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Photograph by Sam Murphy

KINETIC REMOTE CONTROL

By Dhananjay V. Gadre

SHAKE THE BATTERIES OUT OF THE PICTURE FOREVER WITH THIS MUSCLE-POWERED INFRARED REMOTE CONTROL.

A TV remote is one of the most commonly used electronic gadgets. We use it without even thinking about it — that is, until the batteries quit.

TV remotes use infrared light for communication with the TV set. Every infrared remote uses AA or AAA batteries to power an infrared LED, controlled by an electronic circuit that beams commands according to the buttons that you press.

This electronic circuit is a very low-power device. Nonetheless, every so often the batteries get drained, ...

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