Laser Ukulele

Marcus Herbert took an inexpensive ukulele, cut the strings off, designed some circuits, and turned it into a fully functioning laser ukulele that sounds great.

Some of the features include:

  • Custom tuning mode allows 128 notes as per the MIDI standard (12 notes [C, C#, D, D#, E, F, F#, G, G#, A, A#, B] across 11 octaves for C-G and 10 octaves for G#-B)
  • Full soprano ukulele fretboard (12 frets)
  • Four lasers as strings
  • Virtual capo can be placed along any of the 12 frets
  • Although this is in the shape of a ukulele, the computer software determines the final sound, so the physical instrument could end up sounding like whatever instrument you desire
  • Note velocity can be customized from 0 to 127 and is displayed on the LCD screen


Enchant Lightsaber FX Board

The Firebrand Forge has created an open source FX board (Kickstarter) for light sabers and other props.

UPDATE: This board appear to now be available on Tindie.


The ENCHANT board is a light and sound controller with an accelerometer and gyroscope.  It’s compact size makes it ideal for props, like light sabers, and wearables.

This video shows the light saber in action.

The rewards in their Kickstarter campaign include levels from an ENCHANT board, an ENCHANT wearable skirt, and multiple light sabers.




Cochlea Prototype For NeuroBytes

Zach Fredin made a cochlea prototype  – a human ear response for NeuroBytes neuron simulator system.

This video shows the prototype in action.

NeuroBytes are hands-on electronic neuron simulators that allow individuals to learn about the brain while physically building their own neural circuits, synapse by synapse.

Neuro Tinker has a Kickstarter in process for their NeuroBytes system.  The system is made up of modular neuron simulators that allow the user to build and simulate their own electronic brain.

NeuroBytes are fully open sourced,  All source files – schematics, PCB Layout, firmware, etc – are available and shared freely.

Atari 2600 Joystick to an iPad

Allen Huffman used a Teensy 2.0 as an interface between arcade joysticks and an iPad.

The project came about when he was having difficulty getting an expensive input board to work in a haunted house attraction.  When he discovered that the iCade keyboard commands worked over a USB connection, he figured he could use an Arduio board and hood the USB side to an iPad and create his own interface.  With a bit of research he got his project up and running.

Be sure to check out his forum post for details on how the project came about.  The code for the project is available on GitHub.

Arcade Joystick x4 Plus Simon Game

David Guerrero made his own arcade table for playing Simon.


This video shows a demo of the game play.

While he used genuine arcade joysticks and a vintage CRT display, it was still lacking in authenticity.  The risk of a $0.25 loss was missing.  Since emulators basically allow unlimited lives, taking away the gamble of a valuable coin, David disabled that feature and created a little challenge that must be won to add more coins/lives.

The code and many other details about the project (like how to obtain the valuable game play credits) are available on GitHub.



Mario the Maker Magician’s Robot Bunny

Mario the Maker Magician made a Robot Bunny that can be magically pulled out of a hat.


The bunny is made from flexible PLA.  LED Matrixes were used for the eyes and a couple of servos were used for the paws.

Mario said the what he learned most from the project was how to multi-task with the Arduino platform – taking the delay function out of his code, but still being able to control 7 LEDs and make 2 servos work at the same time.  The size of the Teensy was perfect for this magical bunny.

Wake Up Wake Up Video Meme Alarm Clock

Fuzzy-Wobble published an Instructable for a Meme Video Alarm Clock.   This custom clock plays a video of your choice for the alarm, but of course the “Wake Up Wake Up” clip featured in the video makes for a pretty awesome alarm.

The Instructables page provides all the code and instructions for making your own, including instructions on formatting your own custom video and the files for laser cutting the enclosure.