blulamp: funny e-cigarette hacking

I had some fun tweaking my blu e-cigarette a little. It is actually quite nicely hackable. Those small plastic containers are actually assembled in a well defined way. You can easily disassemble them and clean them. Though you need to be careful to not use any force disassembling it.

Here you see, how I disassembled one empty smoked container (greetings to my lung here!). I carefully removed the top, black cap first, then worked my way down to the lower parts. To actually get all the not needed stuff out you need to pull out the bottom of the container.

As you see, I removed the small heating coil to actually solder the cables for the LED I wanted to power. Then I soldered the cables first to the LED I put through the black cap and put on top of the container. Then I soldered the cables to the contacts of the bottom of the container and closed the container.

And taddaaaaa… ready is blulamp a tiny flashlight build on top of the blu-container system. You should kinda remember which way you insert the final container to not swap plus and minus contacts for the LED accidentially. But now comes the funny part…

blulamp video in action

…it only lights up, if you blow and suck air through the USB-charging-port. LOL. Smoke your USB to create light, yeah, soooo cool!

Why do I blog this? I just thought, hey I carry a battery with me all the time, why can’t I use this as a flashlight at the same time? I still need to work on the power-on/off-switch though. Right now it is a safety feature which I fully grasp. But maybe I find an elegant way to occasionally bypass this safety net when I operate this thing in blulamp-mode.

Black Girl Nerds

I found a really nice wbsite: Black Girl Nerds.

Black Girl Nerds is a place for women of color with various eccentricities to express themselves freely and embrace who they are. This is not a site exclusively for Black women. It’s for ALL women who are just as nerdy as we are and the men who love and appreciate us. I named this site Black Girl Nerds because the concept of Black women as geeky-dorky beings is somewhat of an anomaly. It’s against the order of things in the “Black Girl” world. We represent a wide array of diverse women who embrace all cultures and refuse to conform to the status quo.

This community does not have an exclusionary purpose. The term “Black Girl Nerd” is not intended to be derogatory nor is it racially biased. It is a term of endearment to all women like me who have been attached to a stigma that is not an accurate representation of my personality or my idiosyncratic behaviors.

This is a website for every nerdy girl that can finally come out of the closet and tell the world that they are PROUD to be who they are—no matter what anyone says, does, or think. This is a place where you can truly be yourself and not be judged by others. This site welcomes girls of all races, but it was called Black Girl Nerds because it is a term that is so unique and extraordinary, that even Google couldn’t find a crawl for the phrase and its imprint in the world of cyberspace. The mission is to put an end to that and know that many Black Girl Nerds exist on this planet.

This community encourages other bloggers, web creators, and the like to create niche sites such as this one to spread to the world that being a nerd is a lovely thing. In fact, being a nerd is a gift and should be highly revered. It is not often that you will find an unsuccessful nerd. Therefore be nice to your fellow nerds—you never know, you may be working for them one day.

Why do I blog this? This is a nice website which gives a focus to content which is not adequately represented in the usual media. I like to add this marvel to my diverse mix of websites I like to visit.

beeline hacking: power off switch

I was part of the beeline first users. Beeline is the fuzzy navigation assistant for biking in urban areas. The battery powered gadget needs to be charged via Micro-USB-port to be ready for use.

Beeline is the award-winning connected navigation device that puts you in charge and makes journeys fun again. Simply, stylishly and safely find your way around the town or city.

For some weird reason the engineers at beeline did not provide a power off switch but instead wrote in the manual that as long as beeline is not used it will stay „in low power mode“. This never the less meant for me to always have a device out of battery power when I needed it most.

Well… a power off switch… that would be great!

So I fixed it! And this is how I did.

1. Open the device

You can easily open the device at the two tiny slits at the back of the device after you removed the rubber-cover which holds the device on your bike.

2. Remove the battery by slowly pulling the connector

The white connector can be easily removed without a lot of force. Hint: Mark the upper side with a permanent marker to know which way is UP when you later on reconnect it.

3. Cut the red cable on the battery in the middle

Since the cables are very short, be extra careful to cut in the middle. This leaves minimum reserves if for some reason your soldering the cables needs another try after screwing the cable on one side. Be extra careful with removing the isolation from the cable ends.

4. Drill a small hole next to the USB port hole

I used a tiny electric drill machine for this and needed to enlarge the hole after the first hole was too tiny for the cables to go through. NOW: Pull the cables you wired to a switch through the hole to the inside of the device BEFORE trying to connect it to the battery again.

5. Take a common switch and wire it up between the red cable ends

6. Put the cables and the battery back into place

Please isolate the connections. I used hot glue to isolate the cables you may be more ambitious here.

7. Be careful that everything fits well, do not use force/pressure

8. Put the closing back on the device

9. Connect the device to the charging cable to see if everything works well

10. Switch your beeline ON and OFF as you like

Hell why did I need to fix this manually? Please be aware that you disconnect the whole battery by switching the device OFF. This means that for actually charging the battery you need to CONNECT so put the device in ON mode. After it was actually charged to 100% you can switch it OFF and leave it that way until you actually need it.

Now beeline is ready when you are!

Beeline in the rain

Update 10.2.2019
Today I used the modified beeline in the rain outside. Oh, well and it had power and worked so well. But I find the display still difficult to read. Basically due to the high amount of reflections the screen gives. And the visual distortion of even a small amount of raindrops is quite puzzling to me.

Why do I blog this? I really was fed up with the device being always out of battery power when I needed it. So this was a more than necessary move.