Physical Web Hack Motivates Developer Productivity with Remote Control Sugar Buzz
Kevin Huber
Developer | Scrum Master

Physical Web hack motivates developer productivity with remote control sugar buzz.

So maybe it doesn’t do the actual delivering, but it helps make it easier by creating a shortcut to an Electric Imp enhanced hardware/software candy machine hack we learned about through Jameco.

This hack lets users control the SnackMan candy dispenser through a website instead of the built-in motion sensor. We took a few liberties with the code and linked a Physical Web beacon to the final controller page. Now, users can walk up, and using a Physical Web browser/scanner of their choice, they can vary the time the motor operates on a sliding scale. More time… more candy.

What’s to keep someone from just accessing this page from outside of the immediate vicinity? The same URL Tags feature from the PHY platform we used in the Fivestone Video Wall, that’s what. URL Tags are dynamically generated based on the time and that specific beacon to keep control local and secure.

Anyone outside of the immediate area could know the machine’s URL, but they won’t be able to control the bot unless they are standing within sight of it and had just accessed that page from the beacon broadcasting. A timer on each tag keeps people from abusing the privilege.

If you plan on building your own, you should know that Pretzel M&Ms are too big, but regular M&Ms, Jelly Belly jelly beans, and Skittles work great!