The Solarbot project is one of the longest running Polyideas projects, and is currently working through hardware design to come up with a polished prototype. The concept is relatively simple- solar panels gather the most energy when they are pointed at direct sunlight, so tracking the sun can create maximum power from the panel.
Unfortunately, most systems like this (called 2-axis solar trackers) are usually quite large, fixed installations and very expensive. We're looking to make one that is portable, cheap, and relatively small- and very hackable.
As you can see from the pictures, this project has seen many iterations- starting with a "luggable" model designed to house large lead acid batteries and currently a highly portable design with very few parts. Hopefully we'll see this finished by summer of 2014. We have also tried various computing platforms, starting with a BeagleBone and ending up on an Arduino Uno. We'll add more photos here as we progress, ending with a full article.
This project covers all the details of building your own DLNA streaming server on a Raspberry Pi. This is great because a Raspberry Pi is much cheaper many other options, and it makes a great weekend project.
In the spirit of a nice afternoon project, I'd encourage you to use what's laying around if it's close to the specs here. But if you're going to buy all these parts ahead of time like I do, hopefully it will help to use the product links below. While I love Amazon, please try and support great suppliers like Adafruit, who have a great forum community, customer service and tutorial section!
You can read the full post here.
Here at Polyideas we're big fans of power efficiency- we're convinced it's the next big thing. Some people may hear 'efficiency' and think going without- but more and more these days there are clever solutions to saving electricity. In Southern California, this means saving money!
This project focuses on a common area of power usage in the home- the humble PC. Sure, laptops are more efficient- but sometimes only a PC will do. Many of us leave a PC on just in case we need to log onto it remotely. If we're not using it, it's just sitting there using electricity- and usually quite a bit of it. The most efficient desktop PCs still use around 35-45 watts when idling. Gaming PCs with big video cards can easily top 200 watts!
The PiSwitch solution lets you hook up a Raspberry Pi to your PC to control your power and reset buttons. The Raspberry Pi only uses about 1 watt of power when on, so it's more economical to leave it on all the time. You can read the full article here.
This is the photo gallery for my YouTube project for the GPS clock using an Arduino Micro. You can find the YouTube video here.
This project is currently a work in progress- it involves an Arduino Yun that monitors ambient temperature for a small cabinet and controls two fans to keep the cabinet in the proper temperature range. The Arduino sketch also uses Temboo to post the temp, humidity and fan speeds to a Google Apps spreadsheet. Until the full project is done, you can find the code on Github here.
This project is still in the early stages, but the plan is to use the two Pololu DC current measuring circuits to plug inline with two USB power adapters, and send you a tweet when your USB gadget has finished charging. As I have more to share, I'll keep adding it here until I have the full article written up.
Here you'll find various film photographs I've taken over the years. My favorite cameras are the Yashica 124G and the Pentax K1000.
Here are some of my favorite digital camera photos taken over the years. I'm mostly a Nikon guy, with dabblings in the D70, D80 and D90 space- most recently I started using a D600 and love it.