clack-clack-faceWhat you see above is known as the Clack-Clack FACE Typewriter, but in reality, it has the Royal Empress typewriter as the “base”, being a model which was first made in 1961 and over the years, has landed as a possession of Amanda Gelb as a graduation gift. Amanda and her fellow classmates, Jinyi Fu and Quingyuan Chen, decided to wire up the individual keys of the Royal Empress typewriter to an Arduino for tracking purposes, so that it knows what a user types, before sending such information to a small projector that shows off the letters on a sheet of paper that is wrapped around the platen.

Where does the “FACE” bit come in? Well, there is a webcam connected to the top of the typewriter case, where it will rely on the existing brightness level in order to map a silhouette of the person sitting right in front of it, whereas the darkened areas would be filled with letters, resulting in a real time ASCII portrait, now how about that? Not only that, the code itself will also automatically loop the letters that you type, so that even if you press a solitary key, the picture will show up. As Master Yoda said, truly wonderful, the mind of a child is, or something to that effect.

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