There are so many things you can do with an Arduino – they are amazing microprocessors! One thing I have done is make what is called a color organ. Think of it like a giant graphic equalizer that uses LED strips. It has a microphone and turns on the LED strips proportionally to the level of audio.

Its kind of hard to explain, but here is a video of My Color Organ in my living room:

For more information on how to build a Color Organ, click here.

— Mike

Ever hear of a rocket stove?

September 13, 2015

IF not, you should – they are amazing! You can make them for about $10 with a 5 gallon bucket and some concrete. The problem is that it takes about a month for the moisture to get out of the concrete. If you don’t wait, your rocket stove will crack.


I didn’t want to wait, so I bought one. Its a SilverFire stove. It works great! I just go out in my yard and pick up twigs. All I need to make a meal is just a handful no bigger than my thumb.


The model I got is called the SilverFire Hunter stove. They also make a backpacking version called The. Scout It only weighs 12 oz.

I just finished building a HDTV antenna and it works great! Being in a fringe area I needed something with high gain. This HDTV antenna is called a Bow Tie antenna because the elements look like a bow tie.

I am picking up about 35 HDTV channels from 70 miles away. Sure beats paying for cable!

So if you want to build an HTDV antenna, here are the plans.

— Mike

Yes, my son is with his friend Derek, at the SXSW movie and music festival this week. Not only are they there to hang out and enjoy some great music, but they are also playing there!

He went down to San Fransicso for a week before they went to the SXSW festival to practice. But before they left, my son had the opportunity to fulfuill a lifetime dream, when he “traveled to forest moon of Endor!”. I’m pretty sure mind altering substances weren’t involved, as it was in theĀ  Muir Woods National Forest, where the Endor scenes for the film “Return of the Jedi” were filmed.

Then yesterday, they made it to Audtin, Texas for SXSW!

The band is called Perhapsy, and according to their myspace page, their music is Indie / Ambient / Experimental.

According to Derek’s blog, they will be playing at the following dates and times:

Friday, March 19th @ Casa De Gallo (2604 Diaz St.), 7 PM

Saturday, March 20th @ Canvas, 11 PM

Good luck boys!

OK, I finished installing a Tune-o-matic bridge on the electric guitar I am building. Man was that scary! The reason being that if you are off the slightest bit on drilling the holes for the tune-o-matic bridge, you get to start over!

Well at least for me, because I wanted the mahogany wood of my electric guitar to have a natural finish, not painted. I suppose I could have painted the guitar body, but that isn’t what I wanted.

So if you are thinking of installing a Tune-o-matic bridge, you might want to see how I did it. I don’t know if its the best way, but this is what I came up with.

So here is a link on how I installed my tune-o-matic bridge in the electric guitar that I am building.

— Mike

Its been a while.. Sorry!

February 22, 2010

Yeah its been a while. Apparently I have been busy. So the other day at work we had a computer donated, but it was missing the hard drive because they were concerned about the data on it, which I understand, but there are ways to completely erase the data off of a hard drive so you can donate it to your favorite charity.

— Mike

Who knows why, but I have started building an electric guitar. So if you are interested in folling this project, here is my Electric Guitar Building website.

The other day my son dropped his cell phone into a bucket of water. fortunately, he had the smarts to pull the battery as soon as he got a hold of it. This probably saved his cell phone from damage. So when he got home from work, and told me the news, we followed the directions on this site as to how to recover a wet cell phone.

The method describe is a bit scary, but it worked! And my son didn’t have to buy a new cell phone! Needless to say, he was happy about that!

— Mike

So the other day, my boss came to me and told me his computer won’t boot. Not only that, but that he had data on there that he needed. And no he didn’t put it on the server! So he was sweating bullets.

So I was able to pull his data off of the crashed hard drive using Ubuntu. So that was a close call, and I think he learned his lesson.

Let’s hope so!

— Mike

With Microsoft’s new Office 2007, Word now usese DOCX files, which can’t be read by earlier versions (Thanks Microsoft!)

Here is an article on how to be able to read docx files in Microsoft word.

— Mike