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Watch an iPhone sort M&Ms by color

Timothy J. Seppala, @timseppala
December 24, 2014
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Not everyone has Minecraft-creator Markus "Notch" Persson's money (or candy room) so the rest of us have to devise our own methods of sorting M&Ms by color. The English blogger behind reviewmylife has an idea that combines, among other things, an iPhone 5s, an Arduino and an eBay-sourced 12V 80RPM motor to do the menial task. Oh, and an awful lot of ingenuity, foam-board and hot glue was involved too -- but you kind of figured that already, right? Unlike the Lego-powered contraption we've seen before, this one takes advantage of the Cupertino smartphone lens' color sensor to ID the candy's hue during free-fall after it leaves the hopper. The author has a step-by-step breakdown replete with his or her hardships (apparently finding the right motors and magnets took some experimenting) and photos detailing each part of the process, in case you're curious. Or, because maybe you'd just like to spend Christmas building your own.

However, there is a caveat: if your favorite M&M happens to be brown you're out of luck. Reviewmylife notes that chocolate's natural color is pretty hard to distinguish from orange and shadow, but that could probably be fixed with LED lighting and some tweaks to the software. Oh well, no one really likes the brown ones anyway. Or do they? Let us know in the comments.

[Image credit: Isaac Brekken via Getty Images]

In this article: apple, Arduino, candy, hack, iphone, Iphone5s, maker, mms, mobile
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