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871  Forum 2005-2010 (read only) / Bar Sport / Re: So just what is Google saying here ? on: December 10, 2010, 08:29:29 am
They are saying geek is chic.

Real hackers use a command line.
872  Forum 2005-2010 (read only) / Bar Sport / Re: A toy for my son on: December 07, 2010, 01:41:14 am
I bet quite a big proportion of the people on this forum come from a software day job.

There is something very satisfying about some real electronics and only having a few dozen lines of nice easy code to make the Arduino do what we want.

Good luck with the project.
873  Forum 2005-2010 (read only) / Bar Sport / Re: A toy for my son on: December 06, 2010, 02:08:13 am

I have been making an autonomous robot project 'Surveillance bot'. It moves to a random location, stops and then monitors with a PIR sensor.

So, a fun game could be to try and sneak up on it! You could even put a big button on its back to 'Tag' it.

Or, how old is he? He might like helping you to make it. My 11 year-old likes to help, he can solder and drill.
874  Forum 2005-2010 (read only) / Bar Sport / Re: A common language? on: December 03, 2010, 11:01:15 am
In the UK, both 'spastic' and 'cripple' are pretty unacceptable.

So much so, that its a struggle to write them here.

Its almost as disrespectful as the N word to refer to someone who is black.

I was shocked when my nephew who has lived in the US most of his life, introduced us to his cat called 'Spaz'!
875  Forum 2005-2010 (read only) / Bar Sport / Re: Haunted House - Project Idea? on: December 03, 2010, 11:04:50 am
You can get wireless RF power controllers, to avoid too much rewiring.

I have made a beans can that jumps when you shine a laser at it. It has a motor inside the can, with an arm on it that flies up and hits the side of the can as it it was shot!
876  Forum 2005-2010 (read only) / Bar Sport / Re: A device to wireless track hand? on: October 08, 2010, 05:19:42 pm
Ha I found it! This guy is really amazing. VR hand sensing using rollers from a ball mouse after about 2 mins. But watch the whole video. Lots of good stuff.

877  Forum 2005-2010 (read only) / Bar Sport / Re: A device to wireless track hand? on: October 08, 2010, 06:32:40 am
I remember seeing a video by someone who basically did this kind of thing very much on the cheap using a disassembled good old-fashioned ball mouse attaching sliders across the mouse rollers.

I had a quick Google, but couldn't find the link.
878  Forum 2005-2010 (read only) / Bar Sport / Re: Advice to those of us learning to program in C/C++ on: October 25, 2010, 03:30:47 am
Compilers are the ultimate pedants.

I used to use a Pascal compiler that would say something like 'semi-colon missing after final end'.

To which I would reply: 'if you know its missing, why the **** can't you put it in yourself'
879  Forum 2005-2010 (read only) / Bar Sport / Re: Why dont I listen ? another afternoon wasted on: October 25, 2010, 03:38:55 am
Every programmer I know has been caught by that one - usually more than once.

If you added up the cost in programmer time of C and Java allowing you to put assignments in conditions I bet it would come to many many millions of dollars.
880  Forum 2005-2010 (read only) / Bar Sport / Re: Arduino Airplane Carry-On Luggage? on: October 14, 2010, 06:05:05 am
I would keep it in its retail packaging if you have it.

Definitely not a good idea to tuck it inside a shoe to prevent it getting damaged!

If you are worried about it, make a point of showing it to the person dishing out the trays at the scanner and asking if its ok. Act like they are the experts, an you a mere mortal are eliciting their opinion.
881  Forum 2005-2010 (read only) / Bar Sport / Re: Scavenging parts on: October 03, 2010, 06:33:29 am
Another discovery.

Ribbon cable is expensive.

reclaimed IDE hard disk leads are a great source of cheap ribbon cable.
882  Forum 2005-2010 (read only) / Bar Sport / Re: Scavenging parts on: September 09, 2010, 02:05:53 pm
I made a little project a while back (not Arduino) that had a 'fake balloon popper. Regular laser pointer hits the balloon acting as a diffuser for a phototransistor behind it in a little box that uses a mosfet to drop a few amps through a small resistor taped to the back of the balloon. After a few seconds of lasering from the other side of the room the balloon pops!

Much the best way of balloon popping!
883  Forum 2005-2010 (read only) / Bar Sport / Scavenging parts on: September 08, 2010, 04:57:34 pm
I just had some fun with a couple of tiny motors from 'disposable' toothbrushes. I made them into a little light following 'Snailbot' no Arduino, just two transistors and two phototransistors and a rechargeable button cell.

But it got me thinking about what else is reusable from dirt cheap consumer electronics and electricals?
884  Forum 2005-2010 (read only) / Bar Sport / Re: Cool simple, projects? on: October 04, 2010, 04:31:08 pm
This is quite good for inspiration.

Or you could buy my book smiley-wink
885  Forum 2005-2010 (read only) / Bar Sport / Re: Electronic calculator (resistor, capacitor,etc...) on: October 04, 2010, 07:23:30 am
Me too, although I wish they would make the bands a bit wider, my eyesight just isn't up to the job these days.

It is a good exercise though. My son also tested them with the multimeter when he wasn't sure, so now he knows the difference between 'precision' and 'accuracy' as well!
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