There is still a business opportunity for a website to become the definitive ‘best…’ site for a given locale. I know there are ways to get recommendations for various products and services but depending on what you are looking for, the sites vary, and so does the quality of the data you get as a consumer. What I look for maybe 50-60 times a year is for the best… in Philadelphia. Best Air Conditioner repair, best plumber, best sushi, best dentist, best tailor, etc. Imagine a search engine that was locally focused where we could search for these things and we would get recommendations with reviews from regular people and more importantly, reviews from experts in the given fields. It’s time for the internet to focus more on useful tools instead of social connections and toys..
So I spent the day dutifully soldering and attaching parts together in hopes that something would be born, and I’m happy to report that Meggy JR is alive! It was a really painless and easy build and I think anyone could have done it. It just required a lot of patience and care. And I only made one mistake.
The mistake was that I had not pushed this button assembly into the board far enough before I soldered it into place. After I had it all together I found that I couldn’t put the cover on because the button was too high. So I had to painstakingly de-solder it. But I couldn’t do that and pull it out at the same time so I had to enlist the help of an assistant (my beautiful Heather). After playing with it for a few minutes we were able to get it out and then properly reseated and soldered back into place.
The moment of truth was a bit nerve racking. Having build a lot of electronic things in the past I can say that usually they didn’t work the first time I turned them on. But Meggy responded with a beep and a rainbow on the display the second we turned it on!!
All told a great building experience. About 5 hours total.
Now that it works I’m going to have to play with writing a game for it. I’m thinking of a Tetris like thing (at the suggestion of our friend Emily).
Ok so I saw this blog post on Evil Mad Scientist (which up until now I had thought was only a cool blog) about this handheld video game thing called a Meggy JR and I was like : “hmn. I want one of those things!” but apparently it was a kit of some kind so I was like : “I bet I can write them and offer to pay a little more if they send me one pre-built” but then I saw that it was just $100 and figured I’d give it a shot myself. When I was a kid there was this comany called HeathKit that would sell you stereos and calculators and stuff, but the catch was that they were in kit form and you had to build them. My dad ordered a morse code key kit and we built it together (well, he did and I ‘helped’) over a couple of nights. I always think back to then and wish there was something similar. (see other old heathkit products here)
I had expected the Meggy kit to be a schematic printed on some piece of paper and some parts in a bag. Wow, was I wrong. The kit came in a bunch of little organized bags and had an amazing manual that went over each step with great detail for the beginner and expert alike. I was very impressed and this totally reminded me of the old HeathKit days.
Anyway, so I’m going to start building it today. If it works I’ll let you know!