Makers and open hardware for innovation

Just like the garage computer explosion of the 70’s through the 80’s, which brought us such things as Apple, pong, Bill Gate’s hair, and the proliferation of personal computers, the maker movement is the new garage hardware explosion. Today, 135 million adults in the United States alone are involved in the maker movement.

Enthusiasts who want to build the products they want, from shortwave radios to personal computers, and to tweak products they’ve bought to make them even better, have long been a part of the electronics industry. By all measures, garage-style innovation remains alive and well today, as “makers” as they are called continue to turn out contemporary gadgets, including 3D printers, drones, and embedded electronics devices.

Making is about individual Do-It-Yourselfers being able to design and create with tools that were, as of a decade or two ago, only available to large, cash-rich corporations: CAD tools, CNC mills, 3D printers, low-quantity PCB manufacturing, open hardware such as Arduinos and similar inexpensive development boards – all items that have made it easier and relatively cheap to make whatever we imagine. For individuals, maker tools can change how someone views their home or their hobbies. The world is ours to make. Humans are genetically wired to be makers. The maker movement is simply the result of making powerful building and communication tools accessible to the masses. There are plenty of projects from makers that show good engineering: Take this Arduino board with tremendous potential, developed by a young maker, as example.

The maker movement is a catalyst to democratize entrepreneurship as these do-it-yourself electronics are proving to be hot sellers: In the past year, unit sales for 3D printing related products; Arduino units, parts and supplies; Raspberry Pi boards; drones and quadcopters; and robotics goods are all on a growth curve in terms of eBay sales. There are many Kickstarter maker projects going on. The Pebble E-Paper Watch raises $10 million. The LIFX smartphone-controlled LED bulb raises $1.3 million. What do these products have in common? They both secured funding through Kickstarter, a crowd-funding website that is changing the game for entrepreneurs. Both products were created by makers who seek to commercialize their inventions. These “startup makers” iterate on prototypes with high-end tools at professional makerspaces.

For companies to remain competitive, they need to embrace the maker movement or leave themselves open for disruption. Researchers found that 96 percent of business leaders believe new technologies have forever changed the rules of business by democratizing information and rewiring customer expectations. - You’ve got to figure out agile innovation. Maybe history is repeating itself as the types of products being sold reminded us of the computer tinkering that used to be happening in the 1970s to 1990ssimilar in terms of demographics, tending to be young people, and low budget. Now the do-it-yourself category is deeply intertwined with the electronics industry. Open hardware is in the center in maker movement – we need open hardware designs! How can you publish your designs and still do business with it? Open source ecosystem markets behave differently and therefore require a very different playbook than traditional tech company: the differentiation is not in the technology you build; it is in the process and expertise that you slowly amass over an extended period of time.

By democratizing the product development process, helping these developments get to market, and transforming the way we educate the next generation of innovators, we will usher in the next industrial revolution. The world is ours to make. Earlier the PC created a new generation of software developers who could innovate in the digital world without the limitations of the physical world (virtually no marginal cost, software has become the great equalizer for innovation. Now advances in 3D printing and low-cost microcontrollers as well as the ubiquity of advanced sensors are enabling makers to bridge software with the physical world. Furthermore, the proliferation of wireless connectivity and cloud computing is helping makers contribute to the Internet of Things (IoT). We’re even beginning to see maker designs and devices entering those markets once thought to be off-limits, like medical.

Historically, the education system has produced graduates that went on to work for companies where new products were invented, then pushed to consumers. Today, consumers are driving the innovation process and demanding education, business and invention to meet their requests. Makers are at the center of this innovation transformation.

Image source: The world is ours to make: The impact of the maker movement – EDN Magazine

In fact, many parents have engaged in the maker movement with their kids because they know that the education system is not adequately preparing their children for the 21st century. There is a strong movement to spread this DIY idea widely. The Maker Faire, which launched in the Bay Area in California in 2006, underlined the popularity of the movement by drawing a record 215,000 people combined in the Bay Area and New York events in 2014. There’s Maker Media, MakerCon, MakerShed, Make: magazine and 131 Maker Faire events that take place throughout the world. Now the founders of all these Makers want a way to connect what they refer to as the “maker movement” online. So Maker Media created a social network called MakerSpace, a Facebook-like social network that connects participants of Maker Faire in one online community. The new site will allow participants of the event to display their work online. There are many other similar sites that allow yout to present yout work fron Hackaday to your own blog. Today, 135 million adults in the United States alone are involved in the maker movement—although makers can be found everywhere in the world.

 

1,587 Comments

  1. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Engineering students explore prototyping through maker opportunities at Behrend
    http://news.psu.edu/story/519738/2018/05/02/academics/engineering-students-make-prototypes-better-toothbrush-and-water

    Active learning is an integral part of a meaningful education experience and what better way for engineering students to do so than through the creation of robots?

    At Penn State Erie, The Behrend College, students in the honors sections of Charlotte de Vries’ EDGSN 100: Introduction to Engineering Design course have become more engaged in the classroom thanks to the ability to make Arduino prototypes.

    Reply
  2. Tomi Engdahl says:

    CrowPi Packs Everything You Need for Raspberry Pi Experimentation into a Tiny Suitcase
    https://blog.hackster.io/crowpi-packs-everything-you-need-for-raspberry-pi-experimentation-into-a-tiny-suitcase-464f7ab40b16

    Want to learn programming and begin experimenting with electronics? The Raspberry Pi is a great way to get started with this noble pursuit, though once you order and receive a Pi, you’ll need wires to hook everything together, switches, LEDs, resistors, and whatever else your application calls for. If only there was an easily-transported device that packs all you need into one unit…

    Reply
  3. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Tips for hosting a hackathon
    https://opensource.com/article/18/5/software-philanthropy-everyone?sc_cid=7016000000127ECAAY

    Learn what it takes to host a successful open source hackathon from Bloomberg’s head of open source engagement.

    Reply
  4. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Person with diabetes finds open source and builds her own medical semic
    https://opensource.com/article/18/5/dana-lewis-women-open-source-community-award-winner-2018?sc_cid=7016000000127ECAAY

    Red Hat’s 2018 Women in Open Source Community Award winner is Dana Lewis. Hear her story.

    Dana has Type 1 diabetes and commercially available medical devices were failing her. The continuous glucose monitor (CGM) alarm she was using to manage her blood sugar was not loud enough to wake her up. The product design put her in danger every time she went to sleep.

    “I went to a bunch of manufacturers and asked what they could do, and I was told, ‘It’s loud enough for most people.’ I was told that ‘it’s not a problem for most people, and we’re working on it. It’ll be out in a future version.’’ That was all really frustrating to hear

    Dana thought that if she could get her data from the device, she could use her phone to make a louder alarm.

    reverse-engineered a CGM to get the data off his child’s device so that he could monitor his child’s blood sugar remotely.

    She realized that if he was willing to share, she could use the same code to build a louder alarm system.

    “I didn’t understand that it was perfectly normal to ask people to share code. That was my first introduction to open source.”

    The system evolved from a louder alarm to a web page where she could share data with her loved ones.

    As Dana got more involved with the open source diabetes community, she met Ben West. He had spent years figuring out how to communicate with the insulin pump Dana used.

    The result was a do-it-yourself artificial pancreas system (DIY APS).

    Using the algorithm to process data from the insulin pump and CGM, the DIY APS forecasts predicted blood glucose levels and automates adjustments to the insulin delivery, making small changes to keep blood sugar within the target range. This makes life much easier for people with diabetes

    Reply
  5. Tomi Engdahl says:

    The useful resource makers can’t miss
    https://www.eeweb.com/profile/elecrow/articles/the-useful-resource-makers-cant-miss?utm_source=Aspencore&utm_medium=EDN

    With years of experience in open source hardware industry and located in Shenzhen which is referred as the largest electronic market of China, Elecrow has developed a mature supply chain in PCB service and wins a good reputation in international electronics hardware communities. Due to the continuous research and concentration on the needs of industry and individual maker, engineer and entrepreneur, Elecrow got down to expand the production lines in 2017 and launched the brand new one-stop solution to hardware project in March, 2018, to be an accessible and cost-effective manufacturing resource for everybody who has ideas to create electronic hardware.

    Reply
  6. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Innovative New Electronic Prototyping Platform
    https://www.eeweb.com/profile/max-maxfield/articles/innovative-new-electronic-prototyping-platform

    Hexabitz is a new kind of electronic prototyping platform with game-changing modularity and a hint of biomimicry — now hardware prototyping doesn’t have to be so hard.

    Every now and then I run across something that makes me think: “Oooh, Tasty!” Oftentimes, this is quickly followed by me chastising myself, saying: “Why didn’t I think of that!?”

    This was what just happened when I was introduced to the Hexabitz Prototyping Platform. As it says on the Hexabitz CrowdSupply Project Page, “Hexabitz is a new kind of electronic prototyping platform with game-changing modularity and a hint of biomimicry.” And as we read on the hexabitz.com website, “Hardware prototyping doesn’t have to be so hard.”

    Hexabitz modules are hexagonal, thereby lending themselves to the creation of both 2D (flat) and 3D prototypes. It’s also obvious that the modules are connected using an edge-soldering assembly technique (apart from anything else, this means you can easily disassemble and re-configure your prototype in matter of minutes using a soldering iron if you so desire).

    Multiple Modules

    Let’s start with the fact that the initial crowdsourcing campaign features 14 different types of modules that boast a variety of different functions, from sensors and wireless to power and I/O (input/output). Most of the modules are hexagonal, but there is one pentagonal module in the initial offering, with more promised for the future.

    https://www.hexabitz.com/

    Reply
  7. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Electronics Still Thrives as a Hobby
    http://www.electronicdesign.com/analog/electronics-still-thrives-hobby?NL=ED-003&Issue=ED-003_20180521_ED-003_806&sfvc4enews=42&cl=article_1_b&utm_rid=CPG05000002750211&utm_campaign=17404&utm_medium=email&elq2=b2653e9890c4481088ee72f1d6250c7a

    Electronics has been a hobby for as long as electronics has existed. It started with radio in the early 1900s, and has continued to this day. Audio was a big focus in the 50s and 60s, but hobbyists turned to micros, computer kits, and PCs in the 70s and 80s. That interest in micros continues to this day.

    There have always been publications covering the hobby aspects of electronics, and today multiple websites serve this community. It’s hard to pin point the number of participants, but in general, the hobbyist population appears to be growing.

    Maker is the latest term for hobbyists and any do-it-yourselfer (DIYer). That includes not only electronics, but a wide range of hobbies and crafts. Some of those on display at the show were woodworking, metal working (such as welding), 3D printing, rocketry, robots, quilting, and sewing.

    The Maker Faire brings together all those makers who want to show off their projects and to see what others are doing. It’s a mixed bag of displays and demos.

    Electronics seems to be involved in many maker projects.

    Though the tools and components have changed radically since its hobbyist beginnings, the fascination and passion for electronics remains if the Maker Faire can serve as a judge.

    The emphasis today in electronics making is embedded controllers. The Arduino was ubiquitous at the show, but the Raspberry Pi isn’t far behind. And there were several Internet of Things (IoT) demonstration projects. It’s clearly a digital world.

    a survey of 1,700 participants who are probably representative of the average U.S. electronic hobbyist today. Here’s a summary of what I saw in the survey report:

    Average age is 56. That surprised me. Only 7% age less than 30.
    66% have a college degree (34% EE), 30% with a graduate degree.
    35% are self taught.
    Most hobby time is spent on project design (44%) and building (24.4%), and on fixing stuff (22.1%).
    Microcontroller projects and LEDs seem to dominate the interests.
    Most electronic hobbyists hate surface-mount devices (SMD). No surprise here.

    For more details, contact Jameco for the full report by clicking here.

    Jameco Electronics Conducts Electronic Hobbyist Study
    The Great American Electronics Hobbyist Census
    https://www.jameco.com/Jameco/PressRoom/electronic-hobbyist-study-622015.html

    Reply
  8. Tomi Engdahl says:

    The Best Part of Waking Up Just Got Better
    https://hackaday.com/2018/05/31/the-best-part-of-waking-up-just-got-better/

    If you ask us, one of life’s greatest pleasures is sitting down with a nice, hot cup of something of coffee, tea or hot chocolate. Of course, the best part of this ritual is when the beverage has cooled enough to reach that short window of optimal drinking temperature.

    For [Scott Clandinin]’s entry into the 2018 Hackaday Prize, he hopes to harness enough heat energy from the beverage to power a fan that will blow across the top of the mug.

    Coffee/Tea Cooling Buddy
    https://hackaday.io/project/96252-coffeetea-cooling-buddy

    Speed up the cooling of your hot beverage with energy generated from it’s own heat.

    Reply
  9. Tomi Engdahl says:

    DIY Scrap Guitar Really Shreds
    https://hackaday.com/2018/05/31/diy-scrap-guitar-really-shreds/

    [Keith Decent] recently got himself involved in a plywood challenge, and decided to make a single-pickup electric guitar. Since he is a prolific hoarder of scrap wood, the result is a lovely stack of laminates from many sources, including reclaimed cabinet doors. Really though, the wood is just the beginning—nearly every piece of this texture-rich axe started life as something else.

    DIY ELECTRIC GUITAR FROM PLYWOOD – a Decent project
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WwXq3ov0UXI

    Reply
  10. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Blowing Arcylic Canopies Using Stuff From Around The Shop
    https://hackaday.com/2018/05/31/blowing-arcylic-canopies-using-stuff-from-around-the-shop/

    Blowing an acrylic sheet after heating it is an easy way to make a smooth and transparent canopy or bubble for anything from clams to light fixtures. [Michael Barton-Sweeney] does it using plastic blow ovens he made cheaply, mainly from stuff which most of us already have in our workshops.

    Reply
  11. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Modular Robotics Made Easier With ROS
    https://hackaday.com/2018/05/31/modular-robotics-made-easier-with-ros/

    What Is ROS?

    ROS is a framework consisting of a huge number of libraries and tools specifically for developing robots. It’s open source and most code comes under the BSD license. It’s also community supported.

    ROS has been primarily tested on Ubuntu and Mac OS X though the community has also gotten it working on other Linux distributions and is working on Windows. I have the Kinetic release of ROS running under Ubuntu 16.04 on my Raspberry Pi 3B.

    Reply
  12. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Artist turns circuit boards into jewelry
    https://www.edn.com/electronics-blogs/rowe-s-and-columns/4460697/Artist-turns-circuit-boards-into-jewelry

    Alternative uses for obsolete or rejected PCBs and components is nothing new, but the uses keep changing. In a recent trip to Rochester, N.Y., I happened to visit a bead store (as opposed to an electronics store). There on a table was jewelry made with PCBs populated with components. I just had to speak to the artist.

    Reply
  13. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Laser Cut Cardboard Robot Construction Kit
    https://hackaday.io/project/157209-laser-cut-cardboard-robot-construction-kit

    Laser cut cardboard and wooden pieces for making animatronic robots. Open source templates and activity guides for educators.

    Reply
  14. Tomi Engdahl says:

    A Canon Lens Adapter for the Game Boy Camera
    https://hackaday.com/2018/06/04/a-canon-lens-adapter-for-the-game-boy-camera/

    Released in 1998, the Game Boy camera was a bit ahead of its time. This specialized Game Boy cartridge featured a 128×128 pixel CMOS sensor and took 4-color greyscale photos. The camera even rotated, allowing for selfies years before that word existed.

    The fixed lens on this camera meant no zoom was possible. [Bastiaan] decided to address this shortcoming by building a Canon EF Lens Mount. The resulting build looks hilarious, but actually takes some interesting photos.

    Game Boy Camera Canon EF Lens Mount
    http://ekeler.com/game-boy-camera-canon-ef-mount/

    The GBC has a sensor size of about 3.6mm² which seems equivalent to a 1/4″ sensor (Wikipedia). This gives the GBC a crop factor of about 10.81. With my 70-200 f4 mounted on a 1.4x extender, this gives me a max equivalent focal distance of about 200×1.4×10.81=3,026.8mm.

    The lens adapter was designed in Rhinoceros 3D and printer on a Monoprice Select Mini v2 in black PLA at a pretty rough layer height (for speed). Minimal supports and cleanup are required to make the lens fit semi-snugly.

    Reply
  15. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Hacked RC Transmitters Control All The Things
    https://hackaday.com/2018/06/05/hacked-rc-transmitters-control-all-the-things/

    rudRemote
    https://hackaday.io/project/158068-rudremote

    Customizable NRF24L01+ radio control for multiple vehicles (AKA making a 40 year old radio fly a quadcopter!)

    Reply
  16. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Programmable Air Makes Robotics A Breeze
    https://hackaday.com/2018/05/24/programmable-air-makes-robotics-a-breeze/

    [Amitabh] was frustrated by the lack of options for controlling air pressure in soft robotics. The most promising initiative, Pneuduino, seemed to be this close to a Shenzhen production run, but the creators have gone radio silent. Faced with only expensive alternatives, he decided to take one for Team Hacker and created Programmable Air, a modular system for inflatable and vacuum-based robotics.

    The idea is to build the cheapest, most hacker-friendly system he can by evaluating and experimenting with all sorts of off-the-shelf pumps, sensors, and valves. From the looks of it, he’s pretty much got it dialed in. Programmable Air is based around $9 medical-grade booster pumps that are as good at making vacuums as they are at providing pressurization.

    Programmable Air
    A hardware kit to experiment with inflatable and vacuum based soft robotics.
    https://hackaday.io/project/129278-programmable-air

    Reply
  17. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Magnetic Spheres Line Up for Rotary Encoder Duty
    https://hackaday.com/2018/06/05/magnetic-spheres-line-up-for-rotary-encoder-duty/

    When it comes to rotary encoders, there are plenty of options. Most of them involve putting a credit card number into an online vendor’s website, though, and that’s sometimes just not in the cards. In that case building your own, like this encoder using magnetic spheres, is a pretty cool way to go too.

    Low-cost and precise rotary encoder with magnetic spheres
    https://ao2.it/en/blog/2018/05/31/low-cost-and-precise-rotary-encoder-magnetic-spheres

    You know what they say that constraints drive creativity, I think this post is just another little example of that.

    Usually I do not put time constraints to my hobby projects, but I make sure to have some other kind of constraints, like keeping the cost low and trying to reuse stuff that I already have.

    In this case I needed a way to measure the angle and speed of a rotating object for some of my projects, and I wanted a rotary encoder that was inexpensive, but precise enough to work at very low speeds.

    I ruled out optical encoders (I could have reused a mouse) because there could have been noise issues in the final project, so I decided to go magnetic.

    I purchased a couple of Hall effect sensors but I had no idea of how I was going to use them.

    Later I realized that the US1881 sensors I bought were bipolar latching sensors (check out the Hallbook for a nice reference of magnetic sensing), meaning that their state would persist when the magnet was out of reach.

    Reply
  18. Tomi Engdahl says:

    18650 Spot Welder – Car Battery Powered
    A cheap but effective 18650 spot welder
    https://hackaday.io/project/158858-18650-spot-welder-car-battery-powered

    As part of my electric mountain bike project I needed a large lithium battery. Not finding anything in my budget I decided to make a 18650 battery pack to my specifications.

    I needed to be able to spot weld nickel strip to the 18650 cell terminals. 18650 spot welders are widely available on the net and probably worth the investment if you have the demand for it. However, I only planned to build one battery pack, so I made my own spot welder.

    A quick YouTube search found darkkevind’s channel. In this video in particular https://youtu.be/o1NFbchHeM8 he demonstrates his spot welder. His device is a standard car battery connected to a motorbike starter motor solenoid.

    His design worked well but I felt I could build on it to make a more reliable system.

    My design features a DELCO 130493 (pattern part) starter solenoid as the current switch.

    Initial Testing

    The first tests were rather exciting. The battery is only a few months old and the internal resistance is very low, resulting in very high current pulses which would destroy the nickel strips if the pulse was more than 20ms or so. Lots of flying molten metal…

    I experimented with a ‘current limiting resistor’ formed of a length of 1.6mm TIG welding filler wire. This allowed me to run longer lower current welding pulses. I found that the result was a much stronger weld than a shorter higher current pulse….

    Reply
  19. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Flexible Audio Hub
    https://hackaday.io/project/138339-flexible-audio-hub

    A very versatile digital audio hub, enabling DIY audio systems using either custom or garden variety modules.

    Reply
  20. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Infinity Flashlight Powered by Your Own Body Heat
    https://hackaday.io/project/158857-infinity-flashlight-powered-by-your-own-body-heat

    Body Heat Powered Flashlight

    I chose to investigate the aspect of human energy when I found out that we are like walking 100 Watt light bulbs. The goal of my project became a flashlight powered solely from the heat of the human hand. I decided to use Peltier tiles. If one side of these tiles is heated, and the other is cooled, electricity is produced. For my flashlight, I would be heating one side with the palm, and cooling the other side of the tile with a heat sink.

    The goal of my project became a flashlight powered solely from the heat of the human hand. I decided to use Peltier tiles. If one side of these tiles is heated, and the other is cooled, electricity is produced. For my flashlight, I would be heating one side with the palm, and cooling the other side of the tile with a heat sink.

    I calculated that our bodies radiate 5.7 mW/cm2, but only 0.5 mW is needed to generate a bright light at the LED. I characterized both Peltier devices. Both produced power, but only a few millivolts. I need 2.5 V ! I had to convert my DC input to AC, and then run it through a oscillator circuit with a stepuptransformer. My final circuit had only 3 parts and produced a step up ratio of 100:1. So for 50 mV DC from the Peltiers I obtained 5 Volts AC which was sufficient to light the LED.

    Reply
  21. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Building a Knife by Hand is just as Hard as you Think
    https://hackaday.com/2018/06/07/building-a-knife-by-hand-is-just-as-hard-as-you-think/

    Carl Sagan once said: “If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe.” In other words, the term “scratch” is really a relative sort of thing.

    With Carl’s words in mind, we suppose we can’t say that [Flannagill] truly built this incredible knife from scratch, after all, he ordered the sheet steel on Amazon. But we think it’s close enough.

    He was kind enough to document the epic build in fantastic detail, including (crucially), the missteps he made along the way.

    First Knife – A Knife Heavily Inspired by Aaron Gough’s Resolute Series
    https://imgur.com/a/RYcwNck

    Reply
  22. Tomi Engdahl says:

    3D Printed Servo Linear Actuator
    A low cost yet rigid & precise robot module
    https://hackaday.io/project/158014-3d-printed-servo-linear-actuator

    A linear actuator designed for replication, modularity, and to provide maximum performance given its low cost. This is an enabling robotic module that fills a gap in currently available open source hardware.
    This rack & pinion type actuator uses a standard mounting pattern, and is completely 3D printed minus the servo & screws. Printed parts are designed to accommodate 3D printing variance.
    Output = 80mm controlled linear motion, ~0.5kg max force.

    I choose a rack & pinion type actuator to keep the vitamins low and the movement speed fast. (As opposed to a slow leadscrew or pulley driven actuator with belts & bearings). Well for those reasons and the fact that hobby servos only have 180 degs of usable motion severely limits your options.

    Reply
  23. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Custom Buttons For Your Game Controller
    https://hackaday.com/2018/06/10/custom-buttons-for-your-game-controller/

    [RockerGaming] shows us how to cast your own set of custom buttons using a silicone mold taken from the originals.

    The video is a step-by-step walkthrough of the molding process that could just as easily be applied to any other small plastic parts and is not unique to console buttons.

    A dye is added to the two-part silicone to provide a visual mixing aid, and once the cast mold is separated from the buttons the final resin is poured into it. The cloned buttons are tidied up underneath with a Dremel, and the controller is reassembled.

    A set of custom buttons will not improve your gaming, but underlying this is the fact that resin casting is a useful skill.

    How to make Custom Video Game Controller Buttons! Nintendo Switch, Sega Saturn, PS4, Xbox, Gamecube
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9HFNJGZYjng

    Reply
  24. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Artist turns circuit boards into jewelry
    https://www.edn.com/electronics-blogs/rowe-s-and-columns/4460697/Artist-turns-circuit-boards-into-jewelry

    Amanda Preske is the artist behind Circuit Breaker Labs: Intelligent Gifts for Geeks.

    How did you get started making jewelry from old PCBs?
    My brother had some computers that he no longer used and he challenged me to make something. I had already been making jewelry so I took it on. I was teaching myself to use resins for making jewelry at the time. Combining the PCBs with the resins looked like a good way to make jewelry, so I put a few out at craft shows around Rochester. The response was so positive that I expanded my offerings and decided to make it my full-time business. I started with pendants, but have expanded to nearly 90 varieties of products: rings, cuff links, tie clips, money clips, and so on. I’ve been making this jewelry for 12 years and it’s my full-time job.

    https://circuitbreakerlabs.myshopify.com/

    Reply
  25. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Skoobot
    Tiny robot for EdTech.
    https://hackaday.io/project/75832-skoobot

    This is a Tiny programmable Robot with BLE, distance sensor, microphone, buzzer and a led. My goals for it are many:

    1. EdTech: I was inspired by watching kids interact at an ADHD camp around a common toy. I would like this robot to facilitate interaction and teach social skills.

    2. Arduino: A simplified interface so more people could try robotics and see what it is about.

    3. Robot hobbyist, and aspiring robot hobbyist: The cpu is an ARM Cortex-M4F Bluetooth robot platform. I will make it open and documented, so you can level-up (think Goku in Dragon Ball-Z) and become a super powered engineer. Lots of iOS and Android possible as well.

    4. Multiple robot Games: sumo fights, capture the flag, and board games.

    5. Language of your choice: Some people just prefer this. I want to add support for microPython, Javascript, C++ and other languages.

    Reply
  26. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Increasing speed & range of sandals
    Hack sandals for running.
    https://hackaday.io/project/88623-increasing-speed-range-of-sandals

    Reply
  27. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Frozen Rat Kidney Shipping Container
    https://hackaday.com/2018/06/17/frozen-rat-kidney-shipping-container/

    The biggest allure of 3D printing, to us at least, is the ability to make hyper-personalized objects that would otherwise fall through the cracks of our mass-market economy. Take, for instance, the Frozen Rat Kidney Shipping Container, or maybe some of the less bizarro applications in the US National Institute of Health’s 3D Print Exchange.

    The Exchange is dominated, at least in terms of sheer numbers, by 3D models of proteins and other biochemical structures. But there are two sections that will appeal to the hacker in you: prosthetics and lab equipment.

    https://3dprint.nih.gov/

    Reply
  28. Tomi Engdahl says:

    How Does a Prototyping-Only Approach Impact Product Design?
    http://www.powerelectronics.com/power-electronics-systems/how-does-prototyping-only-approach-impact-product-design?NL=ED-003&Issue=ED-003_20180615_ED-003_416&sfvc4enews=42&cl=article_2_b&utm_rid=CPG05000002750211&utm_campaign=17801&utm_medium=email&elq2=c27ace6a74e1452da661cc99c7af6d1d

    One in 10 design engineers still rely on purely physical prototypes, potentially adding significant, unnecessary costs to their designs, according to engineering surveys.

    Reply
  29. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Using IMUs For Odometry
    https://hackaday.com/2018/06/17/using-imus-for-odometry/

    [Pablo] and [Alfonso]’s entry to the Hackaday Prize, the IMcorder.

    The IMcorder is a simple device loaded up with an MPU9250 IMU module that has an integrated accelerometer, gyro, and compass. This is attached to an Arduino Pro Mini and a Bluetooth module that allows the IMcorder to communicate with a robot’s main computer to provide information about a robot’s orientation and acceleration. All of this is put together on a fantastically tiny PCB with a lithium battery, allowing this project to be integrated into any robotics project without much, if any, modification.

    IMcoders
    https://hackaday.io/project/158496-imcoders

    IMU-based encoders. IMcoders provides odometry data to robots with a minimal integration effort, easing prototyping on almost any system.

    Reply
  30. Tomi Engdahl says:

    PIC Powered PicoBat Picks Up Pulsed Power
    https://hackaday.com/2018/06/26/pic-powered-picobat-picks-up-pulsed-power/

    In 2012, [Bruno] wanted to detect some bats. Detect bats? Some varieties of bat (primarily the descriptively named “microbats”) locate themselves and their prey in space using echolocation, the same way your first robot probably did. The bat emits chirps from their adorably tiny larynx the same way a human uses its vocal cords to produce sound. The bat then listens for an echo of that sound and can make inferences about the location of its presumed prey in the volume around it. Bat detectors are devices which can detect these ultrasonic sounds and shift them into a range that humans can hear. So how would you build such a device? [Bruno]’s PicoBat probably sets the record for component count and code simplicity.

    PicoBat : a PIC-based simple and cheap ultrasonic detector
    http://www.micro-examples.com/articles/index.php/PicoBat

    Reply
  31. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Controlling Robotics Visually
    https://hackaday.com/2018/06/26/controlling-robotics-visually/

    But there’s a problem with all educational robots. The programming. For someone just starting out in robotics club, being able to code isn’t a guarantee. You need an easy to use programming interface. This project for the Hackaday Prize gives all students a great visual programming interface. It’s basically like the first generation of Lego Mindstorms, only you don’t need a weird IR tower attached to a serial port.

    The brain for this platform is built on an ARM microcontroller, has Bluetooth, supports up to six DC motors, twelve analog inputs, PWM and serial ports, and all the ports are color-coded for kids who can’t read so good.

    This is a visual programming environment, though, and with that, you get a fancy IDE filled with loops that wrap around commands, IO access that’s in easy to read blocks, and control software that gives students a dashboard filled with buttons and odometers and the video feed from the camera.

    Visual Robotics Platform
    https://hackaday.io/project/90613-visual-robotics-platform

    A low-cost STM32 board with motor controllers created along with visual programming and control software for use in education.

    Reply
  32. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Person with diabetes finds open source and builds her own medical device
    https://opensource.com/article/18/5/dana-lewis-women-open-source-community-award-winner-2018?sc_cid=7016000000127ECAAY

    Red Hat’s 2018 Women in Open Source Community Award winner is Dana Lewis. Hear her story.

    Reply

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

*