Arduboy Business Card Plays Tetris, Might Be for Sale - TIME
TIME Gadgets

Business Card Plays Tetris, Might Be for Sale Soon

TAKE MY MONEY!

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The above video showcases a credit card-sized whatsit with a built-in screen, control pad and two buttons. It plays Tetris! If you’re not convinced by now that we’re either at or very near the pinnacle of human ingenuity, I’m not sure I’d ever be able to convince you otherwise and I’m not sure it’s worth your time to keep reading this. We should amicably go our separate ways.

For the rest of you, this project is called Arduboy. It’s about a millimeter and a half thick and apparently packs north of nine hours of battery life. Its creator, Kevin Bates, created the proof-of-concept you see in the above video and has plans to roll out a Kickstarter campaign to sell these things, complete with a website where people can share other types of software and games they create for Arduboy.

Bates writes on his site that he wants to use Kickstarter to raise $820 to cover licensing costs. I write here that he’ll probably be able to raise that amount faster than he can clear the first level of Tetris. He’ll also probably have to sell the cards without a game loaded onto them to avoid legal issues, though.

No word on how much a final version would cost, but you can visit Bates’ website to read more about how the project came together, complete with photos of the Qdoba and REI gift cards he used to test some of the early builds.

My business card plays Tetris [YouTube via The Next Web]

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One year. One city. Endless opportunities.

Buy it in Detroit

Every now and then, I see something original and think, “Why didn't I think of that?”

That is how I feel when I look at Bought in Detroit, a new Web site started by city resident Andrea Farhat.

What makes this site so envy-worthy is its simplicity. Its only purpose is to provide an online space where people can post pictures of things they purchased in the D.

“The idea behind the site is to raise awareness for local businesses and show the variety of things available IN the city,” Farhat said.

Users upload photos of everything and anything: dental floss, a blueberry muffin, old English D cuff links. There's a graphic novel about Johnny Cash from Leopold's Books. Stella Artois Beer from Palm Liquor. A red mug from the Bureau of Urban Living.

In the market for a new lid? Check out the sweet newsboy's cap from Henry the Hatter. I'm in lust with a light fixture with a Detroit map on it from City Bird.

And there's the genius of the site. Suddenly, I feel the urge to go shopping in Detroit. And that is a surprisingly interesting feeling for this (now) suburbanite.

Farhat, a student at the College for Creative Studies, launched Bought in Detroit last month. It actually grew out of a class project. She was studying where you could buy things locally and studying statistics about the amount of money leaving the city. So Farhat came up with the site to draw people to Detroit.

One of the most common misconceptions you'll hear about Detroit is there is no shopping in the city. In fact, one of the media's favorite stories (and that includes Assignment Detroit, thank you very much) is about how there is no grocery stores in Detroit. Not true – especially if you consider Eastern Market and dozens of smaller, independently owned grocery stores here.

But I digress. Back to my go-to girl Andrea.

Indeed, even Farhat struggled initially when she moved to Detroit from Ann Arbor by way of Lincoln Park to get a degree in graphic design from CCS. Getting to know a new city is challenging for anyone. She is still finding her way around, Farhat admits.

“I can't find everything I need, but the nice thing about doing this site is I might discover whatever it is was was there all along; I just didn't know where to look,” she said.

The site also is great because it is a collaboration among its users. They are creating the site, bit by bit.

“Being only one person, any guide to shopping in the city I created would be nowhere near complete so I decided to make a website where everyone could contribute,” Farhat said.

Each photo and cutline tells a story. There is the item, how much it cost and where it came from. But the viewer (namely, me) is left to wonder: What was going on when someone bought that salad from PJ's Lager House? Why did someone want a metal dog from the Detroit Artist Market for $65?

Every photo makes me think: There are interesting things happening in Detroit, and now I'm intrigued to find out more. (And I just love shameless plugs for Detroit businesses.)

One debate Farhat is still waging internally and on the site is whether people should be allowed to post illegal items purchased in Detroit. Yes, some smart-alecky guy asked if he could post pot or crack cocaine on the site. Uh, no. Farhat is all about personal freedom, but let's try to keep it clean. Detroit has enough problems without the jokers stepping in.

The site also has a Facebook fan page with about 75 members. Most are in Detroit, but there are others from Texas, Oregon, California and Arizona. There's even a Twitter site so you can find out what new items were posted.

It's just one little Web site. But it feels like it could be so much more.

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 Arduboy Business Card Plays Tetris, Might Be for Sale - TIME
TIME Gadgets

Business Card Plays Tetris, Might Be for Sale Soon

TAKE MY MONEY!

+ READ ARTICLE

The above video showcases a credit card-sized whatsit with a built-in screen, control pad and two buttons. It plays Tetris! If you’re not convinced by now that we’re either at or very near the pinnacle of human ingenuity, I’m not sure I’d ever be able to convince you otherwise and I’m not sure it’s worth your time to keep reading this. We should amicably go our separate ways.

For the rest of you, this project is called Arduboy. It’s about a millimeter and a half thick and apparently packs north of nine hours of battery life. Its creator, Kevin Bates, created the proof-of-concept you see in the above video and has plans to roll out a Kickstarter campaign to sell these things, complete with a website where people can share other types of software and games they create for Arduboy.

Bates writes on his site that he wants to use Kickstarter to raise $820 to cover licensing costs. I write here that he’ll probably be able to raise that amount faster than he can clear the first level of Tetris. He’ll also probably have to sell the cards without a game loaded onto them to avoid legal issues, though.

No word on how much a final version would cost, but you can visit Bates’ website to read more about how the project came together, complete with photos of the Qdoba and REI gift cards he used to test some of the early builds.

My business card plays Tetris [YouTube via The Next Web]

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Quotes of the Day »

NICHOLAS FISHER, expert at Stony Brook University in New York who took part in a study which found that bluefin tuna contaminated with radiation believed to be from Fukushima Daiichi were present off the coast of California just five months after the nuclear meltdown.
 MIT Student Creates Connect Four Playing Robot for Course Final - TIME
TIME technology

This Robot Would Very Much Like to Play a Game of Connect Four With You

Game on

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When the singularity finally hits and artificial intelligence takes over everything, at least we know some of the robots will know how to have a good time — like this Connect Four-playing bot, programmed by MIT student Patrick McCabe.

Users can choose between four levels of difficulty and can even ask for a hint if needed. Head over to McCabe’s website for a detailed breakdown of how the machine works. In the meantime, watch here as the bot beats McCabe in the first round — and even taunts him a little bit before clinching the game.

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