GameBoy Color Mod Part 1 - The Painting

Right now I'm working on a GameBoy Color (GBC) mod I've thought about for some time now. Since it's not finished I'm not going to state what it is (and those of you who do know, please refrain from commenting on what the final product will be). This entry will be the beginning of the log of the mod.

First, I had to take off the casing of the GBC to get to the insides. It wasn't hard to get past the three-side-headed screws that Nintendo is infamous for. I took an eyeglasses flathead screw driver and, despite some bending of the flathead, unscrewed the casing off.

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Image hosted by Photobucket.com

I apologize for the fuzziness of most of my pictures. My camera isn't all that great and I tried to get as close as I could. I'll describe the location of certain objects I had to bypass in order to gut this thing.

Now, the first obstacles I saw were the three screws holding down the main board of the GBC. Luckily, these screws are Philips head. Apparently Nintendo thought they were out of the clear of modders when the put those ingenious three-headed screws on the outside. In case you can't find them in the picture, all three are located in in the white portion of the GBC. One is located almost directly in the center of the white portion (the copper-colored dot) and the other two are located above and below it. Those are the only screws I encountered on the main board. The other obstacle was the connector that went from the main board to the LCD screen on the front of the GBC (look on the right side of the picture. Do you see the large brown object with a white stripe running parallel to it? That's it). This wasn't all that tricky, either, for there are two plastic pins on each side of the white foundation that holds the connector to the main board. I simply slid the pins out until they locked in place (I couldn't pull them all the way out, but then again they probably weren't designed to). I then gave a slight tug on the brown connector and it popped right out. Not so hard, right? With that out of the way I stored the main board of the GBC in an anti-static bag to protect it until I'm done with the outer casing. I also gathered the loose items that were under the main board (D-pad, A, B, Start, and Select buttons) and put those in a safe place as well.

Now that that problem was out of the way, a new one followed. The LCD screen that the connector was attached to was adhered to the front GBC case itself. I searched on the net for a way to take off the LCD screen and possibly the clear panel of platic in front of it, but after an hour or so of searching I gave up and decided to do it my own way. I grabbed a roll of electrical tape and taped everything that was clear, smooth, and shiny. I didn't want any paint to get onto the screen now did I? Since the screen was curved in the corners and on the bottom edge and I had tape that only traveled in strait lines, I had to improvise by cutting specific shapes for the corners and bottom. I also had to use the end of a flathead screw driver to push the tape down on the edges to get into the grooves in between the plastic casing and the clear screen. That took a good 30 minutes or so, but I'm happy with the result:

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I was almost ready for painting when I noticed a lone piece of metal in the battery compartment of the GBC. It was to complete the circuit between the two AA batteries, and with some prying of a handy-dandy safety pin I was able to get it out.

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Now I was ready. Plastic is a tricky thing to paint on, and not any regular old paint will do (especially when trying to spraypaint it). I primed the GBC with a can of American Tradition Plastic Primer (I bought my can at Lowe's, but you can buy it at any home-improvement or paint store). After allowing it to dry for about an hour (I placed the case pieces under a fan), I used chrome spraypaint to finish it off. I don't know if I'll do a second coat or not. We'll see.

Product so far:

Image hosted by Photobucket.com

Current status: Drying.

To be continued...


Windows Longhorn 5048 Screenshots

Here are a few pictures of the new OS from Microsoft. It looks a whole lot like Windows XP except that it has a new grey/metal color scheme to it. WindowBlinds will probably have a skin of it available for XP soon if one's not out already.

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gameboy floppy disk drive

Very awesome mod/hack. Worth checking out.

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Episode 2: The Revenge of These Green Saviors

Episode 2 of the podcast formerly known as ROTSS has been posted. This week join Patrick Norton, Kevin Rose, and
Leo, as they discuss journalistic credibility, car stereo support for iPods, LAN Party addiction, and more. Due to repercussions from G$ about the Screen Savers part of ROTSS, Leo, Patrick, and Kevin announce a contest to rename the show. Patrick will generously donate a box or two of his crap that he's found around his house and Kevin will give away 5 t-shirts from jinx.com to the 5 finalists. E-mail your suggestions for the new show name (show name suggestions go in the e-mail title) at leosprogram(at)gmail(dot)com.

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Sushi-making Robot

I just found this by visiting the Daily Rotation which brought me to boingboing.net which then led me to the discovery of a sushi-making robot!

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MPAA Paid Off NYPD To Stop Bootleggers?

The New York Post is reporting that two NYPD officers are being investigated for taking illegal payoffs from the MPAA for busting sellers of pirated DVDs. According to the article, MPAA investigators would tell the cops where pirated movies were being sold, which is perfectly legal, but, after the bust, they'd give them several hundred dollars in gratuities, which is illegal. Naturally, the MPAA denies all of this. It sounds like the MPAA thinks that it's above the law.

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Controlling your home with your PSP

Yet another reason why to get a PSP. Ever since I've read about all the things you can do once you hack into the PSP, I've wanted one. Now that you can hack your PSP to control your entire household I can't wait to get my hands on one. The only problem is I don't have any money to buy one. That's why I'm going to give freePSPs.com a try. I'll have a reference link posted up soon. So, yeah, if you have the time and about $6 or $7 to spare, help me get one by completing an offer for me.

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Congress legalizes ClearPlay

Congress has passed a bill that will allow manufacturers of DVD players to incorporate a new technology into the players that will allow the editing out of course language and sex scenes.

One rep. of Congress says,"The intent of movie-filtering technology is to sanitize movies to protect children."

Then why do have this filter called the movie rating system?

If parents don't want their children to see violent/explicit content on DVDs....then don't let them watch the movie! It's as simple as that, people.

Want to read more? Click here.

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Great Call For Help Torrents

Here's a list of the Canadian Call for Help torrents. For those of you who don't know about Call for Help, it was a tech show on TechTV way before the G4 merger and was second in popularity to the original Screen Savers before everything went down the drain. I've been searching for something like this for a long time, and I can't wait to fire up Azureus and see what I've been missing out on. Finally I can envy you Canadians no longer!

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The Return of the Screen Savers is on the net!

Leo, Patrick, Kevin, and Robert all join in on the debut of ROTSS (Return of the Screen Savers). Finally the tech is back! Leo mentions that he may want to make it a video cast in the future, but if he keeps this up weekly I would be satisfied. For those of you who have podcasting software, point it here.

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Firefox: "Always Use Protection" condom Poster

One word: clever.

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Moonshining Techniques Help Americans Fight High Gas Prices

Inventor Paul Cavalloro says you can run a plant in your kitchen from a gas stove and the resulting fuel, created from liquified apples, corn or other raw materials, would cost you only $1.40 per gallon – plus it burns cleaner and more efficiently than gas.

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Run Linux on Gmail

Hack-a-Day has a link to an article on how to run Linux off of your 2 gig Gmail account. It's in the early developement stages, though.


Drag and drop Firefox tabs

The miniT Firefox extension lets you re-order open tabs by dragging and dropping them in the tab bar. Firefox just keeps getting better and better. :)

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Turn an Atari 2600 Joystick into a PSP Battery

There’s been an increasing demand for an external battery pack for the PSP due to it’s somewhat short battery life. Someone has done just that by using an old Atari 2600 joystick.

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Video: Behind the Scenes at Systm

Keith Harrison from Systm (A new internet show from those who brought you The Broken) has posted a "behind the scenes" video. It's little over 3 minutes in length.

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Nintendo Themes Done A Cappella.

All of you favorite old-school NES theme songs done a cappella. Hear for youself.

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I Love This Mod...

Earlier this week I gave a lot of thought about my iPod and it's average battery life of about 8 hours. I wanted to extend that so much, but I didn't want to open it up and upgrade the battery from the crappy ones that Apple places in them (I don't want to void my warranty), so I thought about making an external battery back that could charge up my iPod when I'm not near a power outlet. I had never done a mod before, so this could be quite challenging for a n00b in this field. Plus I'm not all that well educated in voltage and wiring, so the thought of accidentally frying my iPod came into mind if I had too much power going into the 'pod at one time. Then one visit to Hack-a-Day brought me to a page of someone who had made an iPod battery pack out of an Altoids tin. Now I have a solid foundation and hopefully I'll be able to pull this mod off. This will definately help me out when I make my trip to Japan later in the summer.


Convert Music Easily and Quickly

Acoustica converts between mp3, wav, and wma file formats. The link is to a trial version only, and I'm not sure how much it is to register. But a handy tool if you want to convert your downloaded Napster songs to transfer them to an mp3 player that doesn't support the wma format (ie. Ipod), because this program just blindly converts the file regardless of where it came from.

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$2 Bill Usage Results in Arrest

A man at Best Buy pays for a $114 installation fee in 57 crisp new $2 bills... then finds himself under arrest.

After reading this everything I buy from that store (if I ever go in there again) will be paid for in change.

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Homemade Mech Robot Walks in Japan

One Sakakibara Kikai has pictures and even a movie of their Land Walker robot which appears to work. Powered by a 250cc gas engine and armed with several guns (including 2 that fire Nerf-like balls) it stands at a little over 3 meters. What makes this one interesting is that it is actually armed and it is piloted instead of being an exo-skeleton.

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Zip file password cracker

This beauty cracks passwords of protected zip files, very useful if you need something to do the job.

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Great program for all your coding needs. Includes syntax highlighting for HTML and other coding languages. Best part: it's free. Enjoy.

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SmoothWheel Firefox Extension

This Firefox extension allows you to smoothly scroll through a web page making it easier to follow with your eyes. Scrolls kind of like Google Maps.

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Happy Birthday Gmail!

Gmail turns a year old and ups e-mail storage to 2 Gigs in return. Looks like Yahoo! has more catching up to do.

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