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DIY Universal Remote


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3 replies to this topic

#1 of 4 Bobofbone

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Posted February 06 2013 - 04:19 PM

Around Christmas, I got into a discussion with a a design engineer from Google and her computer -engineer husband (my daughter and son in law) about the possiblility of programing an I phone to use wifi and the codes from existing remotes as a DIY universal remote control. While I think it can be done (there are already manufactured versions-they've been reviewed here) we liked the idea of coming up with something ourselves. One of the stumbling blocks to using the codes from my pile of remotes is that they use infrared. The other is wife approval factor-she asked if we would be infringing on any program copyrights if we could actually do something along these lines. This led to the reminisce about the US and Soviet space programs in the 1960's. NASA spent a bunch of taxpayer cash coming up with a pen that could write in zero gravity You can buy the current version at REI. The Russian's had a more direct approach-they used pencils. With this in mind, we came up with something more "Space Age" Materials used: Assembly: Construction details: Finished prototype: Operation in "Front Lit Mode", using a SureFire E1B: This generates 120 lumens on my lap, and makes anybody that is partially night adapted in my theater to blink a bit. This little project started more as a joke, until I got something like a Harmony Remote. But I've found it's actually quite useful. I used a router to round the edges to keep it from catching, and the whole thing fits in the seat consul, and I don't have to fish around in the dark looking for the remote-all the ones I need are together. It's also been getting good reviews. Everyone that see's it, after they stop laughing, start making comments about how it keeps all the remotes together, is small enough to be useful, and is too big to misplace easily. I know of at least one going together somewhere else. It was made from scrap wood, a cabinet handle from the back of one of the drawers in my tool tower, some stain and finish out of the garage and some Velcro with sticky sides from Lowes that cost less than $10. It's also given me second thoughts about the Harmony universal remote I originally was considering. Sort of like pencils in space.

#2 of 4 DaveF

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Posted February 06 2013 - 06:34 PM

Superb. I had a similar (superior, ahem) idea of remotes wrapping the sides of a 2x4 a few years back. But I failed to implement. But you did. So hats off to execution with style!

#3 of 4 schan1269

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Posted February 06 2013 - 06:48 PM

That reminds me of the time I bought some "larger than normal" clothes pins, made some labels* and turned a few of them into "chip clips"... *the current(at the time) gf had a label maker...that had been collecting dust...guess what else she wanted...

#4 of 4 schan1269

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Posted February 06 2013 - 06:54 PM

I also re-purposed some of the rest of the clothes pins...but their "label" isn't exactly "rated PG"...




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