Sunday, February 15, 2009

What would you like to see me design?

It looks like I might have the opportunity to work on some techy projects at work. But the best part is that we don't even know what the projects are going to be yet. At this stage, the goal is just to create some cool stuff. I can't tell you what hardware we'll have to work with yet but you can bet it'll be heavily based on NB2 stuff. So what would you like to see me build? I want ideas. I want suggestions. I want the weirdest, craziest ideas for cool little gadgets and applications that you've always wished someone would build for you.
As an idea, I was hunting around Harvey Norman today for an Ethernet-USB adapter. Basically I want to have a portable hard drive available to my home network but without needing to have any one specific PC on. So the adapter would simply present the portable harddrive to the network so anyone can access. Even better would be the ability to limit certain PCs to certain folders of the hard drive so everyone can have their own storage space. (BTW, I did find one but it was $199 - way too pricey!)
Another idea might be a USB - Hard disk drive adapter so you can use one of those cool Everio hard disk based camcorders and dump the contents to a much bigger portable drive every so often without needing a PC/laptop.
So give me your ideas and let the world know what hot new gadget it needs.


  1. can you design a fire detector that can live on the outside of a house and raise an alarm inside if there is a large fire withing 10k radius of house?

    There are gadgets on the market for stopping dogs barking but how about something different, like when the dog barks we hear a different sound? A sound altering device for pets!!

    Cheers, Wendy

  2. USB to Ethernet sounds like a good idea. Small enough so you can stick it on the back of any device like a printer or protable HDD and it's instantly on the network. Web management interface etc.

    Or, a mobile phone locator. A device that transmits something that makes a mobile phone respond, and then something to detect it. A specific application I have in mind would be to locate lost people in the bush (assuming they have a mobile on them)or police trying to track someone down so from the phone point of view no one has to do anything except have it turned on. Activate the device to make their phone repsond/transmit and try to pin point their location with a directional antenna or more serious direction finding setup.

    Or, a solar powered IP based camera, with satellite connectivity :) Ok, sounds little over the top, but imagine a device that you could deploy to just about anywhere that will send back a photo whenever there is enough power to do so. Using satelite means it could be stuck on top of a pole the length of long highways to see traffic etc and no cabling or external power would be needed. Solar power would build up in a capacitor or some other long lasting power storage unit until there was enough charge to power up, take a photo and send a radio bust strong enough to make it to a satellite. UDP and IPv6 based so you never run out of IPs and don't care about retransmissions. Add tamper switch so that if someone takes it off it's mount it snaps a pic.

    I'll have a few more cans and dream up some more stuff, and If you make it rich I want some of it ;)