As the prices of common household items such as DVD players drop, the amount of faulty or used ones appearing on the side of the road seems to increase - however interested hackers and enthusiasts can take advantage of this by removing useful parts like stepper motors and LED displays. This is exactly what Gough Lui did by removing the LED status display from a discarded DVD player. With a little work he discovered the pinouts for the module and thus used an Arduino-compatible board, real-time clock and a small amount of circuitry to re-purpose the module into a digital clock, for example:
That's pretty cool, and fitted inside a small enclosure would make a serviceable timekeeper. To find out more, visit Gough's interesting website. And we're on twitter and Google+, so follow us for news and product updates as well.
When working on your own projects that require accurate timing - consider using our super-accurate real-time clock module. Based on the DS3232, it has a temperature-controlled crystal oscillator for accurate time keeping, battery backup and 236 bytes of non-volatile memory for user data. For more information, see our modules page.