Category Archives: Cool Projects

Did ya know? – M5’s Sealed Concrete Floors

Hey everyone, did you know that this past summer, a huge operation that involved the UMass Physical Plant, some of the M5 staff, and several volunteer ECE students led to the sealing of M5’s concrete floors? Well now you do.

The somewhat dusty floors of M5 has been banished using technology! And all it took was laboriously shuffling the furniture and general stuff between Euler’s Good room (formerly known as the Good Room), the Pi Room (formerly known as the Round Room), and the Shop in order for the crew from the Physical Plant to apply several coats of sealant on the concrete. The greatest effect of this is that the floors are much easier to sweep, and consequently reduced the amount of dust in M5. So enjoy one of M5’s newest features, and help keep M5 clean!



Impomptu Kirby dance on the clean floors:
<( ** )> <(**<) (>**)>  ^( ** )^

Saturday workshops at M5

Let it snow… Let it snow

While NE anticipates a storm

very little know

M5 is ground zero.


It is 12 pm, October 29th, M5 opens its doors for engineering students to come expand their traits upon Chuck’s Xbee and Sean’s PCB design workshops.

Why Xbee? Well… XBee radios can be used to replace long wires in distributed electronic projects. These radios can replace serial communications links as well as pass digital and analog data. They are small (the size of a quarter), inexpensive, and can be configured to run a long time on a coin-cell battery. Applications include monitoring power consumption, instrumentation and control of distributed processes, investigation of network topologies and protocols, and cool gestural enhancement of electric guitars. Chuck’s hands-on seminar focused on digital and analog line passing and serial communications.

Across from the XBee workshop room, other students learn PCB layout and circuit prep for manufacture. By using Eagle Editor, Sean and his assistants, Edmar and Rodrigo, took students through the fundamental steps involving circuit layout/design and circuit preparation for manufacture.The coolest thing about this workshop is that students get the opportunity to materialize circuits that are products of their own ideas for their own purposes. The workshop allowed these engineering students to absorb the necessary specs behind the organization of circuit components before the design is sent for the ultimate PCB product.

**Pictures will soon be posted…

-Edmar G.



Cool Projects: DIY Minority Report Gloves

Tony Hyun Kim and Nevada Sanchez, students at MIT, have developed DIY Minority Report gloves all for <$100!

“The glove allows users to zoom around a map application, like using a smartphone touchscreen without the screen — the gloved hands can “grab” the map and do the familiar pinching motion with their fingers to zoom in.” [PopSci]

Video & More Details

Via []


Cool Projects: Skinput

Chris Harrison & his team of researchers, bored of using the same old input devices, have developed a new input system appropriately named Skinput. By projecting interfaces onto the arm or hand and then using a special arm band to pick up specific acoustic signatures, your body parts can now be used as input devices. There is a video, more pics, and a detailed pdf on Chris’ site.

Via []