Categories
Gadgets Geekery Raspberry Pi

Control your Mac with a sonic screwdriver

I recently got very excited about the news that a company is working on a Dr Who Sonic Screwdriver remote control – a device that translates your over excited wavy gallifreyan gestures into channel changing activity on your tardis scanner or home television.

Hang on, I'll just bypass the door/system password/monster/macguffin

This got me thinking about possible ways to control a computer using a sonic, and how I might go about building an infra-red detector for my Raspberry Pi.

But it seems I don’t need to do this: there’s a cheaper and more versatile device already available –  a Sonic Screwdriver Wii-Remote (for about 7 quid) from amazon

To get this working on a Mac you just need to download a program called Darwiinremote

Switch on Bluetooth, click on discover device, and hey presto! you have a sonic controlled mac. You can map the device to any key or use it as a mouse. Powerpoint presentations will never be the same again. The only thing it’s missing is the sonic sound effect – although I have a broken sonic screwdriver which I’m going to have a look at to see if it can be a suitable donor. Next step is to try and get this working on a Raspberry Pi which could work nicely as an IR emitter for sonic controlled home / tardis automation.

Fortunately there are already a few bluetooth project related posts in the Raspberry Pi forums and IR control is possible already with the Arduino, so I’m quite optimistic. I’ll post results on here.

I have to remind myself that I’m 33 sometimes.

Categories
Science Fiction

Vespiforms

Vespiform attacking a 1920's aeroplane

It’s always curious to see real life and fiction blur – this week’s Dr Who adventure which was inspired by a cover of an Agatha Christie book:

Although Russell T Davies recounted that he was disappointed the book didn’t actually feature a giant wasp.. the book makes it into the final minute of the episode the Unicorn and the Wasp as the Doctor recounts to his assistant that Agatha Christie novels are enjoyed after the year five billion.

The book was Death in the Air, and the cover art was by Tom Adams – there’s a good website with more information about the artist, and a selection of prints available to buy, although sadly none of the giant-wasp-attacking an 1920’s aeroplane. Perhaps they’ll get bombarded with requests from Dr Who fans.