Large smart watch has its own beauty

We are used to see smart watches to be somewhat similar to regular watches that are normal size and sleek. Zack broke that confidence by building different smart watch which takes quite amount of your arm. It’s built by using standard 16×2 VFD display. Watch is clocked by Teensy 3.0. Around it there is a solid 3D printed enclosure where other instruments are located.

It has many features that makes it even more attractive. There is a laser pointer, flashlight, TV-B-gone, Breathalyzer, On LCD screen there is a clock, calendar, also the Gathering card game. Watch control is done with fairly big knob and switches. I think it should look nice addition to some sort superhero costume. Wearing it in daily basis would be uncomfortable.

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Building a 2048 game on Arduino

2048 is a little addictive game where you need to combine numbers appearing in 4×4 matrix to get score up to 2048. more about this game can be found on wiki. Lee developed an Arduino version of this game where he controls game with four buttons and joystick while seeing action on Nokia 5110 graphical LCD .

He built all PCBs from scratch leaving only Arduino bootloader on Atmega328 microcontroller. He wanted game device to bee convenient to handle but still doable with home conditions so he split it in to two PCB boards with through hole components. The top board carries LCD, buttons and joystick, bottom board hides microcontroller and power circuit. His home built PCBs look really well made. As power supply he used couple Lithium-Ion batteries and linear 7805 voltage regulator. Even if platform is built for 2048 game it can be used for any game you decide to program. Only memory and imaginations is the limit.

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Forget about Weak Signal with Mobile Phone Signal Booster

Have you ever had the situations in the office when you desperately needed to call your client and agree on a deal, but your mobile phone kept breaking saying that there was not connection?

The Old Story of the Old World

The story when people complain that their mobile phone is always out of coverage is not new and quite typical all over the world.

This very problem is rather painful for workers whose work efficiency depends on calls.

Unfortunately, it can be a typical problem of many multistoried building, where most office plankton works. Continue reading

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How hard can it be to build Linux mini computer

Today this is not a problem to get a Linux based development board really cheap. Raspberry Pi or Beagle Bone are the first that come to mind. Having those on your desk you wouldn’t think about building one by yourself. Unless you want to challenge yourself. Henrik thought it would be fun to build a Linux board with BGA processor. We all know that soldering BGA at home can be tricky, but doable. So he’s chosen cheap ARM processor with memory management – AT91SAM9N12. It comes in 217 BGA package with 0.4mm balls and distance between 0.8mm. Next to it he added DDR2 RAM which also comes in BGA package.

small-diy_linux_board

Another challenge was to find PCB manufacturer which would make small pads and vias reliable and cheap. OSH Park seemed to be right choice. Once boards has arrived, next step was to solder chips and other SMT parts. He applied soldering paste with stencils and placed chips. He had to be careful because even 0.4mm error would cause row offset of ball array. Obviously soldering was done with reflow oven which did job pretty good. Other components like NAND flash and large components were soldered by hand. Then he configures Linux system which had to be loaded in to memory and magical screen appeared. This is amazing what can be done with home conditions and some knowledge today.

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