Twittjr – The Finest Combination of IBM PCjr and Twitter!

IBM, as one of the world’s largest computer company and system integrator, has been created many different types of computers. Amongst the IBM’s computers, the IBM PCjr is considered the very first attempt of IBM corporate to enter the market for relatively inexpensive educational and home-use personal computers. The IBM PCjr introduced in 1984 and it has a 4.77MHz processor, 128KB of RAM and 360KB floppy disks for storage. If we compared these features to the recently computers, it’s totally outdated! Well, instead of keep putting the unused IBM PCjr in the storeroom, isn’t it better to modify it a little bit and turn it into Twittjr? Did you know that Twittjr is a marvelous system that allows an old IBM PCjr to search the public timeline on Twitter? Ok, you’re wondering, “How the Twittjr works?” Well, let’s say you have a IBm PCjr. First of all, you must hook it to an internet-connected computer. The PCjr is used to call the server and establishes a modem connection, which it uses to send a request for whatever search term the user have entered into the computer. Then, the server uses the Twitter Search API to download the three most recent…

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New series of AVR projects from Cornell

It’s been a tradition to check on new projects from Cornell University ECE 4760 Engineering class. They build cool AVR based projects each year and seems that they are getting more and more advanced. During the last 5 weeks of the semester in ECE 4760, Microcontroller Design, students had to combine sensors, actuators, microcontrollers, and mathematical techniques to build something. So 2009 final end up with whole 39 cool projects that include a 3D mouse, Haptic appointment manager, fart detector, tissue impedance biopsy system and several interesting musical instruments. This year the coding was done using WINAVR GCC and AVRstudio. You can hardly find so many AVR projects in other place that are well researched and described. And this number is growing since 1999. This is a great idea to publish these projects instead of stacking them somewhere in dark place like many universities do. Students do lots of interesting stuff why not sharing these ideas, so others could make things even better. Way to go ECE 4760 class. All projects show a great deal of originality and work. There are over 300 projects on the page.

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Time for Launching Some Shooting War!

Working, working and working…What a long and boring working hours! If you’re too bored at the workplace, and you would like to have some fun here, then this cheap shooting range might be your perfect choice! First of all, you don’t have to worry about the building cost for this project, as it is extremely cheap (It cost you about $35 or maybe cheaper). Furthermore, this project is so easy, as you can set up in less than an hour! Some of the basic components that you need for the project are:

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The Latest Wiimote Virtual Reality Desktop

You’re feeling bored about the currently desktop? So, do you want to switch it into the latest Wiimote virtual reality desktop? Then, this is the right time for you to do now… Do you believe that with two Nintendo Wii Remote (Wiimote), you can easily build up a virtual reality desktop? It might sound impossible, but the truth is you can really do it! Of course, instead of Wiimote, you still have to prepare the following components: IR-LEDs, Stripboards, Battery holder, Anaglyph 3D Glassed (Either in Red or Green Glasses), Compatible PC Bluetooth adapter, and Stack. The term “Virtual Reality (VR)” has been around for many years, but is still associated with the special and expensive hardware. The Virtual Reality is only familiar in the research laboratories and big technology companies. For your information, the speaking Virtual Reality can be differential by two things: Immersion The user is normally getting the impression of being inside a computer-generated world. Virtual Reality systems use the stereoscopic output devices to give the user a real 3D impression of the virtual world. Interactivity When the user is interacting with the virtual world, by navigation and manipulation of the objects, then the definition for Virtual…

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Slugbee – The Finest Combination of Zigbee Radio with a Slug!

Have you ever wondered what it’s going to be, if you combined the Zigbee Radio with a Slug? If you have no idea what is the outcome, then you should develop this SlugBee and feel it for yourself! For your information, Zigbee, where it’s also known as IEEE 802.15.4 is another type of short-range radio standard that uses the 2.4 GHz microwave oven band, wireless Ethernet and Bluetooth service. If you’re comparing Zigbee with others, it’s the most suitable component for low-power application that involving simple microcontrollers, such as the wireless sensing, home and industrial automation. Normally, the basic parameters of Zigbee are a data rate of up to 250 kbits/s and a typical range of 50m. A small Linux box like the NSLU2 aka Slug could be useful in a Zigbee deployment. For your information, an always-on Slug can be responsible for logging data sent by remote sensors and generating graphs on web pages or sending email alerts. The DLP design playing an important in this project, where it have a couple of modules. They both have an RF chip and a microcontroller. Beside that, it also has the advantages of the built-in USB at the host end and…

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The Great PLL Induction Heater Driver

Have you ever played with a manually tuned induction heater before? If you did, then you must know that how dull it could be… Oh, for those that didn’t know what the induction heater is that is a key piece of equipment used in all forms of induction heating. Technically, an induction heater will operate at either medium frequency (MF) or radio frequency (RF) ranges. There are three main components from the basis of a modern induction heater, such as the power unit (power inverter), the word head (transformer) and the coil (inductor). This project is a little bit different from the normal induction heater driver, as it will include the Phase Lock Loop (PLL) into it. A phase lock loop is a control system that can generate a signal and it has a fixed relation to the phase of a “reference” signal itself. Since the phase lock loop circuit responds to both the frequency and the phase of the input signals, hence it raises or lowering the frequency of a controlled oscillator automatically, until it’s matched to the reference in both frequency and phase. In overall, this PLL induction heater driver will be one of the magnificent projects that…

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A Fancy and Creative Graduation Gown!

If you’re currently attending a college or university, and the graduation ceremony will be held in several weeks or months from now, then have you done all the preparation for it yet? Well, if you think that the graduation gown is a little bit dull and old-fashioned (Hopefully, it’s not the type of granny style ballroom party’s gown that being wore by Ron in the Harry Potter’s series lol), then it’s time to have some little bit modification on your graduation gown to make you stand out in the graduation ceremony… Ok, it might sound a little bit over to modify your graduation gown, but this is the only way to leave an unforgettable memory during your graduation day! Well, for this project, you’ll need to build the VU meter into the graduation gown. You’ll have to put 10 super bright blue LEDs lined up the front of the gown. These were a small electrets microphone that can be clipped at the top of the gown facing your mouth. So, when you’re speaking, the LEDs will light up from the bottom to the top and it depends on the volume of your voice! Remember to have a great moment with…

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