Creative Uses for Computer Parts

So you now are a pro.  You know where the hard drive is, what it does and what it looks like.  You have removed and installed RAM.  Checked out the central processor chip.  Removed wires and parts from a motherboard.  and NOW we are left with all of these interesting parts.  Before we recycle them we should consider ways that we can HACK the parts we have into something new, useful and creative.

Maybe we won’t be making a monitor aquarium…0626af7e0464940a517388813c4b691b

or motherboard coffee table…circuit-board-coffee-table-1

or even this super cute mouse mouse…

and definitely not a toilet made of computer parts…


but I just know that with a little online searching, spending some time with the parts on hand in the electronics workshop and some brainstorming with others, you can find something very cool to create for you or someone else.

Below are several links to check out to jump start your brainstorming.  Share your ideas with others. You never know when or where a good idea may be hiding.

Pinterest Computer Part Reuse

Amazing Computer ReUse

Upcycled Computer Parts

Local Artist Reuses Computer Parts to make Art

Advanced Coders CLICK HERE


This week is the Hour of Code event.  All across the world students and life long learners everywhere are learning a bit about computer programming through the awesome games available at CODE.ORG.

Despite the fact that all third through seventh grade students are currently involved in working toward 10 hours of coding, we are going to have some fun with HOUR OF CODE this week too.


So click the image below and let’s get started…


Logic Gates..Or Why is your smartphone so hot!!!

These are diagrams of logic gates…


logic_gates-14a976e1fc31080fcc3logic gate circuit board

Check out the BrainPop video for Logic Gates HERE.

  1.  Let’s have a look at logic gates as they relate to lighting a lightbulb.  A simple task right?


2.  Try out logic gates with the LOGIC GATES SIMULATOR

Play this Game.  Be sure to read ALL instructions.

Complete the worksheet.  Partner work is fine.  It is challenging.

Other Resources



You call it Art. I call is Design. What’s the Difference?

Have you seen any of these products or graphics before?  How about the products?  Some may look familiar while others shown here are completely new.  All of the images in this article share something in common, they are all examples of design.

Design is intended to accomplish a task, but the role of art is to transform the viewer.

If many of these images also look like art than join the club.  There is a difference between art and design however.  

Art asks questions, while design answers them.

Designers ask questions about their product: What problem are you solving? Is it ergonomic enough? What will the psychological response of the average user be to this particular arrangement of design elements? Will it cause them distress, or will they have a good experience?

You can appreciate a design even more once you know why it was made. It’s not just a pretty picturethere’s a concrete reason why it exists and a concrete problem that it solves. Design geeks love to get into the nitty-gritty of what makes a particular design work so well. Simply put, designers use the left (mathematical) sides of their brains to create work that resembles something from the right (artistic) side.

Logo Design Project

The evolution of 20 corporate brands

The purpose of a logo is to identify your company, to make a positive first impression.

Whatever it is your company is, your logo should communicate that. What makes a good logo? Well, I think we can boil it down to five points. A strong uncluttered image, comprised of only the most essential elements. We don’t need any extra stuff. The imagery that’s used should be appropriate for the type of business that you are in. The imagery should compliment yourcompany name and any type that’s used should be in a readable font. Font singular, because we are probably not going to be using more than one typeface in the logo and that font should not compete with the logo symbol.

Finally, your logo needs to work in black and white as well as color. The color may be important, but the color isn’t the be-all and end-all because your logo is going to be photocopied, it’s going to be faxed, and it likely going to be printed on black and white printers and it needs to hold its own in black and white.


  • Simple Simple logos are easily recognizable. You’d never mistake Apple’s apple for any other fruit, even when zipping past a billboard at 70 miles per hour.
  • Memorable A memorable logo springs to mind at the mere mention of the company name—or, sometimes, even the product. Who doesn’t picture the magnificent golden arches when they hear the words “French fries?”
  • Timeless Graphic designers, art directors, rebranding campaigns… these things cost money—something most small business owners would rather reinvest in their companies in other ways. Timeless logos last for decades. Just consider Coca-Cola’s elegant red script. The mark is virtually the same as it was in 1885.
  • Versatile The best logos, like the Nike swoosh, are equally fantastic in color, grayscale, black and white, or reverse print. They also work well at any size, whether printed on postcards, brochures, flyers, or billboards.
  • Appropriate The best logos “speak” to the appropriate audience, effortlessly melding color, font, and graphics to convey the essence of the brand. The Toys “R” Us logo evokes memories of childish fun, while the Harley-Davidson mark channels a sense of cool.

Here is an example of logo idea sketches.

Here are some examples of logos that were not well thought out: Learn what not to do from these designs:




Task List

  1. Decide whether to create a logo for personal or business branding.  That means using your own name or creating a business or company name.
  2. Create a design idea sketch of at least 3 different ideas with 3-4 iterations each. as in the examples below:201509090838-page-001
  3. Work through a minimum of 1 GIMP tutorial from the provided links below.  You may also choose to view other GIMP tutorials that you find online. If so, please provide me with the link to the video.