Two technolgies have transformed our lives in the lasty fifty years and they are inextricably linked together. Computing would be limited to what we can do with a Monroe mechanical-electric calculator if it was not for physics and the ubiquitous electronic micro-chip. These are now so cheap that they would give them away with cornflakes if people knew what to do with them. Now is your chance to find out.
Here is a little microcontroller chip controlling a (very small) set of traffic lights. The microcontroller chip costs £1.90 and the other bits about £3.00 but maybe you could hack them from some old kit.
Just think, with a little bit bigger chip maybe you could control an atomic power station (leadership permitting of course).
For something less challenging (as indicated in the pictures below) you could design your own circuit and stripboard then set to work a myriad of solar-powered giant walking insects scaring rabbits away from our precious crops. Well, I bet you have your own ideas. You might use Trimble's free, 3D SketchUp program to model your mechanical parts and then make them on a 3D printer. See our PRODUCTION page for more info.