Tag Archives: DJ Saul

Click your heels three times and call an Uber ride

“There’s no place like home… There’s no place like home… There’s no place like home.” In the American fantasy film Wizard of Oz, Dorothy transports herself back to Kansas by clicking the heels of her ruby slippers three times. Those same three clicks can now transport you home, by way of Uber.


Designed by Maker DJ Saul, Managing Director of Washington-based iStrategyLabs and innovator of the S.E.L.F.I.E. mirror, Dorothy is a physical trigger that can turn a dumb ol’ shoe smart. Adhering to the “if this, then that” principle, the Ruby is an Arduino-based device equipped with a Bluetooth chip, accelerometer and coin cell battery, while its housing is 3D-printed.

The small gadget can be either slipped into or clipped onto any piece of footwear and connected to a smartphone app that will automatically call a cab or send a message.

“Have you ever been stuck in an awkward situation, praying your phone would ring so you could politely extract yourself?  Of course you have,” DJ Saul writes.


That is why the Maker has designed customizable triggers that are activated using three distinct clicks of the heel, which allows a user to escape those seemingly inescapable scenarios. For instance, a user can trigger a call to their phone from a fake boss to escape a bad date, send text messages to a friend with a personalized message and whereabouts, or alert their emergency contact when in danger.

The wearable can also summon an Uber ride. When the onboard accelerometer detects the three clicks, it sends a signal to the connected smartphone via Bluetooth and the action is instantly carried out. Uber then uses the phone’s GPS to know exactly where to send the car.

Though the Ruby currently seems a bit too big to fit comfortably and discreetly in most shoes, iStrategyLabs says the model is only a prototype. The team is currently working on reducing the size significantly as well as exploring the option of building it right into an insole.

Interested in learning more? Click over to iStrategy’s official project page here. Want to see other DJ Saul creations? Click once more here.

Snapping selfies with a magical mirror

iStrategyLabs — a digital agency helmed by Peter Corbett and DJ Saul — recently debuted a new project dubbed “S.E.L.F.I.E.” (aka The Self Enhancing Live Feed Image Engine).

S.E.L.F.I.E allows users to take a hands-free selfie by simply looking at themselves and smiling. Once the hacked device recognizes those pearly whites, hidden LEDs indicate a countdown, then simulate a ‘flash’ as your photo is taken.

The photo is then automatically posted to Twitter (with a corresponding watermark/logo). The best part? You don’t even have to post it to Twitter yourself. #Awesome!

So, how does S.E.L.F.I.E. work? Well, an Apple MacMini behind the two-way mirror powers facial recognition software and related photo-snapping tech.

Meanwhile, an [Atmel based] Arduino controls the LED lights on the front of the display, offering users a visual countdown for the photo.

Interested in learning more? You can check out S.E.L.F.I.E.’s official page here.