b3ta.com qotw
You are not logged in. Login or Signup
Home » Question of the Week » Amazing Projects » Post 1443382 | Search
This is a question Amazing Projects

We here at B3ta love it when a plan comes together. Tell us about incredible projects and stuff you've built by your own hand. Go on, gloat away.

Thanks to A Vagabond for the suggestion

(, Thu 17 Nov 2011, 13:12)
Pages: Popular, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1

« Go Back

Fatal flaw exposed
One of my chosen subjects at A-Level was Design Technology and each year we had to design, document and build an electronic device.

To add to the pressure, each device would also be entered into the Young Engineer of Britain Competition which culminated in a judging session in London.

The first year I'd developed a device that alerted the deaf that their kitchen appliances had completed their tasks (kettle boiled, microwave finished etc). It was a receiver and transmitter, the former housing a couple of flashing lights. Sounds shit, was shit.

Amazingly though the judges at the YEOB competition liked it enough to give me a commendation.

Having raised my own expectations, I really went to town the following year. The judges seemed to like inventions that were somehow linked to pressing social issues, so scanning the news I locked onto the growing concern of video game induced epileptic fits.

My amazing idea was to develop a circuit breaker that cut the power to the games console after a pre-determined time. Parents could then limit the time little Johnny spent on his Megadrive. You plugged the console into my device which in turn plugged into the mains. My device had a small display counting down the time before switch off so little Johnny could save his progress in time.

The teachers loved it, and felt sure I'd be well in the mix for the title that year. I started practicing my winner's speech.

The day of the judging started well enough. There's usually four judges who come to your stand to ask a few questions of your invention before retiring to consider the winner. The first three asked some fairly basic questions about epilepsy statistics and power regulation which i answered competently.

The final judge came by, took one look at the device and said: "What's to stop the kid from unplugging the console from your device the second the parent is out of sight?"

I didn't win.
(, Wed 23 Nov 2011, 14:17, 9 replies)
Again I hate to be the bearer of bad news...
But someone figured out how to fix that flaw and is probably now rich.

(, Wed 23 Nov 2011, 14:48, closed)

A) Bah - a 4 digit pin - that's an hour a day for a month or so, at most to crack.
B) Needles, carefully inserted into the powercord.
(, Wed 23 Nov 2011, 15:11, closed)

Fair play they cracked the 'just unplug it' flaw, but I seriously doubt they're rich unless there's a new law related to Xbox time.
(, Wed 23 Nov 2011, 16:39, closed)
The rich part was just to rub it in a bit.
I quite regularly come up with game ideas only to find someone else has beaten me to it :(
(, Wed 23 Nov 2011, 17:51, closed)
We did something like that
at school.

We were told to design something to help disabled people. We came up with some musical instruments for people with cerebral palsy.

I have to say, we had no faith whatsoever in the designs - mine was basically a keyboard where you poked your fingers into a hole, rather than having keys. Took me all of about 10 minutes to do, including drawings.

We won, and got our photo in the town paper. I stood behind my mate Bonzo for the photo, so you couldn't see me. Bonzo insisted they credit him as Bonzo, and got into a furious row with the reporter when he insisted he needed his real name.

A complete waste of everybodys time, a shit product that of course never went any further than our crap drawings.
(, Wed 23 Nov 2011, 15:49, closed)
Dislocate your childs thumbs
and then pop them back in first thing in the morning. This should also stop them playing computer games after their bedtime or whatever, which is a nice bonus.
(, Wed 23 Nov 2011, 16:29, closed)
It's a shame
If you'd just wired the cable straight into your design rather than using the existing plug you'd be a gazillionaire by now.
(, Wed 23 Nov 2011, 16:51, closed)
that's a daft reason anyway though,
it's to stop the kid having a fit, not to stop him being naughty.
(, Wed 23 Nov 2011, 18:07, closed)
You developed a device to stop kids playing on the Megadrive?
Not only would I have unplugged it, I'd have thrashed you with it, too.

You monster.
(, Wed 23 Nov 2011, 18:42, closed)

« Go Back

Pages: Popular, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1