Ideas 2016

A better Braille display

  • Hack Details: Braille displays are extremely expensive (80 char x 2 lines is several thousand Euro) They are also fragile. A bit of dust or dirt can ruin them. They consume considerable battery power to attain the 200 volts necessary to quickly move the pins. This also makes them more dangerous than a Samsung galaxy note 7. A friend's Braille display started smouldering while she was in university. There must be a better way!
  • What you need to make it happen? Electromechanical, materials and 3D printing skills. Braille pins are tiny. Would it be possible to create micro levers? Memory metal, magnetic, electrostatic, pneumatic, hydroponic or steam-powered actuators?
  • Name: Brian Nitz
  • Twitter/website:

no comments

Thermal coloured floating lanterns

  • Hack Details: Japan's Toro Nagashi (floating lantern) festival is beautiful. If the color and flash rate of the lanterns depended on the temperature and conductivity of the water, we could do beautiful science with time exposures of the festival. The device should be designed to be small and inexpensive like 'throwies' so that a large number of lanterns could track current and temperature. These, of course should be retrieved if they are not biodegradable.
  • What you need to make it happen? Arduino or AVR microcontroller Floating lantern materials (wood/bamboo and paper) thermistor or dallas semiconductor temperature chip red LED blue LED green LED (optional) battery power supply solderless breadboard wires, resistors transistor or driver chip to increase current to LEDs.
  • Name: Brian Nitz
  • Twitter/website:

no comments

Reverse engineering fitbit data

  • Hack Details: I have a had a fitbit for two years now tracking my sleep, steps, heart rate etc. However I am only able to export very aggregated data even thought the underlying interval data is there (fitbit charge you to get access your data). I want to write an R script that can reverse engineer the data used to generate the graphs and create a personal database of my data.
  • What you need to make it happen? I can do a bit in R but help accessing an external API would be appreciated. Also someone who understands HTML would be a lot of help
  • Name: Paul G

no comments

Upcycled laundry basket

  • Hack Details: Tack old washing machine brume. Give it some legs. Cool 1950’s – 1960’s inspired legs made from beach ply wood. Why is it a good idea? Upcycled is good for the planet/environment. A washing machine brume will be full when you have a full load. + it will look cool.
  • What you need to make it happen? Saw up some wood. Glue some wood. Screw some wood together. Clean brume. Attach altogether.
  • Name: Andy

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Pimp My Chair

  •  Hack Details: I use an electric wheelchair to get around, and we have a bunch of ideas for small improvements we could create that would make the lives of wheelchair users much easier. We would love some ideas and help making them happen:
    • 1. Make it hop- up steps and curbs. This is probably the biggest problem wheelchair users face. Most buildings would be perfectly accessible were it not for a single step at the door, and since most proprietors couldn't be bothered to buy portable ramps, an attachment that could help a user enter a building, or a bus when the ramp isn't working which happens often, would solve 80% of problems. There are attachments invented that can do this and even climb stairs but if it could be made more affordable it would be a lifesaver.
    • 2. A lock mechanism- believe it or not my chair has been stolen twice, albeit once by someone high out of their mind on Paddy's Day. Most electric wheelchairs oddly enough don't have locks, so a way to keep it safe when it's not being used would be a big help.
    • 3. Luminescence- to come up with a way of making the chair glow in the dark while driving on roads that would be less dorky and provide better coverage than the builder's jackets (this has artistic potential too).
    • 4. Turbo Power and Battery Saver- some folks at Tog had talked seriously about doing this before. The speed is, let's face it, just for fun, but if we could find a way to tamper with the battery and make it last longer or invent a portable battery pack, that would help enormously. Most batteries run out very quickly, after 1 hour to 30 minutes of driving, and have short lifespans. Wheelchair taxis are very rare and if the battery runs out before you can get to a bus stop you are in big trouble. Once the gardai had to give me a lift home in their van at night after last bus with no battery to get home. All these small improvements would make a huge difference to wheelchair users, and you are welcome to my chair as a test dummy.
  • What you need to make it happen: Additional Metaphor to Brain Juices: From a 5 year old in the book Room "when I tell her what I'm thinking and she tells me what she's thinking, our each ideas jump into each other's head, like coloring blue crayon on top of yellow that makes green" Green means Go Make!
  • Name: Maryam and Jules

1 comment

Bridge Tester

  • Hack Details: Members of TOG run a bridge building activity for events like Engineers Week. Testing the resulting bridges to destruction is fun, but time consuming and requires a lot of material (about 50kg of mass). The idea is to make a frame which can apply and measure the load needed to break a bridge.
  • What you need to make it happen? Have 100kg load cell and driver circuit.
  • Name: Robert Fitzsimons
  • Twitter/website:

no comments


  • Hack Details: When my trash bin is full I have to move it to the gate for garbage pickup van and I hate doing this every Sunday morning so I'll be building a POC for the robot which will drive itself to the gate when it's full and come back when it's empty.
  • What you need to make it happen? Rfduino + IR sensors + MSP430 micro-controller + some other gears.
  • Name: Nick
  • Twitter/website: @SavvyNikhil

no comments

Arduino Controlled Laser Gun

  • Hack Details: Build a laser powerful enough to burn wood and pop balloons and hook it up to an Arduino for fire control. Possibly robotize it?
  • What you need to make it happen? Arduino, motors, laser diodes, power supply/batteries, power brick, electronics equipment
  • Name: K-Swizzle

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DIY Vacuum Former

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Create a mini Wave Energy Converter

  • Hack Details: Using a 1.2m long fish tank we will create waves that will generate an electrical response for a wave energy converter (WEC).
  • What you need to make it happen? I require someone with basic electronics skills to help build a basic magnet and coil device and measure energy converted.
  • Name: Ken

no comments

Keep your distance - proximity alert for cars passing too close to cyclists

  • Hack Details: I'm sick of cars driving too close to me. In the rush hour traffic, it might be just that they're not paying attention, so I want my bike/vest to flash a warning at cars that pass too close.
  • What you need to make it happen? I've got some proximity (ultrasound ping) sensors, some Arduinos and a Raspberry Pi. I can sew lights into the vest for a bigger display to warn the cars with. (I'll be bringing my sewing machine and some e-textiles gear.) If I can get a loan of a bike nearby for the event, that will save me bringing mine up the country. People with ideas on how best to implement the sensor or design a good warning pattern would be great. I need to find out where to get (and power) some really bright LEDs too.
  • Name: Tríona
  • Twitter/website:

1 comment

Levitator Photos

  • Hack Details: Build a levitator to hold pictures in the air or other objects for the fun of it.
  • What you need to make it happen? Some help to enjoy building the project and document it as a project for a future maker day or school display.
  • Name: James
  • Twitter/website:

no comments

Photographing Water Drops

  • Hack Details: Water drops have a fascinating if short life. Photographing them is difficult, but not impossible: I'd like to build a simple hardware setup to make this kind of photography available to all. This will require a simple valve mechanism to generate a drip-on-demand, a sensor to detect the drip falling, and a trigger mechanism for a digital SLR, using an Arduino + simple electronics. I have the camera, trigger cable, Arduino and tons of electronics & wood. I also have some fluroscene and UV LEDs to add some fun if it actually works.
  • What you need to make it happen? Need to build a simple frame, work out the drip sensor (IR sensor?) write a bit of software on the Arduino to fire the camera trigger. And maybe a UV LED array "flash".
  • Name: Mike
  • Twitter/website:

1 comment
Eventbrite - Science Hack Day Dublin 2016

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