Ideas for Inspiration
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To date, a total of 26 ideas have been contributed.+ Hot and Cold Takeaway. Submitted by Geoff-2004/11/16-20:02:17
A thermopile based car refrigerator could be altered to also heat at the same time. This would boost its efficiency and allow you to keep your hot takeaway food hot and the icecream cool. Cool!
Takeaway makes your car stink for days. An activated carbon bag would absorb those smells and keep your vehicle fresh. When the carbon is exhausted, the takeway place could take them back for a free exchange on your next purchase.
As fluorescent tubes age, their brightness declines gradually to a point where they are ineffective. The catch is that you dont realise as all tubes degrade at the same rate. A visual age indicator in the form of a peice of plastic that goes black with exposure to UV light could be placed on the tube. It could say "Replace me now"!
When you buy icecream, the spoon is always too flexible for the target. With a re-useable ultrasonic handle, the cheap disposable spoon would take on new capabilities to make short work of the desert.
In summer chocolate must remain in the refrigerator otherwise it will melt. Placing it into the frig actually damages the chocolate which has been specially treated during manufacture with very slow temperature changes to ensure the familiar glossy appearance. It is uncommon for air temperature to exceed 38.5deg C. This would seem to be the ideal melting point for the chocolate and could probably be achieved by judicious addition of selected ingredients that only chemists would know. Cooking chocolate probably approaches a solution but is unpalatable.
Grass never grows where pine needles fall due to some chemical in them. I understand that this is a defence mechanism of the tree to protect the nutrients near its roots. Why not use this instead of other hazardous chemicals to weed driveways etc. An extract couldn't be that hard to make!
If all of your staff use MSN Messenger, why not create an automated alerter from your IT system that talks via MSN Messenger. A .Net application should be able to do this reasonably simply.
With the availability of cheap PCs, always connected internet connections and video cards with composite output, it should be relatively simple to add an information channel to to TV network. Just connect to content providers such as TV guides and display the information on the screen. The video card composite output would be connected via an RF-modulator to your antenna splitter. Tune your TV to channel 77 for instance to see various content that you have extracted from the web. Goodbye to paper tv guides! Have a look at some of the other technical project on this site to see how this can be done.
If both your windscreen and the cover over the headlights of on coming vehicles incorporated polarised plastic with the correct orientation, it would be possible for headlights to remain on high beam without blinding other vehicles. Simple but effective. The windscreen polarisation would also help cut glare for driving!
Imagine if you could use many low resolution images taken from slightly different angles and times to create a single much higher resolution image. Put all those security frames of the bank robber together and zoom in Imagine the savings in the cost of the Hubble space telescope. There are even possibilities of turning film into high resolution 3d 360 deg panaramas.
Some household injuries are small and are handled by a bandaid whereas some seem to bleed for ages and require multiple bandaids before the flow stops. Bandage manufacturers should look at providing say 3 capacities of absorbency from light, medium to large. You pick the names
Your car should be able to automatically warn you or brake for you if you are too close to the car in front. If the mechanism also monitored vehicle speed, it could make intelligent decisions about braking force.
In summer, outdoor fish ponds get disgusting with a build up of algae and the filter must be cleaned regularly in order to keep you fish alive. I envisage a water driven ratchet progressively loading a spring attached to a strainer style filter. After a preset mass of algae and leaves accumulates, the spring fires, splatting the gunk onto the garden. It then restarts the process. Shame if the cat is sleeping in the wrong spot though
I actually built this one. Get hold of a 2m parabolic dish and a high power thermopile. Place the thermopile in the focal point of the dish so that one end is heated by the concentrated rays of the sun. Attach a heat sink to the other end. The electrical connections should then create a direct current that can be used to charge a battery through a diode (to stop charge flowing in reverse at night). A tracking mechanism is required - but that is another idea...
There must be a way of using a conventional scanner (with multiple scans) to create a 3D image. Smart software would look for common features and map them to spacial coordinates.
Wouldnt it be great if you could watch sport on the weekend without the sun shining in your eyes You get sick of holding up you hand to make a temporary shadow. My idea is to use a a pair liquid crystal lenses in the sunglasses to put a black circle about 5mm in diameter between your eye and the sun. Of course the dot would have to move so that your little shadow stayed in the right place when your head moved. This doesnt sound imposible and I would buy one.
My idea is to create a device that can cause traffic lights to think you have been waiting patiently long before you arrive at the red light. In this way, you could avoid stopping if there is little other traffic on the road. Perhaps an strong directional magnetic field would be enough to trigger the sensor. The sensors normally function by sensing a change in the current of a low frequency signal passed through a coil in the road. The metal in a car is sufficient to de-tune the circuit, alter the current and trip the signal.
Are you one of those unlucky soles who is targeted each cracker night? Do you wake up to an explosion and a thud as your letter box hits the shed out the back? How about a letter box that that is effectively cracker proof. There must be many innovative ways to solve this one
Whenever that pesky Microsoft Office wizard pops up, wouldnt it be great if your agent destroyer would popup and blast it? Shouldnt be too difficult. Imagine the graphics
On those hot summer days, there is usually small gusts of wind. The problem is that even with all the windows and doors open in your house, not much breeze flows through. The answer may be as simple as some appropriately arranged curtains. On the side of the house with the predominant prevailing wind, place curtains on the INSIDE of the window. They blow inwards as the gust arrives, allowing airflow into the house. Place curtains on the OUTSIDE of the window on the other side of the house to allow the gusts out but block the return flow. The overall effect is to cause a steady breeze through your house.
Imagine if a the cover of weekly magazines contained a ink that turned pink 7 days after the publication date of the magazine. Readers would see that their copy had expired and know when the next issue was out. Newsagents would also be able to quickly extract any expired copies from their shelves and may even make some money discounting these items - increasing turnover.
How quick could you add all that tinsel and lighting if your Christmas tree was mounted on a rotating base? Just hook on one end and spin as you feed on the decorations. Reversing the process in January should be even easier
If a simple battery operated lawn sprinkler valve could be made to respond to a radio control, non-technical people could install very sophisticated sprinkler control systems. Of course a matching transmitter and control software would be required for your home PC to do the controlling.
It would be great if my bus left a mark (heat trail, electronic timer etc) so that I could tell how long ago the bus last visited my stop. I would then be able to tell how long I might expect to wait for the next one.
A quick add-in to an email service that scans the body text for key phrases that indicate your intention to attach a file. So the phrase "see attached file" would trigger a search for an attached file - if there is no attachment, you get a friendly pop-up reminder "If appears you are intending to attach a file, would you like to do that now?"\n\nCant say how many times I send these emails off w/o attaching anything - makes me look stupid
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