Tag Archives: mobile applications

Micro Tesla Coil makes a Perfect Stocking Stuffer

Tesla coils are always a hit around here at the office. Giant ones that play music with modern-day chain mail wearing DJ’s, ones thrown together in garages by self-proclaimed mad scientists… But have you ever seen one that can fit in the palm of your hand?

[Ludic Science] just released this tutorial video on how to make it. It’s a miniature diagram of slayer circuitsolid state Tesla coil that’s based on the ever popular Slayer Exciter circuit that was first developed by [GBluer]. The beauty is it’s a very simple circuit to build. It consists of one power transistor, a few diodes, some resistors, and the coil. That’s it!

He even repurposes the magnet wire from a small relay, it’s literally a project you can build from scrap parts around the shop. Awesome.

One of our favorite Tesla coil builds has gotta be [JJ Dasher’s] ridiculous Halloween setup. He goes all out. And if you do ever want to build one on a macro scale, you might need this auto-coil-winder.

[Thanks Andrew!]

Filed under: how-to

Google’s putting song lyrics right into your search results

Despite what your ears may tell you, The Ramones wanted to be sedated (not "a piece of bacon"). There probably isn't one among us who hasn't turned to the oracles of the web to vanquish a pesky mondegreen, and Google's starting to make that process j...

Surprise: CIA-Appointed Panel Finds No Real Problem With CIA Spying On Senate

After the CIA's Inspector General basically revealed that not only did the CIA spy on the network of Senate Intelligence Committee staffers who were investigating the CIA, but that CIA boss John Brennan lied about it and that the breaches were much worse than originally detailed, Brennan appointed a panel to "investigate." Take a wild guess what the panel appointed by the guy who lied about the spying has concluded? If you said that it found serious problems and recommended real consequences for those involved and their leadership, you haven't been paying much attention.

Instead, if you said it would do some hand-wavy talk about "mistakes being made" but recommend no real consequences and downplay the severity of what happened, well, you get a gold star and a special tissue in which to weep about the loss of the separation of powers:
While effectively rejecting the most significant conclusions of the inspector general’s report, the panel, appointed by Mr. Brennan and composed of three C.I.A. officers and two members from outside the agency, is still expected to criticize agency missteps that contributed to the fight with Congress.

But its decision not to recommend anyone for disciplinary action is likely to anger members of the Intelligence Committee, who have accused the C.I.A. of trampling on the independence of Congress and interfering with its investigation of agency wrongdoing. The computer searches occurred late last year while the committee was finishing an excoriating report on the agency’s detention and interrogation program.
The message that we keep sending is, if you're powerful enough, there's almost nothing you can do with any actual consequences attached. Is it any wonder that the intelligence community keeps pushing the boundaries further and further?

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Barilla uses 3D printing to find its next pasta shapes

Pasta maker Barilla is no stranger to having 3D printing improve its methods for churning out products for the masses. Now, it's looking to leverage those tools for some new pasta designs. After a recent competition, the company revealed three winner...

​How to Explain the Sony Hack to Your Relatives

​How to Explain the Sony Hack to Your Relatives

The holidays are a time for eggnog and presents and bizarre credulous rituals involving an old elf-man and his pack of flying caribou. It's also a time to cuddle up by the hearth and begrudgingly explain the latest technology news to your relatives. This week's edition: The Sony hack.


North Korea is suffering a complete internet outage

The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (that's "North Korea" to the common man) has just four networks that connect to the world wide web -- and none of them are working today. "The situation now is they are totally offline," Doug Madory, director...

A Scientifically Accurate Version of “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star”

"Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" has persisted as a lullaby because it's sweet and catchy and encourages curiosity and star-gazing. It also doesn't explain a damn thing about astronomy, something this updated rendition of the traditional ditty strives to correct.


Vague Warnings Of Pending Tor Attack, While Exit Nodes Are Being Seized

Late last week, the Tor Project blog posted a somewhat vague warning about the possibility of an upcoming attempt to disable the Tor network by going after and seizing specialized directory authority servers that are the key to making Tor work.
The Tor Project has learned that there may be an attempt to incapacitate our network in the next few days through the seizure of specialized servers in the network called directory authorities. (Directory authorities help Tor clients learn the list of relays that make up the Tor network.) We are taking steps now to ensure the safety of our users, and our system is already built to be redundant so that users maintain anonymity even if the network is attacked. Tor remains safe to use.

We hope that this attack doesn't occur; Tor is used by many good people. If the network is affected, we will immediately inform users via this blog and our Twitter feed @TorProject, along with more information if we become aware of any related risks to Tor users.

Given that, it seemed especially noteworthy that over the weekend a bunch of Tor exit nodes were apparently quietly seized, according to Thomas White, who ran those servers:
Tonight there has been some unusual activity taking place and I have now lost control of all servers under the ISP and my account has been suspended. Having reviewed the last available information of the sensors, the chassis of the servers was opened and an unknown USB device was plugged in only 30-60 seconds before the connection was broken.
While he initially suggested that the way it was done made it seem likely that law enforcement was behind it, he later toned down that suggestion, saying he thought it was less likely that law enforcement was involved than he originally believed. Update: And now the servers have been returned and while there's still some confusion, it looks like nothing nefarious happened here.

Tor, itself, isn't compromised -- and pretty much all experts agree that it remains safe -- but it's at least troubling to see that there's at least some possible attempt to compromise parts of the network.

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The 14 Most Popular Products of 2014, as Purchased By You

The 14 Most Popular Products of 2014, as Purchased By You

Another year in Deals, great products, user-voted Co-Ops, and gift guides has come to an end. Last year we had such a great time putting together a list of 2013's most popular products, that we've decided to make it an annual feature.


Google unveils the first complete version of its self-driving car

Google had a (not very well-kept) secret when it unveiled its experimental self-driving car: that first example you saw was just a mockup that lacked many of the basics. At last, however, the internet giant has unveiled a complete prototype of the ca...

Amazon Pulls Werewolf Novel Sequel for Surprisingly Non-Werewolf Reasons

Amazon Pulls Werewolf Novel Sequel for Surprisingly Non-Werewolf Reasons

Amazon is no stranger to independent publishing drama. But when it pulled books in the past, it at least purported to have some sort of legitimate reason. In the case of High Moor 2: Moonstruck (the story of one werewolf gang's quest to keep its existence hidden and the extreme lengths to which it goes to protect its deadly secret) that reason appears to be... hyphens.


Here’s Google’s First Fully Functional Self-Driving Car Prototype

Here's Google's First Fully Functional Self-Driving Car Prototype

Google is a front runner in the autonomous auto future. Back in May , Google showed off an early prototype, a hack together little car with an exposed roof sensor and non-functioning headlight stickers. Today, in a short blog post, the team revealed the first fully functioning model.