Aug 29 AT 12:44 PM Clark Wimberly 7 Comments

TouchPad mod: a wall-mounted Twitter stream. Come join us!


At this point, I probably don’t need to recap the story. But for the uninitiated, HP discontinued their hardware the other day, dropping the TouchPad down to $99 (for the 16GB version). Everyone and their mom went out and bought one, us included. While we wait for Android to hit the TouchPad, we thought it might be fun to explore some other uses for this little guy. And since I don’t have OS-level coding abilities, we decided to take a walk down the mod path.

Our first TouchPad mod was turning the tablet into a wall-mounted Twitter activity stream. For a while now, we’ve been toying with the idea of giving our power users a way to stay in direct contact with our office (for tips, questions, etc). As a quick proof-of-concept, I’ve whipped together a Twitter-based solution that just monitors for the @androidandme handle and sends a live alert to my TouchPad (complete with a Mario coin sound effect).

For this mod, I kept things relatively simple. Most of the modifications were done on a cheap picture frame from Target, leaving my new TouchPad completely pristine inside its new home. I even drilled out a hole in the side of the frame, allowing the TouchPad to charge within. While I’ve still got some changes left (cleaning up my matte, painting/sanding the hole I drilled, and notching the matte with a space for the TouchPad’s phyiscal button), I’m far enough along that I just had to share it with you guys. Check out the gallery below for a few shots of how things came together:

IMG_2509 IMG_2522 IMG_2524 IMG_2526 IMG_2527 IMG_2529 IMG_2532 IMG_2533 IMG_2534 IMG_2520

Now comes the fun part. For the next few hours, I’ll be live streaming this TouchPad over on ustream (update: We’re done with the steam, but thanks for joining us today! We had fun answering your tweets live!). If you want to help us test it, just send a tweet to @androidandme. In fact, use the box below to make everything even easier:

While we continue to wait for Android, we thought exercises like this would be a fun way to kill some time. Are you guys doing anything super-handy with your new TouchPads? If so, let us hear about it in the comments below. Or send us a live tweet, straight onto our wall!

Clark is a developer living in Austin, Texas. He runs ClarkLab, a small web firm with his wife, Angie. He's a big fan of usability, standards, and clean design.

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  • Taknarosh

    Very cool, definitely going to test this out!


    Looks sweet guys.. Good job!

  • Clark Wimberly

    It only took a couple hours, most of which was sitting around scratching my head planning.

    Now that I’ve done it once, I’d say it’s about an hour-long project. The main trick is finding a nicely-sized frame. I just used square wooden dowels as spacers and the tablet is held in there so perfectly.

    I’m thinking for the final matte I’m probably just going to go to a framing place and let a professional cut it for me. Mattes only cost a couple bucks but are crazy frustrating to cut perfectly yourself.

  • SliestDragon

    Really cool. Now I wish I had one to spare :D

  • Ziggy

    You should create a Facebook account just for this, and stream that to the TouchPad. Then you could say something like “So-and-so literally posted on my wall”, and for once, ‘literally’ would be used more-or-less correctly.

  • pekosROB

    ok so I tweeted but did not see anything or hear a coin on the ustream broadcast, is this broadcast not live?