Inspired by Claude Shannon and Marvin Minsky's Ultimate Machine, the LeaveMeAloneBox is made of a couple of hobby R/C servos, a switch, a microcontroller, and a battery pack, all contained in a little box and with a sprinkling of code. "I get a pretty consistent reaction," says Michael, the guy who made it. "First no one wants to touch it. Next, someone reaches out tentatively and flips the switch. After that, all you hear is laughter and everyone's trying it out." And this is how it reminds me of The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy.

Arthur listened for a short while, but being unable to understand the vast majority of what Ford was saying he began to let his mind wander, trailing his fingers along the edge of an incomprehensible computer bank, he reached out and pressed an invitingly large red button on a nearby panel. The panel lit up with the words Please do not press this button again. He shook himself.

Its slender hands remind me of my childhood ghoulish coffin bank, out of which an emaciated hand would snake, and avariciously grasp my pocket money before returning from whence it came. [LeaveMeAloneBox via MAKE]