The 2019 Hackaday Prize kicks off

Subject: General Tech | April 4, 2019 - 12:40 PM |
Tagged: hackaday prize, hack, DIY

The Hackaday Prize has been around for a few years now, and some of the winning projects have been very impressive.  This years process is a little different, instead of having different categories of projects such as Robotics or Power Harvesting the prizes are awarded for the most effective participant at each stage of their project.  Those stages are Concept, Design, Production, Benchmark, and Communication with a $10,000 prize for each, with the final winner taking home $125,000 as well as a residency at Supplyframe DesignLab, who are working with Hackaday this year.

Head over for more details, including seed money available for crowd favourites as well as rules and entry steps.

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"This is the 2019 Hackaday Prize, the worldwide hardware design contest focused on product development. We know you can build a working prototype, and we still want to see you do that. But a great idea should have reach beyond your own workshop. This year’s Hackaday Prize is about taking your product across the finish line, from concept to design for manufacture."

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Source: Hackaday

Intel's 28-Core Xeon W-3175X Processor Listed on Newegg

Subject: Processors | February 1, 2019 - 04:37 PM |
Tagged: xeon, workstation, W-3175X, system integrator, SI, processor, parts, OEM, newegg, Intel, DIY, cpu

In a move that would seem to contradict what we have heard about Intel's new 28-core Xeon W-3175X processor, Newegg currently has it listed as a standalone CPU part for $2977.99.

The official announcement from Intel had only mentioned availability via pre-built workstations from system integrators:

"How You Get It: The Intel Xeon W-3175X processor is available from system integrators that develop purpose-built desktop workstations."

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Product page at Newegg.com

Though not available for purchase (yet?), the existence of this product entry in Newegg's system suggests that the DIY community will have access to Intel's most powerful workstation processor after all, and without a markup over the tray price.

Source: Newegg

Look ma, no keyboard!

Subject: General Tech | January 16, 2019 - 12:34 PM |
Tagged: DIY, dual screen, nifty

Anitomicals C is a inventive computer enthusiast who has built his own version of Microsoft's large PixelSense workspace (once called Surface); a dual touchscreen desktop machine.  It looks like a laptop in that it folds closed but packs desktop components, with graphics handled by a proper GTX 1080 and with a server PSU hidden inside.  At 10kg (22lbs) it is a bit heavy to carry around daily but certainly portable. He has designed it in such a way that input peripherals are superfluous, for those who do not need them or cannot use them.

Check out the quick overview at Hackaday and click through to the build video if you are so inclined.

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"He freely admits that it is a prototype and proof of concept, and that is obvious from its large size and extensive use of desktop components. But he has brought it together in a very tidy Perspex case serving as an interesting class in creating a portable computer with well-chosen desktop components, even though with no battery it does not pretend to fit the same niche as a laptop."

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Source: Hackaday

The Hackaday Prize finalists have been announced

Subject: General Tech | November 2, 2018 - 05:08 PM |
Tagged: hackaday prize, hack, DIY

The final twenty projects for the five categories in the Hackaday Prize have been announced, for Open Hardware, Robotics, Power Harvesting, Interfacing and Music.  Those topics cover a gamut of projects, from building your own motion tracking system through running electronics off of the energy leaked from your microwave to setting up a semiconductor lab in your garage.  As these designs are all open source and part of the competition was to create detailed build instructions you can look through all the submissions for ideas of your own, or a useful project to build for yourself.

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"Over the last eight months, we’ve been deep in the weeds with this year’s Hackaday Prize. It’s five challenges, with twenty winners per challenge. That’s one hundred projects that will make it to the semifinals in the hopes of becoming the greatest project this year."

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Source: Hackaday

They can never stop the signal ... Radio Shack could be back?

Subject: General Tech | July 23, 2018 - 05:51 PM |
Tagged: radio shack, kick ass, DIY

According to Hackaday, 50 of the 147 HobbyTowns in the US will soon contain a 5002 foot RadioShack Express section.  In it you will find electronic components which should go beyond the basic equipment offered in HobbyTown and will more resemble the Radio Shack of yore.  It may soon be that you can pop down to grab some resistors, caps or other random surface mounted kit, along with a variety of the other components you could once grab after a quick car ride as opposed to waiting for the mail order to arrive.  Pop on over if you have an interest in the history and the possible resurgence of Radio Shack.

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"Still, I’m cautiously optimistic that this is a positive development for RadioShack, and I think it’s a win for electronics hobbyists overall. I’ll be keeping my eye on my local HobbyTown for the return of that iconic RadioShack logo, and looking forward to the day that I can pay a buck for a resistor again."

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Source: Hackaday

In the summertime, when the computer is hot ...

Subject: Systems | June 7, 2018 - 06:27 PM |
Tagged: DIY, system build

Why not cool down with some new components or build an entire system; thus avoiding the fiery ball of death which inhabits the sky this time of year?  They are as excited as we on the Hardware Leaderboard that you do not have to mortgage your life in order to afford the RAM and GPU for a new build.  The benefits of competition show in their builds, with their system builds showing a mix of AMD and Intel processors; NVIDIA still holds the GPU choices for now however.  Drop by for a look at what might be your next build.

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"Welcome to TR's Summer 2018 System Guide. This is where the TR staff picks out the créme de la créme of hardware components fit for the most price-effective builds around. We've tried to create builds across a wide range of price points with parts that provide the best performance possible for the money."

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Roll your own keyboard

Subject: General Tech | May 24, 2018 - 01:44 PM |
Tagged: DIY, input, mechanical keyboard

The mechanical keyboard market is huge, with numerous companies offering a variety of designs, switches and keycaps but perhaps you just can't yet find the perfect model.  One answer to that dilemma would be to build your own keyboard from scratch and TechSpot just published a guide to help you do just that.  In part one they provide a bill of materials you can build a shopping list out of, with an impressive amount of choices for each component.  In part two they cover the build process as well as a large gallery of designs which just might inspire you to take this project on.

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"In the world of mechanical keyboards, big brand names like Corsair, Razer, HyperX, etc., take the bulk of the limelight. But what if I told you that every part of a keyboard can be customized? This goes far beyond the aesthetics, so if you're not one for making compromises, it may be time to build your own."

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Source: TechSpot

Go fly a kite? No thanks, I'd rather build a phone out of it!

Subject: General Tech | May 14, 2018 - 03:03 PM |
Tagged: KiteBoard, DIY, cellphone, snapdragon 450

Hackaday is showing off one of the entrants to their Hackaday Contest, a project which describes how to build your own Android powered smartphone based on a KiteBoard powered by a Snapdragon 450.  Inside you will find everything you would expect from a phone, from a cell radio and WiFi service through to an accelerometer and even a daughterboard which supports sending 1080p externally over HDMI.  There is even a Raspberry Pi compatible expansion board to allow you to control the phone, or use the phone to control other tech.  Check out the full project here.

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"Let’s get this out of the way first – this project isn’t meant to be a replacement for your regular smartphone. Although, at the very least, you can use it as one if you’d like to. But [Shree Kumar]’s Hackaday Prize 2018 entry, the Kite : Open Hardware Android Smartphone aims to be an Open platform for hackers and everyone else, enabling them to dig into the innards of a smartphone and use it as a base platform to build a variety of hardware."

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Source: Hackaday

Design a thing, win a prize; change the world?

Subject: General Tech | March 12, 2018 - 01:29 PM |
Tagged: hack, DIY, nifty, hackaday prize

Last years grand prize winner of the Hack a Day prize picked up $50,000 for creating the Open Source Underwater Glider, an autonomous underwater vehicle which uses a buoyancy engine instead of screws to travel underwater.  That makes it silent and able to roam around for a week or more before returning home and the plans and materials are readily available for anyone who wants to build one.

Today the 2018 Hackaday Prize launches, commencing with the Open Hardware Design Challenge.  For this challenge you need only to provide detailed plans of your project and the theory behind it, if your plans are among the best 20 and fit into one of the next four challenges you might just pick up $1000 and move onto the next stage.  The four specific challenges are Robotics, Power Harvesting, Human Computer Interface and Musical Instruments; so if you have an existing project or an idea just burning around in your brain, then here is your chance to shine!  Check out the full rules and details here.

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"The Hackaday Prize begins with 5 themed challenges which run in nonstop series (one directly after the other). Each challenge lasts 6 weeks long, with the first challenge beginning on March 12th and the last ending October 8th. The top 20 projects from each round win $1000 and advance to the finals."

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Source: Hack a Day

Beep beep VROOOM! A remote starter for your PC

Subject: Systems | August 4, 2017 - 03:41 PM |
Tagged: remote starter, microcontroller, DIY

The Tech Report have an interesting project for those interested in building their own electronic gadgets and doohickeys.  They have created a project which uses a NodeMCU open source microcontroller for IoT devices to allow you to remotely power cycle your PC via an RF signal.  The build will teach you about creating your own IoT device, a bit about how to secure said device and insight into the signals which tell your PC to power on or off or to go into sleep mode.  For those already familiar with the components and processes utilized by this project, it is a quick and easy way to design a device that retails for $25, for a lot cheaper.  Take a peek here.

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"Commercially-available remote power switches make turning a PC on and off from a distance a simple task, but our resident microcontroller enthusiast thought of a few ways such a product might be improved. Join us as we see whether those ideas could be implemented for about $10 in parts."

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