Competitive Soldering is Now a Thing

At Hackaday, we’re constantly impressed by the skill and technique that goes into soldering up some homebrew creations. We’re not just talking about hand-soldering 80-pin QFNs without a stencil, either: there are people building charlieplexed LED arrays out of bare copper wire, and using Kynar wire for mechanical stability. There are some very, very talented people out there, and they all work in the medium of wire, heat, and flux.

At this year’s DEF CON, we opened the floodgates to competitive soldering. Along with [Bunny] from Hardware Hacking Village and the many volunteers from the HHV and Soldering Skills Village, dozens competed to solder up a tiny kit full of LEDs and microscopic resistors.

The kit in question was an SMD Challenge Kit put together my MakersBox, and consisted of a small PCB, an SOIC-8 ATtiny, and a LED and resistor for 1206, 0805, 0603, 0402, and 0201 sizes. The contest is done in rounds. Six challengers compete at a time, and everyone is given 35 minutes to complete the kit.

via Competitive Soldering is Now a Thing — Hackaday

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E-Paper Badge is a Hint at Great Things to Come

From All the Badges of DEF CON 26 (vol 3) on Hackaday:

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E-Paper Badge is a Hint at Great Things to Come

Friend of Hackaday, Drew Fustini, came to our Breakfast at DEF CON meetup sporting a name badge of his own design. The E-Paper Badge uses a Teensy LC to drive a 2.15″ E-Paper display. The row of capacitive touch buttons to the left allow the image to be changed, and he just happened to have the Jolly Wrencher in the gallery of choices for this picture.

This badge gets me really excited for this year’s Open Hardware Summit which is at MIT on September 27th. This year’s badge is a collaborative effort between a group on Hackaday.io! It’s basically Drew’s badge on steroids, and he told me the experience of working with a team has been really positive. It seems each time the group hits a hard problem or a pile of work that needs to be done, someone on the team grabs it and runs with it. It’s a great example of both certified open hardware and team development.

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Women in Hardware Dinner

Hackaday will be hosting a dinner the evening before the 2018 Open Hardware Summit:

DATE AND TIME: Wed, September 26, 2018, 7:00 PM – 9:30 PM EDT

LOCATION: 321 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA 02139

It’s Open Hardware Summit time of year again and Hackaday is holding our 2nd annual Women in Hardware dinner at The Miracle of Science Bar + Grill.

It’s the night before the Open Hardware Summit begins so you’ll have lots of opportunity to meet and chat with others pre-conference. We love it when you bring your finest blinky, flashy, IoT, hacks, wearable, or other DIY items for us to paw (er…. look at), but bringing yourself is the most important.

Dinner is sponsored by Supplyframe/ Hackaday. The Miracle of Science Bar + Grill can accommodate food allergies and preferences. They ask that you just let them know when you order.

All who identify as women are welcome!

Please RSVP so we can call the restaurant in advance to let them know how many to expect.

Women in Hardware Dinner

This Is Your Last Chance To Design The Greatest Human Computer Interface

This is your last chance to get your project together for the Human Computer Interface Challenge in this year’s Hackaday Prize. We’re looking for innovative interfaces for humans to talk to machines or machines to talk to humans. These are projects that make technology more intuitive, more fun, and a more natural activity. This is your time to shine, and we’re accepting entries in the Human Computer Interface Challenge in this year’s Hackaday Prize until August 27th. This is your last weekend to work on your project, folks.

via This Is Your Last Chance To Design The Greatest Human Computer Interface

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Badgelife, The Hardware Demoscene

Last week, tens of thousands of people headed home from Vegas, fresh out of this year’s DEF CON. This was a great year for DEF CON, especially when it comes to hardware. This was the year independent badges took over, thanks to a small community of people dedicated to creating small-run hardware, puzzles, and PCB art for thousands of conference-goers. This is badgelife, a demoscene of hardware, and this is just the beginning. It’s only going to get bigger from here on out.

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We were lucky enough to sit down with a few of the creators behind the badges of this year’s DEF CON and the interviews were fantastic. Right here is a lesson on electronic design, manufacturing, and logistics. If you’ve ever wanted to be an engineer that ships a product instead of a lowly maker that ships a product, this is the greatest classroom in the world.

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Although badgelife may seem like a bunch of hardware engineers sitting behind a pick and place machine for a weekend’s worth of lulz, this is a masterclass of product design and manufacturing. Badgelife is product development, and unlike many other hardware design jobs, the ship date will not slip for any reason. The hardware must be done on time, and if you’re not shipping all the features you promised everyone will be upset. Badgelife is the best experience you’ll ever get in engineering for production, product design, and manufacturing.

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Hackaday Belgrade: Sophi Kravitz’s Blimp Army

From  on Hackaday:

Hackaday Belgrade: Sophi Kravitz’s Blimp Army

Building things that fly is hard. The constraints on small, battery powered, radio-operated gear already presents a challenge, but adding weight, balance, and aerodynamic constraints takes it to a whole new level. Sophi Kravitz rises to the occasion and discusses each challenge of building a blimp from start to finish in her presentation at the 2018 Hackaday Belgrade conference.

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One of the pleasures of writing for Hackaday comes through the incredible array of talent and experience to be found among our colleagues. We all do our own work, but one is humbled by that which flows from the benches of those one works alongside. Just such a project is the Remote Control Mini Blimp from our colleague Sophi Kravitz. It’s a game involving an obstacle course and a set of remote-controlled blimps. The challenges in such an endeavour have been pushing the limits of what is possible with off-the-shelf components.

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So after a series of versions, she had a PCB with left and right motors on two arms and a lift motor pointing downwards, which she suspended beneath the helium bag. Her controllers are simple enough 3D-printed joystick housings, with another ESP8266 within. The blimp ESP8266 forms a wireless network to which the controller connects.

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