Invisible Graduation Cap Hack Slips Under the Radar
In the US, we really only break out the academic regalia--good old caps and gowns--for special events, and most people only run into them at high school and college commencement ceremonies. Many schools are perfectly happy to let their graduates use their regalia as canvases, showing off everything from personal aesthetics to engineering pride.
But what do you do if your academic institution is too set on enforcing the solemnity of the occasion to let you express yourself? If you’re Victor of RazorConcepts, a high school graduate as of last Saturday, you hack your way around the dress code.
Infrared LEDs give off light that isn’t visible to the human eye, but on video it shows up bright and shiny. Victor installed four IR LEDs at the corners of his hat, powered them with a 4.2V lithium polymer battery, and programmed a microprocessor to control their output. They blink an invisible message in Morse code: “Congratulations class of 2011!”. Thanks to careful tailoring, his mortarboard looked no different from those of his classmates during the ceremony, but any video recordings of the event will have picked up the clever congratulatory beacon.
Regardless of the dress code violation, I can’t imagine his former high school can get too mad about that highly inventive workaround.
Well done, Victor, and congratulations from GeekTech!
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