Dan

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Aw, this dad made his kids a DIY tooth fairy delivery system

Cha-ching<p>A father made this sweet DIY project for his kids: it's a set of pneumatic tubes, as seen in drive-up bank windows, where teeth can be inserted and launched to the tooth fairy. (The video begins: "The population of earth has risen continuously since the Great Famine and Black Death of …

A DIY Submarine That Can Dive 30 Feet

It's even got a skylight.<p>Justin Beckerman was walking to high school with some friends when one of them spied an abandoned soda fountain in a parking lot. "Dude, you should go and get that," his buddy said. He knew Beckerman was collecting parts to build a one-man submersible, with the hope of …

How To Make Your Own (Floating!) Concrete Boat

Rock the boat using the physics of buoyancy<p>The Greek polymath Archimedes is said to have solved the mystery of buoyancy in a bathtub. Even if the story is apocryphal, his principle isn't: If an object weighs less than the water it displaces, it won't sink.<p>Even concrete can float. Materials …

Build A Smartphone Scanner To Digitize Your Notes

Got 30 minutes and $5? Then you can add those scribbled notes to your phone.<p>Graphic designer Giovanni Re likes to scribble his many ideas and drawings in paper notebooks. He also wants digital access to them, so Re built an inexpensive scanner using his iPhone. A stand positions the phone’s camera …

Build A DIY Soldering Stencil Out Of A Soda Can

A cheap way to make clean electronics<p>Taking an electronics prototype to the next level often means soldering tiny components onto a custom-printed circuit board. Solder paste applied without a stencil, however, can ooze, cause shorts, and end a project in flames. Systems engineer Felix Rusu devised …

A Toy Box That's Opened By A Kid's Fingerprint

Starting 'em young on biometric scanning.<p>Four-year-old Ewan Gibson loves toy cars. His dad, Grant, a Scottish Web developer, prefers electronics. Hoping to find common ground—and inspired by Apple’s new finger-scanning iPhone—Grant built a biometric lockbox for his son’s cars. He installed a sensor …

6 DIY Gadgets That Will Care For Your Pet While You're Away

Using Arduino or other micro-controllers, build a device to automatically feed, water, or snap photos of your pet<p>The holiday season is nearly here. Along with the pleasures (Ooh, fruitcake!) and anxieties (Ugh, fruitcake?) that accompany this time of year, there's a worry particular to pet owners: …

Make An LED Holiday Light Out Of Pennies

And a lemon, and some other stuff. But mostly pennies.<p>Skip the tangled strings of holiday lights this year and go wireless using a few copper-coated cents. U.S. pennies minted since 1982 conceal a zinc core. If exposed to acid, the zinc dissolves and frees electrons for use in a circuit. The …

How Many Model Rockets Would You Need To Get To Space? [Infographic]

A lot of them! And that's just if you know how to stack them for optimal use.<p>Today, the always-great web-comic XKCD gets Wile E. Coyote on everyone by explaining how many model rockets you'd need to shoot a rocket into space. (Spoiler: you will need several model rockets.)<p>The creator of XKCD, …

How Far Can You Damage A QR Code Before It's Unreadable?

One engineer tried 31 types of distortions.<p>What does it take to take down a QR code? More than I would have guessed, actually. In a blog post, engineer Nick Berry made a quick response code pointing to his company's website, datagenetics.com, then distorted the code in 31 ways to see which …