I created a series of electronic Mad Wrapper projects a some years ago. Most of the these projects are based on a “simple” electronic circuit that I reused and adapted for a variety of projects. The basic principle is to use a timer circuit to sequences through the contents of a flash memory part. The output of the memory chip would be connected to different devices. The frequency of the clock — the heartbeat — will be different depending on the type of message you are showing.
Typically for this type of Mad Wrapping, each gift around the tree would have a preprogrammed flash part tied to it. Each flash was unique contained a different message. One project used a set of serial connectors as dongles — each one wired slightly differently.
When I get a chance I will dug up my old notes and write up the instructions for some of these.
Here is a list:
- Morse code for the layman.
- A remote controlled car that spells out people’s initials
- An LED persistence of vision wand that spells out names in mid air when waved around in the dark. (Possibly The Mad Wrapper’s grandest.)
- A set of HitClips sound chips that spoke gift receiver names
- I programmed a Timex USB DataLink watch to, after a countdown, display a person’s name depending on where the bezel was set. Nice hacker watch. Too bad they discontinued it. (Not quite in the same class as the other electronic projects, but fun nonetheless.)