led displays are a joy to watch. I read numerous articles
on the web describing their construction in detail and was
planning to build one myself. But yesterday, I came across
a chinese made spinning display at a local street market.
They were being sold at dirt cheap rates of Rs.30 (bargained
down from 50). The moment I saw it, I knew I could hack it
and add some patterns of my own.
my niece and nephew played around with it for sometime, I
decided to dissect the cute little toy. I was in for a rude
shock. Where in the world did the circuit go? The actual body
holds only 3 batteries, a switch and the motor, but where
did the circuit go?
As a classic chinese toy example, the circuit was nicely tucked
away inside the spinning head itself. And what did it consist
of? Just two blobs of ICs and a capacitor :-(
I could see my hacking plans simply washed away…
the display with its 32 different patterns is quite entertaining.
I could see the amount efforts put into it while designing
those patterns and stuffing them into those itsy-bitsy silicon
video grabs of the toy in action
and one more thing, the toy was suppose act like a fan and
cool you with its breeze but none of that happened. In fact,
I had to remove the fan for the display to spin properly!
But in the end, not a bad investment at all ;-)
17 April 2006