Tetris or treat! Playable pumpkin Tetris haunts Halloween
Forget candy. The coolest treat for Halloween this year is a playable pumpkin Tetris rigged with 128 LED lights.
All right, kid, I'll give you three Snickers, four rolls of Smarties, and five bags of M&Ms if you can beat my pumpkin-Tetris high score. Hacker/squash carver Nathan Pryor has created something a little more elaborate than a candle inside a jack o' lantern. He has a playable pumpkin Tetris.
Pryor carved an impeccable grid into a good-size pumpkin and loaded it with 128 LEDs for the display. He named this glorious triumph of technology over fruit "Pumpktris." Say that five times fast.
A detailed description of all the twists and turns it took to make Pumpktris a reality can be found on Pryor's blog. The process involves some drywall screws, some drilling, and a whole lot of soldering. Let's just say you're not likely to throw this project together the night before Halloween the way you would a ghost costume made from a bed sheet.
A playable pumpkin Tetris game would be awesome no matter what, but Pryor really took it to the limit by making the stem into the controller. It works like a joystick, but is probably extra challenging due to the rough prickles you usually find on pumpkin stems.
Pumpktris took 12 hours of work, 256 pieces of heat-shrink tubing, and 313 solder joints to complete. So far, the top score is 9,800 points. Perhaps Pryor will get around to creating a more portable version in an acorn squash for Thanksgiving.