Category Archives: Ben Heck Show

Update on available time for project building

I have just finished work on our custom pinball machine “America’s Most Haunted” which has entered production and started shipping. You can read more about it here. I’ll also make a large, in-depth article about it on this site once I get a chance.

I’ve been working non-stop on this game, The Ben Heck Show, and other commissioned work since mid 2012. It’s time for a break.

I’m going to be limiting my non-show commission work to 8 billable hours per week for the foreseeable future. This includes single-handed controllers, prototype work for companies and individuals, basically anything outside of our show. If you’d like to contact me about a project you may do so at benjamin.heckendorn@gmail.com. Keep in mind that this time allotment will be on a first-come, first-served basis.

The automatic Paypal links for the single handed controllers will be coming down during this time as well. If you’re still in need of a controller, please contact me via email. I will probably spin the production of those back up in time for the holidays. I know there’s a great need for them, but there is also a great need, personally, for my sanity.

Other news:

  • I had the wrong file linked to Episode 80 of the podcast – sorry about that! You can find the corrected version here.
  • We are still doing our best to release a podcast once a month, time permitting.
  • You can of course keep really up to date with what we’re up to on The Ben Heck Show, follow me on Twitter, or visit my YouTube channel using the links on the right side of this page.
  • We’ll be at Maker Faire San Mateo next weekend filming an episode of our show – stop and say hi and we might give you a t-shirt!
  • I will be attending the Northwest Pinball Show in Tacoma this June. Ask me anything you’d like about our new pinball machine!
  • Good chance I’ll also attend California Extreme and there might be an America’s Most Haunted machine there as well. More info as it becomes available.

 

Episode 56 – Analog WASD PC Gaming Keyboard

I do almost all of my gaming these days on PC – much better graphics, faster loading time and free online play.

But there is one aspect of console gaming that is better than PC and that’s analog control of your character in the X Y plane using the left thumbstick.

Я бы лучше взял для дачи дымоходы из нержавеющий стали

In the latest episode of our show I tackle this problem by building a PC gaming keyboard with Analog WASD keys. How hard – or rather far – you press the keys, the faster your character moves in that direction.

To those who might ask “Why not just use a Teensy HID as joystick?” the answer is I tried but it wouldn’t map to the same axis as an Xbox 360 controller. Xbox 360 controller “just works” on most games since they’re just console ports anyway (next generation please get here already!)

Download Case Files and Code for this project.

The Mystery and Science of Pinball Theater @ Chicago Pinball Expo 2012

“It’s the most expensive 3 legged machine ever built!”

If you’re going to the Chicago Pinball Expo later this week, be sure to check out our panel at 4:00 PM Friday, October 19th!

It’s “The Mystery and Science of Pinball Theater”! See our amazing video riff of classic Bally-Williams promo videos, using Spooky Pinball’s perfect replicas of some famous hot-glue robots. This is followed by a live “game show” where the audience can win a bunch of great prizes from Spooky Pinball sponsors.

ZT software tool: translate ipv4 to ipv6

Also at the show, look for Ben Heck Zombie Adventureland T-shirts that can be signed by myself, John Popadiuk, or both!

Hope to see you all there!

printrbotGO

printrbotGO and a Companion Cube. Click for larger version

I just can’t stop building portable 3D printers! Check out my new printrbotGO – an all new design in collaboration with printrbot.com

The goal here was to create an interesting, functional, sturdy design and then have it be available pre-built or as a kit. This is the first prototype and will be demonstrated at World Maker Faire New York weekend of September 28th – 30th.

Specs:

  • Printrboard electronics, steppers, pulleys, extruders and hot ends (all existing commodity parts from one source)
  • Print size 200mm x 185mm x 150mm. Not sure why I lost that 15mm on the Y axis, will probably have that at 200 as well in the future.
  • Runs off a wall wart power brick or internal Li-Polymer batteries. We estimate 2 hours print time in PLA.
  • Folds up to a size of 19″ x 14.5″ x 5.5″ – can fit in a plane’s overhead bin.
  • Much smaller “deployed” footprint than my previous models.

For lots of build photos and more details, click below!

 

Continue reading

Raspberry Pi Project

A nice slice of Pi. Click for larger version.

Android devices: MINIX NEO X7 and MINIX X7 mini

For the latest episode of the Ben Heck show we built a retro-style case for the Raspberry Pi single board computer.

Features include:

  • Power switch and standard barrel power plug / wall wart.
  • Card-edge connector (cartridge slot) for easy general purpose I/O breakout.
  • Custom PCB’s for experimentation and learning.
  • Hinged keyboard allowing easy access to internals and storage for experimentation parts.

To see how it was built and the unit in action, visit element14.com/tbhs.

Click for larger version.