Arduino Uno

The Arduino folks have announced a new board, the Arduino Uno. I’ve worked with the Arduino Duemilanove, the board it’s replacing in the past and found it to be a great starting point for a project. In fact I still have another Duemilanove sitting around ready to go for the next crazy idea I have. The upcoming Arduino Ethernet also looks very interesting, if not more interesting.

No announcements on pricing just yet. Very cool stuff for hardware hackers.

Update [9/26/2010 @ 10:50 PM EDT]: Looks like the going price is $29.95$30, about $5 more than the Duemilanove.

Email Alarm System

I’ve been in the mood for some hardware hacking for a while. Recently at work I thought it would be nice to have a way to know if an important (emergency) email came in that required attention. These fire-drills are just part of the job. I have multiple computers and screens so an on-screen alert isn’t always effective. Audible alerts don’t work either because speakers are only connected to one computer at a time and often headphones are plugged in. I need something more independent.

My solution was to build a USB alarm system: Two rotating LED lights to get attention visually as well as a 76 db piezo buzzer which chirps when the system is activates to help get attention. The buzzer only chirps and only when the system first invokes so it’s not an annoyance. It’s enough to get attention, but not enough to bother others. It has multiple chirps so that I can potentially setup multiple alert types.

Now we can really be on the ball!
P1 Bug Report Alarm
Obligatory goofy office signage

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