Grand Illusions Music Box (Image courtesy Grand Illusions)
By Andrew Liszewski

Sure, it might not have a screen, headphone jack or any electronics at all but I guarantee you’ll never need to replace the batteries on this hand-cranked music box. And instead of digital files that have been DRM’d or copy-protected this music player uses open source strips of paper with strategically punched holes that you’re free to share with friends and family. These ‘Melody Strips’ as they’re called are about 48cm long and as they pass through the player the holes cause different notes or chords to be played.

The player even includes the hole punch and 3 blank Melody Strips allowing you to transfer a few of your favorite songs to this format. And unlike all those other personal music devices on the market this one even includes a song right out of the box. Sure, some might complain that ‘Happy Birthday’ isn’t exactly topping the charts these days but hey, it’s free. I’ve even seen a few forums pop-up where people have been using scissors and scotch tape to put together some very clever mashups. Mark my words, this thing’s gonna be big!

The hand-cranked Music Box Set is available from Grand Illusions for $19.68.

[ Grand Illusions Music Box Set ]