, amongst many other things. What do the Instructables recommend? For $100 we may not be able to create a museum-worthy vault in our home. But surely for $100 we can create a space that would hold up to many everyday threats to our musical treasures. What say you? Thanks @detroitsound

Question by detroitsound   |  last reply


Bullet proof bra!

A US woman had a lucky escape when a burglar's bullet bounced off the metal underwire in her bra.Police in the city of Detroit said one of three intruders fired a shot when the woman looked out of her window and saw them raiding the house next door.The bullet smashed the window and hit her, but instead of causing serious injury - or worse - it was deflected off the wiring in her bra.The unnamed 57-year-old woman was taken to hospital and released the same day."It did slow the bullet down," said a police spokesman. "She sustained injuries but they're not life-threatening."Teenage gangThe woman, who lives on the west side of Detroit, had seen the youths breaking into the house next door while her neighbour was away.Police believe one of the gang saw her looking out of the window and fired at her.The suspects then drove away after the shooting.Local police Sgt Eren Stephens Bell told the Detroit News: "We need to get some bulletproof vests made from that. It is some strong wire." BBC Story

Topic by Kiteman   |  last reply


Do you need liquid mercury?

I have 5, one pound bottles of liquid mercury.  These were in dental office cabinets aquired through an estate sale. Not looking to make a killing,  just want it to go to a responsible person. These are in the Detroit Michigan area.

Question by urdzy   |  last reply


Do you need liquid mercury?

Do you need liquid mercury? I have 5, one pound bottles of liquid mercury.  These were in dental office cabinets aquired through an estate sale. Not looking to make a killing,  just want it to go to a responsible person. These are in the Detroit Michigan area.

Topic by urdzy   |  last reply


Looking for Electrical Engineer

The company I work for is looking for a full-time in-house creative EE. We design products for commercial and consumer applications.Here is our website:Griswold EngineeringWe need one innovative Electrical Engineer with experience programming electronics, as well as designing boards and circuits.Metro-Detroit area.Contact me if interested.

Topic by whiteoakart   |  last reply


Have you heard?

There's this "make fest " coming very soon to the Henry Ford museum. Those that live near Detroit or in it and love making things may want to visit. They have all kinds of people making things, demos and more. Here's the link for those that are interested.   http://www.thehenryford.org/events/makerFaire.aspx

Topic by Treasure Tabby 


East Bay Mini Maker Faire

Maker Faire is spreading.  I've just become aware of a local school which is holding a "Mini Maker Faire" as a fundraiser.  The website with details is at http://ebmakerfaire.wordpress.com/.  It's approved by Maker Faire and is being promoted on the main Maker Faire site's calendar.  This particular mini fair is a fundraiser for the Park Day School.  It will be held on October 24, 2010, at the school itself.  Call for participation is now open, and closes on August 31st.  If you're local to the San Francisco Bay Area, check it out! Other Mini Maker Faires going on soon are in Aspen Colorado on July 10, and in Denver Colorado on July 17.  I like this trend!  And of course the Detroit Maker Faire, which is not mini at all, is coming up on July 31 and August 1, in Detroit.  Check out the calendar at http://www.makerfaire.com/.

Topic by rachel   |  last reply


Can't Upload Pictures

I can't upload pictures for my instructables. I am going to Detroit on Saturday, and I would like to finish my instructable before I leave so I can enter it in the USB contest. However, I cannot upload pictures. I don't get any error message. I have a mac computer. Thanks, and please help! 

Topic by splazem   |  last reply


Geographic Groups

We're planning to hold local versions of Instructables Show & Tell in March, and hope to do it again soon if there's enough interest.I've set up some geographic groups to get things started! Add yourself to the relevant group, or start your own.Comment here or PM me to add your group to the list.SF Bay AreaLos AngelesTorontoHoustonNew YorkSeattleChicagoAustinLondonSan DiegoPortlandOrlandoMinneapolisBostonAtlantaCalgaryDenverSt. LouisVancouverDallasSingaporeMadridSydneyMontrealOntarioOttawaAlbertaBaltimoreDetroitLas VegasSavannahYour city here...

Topic by canida   |  last reply


Pros and cons car for camping. Suburban, truck, or wagon

I have a 3 door 1971 suburban Custom. 350 small block i think Edelbrock headers (if anyone knows where to get a gasket that drops in, let me know. (-;) Edelbrock 4 barrel carb Posi rear end detroit lockers LSD front Barn door rear doors. And my brothers 91 ford ranger 4 cyl. 4 speed with overdrive RWD 2 1/2 seater no canopy An 87 camry wagon. FWD 4 cyl knocking engine. new clutch All of them have custom LOUD stereo's. There are 3 or 4 people going. Don't turn this into a ford vs chevy vs Toyota debate

Question by Yerboogieman   |  last reply


Sourcing solvents in michigan

Ok, so I'm having some trouble finding solvents in quantities of under 5 gallons (5 is too much, and  for this project 1 gallon is too) that arent acetone, MEK, or xylene (home depot and lowes carry those). Specifically I need Perchloroethylene because thats the solvent that E6000 glue is made with and is the glue I want to thin out. The datasheet indicates that  1,1,1-Trichloroethane, Cyclohexane, Methylene chloride, Chlorothane NU, Chevron solvent 1100, gasoline, Propyl acetate, or Toluene will also dissolve it, but I'd really like to stick with its manufactured solvent.  I presume it would have some sort of pricey hazmat shipping charges or the necessity of some sort of licence and I would rather pick it up, so where (or who) can I order some from in the Detroit area?

Question by The Ideanator   |  last reply


Looking for Seville Orange Flavoured Coffee or the receipe?

I used to buy this coffee at Rafal's in Detroit (Leading spice importer) but it closed down and none of the local specialty grocery stores sell the coffee, Amazon lists the coffee but it is unobtainable at this time. I tried adding Kroger orange essence to generic run 'o' the mill coffee but it was weak (Even after adding the entire little bottle) and it had a "Candy" like flavour that was actually slightly sweet and not like the coffee which is slightly bitter. I have my trusty Ronco dehydrator and have considered looking for tart Florida oranges to dry and cut for use in the mix. I came up empty on a Yahoo and Google search and so hopefully someone has the smarts and knowledge to replicate the coffee. I prefer to make things myself over buying them but desperation is setting in and I will break down and buy coffee if I need to.

Question by Earlofmercia   |  last reply


Toyota Will Offer a Plug-In Hybrid by 2010

If you make it, they will come. Or something.CalCars, the California Cars Initiative, has not only been campaigning for plug-in hybrid vehicles, they were the first to build a plug-in Toyota Prius. CalCars longstanding, and really quite simple, thesis is that plug-in hybrids can achieve 100+ MPG using today's technology:We promote plug-in hybrids (PHEVs). PHEVs are like regular hybrids but with larger batteries and the ability to re-charge from a standard outlet (mostly at night). They're the best of both worlds: local travel is electric, and you always have a gas-tank backup. More details here.Toyota seems to have finally received the message, now pledging to offer a plug-in hybrid by 2010: Toyota Will Offer a Plug-In Hybrid by 2010 (NYT). From the article:DETROIT -- The Toyota Motor Corporation, which leads the world's automakers in sales of hybrid-electric vehicles, announced Sunday night that it would build its first plug-in hybrid by 2010.The move puts Toyota in direct competition with General Motors, which has announced plans to sell its own plug-in hybrid vehicle, the Chevrolet Volt, sometime around 2010.Katsuaki Watanabe, the president of Toyota, announced the company's plans at the Detroit auto show as part of a series of environmental steps.Mr. Watanabe said Toyota, best known for its Prius hybrid car, would develop a fleet of plug-in hybrids that run on lithium-ion batteries, instead of the nickel-metal hydride batteries that power the Prius and other Toyota models.Plug-in hybrids differ from the current hybrid vehicles in that they can be recharged externally, from an ordinary power outlet. In a conventional hybrid the battery is recharged from power generated by its wheels.Mr. Watanabe said the lithium-ion fleet would be made available first to Toyota's commercial customers around the world, like government agencies and corporations, including some in the United States. He did not say when they would be available to consumers.Another case of hackers' solutions becoming mainstream? Definitely!

Topic by ewilhelm   |  last reply


Please read: An urgent appeal from Instructables member The Ideanator

I’m an I'bler. Like the thousands of others who write and publish Ibles, I have tons of fun doing so, and I can tell you, I wasn't expecting to get this big. I am finally adding more Ibles and other things to my profile, to build a resume, and to develop my semi-technical writing skills. Since I've joined, I've had over 37,100 total views, my goal is to top 40,000 by new years. Instructables, in all its glory has produced some incredible view totals. It’s a stretch, It would take about 500 views per day overall to get there. Please help me get to that 40k total, its as easy as peeking through my I'bles. The Ideanator Instructables member. To get you started: Mounting an LCD screen on the wall in your shop/lab The ever-popular geek bling A DIY magazine holder A large number of photos I took at the Maker Faire here in Detroit, some pretty good photos. A clothing "organizer" of my own design

Topic by The Ideanator   |  last reply


Need help planning build for my self designed armor.

The first picture is of my costume that i call BURN OUT, it has stilts to make me at least as tall as a few people. Then the next picture is of a costume i designed for a friend. It is called ONYX STORM. I need to know how to see out of burnout's helmet. and i need to know where to start on ONYX STORM. so heres a wrap up of the two;      BURN OUT: burnout is a genetic experiment issued by the military. he is a heat producing bio-form that was issued a suit of armor both to protect him from the heat his body produced, and to institute a sedative that has kept his emotions under control and kept him alive for hundreds of years. then they trained him to fight and adapted his suit for battle. but after accidentally destroying the base he was housed in, he started to run out of the sedative and nearly died until he ran into ONYX STORM.       ONYX STORM: onyx was a five years old when he was taken into the military. he was told his parents were killed during one of his outbreaks. they were supposably killed during the northeast blackout, which he caused. he is a bio-form that produces so much bio-electricity that was powerful enough to power many testlaunches and research for the military.  then he was issued an aging drug to make his body age much faster, then put him on a sedative similar to burn out's. he was put through military training and finally found out what had really happened to his parents, who where killed by the station he was in. in a blind rage he destroyed the base he was in and built a hidout outside of detroit. where he found burnout. that's it, the back story for both characters. as you can see not much is known about burn out.so any ideas on how to see out of the helmets, how to get the various pieces and where to get them cheep?

Question by DehLeprechaun   |  last reply


Instructables in the New York Times - How to Improve it? Ask Those Who Use It

Instructables was mentioned in the New York Times article "How to Improve It? Ask Those Who Use It" about user-innovation. I know this might cause a stir, but specifically mentioned are the K'Nex guns. Here's the section of the article that mentions us directly:Even some of Mr. von Hippel's acolytes remain cautious. "A lot of this is still in the category of, , 'You could imagine this working out really well,' " says Saul T. Griffith, who as an M.I.T. engineering student was part of a group of kite-surfers who developed products for their sport that have since become commercialized. Mr. von Hippel wrote about Mr. Griffith in his 2005 book, "Democratizing Innovation."Still, Mr. Griffith can cite a long tradition of user design. One of his favorite examples comes from the title article in Tom Wolfe's 1965 book, "The Kandy-Kolored Tangerine-Flake Streamline Baby," which chronicled car customizers whose innovations -- tailfins, double headlights, low-slung bodies -- were later adopted by Detroit. Mr. Griffith says that even now, millions of people modify their cars, far more people than the world's automakers could ever employ in research and development.There is currently no effective way for companies to harness the ideas of those millions. But the Web -- itself created by Tim Berners-Lee, an Internet user looking to do something new -- seems to offer an excellent potential idea-gatherer. Mr. Griffith's industrial design firm, Squid Labs, last year spun off a do-it-yourself community site on the Web called the Instructables, which features items as diverse as the Minty Boost iPod power source, dachshund wheelchairs and guns made entirely of K'nex toys, along with detailed instructions on how to build them. The Instructables intends to offer software to companies that want to build communities of citizen product developers.Mr. von Hippel, who has spent 30 years waiting for his ideas to take hold, says that as user communities like the Instructables spread, they will dominate innovation. He calls them "the dark matter of innovation."

Topic by ewilhelm 


Help with my project.

Little help with my project.  I think ya'll could help me with my project. I have no experience in electrical engineering other than 1 high school electronics project. That I messed up, but still have that project & it works due to teacher tinkering with it. So now I'm attempting to tinker with electronics. I've taken a Paper Jamz amplifier that was powered by 4 aaa batteries and modified it to be powered by a 6v 300ma ac/dc wall wort w/o destroying either. Whoa who!! Now time to try something a bit harder. This project is to make a attractive desktop Solar USB charger, dual stereo amplifier, mp3 player system (Pandora's Box). Seeing Joshua Zimmerman of BrownDogGadgets.com's heavy duty solar charger in a tin & USB charging circuit I believe that my project is possible. I will probably be purchasing both of them and hack together a Dual USB solar charger with 2 AA batteries.  Looking over this post could someone draw a schematic in "English" with missing parts added? So I've started to tinker. Here is a list of all the things I have. Got pictures of some of them but not sure if I have to go pro to post. (* Not married to some of these parts) 2 Paper Jamz amplifiers 8ohm 1w stereo speakers (each powered by 4 aaa batteries) 1 5v 200mA solar panel * 1 Paper Jamz battery pack * (4 aaa batteries) Not sure what batteries to use. Can power both amps w/ 1 pack. Coby 1gb USB mp3 player (playback functions powered by 1 aaa battery) 1 Micro USB MALE - USB A MALE cable cut and stripped. Breadboard, hookups for wiring. To avoid soldering. Audio hookups: 4 3.5mm M - M, 2 3.5mm F - F coupler, Stereo Y adapter 3.5mm M - 2 F  Y adapter Cigar Box enclosure. Internal dimensions (open no lid space): 2.25"h x 7.5625"w x 6.1875"d. external closed: 2.6875"h x 8.375"w x 7.0625"d So I've powered both of the amplifiers with one set of AAA batteries. I'm thinking that they can be powered by the 2 AA batteries from the solar charger. Let me know if I'm right here.   I would like to attach my USB micro male whip to a circuit, through box to charge my BlackBerry PlayBook. I think it needs 5v 1.8a for charging. Don't know if it also needs fake data voltage for charging. I've tested my phone with the USB micro whip, AAA power pack & it charges. For ease of construction I'll be using the breadboard & hot glue circuit parts together. Seeing that the mp3 player only needs power from the equivalent of a aaa battery, what is the best way to reduce the amperage from the two AA batteries so not to burn out the Mp3 player? Going to mount it against side of box with USB MALE adapter going through back wall. Use dowl rod pieces for buttons on side, battery hookups faceted inside. All components sending/receiving audio via 3.5mm audio patch cables.  Paper Jamz amps wired in parallel through breadboard to power pack. [power pack, breadboard (not mounted)], audio ports, speakers. Speakers mounted to sound board suspended from lid. Would like to mount solar panel on outside of box lid. Nothing mounted is set in stone but the audio ports & speakers are fixed in place.  Thanks in advance hope ya'll can help here. & if your going to Maker Fair Detroit this weekend have fun. Thanks again,  Okaybye! Josh Kalbow Remember to Zombie proof your projects. 

Topic by Zombie_Tinker   |  last reply


Can anyone help me out with my project?

Little help with my project.  I think ya'll could help me with my project. I have no experience in electrical engineering other than a 4th grade science fair project on the difference between parallel and series circuits. And 1 high school electronics project that I messed up, but still have that project & it works due to teacher tinkering with it. So now I'm attempting to tinker with electronics. I've taken a Paper Jamz amplifier that was powered by 4 aaa batteries and modified it to be powered by a 6v 300ma ac/dc wall wort w/o destroying either. Whoa who!! Now time to try something a bit harder. This project is to make a attractive desktop Solar USB charger, dual stereo amplifier, mp3 player system (Pandora's Box). Seeing Joshua Zimmerman of BrownDogGadgets.com's heavy duty solar charger in a tin & USB charging circuit I believe that my project is possible. I will probably be purchasing both of them and hack together a Dual USB solar charger with 2 AA batteries.  Looking over this post could someone draw a schematic in "English" with missing parts added? So I've started to tinker. Here is a list of all the things I have. Got pictures of some of them but not sure if I have to go pro to post. (* Not married to some of these parts) 2 Paper Jamz amplifiers 8ohm 1w stereo speakers (each powered by 4 aaa batteries) 1 5v 200mA solar panel * 1 Paper Jamz battery pack * (4 aaa batteries) Not sure what batteries to use. Can power both amps w/ 1 pack. Coby 1gb USB mp3 player (playback functions powered by 1 aaa battery) 1 Micro USB MALE - USB A MALE cable cut and stripped. Breadboard, hookups for wiring. To avoid soldering. Audio hookups: 4 3.5mm M - M, 2 3.5mm F - F coupler, Stereo Y adapter 3.5mm M - 2 F  Y adapter Cigar Box enclosure. Internal dimensions (open no lid space): 2.25"h x 7.5625"w x 6.1875"d. external closed: 2.6875"h x 8.375"w x 7.0625"d So I've powered both of the amplifiers with one set of AAA batteries. I'm thinking that they can be powered by the 2 AA batteries from the solar charger. Let me know if I'm right here.   I would like to attach my USB micro male whip to a circuit, through box to charge my BlackBerry PlayBook. I think it needs 5v 1.8a for charging. Don't know if it also needs fake data voltage for charging. I've tested my phone with the USB micro whip, AAA power pack & it charges. For ease of construction I'll be using the breadboard & hot glue circuit parts together. Seeing that the mp3 player only needs power from the equivalent of a aaa battery, what is the best way to reduce the amperage from the two AA batteries so not to burn out the Mp3 player? Going to mount it against side of box with USB MALE adapter going through back wall. Use dowl rod pieces for buttons on side, battery hookups faceted inside. All components sending/receiving audio via 3.5mm audio patch cables.  Paper Jamz amps wired in parallel through breadboard to power pack. [power pack, breadboard (not mounted)], audio ports, speakers. Speakers mounted to sound board suspended from lid. Would like to mount solar panel on outside of box lid. Nothing mounted is set in stone but the audio ports & speakers are fixed in place.  Thanks in advance hope ya'll can help here. & if your going to Maker Fair Detroit this weekend have fun. Thanks again,  Okaybye! Josh Kalbow Remember to Zombie proof your projects. 

Question by Zombie_Tinker   |  last reply


techy w00tness - a day of computer tech guy

Some1 brought the following quote to another forum i am inits sure been copy pasted alot of times before me. the original author is unknownI was working in a job running the campus email system some years ago when I got a call from the chairman of the statistics department. "We're having a problem sending email out of the department." "What's the problem?" I asked. "We can't send mail more than 500 miles," the chairman explained. I choked on my latte. "Come again?" "We can't send mail farther than 500 miles from here," he repeated. "A little bit more, actually. Call it 520 miles. But no farther." "Um... Email really doesn't work that way, generally," I said, trying to keep panic out of my voice. One doesn't display panic when speaking to a department chairman, even of a relatively impoverished department like statistics. "What makes you think you can't send mail more than 500 miles?" "It's not what I *think*," the chairman replied testily. "You see, when we first noticed this happening, a few days ago--" "You waited a few DAYS?" I interrupted, a tremor tinging my voice. "And you couldn't send email this whole time?" "We could send email. Just not more than--" "--500 miles, yes," I finished for him, "I got that. But why didn't you call earlier?" "Well, we hadn't collected enough data to be sure of what was going on until just now." Right. This is the chairman of *statistics*. "Anyway, I asked one of the geostatisticians to look into it--" "Geostatisticians..." "--yes, and she's produced a map showing the radius within which we can send email to be slightly more than 500 miles. There are a number of destinations within that radius that we can't reach, either, or reach sporadically, but we can never email farther than this radius." "I see," I said, and put my head in my hands. "When did this start? A few days ago, you said, but did anything change in your systems at that time?" "Well, the consultant came in and patched our server and rebooted it. But I called him, and he said he didn't touch the mail system." "Okay, let me take a look, and I'll call you back," I said, scarcely believing that I was playing along. It wasn't April Fool's Day. I tried to remember if someone owed me a practical joke. I logged into their department's server, and sent a few test mails. This was in the Research Triangle of North Carolina, and a test mail to my own account was delivered without a hitch. Ditto for one sent to Richmond, and Atlanta, and Washington. Another to Princeton (400 miles) worked. But then I tried to send an email to Memphis (600 miles). It failed. Boston, failed. Detroit, failed. I got out my address book and started trying to narrow this down. New York (420 miles) worked, but Providence (580 miles) failed. I was beginning to wonder if I had lost my sanity. I tried emailing a friend who lived in North Carolina, but whose ISP was in Seattle. Thankfully, it failed. If the problem had had to do with the geography of the human recipient and not his mail server, I think I would have broken down in tears. Having established that--unbelievably--the problem as reported was true, and repeatable, I took a look at the sendmail.cf file. It looked fairly normal. In fact, it looked familiar. I diffed it against the sendmail.cf in my home directory. It hadn't been altered--it was a sendmail.cf I had written. And I was fairly certain I hadn't enabled the "FAIL_MAIL_OVER_500_MILES" option. At a loss, I telnetted into the SMTP port. The server happily responded with a SunOS sendmail banner. Wait a minute... a SunOS sendmail banner? At the time, Sun was still shipping Sendmail 5 with its operating system, even though Sendmail 8 was fairly mature. Being a good system administrator, I had standardized on Sendmail 8. And also being a good system administrator, I had written a sendmail.cf that used the nice long self-documenting option and variable names available in Sendmail 8 rather than the cryptic punctuation-mark codes that had been used in Sendmail 5. The pieces fell into place, all at once, and I again choked on the dregs of my now-cold latte. When the consultant had "patched the server," he had apparently upgraded the version of SunOS, and in so doing *downgraded* Sendmail. The upgrade helpfully left the sendmail.cf alone, even though it was now the wrong version. It so happens that Sendmail 5--at least, the version that Sun shipped, which had some tweaks--could deal with the Sendmail 8 sendmail.cf, as most of the rules had at that point remained unaltered. But the new long configuration options--those it saw as junk, and skipped. And the sendmail binary had no defaults compiled in for most of these, so, finding no suitable settings in the sendmail.cf file, they were set to zero. One of the settings that was set to zero was the timeout to connect to the remote SMTP server. Some experimentation established that on this particular machine with its typical load, a zero timeout would abort a connect call in slightly over three milliseconds. An odd feature of our campus network at the time was that it was 100% switched. An outgoing packet wouldn't incur a router delay until hitting the POP and reaching a router on the far side. So time to connect to a lightly-loaded remote host on a nearby network would actually largely be governed by the speed of light distance to the destination rather than by incidental router delays. Feeling slightly giddy, I typed into my shell: $ units 1311 units, 63 prefixes You have: 3 millilightseconds You want: miles 558.84719 / 0.0017893979 "500 miles, or a little bit more."

Topic by 11010010110 


TEDxBaghdad - Iraq - violence, dust storms and open sourced manufacturing

Baghdad Iraq. It was once the jewel of the Muslim empire and epicenter of knowledge in the Eastern world. Now it is best known for corrupt governance, bombings, and dust storms. It was also my parents’ home. After visiting once in 1991 as a child the few memories I have of Iraq seemed to be shouting matches as my parents yelled over the phone making overseas calls. Names of Uncles I had never met were mentioned and a phone was handed to me and I was left to nervously fend for myself with my weak Iraqi slang and an Uncle who apparently knew all about me while I knew nothing of him. The country was an impenetrable black box to me that would spit out another refugee somewhere in the world every few years or so. Sixteen years later the first wall between Iraq and me was broken. In 2007 my nuclear family had traveled to Syria and for the first time I met family members who still lived in Baghdad. I knew them now. My uncles and cousins grew flesh and blood. I could feel their prickly faces as we greeted with the traditional Iraqi 4 sided cheek kiss. They could graciously give me their dishdashas as gifts. Names finally had faces, but those faces were deep, sunken and afraid. 2007 was a bad year of sectarian war in Iraq, which is why the Damascas district of Harasta was flooded with Iraqis. The sound of construction continued through the night to keep up with the massive (ab)use of the "tourist" visas. I saw something in the Iraqis in Syria that I hadn't seen before; something that scared me. I saw hopelessness. It was then I settled on a long-term project to return to the country and share something that I had just discovered around the same time: the future doesn’t come prepared -- we make the future. The do-it-yourself attitude that was growing in America was being combined with the culture of sharing that you find in hackerspaces, at instructables.com and in open source technology. This atmosphere made anything possible. You want to build a vertical generator without any spinning parts? Sure! How about a walking quadraped robot with a sofa? Do you want to quit your job, write zines and sell them in the crafting circle? Sure! Start a business! Write a novel! Organize a benefit concert! Sure - sure - sure! “Make your own future” was the message. It was a message of hope - it was the message that I wanted to share in the Middle East, and especially in Iraq. In 2011 the opportunity to work on sharing this beautiful message in the Middle East presented itself to me, so I quit my robotics job and took it (sorry Andrew). A few friends and I started a tiny organization called GEMSI - The Global Entrepreneurship and Maker Space Initiative. We funded ourselves through Kickstarter and our first project was a Three-Day Maker Space hosted at Makerfaire Africa. We were hoping to let people experience the feeling of the Maker Movement first-hand. We collaborated with Emeka and the team from MFA, Cairo Hackerspace, along with many amazing egyptians from all over the country. We had a successful first attempt at sharing the message of "Yes you can!” It was a great start, but Iraq was still an impenetrable fortress to me. It took till 2012 and a chance encounter with friends in Cambridge, MA for me to find my first avenue back into Iraq. Via my friends, I met someone who’s friend was affiliated with TEDxBaghdad. A few steps removed, sure, but when I heard about TEDxBaghdad I knew I had found my way in. I knew TEDx and the types of programs they hosted; I knew they were hopeful, inspired, and shared a vision for a brighter tomorrow. I started communicating with Emeka from MFA, who also works with TED, and he put me in touch with Yahay. After my first skype call with Yahay I knew I was going. Someone else had done it - someone broke that barrier, did amazing work in the country, and survived. It wasn't the death trap my family was telling me it was. There was a new narrative being woven and I knew what I needed to do. I booked my flights before I even finalized any workshops. I needed to meet the TEDxBaghdad team. Later, I called my parents and told them I was going to Baghdad and they said, "Shinu?! Inta Makhabal?!" That probably means exactly what you think it does. Needless to say, they had their concerns, but I was going regardless. Now that the tickets were bought, we started planning. Yahay put me in touch with Abdal Ghany, one of the Iraqi organizers living in Baghdad. He coordinated everything. It was amazing. These guys kick some serious planning butt! Ghany basically told me, “Show up and give your workshop. We'll take care of the rest.” This was a welcome change from the hours of facebooking, planning, and coordination I usually have to go through to schedule events. It really seemed like this was possible. I was going to give an Arduino and 3D printing workshop in Baghdad and I was really excited! I sent an email to Sparkfun and Makezine asking them for open source electronics donations since I knew bringing my electronics box through the airport wouldn't be a good idea. They sent me a nice goodie-bag of beautifully packaged Maker products. These two organizations have given me a tremendous amount of help throughout the years, for which I am extremely thankful. I packed a suitcase filled with 2 3D printers, 25 Arduinos, an assortment of other open source hardware and sensors and headed out looking a bit like a bomb development lab. Yeesh! Somehow I made it through China, Saudi, and Turkey without any serious interrogation. Mostly just really quizzical looks from my unzipped bag up back to me... "You're a teacher?" they ask. "Yes," I say, "yes I am." Turkey was the stop before Iraq. Turkey was brilliant, sunny, lush, and seemed to be comprised of mostly happy smiling people walking by the sea. Coming from the deserts of Mecca, this was a welcome sight. I let the green of Turkey wash away the dust of Saudi Arabia. The mishmash of cultures, sounds, foods, religions gave me a great feeling of liberation. This was a lively place and the two hackerspaces I met up with there, Base Istanbul and Istanbul Hackerspace were fantastic hosts. Furkan and I spent a lovely day together chatting about Maker culture as it spreads through the Middle East and then in the end we had a potluck BBQ with members from both hackerspaces by the rocks of the sea. It was great to see these two Turkish hackerspaces and to be reminded that this movement is truly global. My dream of hackerspaces empowering people globally is really possible – and it’s great to know that it is a dream that is shared by others. I left them full of enthusiasm and flew directly to Baghdad. Landing in Baghdad was strange and a bit concerning. Looking out of the window all I could see was a brown cloud. We were landing in a dust storm. I had heard about the turab (dust) of Iraq, but this was the first time I saw it in person, and it would be one of the things most often on my mind. Getting a visa for me was surprisingly easy, except for the fact I forgot my passport on the plane and two guards had to escort me one to each side back to the airplane to retrieve it. But once I had my passport, I told them my laqab, which is the full name that includes ancestry. Showed them a copy of my dad’s passport and my Iraqi birth certificate and I was in. I was hoping for a nice stamp, perhaps with some Iraqi relic on it. But they took my passport and wrote in it: "Originally Iraqi", so there it goes, it's official. Ahmed, my cousin, was not at the airport when I took my paper work and headed out to the lobby. The airport was sparsely populated and heavily regulated. I barely managed to snap a picture before a guard came up to me and had me delete them from my phone. In the lobby I met a man just released from a Swiss prison. The Swiss had given him the option to be sent back home to Iraq, or be jailed. He chose to leave and come back to Iraq. This becomes a theme later as I see more and more people, all of whom desire to leave the country to become refugees elsewhere. It seems that when hope runs out for the country you live in, the only option is to find a new one. This story is one of a million various stories of struggling to find a new life. Each varies in its details, but all have survival at their core. Ahmed arrives 30 minutes late, apologizing. He's wearing jeans and a polo. His hair seemed freshly cut and his face was serious. We had never met before. The only thing I knew of him was that he thought I was reckless for coming. He had been spending hours on Skype with me attempting to convince me that coming would be a bad idea: "You have no idea how bad the bugs are. Just wait till you see the dust storms. The heat will kill you... etc" But once I saw him in person it all changed. I didn't think I'd grow to like Ahmed, but I grew to appreciate his ways and he became like a brother to me before I left. He took me to Mansour, a neighborhood in Baghdad, telling me stories about Iraq as we travelled. This is the neighborhood where the house my dad designed and family built stands. On the ride home we had our car checked for bombs at least 4 times by what Iraqi's call Saytarat, which is the equivalent of a checkpoint and, to me, seemed a total nuciance. They were the reason he was late. What would normally be a 20 minute drive can become three hours long because every car is checked for bombs. They are everywhere; throughout the city, on every road. We passed the guard who watches over my family’s neighborhood, and he takes his hand off his machine gun to wave at Ahmed, and I begin to recognize that weapons, car inspections and burned out cars are normal here, so they don't think to comment on it - like an empty lot in Detroit, or the homeless in San Francisco. We got to my family home with no time to rest. I had to leave to meet up with Abdul Ghany and the crew at a Cafe in an hour and then conduct the workshop in two. Ahmed comes with me - he doesn't trust people we'd never met before and won’t let me out of his sight. I trust first till proven otherwise, he has learned to do the opposite. It’s a telling sign of how different our lives are on a day-to-day basis. As soon as I met the TEDxBaghdad crew, I felt at ease. MNA, Abdul Ghany and the entire crew were thoughtful, hardworking, and inspiring people. I was really happy to have intersected with them and they helped me in more ways than I could count. We first met up at Everyday, a local Mansour café. Everyday cafe was hyper airconditioned and everyone seemed to think it was hotter than it was. The crew was awesome, they were really a great first introduction to the excited young people of Baghdad and they certainly have the famed Iraqi hospitality. But here's a tip: do not order a fajita in Baghdad ;D. Mohammed Al-Samarraie pulled out their iPads and started showing me video production work he was doing for TEDx. Abdul Ghany comes a little late and we have head out to the workshop. The workshop was held in a two story office building surrounded by palm trees. Looking out the the tinted back window we could see the muddy river run past, winding and dark. Slowly the TEDx people started trickling in. Then I started to get nervous. The checkpoints didn't bother me, the tanks in the streets were not an issue, but here were these people coming to learn something from me. What could I share that would really matter to them when they had so much to deal with daily? What could I share that could be relevant to people who see bombings as I experience lightning storms? I have been to other places in the world to share this kind of information, and some of those places have had political problems and ongoing revolutions. But Iraq was the first country I had been to that really seemed like a war zone. I decided that first I needed to learn from them! What were their projects? What did they hope for? I hoped they would learn from each other and get excited about their projects and I wanted to be able to share things that were relevant to them. Thus, everyone was encouraged to talk about who they are, how they learned about TEDxBaghdad and to share their project, share with us their mission, or share an inspiring story. I was amazed to hear about all the incredible initiatives the crew was doing. From intercultural exchange programs, to street clean ups, to historical artifact preservation, each of them shared and I started realizing something. They were not as interested in new technology as they were interested in arts and culture and after hearing about a few of their projects I started realizing why. Learning about culture and paying attention to the arts gives people the ability to pay attention to details. They can look at another human being and see all the subtleties that make us who we are. We each fall in love, we struggle, we question, and have doubts. Arts give depth to a black and white world. Sectarianism is difficult when we pay attention to the commonalities that tie us all together. What would the world be like if anyone who wanted a weapons license was required to have visited India, could pass an art history exam and could play stairway to heaven on the guitar? We were in a sort of office building near the river which ran by dark and muddy looking through the tinted windows. One by one, they stood up in front and gave their short presentations. There were doctors, engineers, and designers in the crew. They each stood up and told the story of how they found out about TEDxBaghdad and it was incredible. Each of them had a friend recommend it to them, and it was mostly done through Facebook. Some people's projects were related to health, culture, antiquity preservation, and connecting Iraqis with the rest of the world. While they spoke I made a graph of the things that connected all of their ideas together. It was a beautiful thing to see. The common themes were to help Iraq as a country through the integration of new ideas and how to bring a new face of Iraq and present it to the world. To have the news about Iraq be about amazing things, inspiring things, rather than explosions. Being in that room with that energy made me feel like we were already on our way. I pulled out the boxes of donations given to us by Sparkfun and The Make Shed and now it was my turn. I told them about my story coming into contact with my friend Alex through instructables.com, how being in San Francisco and Cambridge opened my eyes to a new way of entrepreneurship using communities and open source technology. And how they could make anything they could imagine if they got together to do it. We discussed how sharing and collaboration was a common value that held the entire system together. I used the concept of the LED throwie, which is a simple idea by Graffiti Research Labs to connect an LED to a coin battery and a magnet. They used it to throw at ferrous buildings as a form of electronic graffiti but once they uploaded it to instructables the idea was out there and people were inspired to take it and derive many other projects. You can never know what will happen when you share something or when you create a tool and share it. People created outlined throwies, LED floaties in balloons and finally we start seeing LED floaties which are sequenced to act like a light show at a phish concert. Hahaha! We then talked about the Arduino an easy to use microcontroller designed for artists. It's a bit of technology that is a simple and easy to use platform to build interactive projects. We talked about how the open nature of the project people can use the Arduino and then use shields to add features like being able to connect to the internet or play MP3s. Open source tools make building new products a lot like using legos. We were in the middle of using some of the sensors The Maker Shed had sent us to make a DIY heart rate monitor when the power went out and all went dark except for the LED throwies we had made. It suddenly felt very intimate. We put all the LED throwies in the center of the room and huddled around it for story time. The feeling of connection was palpable for me. Sure the lack of power meant that we were not going to be able to 3D print, but being in the dark with TEDxBaghdad was one of my favorite memories of this trip. The lights went on and we had a long question and answer session / photo shoot. Some of the doctors were interested to use the Arduino based heart rate monitors to replace the broken ones in the hospital. I heard about this and was flabbergast that the most basic and cheap tools I had brought with me might have a direct impact and may even save lives. Technology might not solve the political problems of the country but it seems that there was a lot of room for development and that the crew I was with was creative and excited to make use of it. I passed out 20 Arduino kits that day, including the Lillypad which is a version of the Arduino intended to be sewn into clothing. Although there were very few engineers in the audience, everyone seemed to be buzzing with ideas and ways to use the Arduinos. What a great workshop! I was super excited because not only had they understood the message, they seem to have been infected with the feeling of capability! Now to seal the deal, we were all going to go out and eat a classic Iraqi dish Simach Masguf. Ahmed has been calling me hourly making sure that I was OK, but I felt safe enough with my new friends so we all headed out to a fish spot by the river. Hours go by, lots of fish is eaten, and lots of juice is drunk. Some of the crew smoke some sheesha. It was like I was with new old friends. My Iraqi slang was improving hourly and although we had just met I knew me and TEDxBaghdad we're going to be working together again very soon. I would have stayed all night eating and chatting about future projects and the problems to solve in Iraq, but the cerfew was about to set in and we had to jet. Yeah, there is still a curfew. On the ride home my head is filled with contradictions. Hope and confusion mix in my head as my family rings 4 more times. I get home safe and decide that the only way to deal with the complicated situation in Iraq was to act with irrational hope and optimism. That's the way TEDxBaghdad seemed to work. And that's going to be mine as well. The next day there were five explosions in Baghdad so TEDxBaghdad and I decided against going out to the Iraqi National Museum even though we had to request permission to go. We meet instead back at Everyday and there we solidify our commitment to working for a more beautiful Baghdad and a country which will become a producing nation once again. Sharing with the world it's art, science and literature like it once did years ago. +BG

Topic by lamedust   |  last reply