Monday, December 29, 2014

Great Giant Wooden Lego men

image of two large wooden lego men
Giant Lego men
 If you don't know of then you need to.  It's an amazing site with instructions on creating or making a range of items.  Whether it's electronics, sewing, cooking, science experiments or interesting effects, Instructables has enough to keep you busy.

I continue to be awed and inspired by some of the makers at Instructables and this is one such project.  Not only is it Lego which is a current big hit in my house post-Christmas, it's wood.  Simon Begg execution of it is gorgeous.   He's a professional wood turner, but obviously also a talented wood crafter as well.

The men were created at a scale of 1:6.25 using Huon pine, Australian red cedar and American walnut.

close picture of lego man head with hand in waving position
Lego man waving

man with beard holding two wooden lego men, one which is holding small plastic lego man
Simon Begg

More pictures and build instructions are available at Instructables or visit Simon's Facebook page for more of his work.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Are Cyclists Fair Game?

Above is the image of the Australian Magazine cover with the headline "Are cyclists fair game?"  

Despite being a pro-cycling article, many have commented that inflammatory headlines such as that continue to drive anger towards cyclists on the road. 

(I did like that one person observed "the one on the cover is a triathlete apparently and inexplicably riding on the wrong side of the road, at night, without lights, and wearing sunglasses")

Unbalanced by a Headline
I just want to get home alive

Friday, May 16, 2014

Cycling and Taking Chances

 Every spring, the debate about cyclists on the street heats up.   This year it was stirred by a column by Wendy Leighton in my local paper.  She proposes that the State's laws are flawed because of some dangerous incidents she recounts, such as "Last summer on Route 231, I was approaching a blind hill with a blind curve when a woman driving a station wagon appeared in my lane, setting the stage for a head-on collision. There was a lone bicyclist on her right. She was over-compensating for the flawed, 3-foot law..."

As one adept rebuttal noted,she never once considers the dangerous action of the vehicle to be the drivers fault, but blames the cyclist and suggests "all the driver of a vehicle has to do is treat the cyclist just as she would any other vehicle"

I weighed in on the debate as I see another side of the issue, which is drivers not giving space to cyclists.  According to State law in Maine requires vehicles to give 3ft  to runners and cyclists on the road (not a suggestion as Leighton says).  However, all too often vehicles are not giving that space and are instead coming extremely close to me as a runner and cyclist, often at high speeds.

I don't believe drivers are considering the consequences of what happens if they misjudge when they're trying to squeeze between me and oncoming traffic.   180 lbs versus 2+tons doesn't have a good outcome for me. 
Arguing against me (and still somehow making my point), a lone commenter "You can pound your fist on the table and demand three feet all day long. The next time you are sitting in your car, look right and attempt to accurately judge three feet. If you are in a car, now try to imagine doing this in a pickup truck, a one ton truck, now a tracker trailer truck."

In a recent article in Australia (where the author is experiencing similar issues), he notes " one seems to have a problem with changing lanes to go around a parked car." which is very accurate.  People go out wide to get around other vehicles and would would never consider driving past a parked car as close and fast they pass runners and cyclists.

While most drivers are respectful and give people space on the road, too many times people choose to cut it very close (like less than a foot close) rather than give me space or slow down for the few seconds which would allow them to safely pass me.   It's great to know that, for those drivers, the risk to my life isn't worth the 10 seconds they'd have to wait.   

Because of the news paper allows only paid subscribers to comment, much of the dialogue about this issue is in multiple letters to the editor. Below is a selection

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Today is Global Accessibility Awareness Day

Today is Global Accessibility Awareness Day.

"Global Accessibility Awareness Day is a community-driven effort whose goal is to dedicate one day to raising the profile of and introducing the topic of digital (web, software, mobile app/device etc.) accessibility and people with different disabilities to the broadest audience possible."

Here's a few resources to start you on better understanding what accessibility is and why it's important.
Web Accessibility WCAG Theme Song (and yes, it's captioned). Transcript via YouTube

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Vinyl Record Glasses from Vinylize

picture of glasses frame made from vinyl record
Vinylize takes old 78 records and turns them into glasses.  I love that you can still see the grooves in from the record on the frame itself.
close up of glasses frames showing groves from the record

Below is a great video of the process and products.

Available for purchase from Vinlize for about 334 euro

via Designboom

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Mesmerizing Submerged Turntable

In this short video, Evan Holm submerges a turntable with great effect. And how he brought the installation to SFMOMA For more work from Evan, visit via Colossal

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Barbarian Superdesk

two people walking toward arch with desk underneath
I love this office structure developed for the Barbarian Group and the use of plywood to create nooks and curves.  There's a great little place to curl up at 1:17.

I also like that they've mixed the seating in these spaces from low desks, high desks with stools as well as comfortable couches/benches.   This variety also lends itself very well to accessibility given the various options for seating.

There does seem to be some missed opportunity for using the structure for recessing lighting as well as shelf space.  As they walk through the video there is only one place that the supports are placed in a way that they're horizontal to the floor (and are actually used as shelving).  

I would be very curious to see the video of how the desk was poured continuously.  It's an amazing feat in itself.

Introducing the Superdesk from The Barbarian Group on Vimeo.

via Core 77

Friday, February 14, 2014

Gherkin Chandelier aka Pickle Light

Close up of glowing pickle
Pickle Light
I have a bit of a thing for pickles and enjoy the many pickle related references and pictures in Richard Scarry stories as well as hiding one in my Christmas Tree.

That being said, I couldn't pass up sharing the video below where  Bompass and Parr have created the first Gherkin Chandelier.  From the video description;
“We always knew there was scientific magic contained within the humble pickle,” says Sam Bompas, one half of the experimental culinary duo, Bompas & Parr. “Everyone is pickling right now, and we were interested in pushing it to the extreme. We knew the time had come to create the world’s first gherkin chandelier.”

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