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A Dashboard for My Apartment

I originally bought my iPad back when tablets were becoming a fad. I had expected to use it for everything from reading ebooks to playing elaborate new games. But no, it has been sitting idle, collecting dust, for years. Even the promise of a shared, coffee-table web browser has fallen flat. Whenever there's a task to be done, I instead reach for my laptop or my phone. After all, as phones get larger and more capable, and laptops get lighter and extend their battery life, the sweet spot that tablets offer gets squeezed out from both above and below. So for the past year or so, my usage has been limited to ordering food online with friends, passing the iPad down the couch. But now I've finally figured out the perfect job for it. I've mounted it right next to my front door. My previously-unused iPad now serves as a dashboard and control panel for my apartment.

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Grandma, can you pause the story?

I remember smiling to myself when my granddaughter asked me to “pause” while reading her a bedtime story. To her, the language was appropriate. She has only known a world where you have the power to “pause” by simply pushing a button.

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Theremin Fountain with C# and the Arduino Uno

My Project Idea

I want to create a fountain that can entertain guests. Namely, I want to be able to control the flow of the fountain with my hand. Recently, at our last summit, Jay Hannah introduced me to the Leap Motion, which is basically a Kinect for the hands. A little research introduced me to Arduino, an open source solution for programming microcontrollers.

The fountain will be built using base electrical components. The actual physical basins for the water may be taken from an existing fountain, but I plan on making that decision later. This post details my initial goals for the project, as well as the first steps I took towards a side-project, and the coding hurdles I had to overcome to complete the side-project.

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