New Life For Old Tech

Tech Tips

We all have outdated cell phones (of the smart and dumb variety) in a junk drawer, or ancient consoles and games hogging up space in our parents’ garage. My mother threatens to throw out a Shaq-Fu Genesis cartridge that I left when I moved. Three years later it is still on a shelf next to the holiday decorations collecting dust since the Clinton Administration. However, if you have a little bit of talent, time, and a bunch of old gadgets and gizmos, you can upcycle and create unique tech decor for your home or office.


Yoshi Would Be Proud

 Your vintage Nintendo devices probably still work (My original Game Boy from ‘89 can play Tetris without skipping a brick!), but you’re probably playing all of your old school favorites on an emulator now, so it’s not that big of a deal to see your Nintendo consoles and accessories change careers. You can easily hack an N64 controller into a pen and paperclip caddy with USB outlet, or use your GameCube as a tissue holder. You can’t play  Mario Kart on it anymore, but it’ll be the hub of the office during cold and flu season.


game cube tissue box

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From N0Ob Blaster to Grill Master

 Upcycling usually means turning outdated devices into something new, but some folks forego the outdated portion and just mod existing tech. The XBOX 360 is still relevant, but what would you say if I can turn that console into a lean, mean, fat-fighting, grilling machine? Turning consoles into grills isn’t a new thing. Back in 2006 when the PlayStation3 was released, a few entrepreneurs (I’m using that word liberally) took their recently purchased, $500 gaming system that they camped out for and decided that it was better off grilling packages of $1.99 hot dogs. I didn’t say that all of the ideas mentioned in this article had to be good ones.



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When Your Phone is Too Old for ET to Use

 What can we use old cell phones for besides an authentic addition to your Zack Morris or Gordon Gekko cosplay?  I know I have everything from my first Nokia (Don’t lie, Snake was a much better game than Flappy Bird) to my Razr and a few early gen iPhones all sucking up space.  If you’re artistically talented or have a bit of engineering know-how (You probably have both if you’re reading this) you can rig up a remote car starter with your phone; however it has to be able to make a few calls (Hello, cheap prepay!).


RIP CDs DIY Projects

If you still have CDs lying around (When are you going to need a physical copy of the Backstreet Boys’ Millennium  or a free trial disk for AOL?) it’s time to stop waxing nostalgic and morph your old media into something useful. You can create beautiful mosaic picture frames using broken CDs. Of course, the big decision you’ll have to make is which CDs are worth destroying. I think the ghost of Kurt Cobain would understand if you smash your copy of Nevermind for the sake of art. Now that you’ve broken all of your CDs, what are you going to use the jewel cases for? Five jewel cases glued together is all you need to create a planter or a storage cube to organize small items. You can even make smaller planters and storage cubes if you’re a real old school tech hoarder and have floppy disks in your office. If you can’t find them, be sure to look on your bookshelf near the copy of Windows 95 for Dummies.


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