I returned back from the USA, and amongst other things , I got myself the Bus Pirate.
Here is what it looks like
What is it? Its a bus sniffer.It can sniff and execute arbitrary commands over buses like I2C and SPI, making prototyping very easy.
In itself it is very fragile, and needs some protective covering so that it does not fling all over the place. I saw a few laser cut acrylic cases on the web, and decided to build my own.This is how it looks
Here is a quick guide to building one, and I will post an instructable soon
1) Cut three rectangular pieces of acrylic of size 7.5 cms by 4.5 cms.The bus pirate is 5 cms by 3 cms. Match all edges, file them smooth, and while sandwiching them tight with a bench vise, drill four 3/16" holes at the corners.Make sure you keep enough space, at the edges, so that the acrylic remains intact at the edges.
2) Take the piece in the middle, and cut out a rectangular piece of the size of the bus pirate.
3) Take the topmost piece, and make rectangular slots at the places where the headers come out from the bus pirate.
4) Create slots where the USB mini connector attaches with the bus pirate.
At the end, you should have the three pieces looking like these.
5) You are almost done.Insert the screws in the holes you drilled at the corners, and then file the corners round.Then keep the bus pirate in the second piece and layer the third top piece over it, and tighten the screws.Make sure you do no crush any circuity while tightening the screws.
Here is the final result
Total cost of materials-Under 100 Rupees/$2.This took me about 4 hours to build, and it probably needs a lot more finishing, but it does the job very well.