Monthly Archives: May 2013

Makey Makey Arrow Controller

In this project, I made a few arrow controllers out of a file folder, some 3″x5″ cards, craft sticks and aluminum tape. The first idea I had turned out not to work as good as I originally thought it would, so I tried it again (a couple of times). It would be fun to create a game controller that is themed on the games a player might enjoy, or to make one that uses all of the controls built into the Makey Makey.
Working with this controller in combination with writing computer programs would also open up a lot of really amazing options.
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TapeTricity Cards

TapeTricity is quite possibly the simplest way to introduce electricity to people. THere were kids as young as three or four who made their own working circuits (the younger ones got some parental help). This project was fun, because people got a chance to make a drawing, which they then picked out some places for LEDs. Next, they built a simple circuit out of tape, batteries and LEDs. It is a fairly quick project, and costs about a quarter per person. Continue reading

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10 Dollar Stomp Rocket Launcher

Stomp rockets are a great way to introduce flight, pneumatics, and energy transfer through hands-on learning. Paper rockets are very easy to make, and use “virtually free” materials. This will help encourage multiple iterations and exploration of rocket design. You should be able to focus on the important aspects of building and redesigning the rockets. The rockets themselves are very inexpensive, and there are lots of options for their redesign. Continue reading

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BrushBots and CupBots

Recently, I helped out at the local library makerspace on a workshop for teens. We started with the BrushBots kit and project from Maker Shed. We used the BrushBots Party Pack.

The PHILS is an after school group that has been meeting at the library for a while, starting out as a philosophy discussion group. They are now exploring and demonstrating their philosophy with lots of hands-on learning. This week, they started building things that use electricity. Continue reading

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Replacing a Smartphone Screen

When my phone slipped out of my pocket and landed on brick, the shiny touch screen shattered instantly. In a second, it gained new textures. I got sad. I got even sadder when I remembered that I had rejected the broken screen coverage offered by my carrier.

Eventually, I realized that it wasn’t the end of the world to break the screen on a phone, for a few reasons:
The screen replacement coverage seems to have a deductible, of perhaps $100 (Since I didn’t have the coverage, I didn’t look into it too carefully)
Taking the phone to a store and having it done would cost about $100, and would take a day or two for it to be returned.
Buying a replacement screen online is possible, at a fraction of the replacement service cost.
Replacing the screen yourself is possible, at a cost of $0 Continue reading

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