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The Big Book of Hacks: 264 Amazing DIY Tech Projects

4.03  ·  Rating Details ·  90 Ratings  ·  14 Reviews
Fire up your soldering iron, charge up that drill, and get ready to hack! From a tiny theremin to a watermelon keg, from an automatic cat feeder to a glowing mousepad, the ingenious and hilarious projects in The Big Book of Hacks are perfect for aspiring makers. And it's all brought to you by the DIY masters at Popular Science magazine.

Four comprehensive chapters help you
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Paperback, 256 pages
Published October 23rd 2012 by Weldon Owen (first published October 2nd 2012)
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Natacha Pavlov
Oct 17, 2012 Natacha Pavlov rated it really liked it
Shelves: review-copy, diy
This book is great for people who enjoy hands-on work and like to hack—aka take apart and re-use objects in new ways.

There are 264 projects for rookie and seasoned hackers split into 4 categories: geek toys, home improvements, gadget upgrades and things that go. Some of the simpler projects I recall include installing an aquarium in an old TV, creating a supersize game of operation, and a variety of uses for old CD’s, duct tape, aluminum foil and tennis balls. I was amazed by bigger projects li
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Wendy
Jul 20, 2013 Wendy rated it liked it
This has some interesting projects--I was especially interested in the ones for converting things to alternative energy sources, and the ways you can use parts of dead computers for other stuff--though a lot of them seemed kind of silly to me. But making things is always cool, and even for dumb projects, you still practice skills. No, what mildly irritated me about the book was this excessive trying-to0-hard "bro" vibe that screamed "We're not nerds! This stuff isn't nerdy I swear! Chicks will d ...more
LAPL Reads
Aug 10, 2016 LAPL Reads rated it really liked it
Much can be written about the popularity and permeation of DIY (do-it-yourself) culture into our everyday lives. The emphasis on self-sufficiency and learning to do things without paying someone, or relying on an expert, has encouraged many to become modern-day homemakers and handypersons by learning to knit, install drywall, bake bread and start a vegetable garden. The library, if anything, is an incubator for DIY with its multitude of programs and books that encourage self education.

A subset o
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Melody
Jul 06, 2013 Melody rated it really liked it
I wanted to do about 90% of the projects in this book. Sadly, only about 30% of them fall within my current skill level. Even if you don't know which end of the screwdriver to hold, this is an engaging and interesting book. The photographs are clear and informative, the instructions mostly comprehensible to me, the list of resources exhaustive. Who doesn't want custom-fit earbuds? Or a cardboard hammock? Or a foot-operated mouse, for Pete's sake. So much cool stuff, just waiting for you to make ...more
Carrol
Feb 08, 2013 Carrol rated it liked it
The title of this book is misleading for those who equate "hacks" with electronic devices. Yet there are still some interesting, though not always useful, projects in the book. I, for one, do not find lawn mowing so odious that I would attach my mower to a rebar pole in the middle of the yard so that the mower can do its thing in ever-decreasing circles. If you like taking things and making them into something else, there's lots of useful ideas in this book. It's just not a hacker's book of tric ...more
Kim
Aug 05, 2013 Kim rated it it was amazing
Shelves: diy
From 5 minute projects requiring little skill to seriously challenging projects that require multiple settings to accomplish, this book offers a wide range of options. While some projects seem silly (shower beer caddy), and others seem dangerous (hold a flaming ball in your hand), others are useful (things to do with an old coffee can), or simply fun (lounge on a cardboard hammock)!
Jon
Jan 04, 2015 Jon rated it it was ok
Shelves: tech
There are lots of projects in this book ranging from the moronic (toenail clipper catapult?) to the downright dangerous (flame tornado?), very few of which inspired me to action. The ones that almost inspired me to act were eventually cast aside after asking the question "is this useful or just neat?"

There are neat projects in this book, they're just not for me.
Sherrill
Jul 23, 2014 Sherrill rated it really liked it
Disclaimer: I don't have a DIY cell in my body. With that said, I love this book! So much fun! Kept it out of library so long I'm beginning to feel guilty. It's even witty! Really should be a 4.5. There is something for everyone. Yes, even I could successfully complete a project. Example: using a CD, the Beer Spill Blocker (p77), aka a "Quick Hack." :D
Jennifer Rummel
Nov 25, 2014 Jennifer Rummel rated it really liked it
Mix of easy and hard projects - some great for library programs and others are bit older. Looking forward to testing out some ideas with teens next year.
Vi
Jan 02, 2013 Vi rated it really liked it
Shelves: pop-science
A fantastic book that is lavishly illustrated with appeal to browsing. The explanations can be a bit light, but the variety of projects at different price points and technical skill level is a plus.
Marcy Graybill
Jan 27, 2013 Marcy Graybill rated it liked it
Though not a book you really sit down and read, it was fun to thumb through and see all the ideas. I actually found a couple I wanted to try.
Michael
Nov 17, 2013 Michael rated it liked it
There were some really cool ideas, but as a book on a high school reading library, it does not belong. Too many alcohol references or "how to's" for alcohol.
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