Category: Offbeat

via the ARRL: Online Fund-Raising Hoax Targeting Some ARRL Members

A poorly worded online solicitation seeking donations to support medical costs for an ill youngster is not from ARRL and is a scam! Some members have reported receiving an email with the subject line “Help Support Dawn,” dated on or about June 30, stating that “Dawn” is the critically ill son of an ARRL member and requires […]

via HACKADAY: Teddy Ruxpin: Navigate to 143 Main Street

In the United States, TV and radio stations have to give the opportunity of equal airtime to all candidates. In that spirit, we thought we should show you [Jayden17’s] hack that puts Google Assistant into a Teddy Ruxpin. You can see the hacked bear do its thing in the video below. Teddy was the best-selling toy […]

via HACKADAY: Power Harvesting Challenge: Scavenge Some Power, Win Prizes

It’s a brand new day as the Power Harvesting Challenge begins. This is the newest part of the 2018 Hackaday Prize and we’re looking for 20 entries who will each receive $1,000 and move onto the finals to compete for the top five spots, scoring cash prizes of $50k, $25k, $15k, $10k, and $5k. Put simply, Power Harvesting is anything […]

Student grilled for carrying VHF radio in Hyderabad (India)

A 19-year-old amateur radio ham was detained by Hyderabad Metro Rail officials at the Nagole Metro Station for carrying a very high frequency (VHF) radio base station and walkie-talkie. The Electronics and Communications Engineering (ECE) student, K Nagasainath, told ‘Telangana Today’ that he was let off only after an hour of interrogation and after his details were […]

via the RSGB: Schoolboy makes silicon chips at home

We normally think of silicon chip fabrication as being a cutting-edge practice, requiring huge investments and hundreds of people. However, we learned recently of Sam Zeloof, a 17-year-old high school student in the USA, who is making his own chips in his garage. Using ingenuity and equipment purchased via eBay, including things like an electron […]

via HACKADAY: Tiny Transmitter Brings Out the Spy Inside You

When it comes to surveillance, why let the government have all the fun? This tiny spy transmitter is just the thing you need to jumpstart your recreational espionage efforts. We kid, of course — you’ll want to stay within the law of the land if you choose to build [TomTechTod]’s diminutive transmitter. Barely bigger than the 337 button […]

Lightning knocks out woman’s brain implant

Deep brain stimulators — pacemaker-like implants that deliver electrical impulses to specific regions in the brain — are common treatments for Parkinson’s and other neurological disorders. It’s known that strong electromagnetic fields from the likes of ham radio antennae and arc welders can damage the devices. Now, researchers report the case of a 66-year-old woman […]

via HACKADAY: Another Reason to Learn Morse Code: Kidnapping

Morse code — that series of dots and dashes — can be useful in the strangest situations. As a kid I remember an original Star Trek episode where an injured [Christopher Pike] could only blink a light once for yes and twice for no. Even as a kid, I remember thinking, “Too bad they didn’t think […]

Collecting transistors is this Hyderabad techie-turned-ham’s hobby (India)

From wooden-framed valve broadcasting receivers of the 1950s to transistors of the 90s, this 43-year-old software engineer-turned-radio ham has more than 90 different radios in his possession. In the dining room converted into a ham operator’s room of Sridhar Reddy Bheemreddy at Pragathinagar, stacked in order are reel tape recorders to radios and transistors with […]

via HACKADAY: Ask Hackaday: Is Your Clock Tied to Mains Frequency?

Earlier in March we heard about a quirk of the interconnected continental European electricity grid which caused clocks to lose about six minutes so far this year. This was due to a slight dip in the mains frequency. That dip didn’t put anything out of commission, but clocks that are designed to accumulate the total zero-crossings of […]

“The Zen Diaries of Garry Shandling” Is an Intimate Portrait of a Comedy Pioneer

…Shandling was born in Chicago and raised in Tucson, Arizona, where his family moved because his older brother Barry had cystic fibrosis, and his parents thought the dry, warm climate would be better for him. Barry’s death at just 10 years old is the “Rosebud” of this production, if not of Shandling’s life. His personal […]

via HACKADAY: Fail of the Week: How Not To Build Your Own DGPS Base Station

GPS is the modern answer to the ancient question about one’s place in the world yet it has its limitations. It depends on the time of flight of radio signals emitted by satellites twenty thousand kilometers above you. Like any system involving large distances and high velocities, this is bound to offer some challenges to […]

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