Digital Magic 8 Ball hack gives not-so-fuzzy answers

Take control of your destiny with a DIY digital Magic 8 Ball hack that lets you set the answers.

Amanda Kooser
Freelance writer Amanda C. Kooser covers gadgets and tech news with a twist for CNET. When not wallowing in weird gear and iPad apps for cats, she can be found tinkering with her 1956 DeSoto.
Amanda Kooser
Digital Magic 8 Ball
This Magic 8 Ball is a little different. Video screenshot by Amanda Kooser/CNET.

The classic Magic 8 Ball toy has been giving vague answers about the future for many decades. It's about time it got a modern update.

Maker Jason Poel Smith has unveiled an Instructables project that uses a digital photo keychain, a cutting tool, and a lot of glue to create a digital version of the fortune-telling device.

This project has the added bonus of giving you a peek inside the workings of a Magic 8 Ball. There's a lot of plastic to saw through in order to open it up. What you find inside is a tube filled with blue fluid that holds the fortune-telling piece. You don't need that part anymore, since you're going digital.

The rest of the steps involve the installation of the digital photo keychain in place of the tube. You also have to attach some button extenders so the keychain can be triggered from the outside of the ball. Cutting out a USB port gives you access to the keychain for changing the images and recharging the battery.

Smith's end result is the ability to scroll through 60 different fortunes. They can be customized with images, giving you some entertaining alternatives to the usual "Ask again later" and "Most likely" answers.