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Arduino hack turns Space Invaders alarm into Gmail Notifier (video)

Daniel Cooper, @danielwcooper
February 6, 2012
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Glaswegian engineer Grant Gibson spied a Space Invaders alarm clock being flogged off cheap ($5) and decided it deserved hacking. When activated, the battery-powered unit scuttled left to right, old-school style as it roused sleepy gamers but Mr. Gibson added a little Arduino magic to turn it into a moving Gmail notifier. Stripping out the battery compartment, he installed a USB-powered Arduino Nano, programmed to poll his email and activate the motion whenever he received a new message. The system is ripe for customization, it can be set up to alert when a front door bell is pushed or a notification received on Twitter -- which you'll be allowed to try as he's included all the details on his blog. The project (including the Nano and Alarm Clock) came to $20 and three hours of his time, which we're understandably impressed by. Head on past the break to see the thing in action and then fling yourself (highland-style) down to the source link to learn how to build your own.





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