Nobody likes going out on a rainy day, and having an umbrella only makes it slightly more tolerable. Alice Zappe made an attempt to change that with a unique and unusual invention: The 8-bit umbrella. Using speakers, an arduino, and a dozen piezo sensors, the 8-bit umbrella translates the pressure from raindrops on its surface into an improvised orchestra of 8-bit tones. The result is a sort of digitized rainfall noise with a bit of an edge to it.
As you can see in the video below, the umbrella certainly works well enough, but the sonic output can be a little frantic. I’m not sure I’d want to listen to that — or subject anyone else to it — while rushing to work in the pouring rain on a Monday, but it’s certainly a fun triviality. A pair of rain boots that make the splash sound from old Sonic games when you jump in a puddle though, that I could get behind.
(via Hacker News)