Be lured to the dark side as old hardware comes to life
The idea isn’t exactly new, but it still impresses every time. Ever since some bored tech-heads made their HP scanner play Fur Elise, the race has been on to out-do the next guy in hacking anything with a motor to play novelty versions of our favourite tunes.
Today we bring you the ominous tones of the Imperial March from Star Wars, as played by a duo of 3.5 inch floppy drives.
Put together by a Polish student when he found himself in need of some release after passing his September exams, this micro-musical delight is powered by an Arduino board with an ATmega controller chip installed.
There is a wonderful collection of similar projects to be found that spread their tuneful joy, with sounds emerging from solo stepper motors, more computer parts, CNC machines and even laser cutters.
Here is another example with notable musicality that my research led me to… the Phantom of the Floppera.
If this carefully controlled cacophony gets your toes tapping, you are in good company. There are so many more great musical hacks out there that I think we’ll have to revisit this topic on another day…