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.

Earning Kudos From The Nation

At a time when the clown quotient in local politics continues to creep higher, I thought it was kinda nice to see The Nation magazine offer up a tribute to Detroit City Councilwoman JoAnn Watson recently. Watson was named by the magazine's John Nichols as the country's "Most Valuable Local Official."

Watson has led fights for greater transparency and accountability in government, has gone after predatory lenders and has promoted a multifaceted Detroit Marshall Plan to revitalize her economically battered city. She's proudly controversial and remarkably successful at getting local, state and national officials focused on fundamental issues.

As I wrote back in October, I've always placed Watson among the most fearless politicians in Detroit, bold and unflinching in pronouncements that very often go against the popular political grain in the state. For instance, her recent call for a massive infusion of federal cash to bail out the city certainly didn't win many friends among those who get constipated at the mere thought of billions in tax money flowing to cities like Detroit--but that hasn't muted her one bit.

From the bailout proposal to her fight to shutter the Detroit incinerator to her opposition of privatization of city jobs, Watson continues to be an advocate of progressive values as well as a lightning rod for criticism from the media and others. Personally, I have immense respect for her activism and ideas, even as I realize that many around Detroit disagree with her vehemently and some others just don't like her. But like her or not, at least with JoAnn Watson you're never confused about where she's coming fr0m--because she never hesitates to speak her mind.

In a Detroit starved for backbone in its leadership, I consider that a plus.

What're your thoughts on Watson and her MVP from The Nation? Deserved? Why or why not?

(Hat tip to the Metro Times for this one...)

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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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 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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